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When you think about a charcuterie board, your mind probably wanders primarily to meats and cheeses. Traditionally, charcuterie boards are composed of a variety of these items, along with spreads, dips, and cheeses. Vegetables and fruit do occasionally make an appearance on a charcuterie board, but they’re rarely the main event.
But why shouldn’t they be? Who says you can’t put together a fruit and veggie charcuterie board or a fruit and cheese charcuterie board in which berries, apples, and citrus get to take center stage?
A fruit charcuterie board might just change the way you enjoy both fruit and charcuterie. If you’re not sure where to start, read on! You’ll get the scoop on the best charcuterie board fruit and ideas that will inspire you to assemble dreamy fruit charcuterie boards to enjoy on your own, with a smaller group, or even at a big party or event.
Best Fruit for Charcuterie
Now that your wheels are turning about the possibility of creating a fruit charcuterie board, you’re probably asking yourself, “What’s the best fruit for charcuterie?” There isn’t one right answer, though there are a few factors you might consider when choosing fruit for your board.
First thing’s first: What fruit do you (and your guests) like the best? After all, if you don’t actually enjoy the options available on your charcuterie board, it doesn’t really matter how it looks. Start planning out your fruit charcuterie board by making a list—mental or otherwise—of your favorite fruits.
From there, think about which of those fruits are in season. If you’re into food photography, it also doesn’t hurt to consider which ones will look the most aesthetically pleasing. (It’s social media’s world and we’re just living in it.)
Here are a few fruits to add to your fruit charcuterie, along with some tips to help you serve them.
Pineapples offer a tropical twist and perfect pop of color to your charcuterie—and once you’ve learned the basics of slicing a pineapple, you can chop it into any size or shape you’d like. Cubes, slices, spears… you can even use cookie cutters to incorporate fun shapes.
Cubes or wedges of watermelon are a perfect addition to a fruit charcuterie board. In fact, the only way to serve this fruit in a more fun way is to create a 3D watermelon arrangement. If that sounds overwhelming, don’t worry—putting watermelon on your charcuterie in any form is bound to be a crowd-pleaser.
Grapes are a regular addition to standard charcuterie boards of the meat and cheese variety, so they should definitely make an appearance on your fruit board. Choose green or red grapes or a mix of the two depending on the overall aesthetic you’re going for.
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries… pick your favorite or mix up a variety and spread them across your charcuterie board.
Slices of cantaloupe or honeydew will look right at home on your fruit charcuterie board. They also add a beautiful pop color and can be fanned out on your platter.
Practice Arranging Fruit
Fruit Arrangement Workshop: How to Finish a Tropical Watermelon
Kiwi might not be as ubiquitous as some of the other fruits on this list, which means people will be very excited to see them in your fruit charcuterie. Slice them and place them around your serving dish or board.
If you anticipate your guests eating your charcuterie pretty quickly, you can’t go wrong by including apples slices in the selection. The only downside is that if they sit out for too long, they’ll turn brown.
Bright and colorful, juicy and flavorful, orange slices are sure to be a crowd-pleaser on your board.
Change up the texture of the fresh fruit by adding dried apricots, figs, and prunes as accents.
Fruit Charcuterie Board Ideas
Now that you have a clearer picture of the many fruit options that can find a home on your fruit charcuterie board, let’s consider a few other ideas to help you make the most of this kind of dish.
Create a Cheese and Fruit Board
Just because this version of charcuterie isn’t focused on meat and cheese, doesn’t mean you have to do away with the cheese entirely. Fruit and cheese charcuterie boards are a delightful option. Gouda, manchego, brie, parmesan, and blue cheese all pair especially well with fruit in both flavor and texture.
Serve Fruits and Veggies Together
Vegetables are also more than welcome on this kind of charcuterie board. A fruit and veggie charcuterie board might include vegetables like cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, celery, zucchini, carrots, yellow squash, and cauliflower. The combination of colors, shapes, and textures will make for some incredibly beautiful charcuterie, not to mention a wide variety of options for any vegetarian friends!
Make a Fruit and Dessert Board
You’re probably familiar with fruit as a guest star in many of your favorite desserts, including pies, tarts, and cakes. You can skip the preparation and baking process by making a fruit and dessert charcuterie board instead! Arrange your favorite fruit on a board with sweet treats like cookies, brownies, candy, and biscotti. It’s the perfect thing to serve for an evening gathering or holiday party.
Put a fun twist on the raw fruit you’re serving by preparing a dip. Fruit dips are typically made of some combination of sour cream, cream cheese, yogurt, or whipped cream and an extra zing of flavor, such as orange zest, lemon zest, or lime zest. This recipe for cream cheese fruit dip from My Baking Addiction is a good place to start.
Don’t Forget the Crackers or Bread!
Most charcuterie boards come equipped with some combination of crackers, breadsticks, or bread slices. Why shouldn’t a fruit charcuterie have the same? Crackers will help cut the sweetness of all the fruit and are especially well-suited for boards that also include veggies or cheese.
Let Your Charcuterie Creativity Fly
Obviously, the days of boring charcuterie are well behind us. With fruit as your starting point, there are so many ways for you and your loved ones to charcuterie.
Take Beautiful Photos of Your Fruit Charcuterie Board
iPhone Food Photography: Styling & Shooting for Instagram