If there were ever a Thanksgiving that called for 1) easy and 2) extra dessert, this is it. So here’s how to make an easy Thanksgiving charcuterie board.
I honestly can’t believe it’s taken me this long to make my first charcuterie board, but here we are. I bought this wood platter at Home Goods at least a year ago, thinking “ooh! this will be perfect for charcuterie!” And then it sat around, as things sometimes do.
Most of my desserts came from Sprouts. (The beauty of the charcuterie board is that while you certainly could make little treats for it, you can just buy everything you need.)
- Platter (my board is 24 inches long x 11 inches wide)
- Candy corn
- Gumballs or other candy
- Macarons (2 flavors)
- Milano cookies
- Pirouline wafers
- White chocolate coconut rolls
- Lemon meringues
- Mini chocolate cupcakes
- Yogurt covered pretzel knots
- Mini apples
So, what I love about the charcuterie board concept is that you can have a theme AND variety.
Our theme was obviously Thanksgiving, but more specifically, I wanted to highlight the colors of fall leaves. (It’s easy for Thanksgiving desserts to wind up boring brown, even if the flavors are varied and yummy. Trust me.)
Since the idea of giving my family goodies to graze on while they ask how much longer til dinner, I can give them sweets in a bunch of flavors and a few more filling, healthier treats.
But what you want to know is: how do I arrange everything so it looks cute? Here we go.
1 – Start by setting the table where you’ll display your board. Once you have all the goodies set, you won’t want to try to move the board. I picked my kitchen sideboard, and covered the middle with brown kraft paper, set at a jaunty angle. I arranged our glassware, plates, napkins and some candles around the board. I meant to add mini pumpkins, but forgot. Oh well! (Remember: no one at your parties will ever know what you forgot unless you tell them. So don’t!)
2 – Add shallow bowls for your candies, and distance the bowls. I put mine at separate corners of the board.
3 – Add cupcakes toward the middle of the board, and create some vertical interest by arranging them in a snake-y “S” shape.
4 – Hug one side of the cupcake snake with a long mound of yogurt covered pretzels. Fill in one corner with a mound of macroons. (Don’t be afraid to pile your treats on top of each other, as long as they won’t wind up squished.)
5 – Hug the opposite side of the cupcakes with a pile of meringues. Fill in the narrow space between the bowl of candy corn and the meringues with the Piroulines. Add apples to another corner. (As you choose what to place where, think about contrasting shapes and colors.)
6 – Fill in gaps with macarons, coconut rolls and a small bowl of walnuts.
7 – Milanos are great for the remaining narrow spaces you need to fill. They’re also a good choice because they are a sturdy cookie.
When you choose your treats, it’s helpful to have:
- A variety of sizes and shapes, including smaller items and long narrow options
- Desserts that are sturdy and won’t easily crumble. This will make it easier to pile your treats (and keep your board from looking flat)
- A variety of flavors and colors
- Colors that illustrate your party theme
Are you in love with charcuterie boards, too?