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How to Make the Ultimate Holiday Charcuterie Board

The holiday season is the perfect time to pull out the ultimate charcuterie board for large crowds. You may have a wine pairing or simply want to tide your guests over until the full meal is ready.

But how do you make the ultimate holiday charcuterie board? I’ll show you how, and you can make it or change it up to create your own.

The Perfect Charcuterie Board

A charcuterie board with dessert and fruit on it.

Most charcuterie boards have an array of hard cheese, soft cheese, or blue cheese, along with plenty of cured meats.

You can make them sweet, savory, or both.

With fresh fruit, sweet dips, and nuts, this one’s got a little bit of everything on it, inviting everyone to mix and match and make their own combinations of flavors to create the perfect board.

Add some sweet and salty chocolatey Christmas pretzels to the board.

Dipping an apple into caramel. There are apples and crackers around the bowl.

Ingredients for an Amazing Charcuterie Board

You’ll need a large wooden board to set everything on for this fun spin on your charcuterie. You’ll also need some ramekins or bowls in medium and small sizes. Candy apple sticks will allow everything to spear what they want to eat.

As for the ingredients, here’s what you’ll need:

  • Honeycrisp apples
  • Granny Smith apples
  • Caramel sauce
  • Chocolate sauce or hot fudge
  • Cream cheese dip
  • Sprinkles
  • Chopped peanuts
  • Chopped pecans
  • Toasted coconut flakes
  • Crushed pretzels
  • Mini chocolate chips
  • Heath bits
  • Crushed Oreos
  • Mini marshmallows
  • Caramels
  • Cookies (like Vanilla Wafers or Ginger Snaps)

Full printable recipe with measurements and instructions listed at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.

How to Make This Charcuterie Board Recipe

Ingredients for a charcuterie board.

Gather your ingredients for the dessert board.

Cream cheese dip in a clear glass bowl.

When you’re ready to build your charcuterie board, you will start by making the cream cheese dip. It’s super simple…just beat the whipped cream cheese, powdered sugar, Greek yogurt, honey, and lemon together using your hand mixer until it’s light and fluffy.

This generally takes about 3 minutes to get that perfect texture.

Different types of dips on the counter. There are also sprinkles, marshmallows, chocolate chips, nuts, and more on the counter in small bowls.

You can assemble your charcuterie board once the cream cheese dip is ready.

Start by filling the medium-sized ramekins with caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, and cream cheese dip and set them on the wooden board.

You’ll then fill the small ramekins with your toppings – sprinkles, chopped nuts, coconut flakes, crushed pretzels, Heath bits, crushed Oreos, and mini chocolate chips. Set these small bowls around the board.

Ingredients in bowls on a charcuterie board.

Slice your apples, then place them around the bowls. You can artfully arrange the apple slices. 

Now, you’ll want to fill the gaps on the board with your caramels, marshmallows, and cookies. Tuck the candy apple sticks into a holder and set them nearby with small plates and holiday season napkins to let everyone serve themselves. 

Caramel apple charcuterie board.

Recipe Tips for the Best Charcuterie Board

  • Don’t forget that building a charcuterie board is easiest when you work your way from the board’s interior to the exterior. 
  • Feel free to swap your favorite nuts for the peanuts and pecans. You could use walnuts, shelled pistachios, Marcona almonds, or even macadamia nuts. You can also swap out some of the toppings for other items and choose your favorite cookies. There’s nothing like going over the top and baking your own cookies (and I have plenty of recipes you can use for that!).
  • Pomegranate seeds can add a pretty pop of color and bring in more of a fall feeling. Seasonal fruits are always a great element to add to your charcuterie board, whether it’s a sweet or savory creation.
  • While this charcuterie board is a sweet treat, if you’re in the mood for savory, why not build a traditional version to serve, too? It’s a great idea if you’re hosting a party. I love charcuterie boards because everyone can easily mingle and grab little bites of what they like. 
  • You could make a cheese platter with different types of cheeses. Serve it with crusty bread and wine pairings. Or mix it up on your large board with a variety of meats. Just use the same principles for creating your charcuterie board to make it visually appealing. In doing so, you will always have the perfect balance and the ultimate charcuterie board.
  • Add different varieties of wine on the side, such as Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, or some Merlot.
Charcuterie board with dips and candies.

Optional Ingredients

You can easily switch out items for your charcuterie board. You don’t have to make it all sweet or savory. Here are a few ideas:

  • Fig jam
  • Savory meats like pepperoni, Genoa salami, ham, etc.
  • Creamy goat cheese
  • Slices of sharp cheddar
  • Fresh mozzarella balls with fresh herbs
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Greek olives
  • Brie cheese
  • A selection of crackers
  • And so much more! The possibilities are endless for your charcuterie plate.
  • Brown sugar fruit dip from Six Sisters’ Stuff
Charcuterie board with marshmallows, dips, and candy.

How to Make the Ultimate Holiday Charcuterie Board

A charcuterie board is truly a blank canvas that you can paint with various foods. Whether you serve it with just cheese, meat, and cheese or make a sweet option like in this recipe, it’s all about being creative.

Keeping the balance in flavors is important, too. At your next party, be sure to serve this conversation starter for a dessert grazing station!

The visual appeal of a charcuterie board is a great way to express some art while making plenty of great options for snacking.

A full charcuterie board with apples, dips, marshmallows, and more.

How to Make the Ultimate Holiday Charcuterie Board

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Create the perfect holiday charcuterie board with our expert tips and ideas. Impress guests with a festive platter of cheeses, meats, and more.

Ingredients

  • All of the measurements for the apples, caramels, etc. are based on your need. You can buy as many or as little as you'd like.

Cream Cheese Dip

  • 1 (8 ounce) container plain whipped cream cheese
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon lemon

Additions

  • 2 Honeycrisp apples, sliced
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, sliced
  • 15 ounces caramel sauce
  • 15 ounces chocolate sauce (hot fudge)

For the Toppings:

  • Sprinkles
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup toasted coconut flakes
  • 1 cup crushed pretzels
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 cup Heath bits
  • 1 cup crushed Oreos

Extras

  • 13 ounces Caramels
  • 10 ounces mini marshmallows
  • 1 box cookies of choice (I used vanilla wafers and ginger snaps)

Tools

  • Large wood board
  • Ramekins or bowls (medium and small)
  • Candy apple sticks

Instructions

Cream Cheese Dip

  1. To make the cream cheese dip, beat all the ingredients with a hand mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. 

Charcuterie Board

  1. To assemble the charcuterie board, fill medium ramekins or bowls with the caramel sauce, chocolate sauce, and cream cheese dip and place on a large cutting board or serving tray.
  2. Place the sliced apples around the bowls.
  3. Fill small ramekins or bowls with the toppings and place them on the board.
  4. Fill in the gaps with caramels, marshmallows, and cookies.
  5. Serve with candy apple sticks to dip.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 928Total Fat: 30gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 505mgCarbohydrates: 163gFiber: 8gSugar: 127gProtein: 12g

Nutrition is approximate.

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