Charcuterie Definition & More! – Build the Best Boards

Charcuterie Definition & More!

~How to Make the Best Board!~


What is the charcuterie definition? And why is summer time the season of charcuterie boards? Well, first issues first. Let’s assessment the charcuterie definition since you WANT to get on ‘board’ with this social media craze. Then, you too would be the one posting stunning photos of your meat, fruit and cheese spreads. So right now’s weblog is not going to solely outline charcuterie, but additionally give 5 methods to get inventive with cool, distinctive (and wholesome) charcuterie boards. These vibrant spreads could be loved as an entertaining appetizer and even as a nutritionally balanced meal.


This publish was sponsored by the Egg Farmers of Ontario, as at all times, all opinions are real.


What is the Charcuterie Definition? 

Noun: Charcuterie describes chilly cooked meats; with French origin from ‘char’ which means meat and ‘cuite’ for cooked.

Historically, charcuterie referred to pork merchandise (pate, bacon, sausage, ham, terrines). The fashionable charcuterie definition has expanded to incorporate different sources of protein reminiscent of hen and duck. Plus, a wide range of different meals reminiscent of cheese, crackers, olives, fruit, and so on. have been added. 

Pronounced: char·cu·ter·ie


andrea charcuterieandrea charcuterie                               

My Charcuterie Definition: 

Putting an array of vibrant meals, protein sources and carbohydrates on a wood board or platter for human consumption. These could be loved as an appetizer or an entire meal.  


Charcuterie BoardCharcuterie Board


Now, that the charcuterie definition, let’s ‘cut’ into find out how to make the perfect boards!


What you’ll Need in your Charcuterie Board:

  • Wooden board for arranging meals: A deal with on the board is useful for serving and carrying. Use a platter or marble slab, for those who choose. 
  • Variety of small bowls for putting dips, mustard or small fruits or veggies. Additionally, use measuring cups for a cool, classy-looking ingredient holder. With small bowls, go for a wide range of colors, sizes, shapes and supplies. 
  • Utensils: You will want some knives for chopping cheese or spoons for scooping pate or dips. Forks or toothpicks are additionally useful for transferring substances from the board onto your plate.





5 Tips for Building Charcuterie Boards: 

1. Colour is Key

What makes a charcuterie board stunning is seeing an array of colors! When constructing your board, entertain the attention by including at the least three colors with fruits and distinctive, vibrant veggies. Place colors in several areas to spotlight sections of the board.


Colourful CharcuterieColourful Charcuterie

Add an array of colors in your charcuterie board!


Without a doubt, vibrant meals create visible curiosity and enchantment. Offering veggies at meals (or appetizers) and displaying them fantastically encourages consumption. Another technique for constructing vibrant charcuterie boards is chopping veggies into completely different shapes – small items, sticks or thinly sliced. You can then place these beside a dip since analysis helps dips improve veggie consumption. 









Examples of Colourful Charcuterie Board Foods:

  • Strawberries or raspberries 
  • Cherries (plus a tiny bowl for pits)
  • Blackberries or blueberries 
  • Sliced apples with peel 
  • Roasted peppers or uncooked pepper strips
  • Cherry tomatoes or heirloom tomatoes
  • Garnishes (arugula, cabbage leaves or endive for holding substances)


TIP: Aim for at the least Three colors in your Charcuterie Board. Go for sensible hues and also you’ll by no means have a bland-looking board! Try to incorporate veggies on half your board (as you’ll with meals). 


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2. Mix Up Your Proteins

The charcuterie definition historically refers to cooked meats; nevertheless, don’t let that restrict you. Instead, assume exterior “customary” protein sources. This permits your charcuterie board to incorporate choices reminiscent of hard-cooked eggs, beans or legumes, fish pate, and distinctive nuts/seeds. To be clear, we don’t have to shrink back from having fun with meat or cheese, simply increase the protein potentialities.










Charcuterie Board Protein Tip: Choose at the least two to a few completely different protein choices in your board and at the least 5 choices if entertaining a gaggle. 


Think Outside the Carton: 

Just not too long ago, I used to be placing collectively a lunch charcuterie board and was in search of distinctive, wholesome protein choices. Luckily, I at all times have hard-cooked eggs within the fridge and felt impressed to incorporate them on my board! After all, eggs are an superior supply of full protein with 6 grams per egg and solely 70 energy. They’re additionally wealthy in 14 important minerals reminiscent of choline for the mind and lutein for eyes. Additionally, Ontario eggs go from the farm to the grocery retailer in solely four to 7 days – scrumptious and at all times contemporary!

