A holiday cheese board is a must for any festive occasion. This appetizer has several different kinds of cheese to try along with a variety of fruit and crackers.
A holiday cheese board is easy to make and can be prepared in advance so you can focus on more important tasks the day of the party. This is a great fall and winter appetizer or side dish. The weather is not too hot to enjoy cheese, and you can offer lots of food and drink pairings for guests to experiment with. Everyone will be excited for one of these boards before you bring out your Instant Pot Pot Roast for dinner!
When you offer gluten free crackers or baguettes, there are options to suit everyone at the gathering. Offer your guests this elegant charcuterie platter before your next holiday dinner.
How do you make a holiday cheese board?
A cheese platter appetizer is a great way to get all the tastes of the winter season in one giant plate.
You can vary your ingredients, but follow this basic plan:
- Four different kinds of cheese
- Crackers (gluten free and regular)
- Fruit (grapes, blueberries, apples, pomegranate seeds, olives)
- Jam (I personally love raspberry)
- Garnish like fresh rosemary
How much cheese should I include?
For this holiday cheese board, it is just one of a number of dishes that will be available to your guests. Since it is intended as an appetizer, you should plan three to four ounces of cheese per person.
Four types of cheese is enough to get a good variety. These are the cheese I use on this platter:
- Aged cheddar is a rich, full-bodied hard cheese. Cheddar becomes sharper the longer it ages. Cut it in cubes so it is easy to identify.
- Brie is a soft cow’s-milk French cheese that is very creamy with a buttery taste. You can use a traditional brie or find one that is covered in nuts, herbs or peppers.
- Smoked gouda has been smoked in brick ovens over hickory chips. That gives it a brown rind and creamy yellow interior.
- Boursin is creamy and slightly crumbly. It looks very similar to cream cheese and would be served whole so guests can use a knife to spread it on other items.
However, I love using as much cheese as possible because who doesn’t love cheese. I try to fit as many as I can into a large board. Also, if you’re going over to a friend’s for the holiday, a board is such a great hostess gift! Need more ideas? Check out my Gift Guide for the Home Cooks, Holiday Gift Guide For Healthy Foodies, Holiday Gift Guide for Foodies Under $15, or any of these handy kitchen tools!
What do you drink with a holiday cheese board?
Having this cheese platter available to guests while they are mingling and awiting the main course is a great idea. Items on this dish are portable and not messy. It’s easy to socialize while nibbling a piece of cheese.
You’ll want to offer some beverages to go with it as well. Try some of these adult only or family friendly drinks:
- Wine is always a popular choice with cheese. A crisp white or a light red pairs best with cheese.
- A lager for beer drinkers
- Gin and tonic
- Oolong tea
- Citrus flavored sodas
Another Cheese Board Recipe to try:
More Holidays Side Dishes:
- Easy Roasted Turkey Leg
- Garlic Butter Turkey Breast Recipe
- Cranberry Orange Sauce
- Potatoes au Gratin
- Gluten Free Cornbread Recipe
- Aged cheddar cut in cubes
- Brie any kind you prefer.
- Smoked Gouda sliced
Crackers and Crostini
- Gruten-free crackers
- Low-carb crackers
- Regular crackers optional
Fruits and others
- Red grapes
- Green grapes
- Red apple sliced
- Pomegranate seeds
- Black olives
- Raspberry jam
- Fresh rosemary for garnish
- Start by placing a variety of cheeses on different corners of the wood board, platter, marble board or baking sheet.
- Next, arrange sliced crackers near the cheese and then place on the board items in containers like bowls of olives and small jars of jam.
- Add fruits like sliced apples, grapes, and so on, filling up the board.
- Fill in empty spaces with smaller fruits like berries and pomegranate seeds. Enjoy!
- Use this list as a general guide. These are the ingredients we used to build this exact cheese plate, but don’t be afraid to mix it up using your favorite snacks and cheeses or anything you have on hand!
- Make sure everything is cut up into bite-sized pieces so your guests do not struggle when serving themselves.
- Always give the fruit a good rinse before patting dry and serving them.
- To store: Store leftovers in separate airtight containers in the fridge.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.