This post was written in partnership with The Anders Collective. Be sure to read all the way through for a chance to win one of their beautiful charcuterie boards!
There’s something about the casual vibe of serving a cheese board that feels so comfortable. It doesn’t need to be perfect and there really is no “wrong” way to build it.
One thing I often think about cheese board photos online – they can be a little intimidating at first. Since I’m all about making things simpler (without sacrificing quality or flavor), today I’m sharing my top four tips to build a better cheese board, no obscure ingredients required.
Start with a Beautiful Platter
I’ll always be on “board” (sorry) with using whatever you have available to make a cheese board. You can transform anything from a standard dinner plate, to a stained sheet pan into a serving vehicle. But let me tell you, a beautiful board sure makes it feel fancy, especially if you’re serving this for a special occasion.
Clearly I was thrilled when I met Luisa Ellis of The Anders Collective. She and her husband Brent own a local woodworking business and create these insanely gorgeous charcuterie boards. They also sell them at the farmer’s market I visit on the weekends. Partnership waiting to happen?
This one is “The Bennett” and not only is it a beautiful dark color, it’s the perfect size for a smallish cheese board and can double as a piece of kitchen decor. Read until the end to find out how you can win one!
Include Interesting Dips & Spreads
While the food star of your board will clearly be the cheese, adding a homemade or store-bought dip or relish can be a great way to make things more interesting. Bonus: many of these make an excellent pairing. Use this guide to learn more about which flavors to combine with each variation of cheese on your board!
Regardless of where you live or where you buy your groceries, you’ll likely have access to most of these items. A good rule of thumb: choose two.
- Jam or preserves (mix it up with a spicy variety like this Colorado Whiskey Peach from Red Camper).
- Hummus (consider colors and how it will “match” with the rest of your tray)
- Pesto (homemade or store-bought)
- Course grain mustard
- Creamy dips and spreads (I love Blue Moose for these)
Add Dimension with Bowls & Breadsticks
When arranging your board, add dimension to make it more visually appealing. I think it works well to include at least one cracker (preferably mild-flavored, like these sea salt almond flour crackers from Simple Mills) and something more out-of-the-box like a breadstick.
- Breadsticks are a fun addition to any board and act as a barrier between items if “lying down” or add height if you stand them up in a glass.
- Use small sauce dishes for anything wet like pickles, olives or relish. This way the flavors won’t run into everything they touch.
- Stack items to fill in gaps.
Garnish with Fresh Herbs & Flowers
Herbs add a pop of color while also providing contrast and something “fresh” to your board. Here are a few to try based on the season:
- Summer: dill, mint
- Fall/Winter: rosemary (perfect for holiday time), sage
- Spring: basil, edible flowers (!)
Another option is to add seasonal fruit and/or some colorful vegetables for contrast.
Now for the exciting part. You have a chance to win an amazing entertaining-themed prize including the following:
- The beautiful charcuterie board pictured above (food not included 😉)
- $25 gift card to Whole Foods Market so you can splurge on some cheese and other fun things to build an awesome board for your next get-together (or just for yourself). note: If you don’t have access to a WFM, we’ll figure something else out!
- One cream-colored bowl and a decorative towel from Dwell Antiques, perfect for adding extra flair to your spread.
Head over to Instagram and follow the instructions in today’s post to enter.