For my lunchtime Charcuterie Board, I slice hard-cooked eggs into cash and fan them for simple scooping. 


eggs canvaeggs canva


If you might be into meal prepping, remember to put apart about 10 minutes to hard-cook your eggs. Finally, you probably have by no means hard-cooked eggs, right here’s my no-fail recipe that may go away you with a velvety yolk each time. Additionally, you’ll be able to high your eggs with contemporary chives or dill for added color. 



Devilled eggs are one other means to make use of your hard-cooked eggs. They’re at all times a pleasant crowd-pleaser for an appetizer or meal charcuterie board. 


Legumes or Beans? 

When planning proteins in your charcuterie board, why not embody beans and/or legumes? These heart-healthy additions are filled with fibre (about eight grams per half cup), protein (about 9 grams per half cup) together with minerals reminiscent of iron, potassium, magnesium, and folate. Beans are additionally very economical (click on right here to avoid wasting in your groceries with inspiration from my Cheap, Healthy Meals weblog publish).


Iupini beansIupini beans

Do the well being advantages lupini beans present? Click right here to study extra and take into account together with them in your subsequent charcuterie board!


My Italian-Style Romano Beans are a preferred Three-ingredient recipe and have a fibre increase that retains you feeling full after your meal. Additionally, analysis helps that meals wealthy in fibre assist us really feel full for longer and lowers ldl cholesterol, blood strain, and promotes bowel regularity. 

A small bowl of roasted chickpeas can be a heart-healthy protein addition: 

Thyme Roasted ChickpeasThyme Roasted Chickpeas

Looking for a coronary heart wholesome snack? Check out Andrea’s scrumptious Thyme Roasted Chickpeas.


Charcuterie Protein Ideas (select 2 or Three choices):

  • Romano beans or bean salad.
  • Hard-boiled eggs.
  • Lupini beans.
  • Cheese – laborious cheese, mushy cheese, robust-flavored, spicy, and so on. I like supporting native with MountainOak gouda. They have award-winning cheese in all kinds of flavours (Smoked, GOLD and Wild Nettle are my favourites). Other charcuterie cheeses embody Swiss, bocconcini, brie, and jalapeño cheddar.
  • Unsalted, roasted nuts, and seeds (almonds, cashews, or pistachios).
  • Salami or cured meats like prosciutto.
  • Smoked salmon antojitos or smoked salmon cucumber bites.
  • Salmon/shrimp/crab pate.
  • Yogurt or cottage cheese.
  • Devilled eggs.



smoked salmon cucumber bitessmoked salmon cucumber bites

Smoked Salmon on Cucumber Bites from the Entertaining Eats weblog!


Dietitian Tip: Use your fridge as inspiration when planning your charcuterie board. This helps you narrow down on meals waste too!



Three. Count on Some Carbs!

Now that you’ve got a wide range of vibrant meals and a pair completely different proteins in your charcuterie board, let’s guarantee you might have carbohydrates. After all, carbs are our physique’s most well-liked supply of vitality/gas and a significant a part of a nutritionally balanced meal. Additionally, they’re NOT unhealthy (please learn my weblog publish In Defense of Carbs: Stop the Hating for those who concern carbs).

carbohydrate canvacarbohydrate canva


Nevertheless, carb sources are vital on a charcuterie board to maintain us feeling full and glad. We wish to select “complex carbs” extra typically, which seek advice from much less processed choices with larger fibre and vitamin/mineral content material. Carbs additionally gas our muscular tissues for bodily exercise and assist brainpower. Additionally, individuals love having crackers with their cheese or dips, so together with them as an possibility in your board is a assured technique to please visitors!


Charcuterie Board Carbohydrates Examples: 

  • Whole-grain crackers (go for larger fibre and low salt when attainable).
  • Pita chips or baguette bites (these could be do-it-yourself or store-bought).
  • Fruits (technically a carb supply regardless that they’re additionally included above as colouful meals).
  • Toast – best for simple lunch boards. 
  • Pretzels (may even have do-it-yourself pretzel bites).
  • Dried fruits (apricots, prunes, dates).
  • Breadsticks or melba toast.


TIP: Choose 2 to four completely different carbohydrate sources in your board and add them on the finish to fill empty areas in your board. 




four. Dips, Sauces, and Spreads

What’s a charcuterie board with out dips, sauces or spreads? Go for a range with at the least two dips for meals and extra choices if entertaining. Dips make every little thing extra thrilling! Those crackers and veggie sticks develop into autos for dip consumption. Not to say, dips are an inevitable crowd-pleaser. Who isn’t impressed with a do-it-yourself (or store-bought) Tzatziki or a beet hummus on a charcuterie board? Finally, remember to use your small bowls, measuring cups, or lids to show your fancy dips to visitors. 


dips sauces charcuteriedips sauces charcuterie

Dips are a enjoyable means to boost any charcuterie board! Try together with a Tzatziki sauce or a beet hummus in your subsequent board.


Here are some dip, sauces or unfold concepts:

  • Hummus
  • Grainy mustards
  • Jellies or jams (fig jam or habanero pepper jelly) 
  • Yogurt or cottage cheese
  • Salmon pate or smoked salmon
  • Bruschetta combine
  • Caramelized onion French dip
  • Salsa
  • Tzatziki
  • Spinach and artichoke dip 
  • Pickled eggplant (common amongst my Italian family) 
  • Walnut Lime Pesto


charcuterie canvacharcuterie canva


TIP: Need some enjoyable new meal concepts? Try a charcuterie-style lunch! This is a inventive various to a standard sandwich and could be put right into a bento field to take pleasure in a wide range of tasty meals on the go.



5. Expand Charcuterie Definition with Theme!

Finally, carry your charcuterie board along with a theme. You actually don’t want to have a theme, but it surely positive add creativity. If you might have a vibrant board, a wide range of proteins, and carbs with some dips you WILL have a scrumptious and nutritionally balanced board. 



Expand Charcuterie Definition with Themes:

Breakfast Charcuterie Board

Lunch Board 

charcuterie eggs sausage pepperscharcuterie eggs sausage peppers

Cheese Board

Veggie Board 

  • Blanched asparagus (put in boiling water for one minute after which into an ice bathtub), snap peas, cucumbers sprinkled with little Kosher salt, radicchio, Greek Yogurt Tzatziki Dip, whole-grain crackers, olives, and Lupini beans. 

German Board 

  • Pretzels, summer time sausage, roasted or fried potato balls, rosemary sprigs, carrots, sausage in cash with toothpicks, pickles, apple slices and sauerkraut. 

Italian Board

  • Genoa salami, olives, prosciutto, Italian parsley, crusty bread, bocconcini, radicchio, cherries, grapes, grilled artichokes, eggplant, and bruschetta combine.

Pizza Board 

  • Pepperoni items on sticks, black olives, crackers, sliced peppers, mozzarella cheese cubes, roasted pink peppers, mushrooms, contemporary basil, tomatoes, and marinara dipping sauce. 

Dessert Board

  • Mini chocolate squares, strawberries, fruit, cherries, pretzel sticks, caramel dips, yogurt dip, bite-sized brownies, nuts, and prunes/apricots. 

Go Local Board 

  • See what’s on the native farmer’s market – radishes, carrots, beans, go together with what is accessible! Be positive so as to add completely different colors, a pair proteins, a carb supply, and perhaps one thing to dip. Here’s what’s in season in Spring, Summer, and Fall!

Peanut Butter Board

  • Sliced banana, mini toasts/waffles, peanut butter in bowl, chocolate chips, pretzel sticks, strawberries, celery, whole-grain crackers and yogurt. 

Under The Sea Board

  • Salmon pate, cucumbers, shrimp cocktail, Smoked Salmon Antojitos, rice crackers, seaweed salad, sliced peppers, olives and cheese cubes. 














Bottom Line:

Summer is the season of charcuterie boards! But actually, a charcuterie board in any season will inevitably impress a crowd or make for an awesome meal. Charcuterie historically refers to cooked meats however the potentialities with these versatile boards are infinite. Remember, tips (or concepts) function inspiration however there aren’t any “rules” for charcuterie boards. Anything goes! This means, you may make it your individual. Additionally, change it up through the use of non-traditional substances – like eggs or beans. You may also take it up a notch by arising with a charcuterie board theme. Finally, remember to dissipate vibrant substances and substances in your fridge for inspiration. 


charcuterie grapes cheesecharcuterie grapes cheese


Now it’s your flip! What’s your definition of a very good charcuterie board? Do you make vibrant boards? What charcuterie substances are your favorite?  


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