Admittedly, I discovered charcuterie platters for dinner out of laziness. If I’m being honest, sometimes I just don’t want to cook (or do dishes)! Especially in the summer or busy holiday seasons.
I discovered that a charcuterie platter can be as simple or complicated of a meal as you would like, using a wide variety of meats, cheese, pickles, veggies, fruits, nuts, and spreads.
For a small platter for two, you can simply use a large dinner plate. For a larger gathering, find a beautiful platter or wooden cutting board.
Then, simply make small piles of each food in various places. For smaller or messier items like capers and cranberry sauce, use a small ramekin.
Below is a list of food items to consider when assembling your platter. Most of these can be found at your local grocery store. If you’re lucky enough to have a specialty foods store like Bayleaf, as we do on Whidbey Island, shop there for some harder-to-find scrumptious options.
And, of course, pair it with your favorite Dry Farm Wine!
This is so delicious, so fun and so easy. And, hardly any dishes to wash!
How to make a paleo charcuterie board
Charcuterie boards typically feature non-paleo items like (wheat) bread, crackers, cow-derived dairy, and jams ridden with added sugars. Luckily, it is very easy to make a charcuterie board that is paleo, and you can even make them keto and low-carb friendly!
One of the easiest ways you can make your charcuterie board both paleo and keto-friendly is by simply skipping any item that has grains or added sugars. For a paleo platter, you can add paleo-friendly crackers that are made with almond flour, or chips made from crisped veggies like beets and sweet potatoes. You can also swap jams and jellies with added sugars for fresh fruit or homemade or no-sugar-added spreads.
Another conflict that people following the paleo lifestyle may have with charcuterie boards is that they often center around a variety of cow milk cheeses. You can avoid this by swapping cow milk cheese for goat or sheep cheese or to keep it completely dairy-free, you can look into vegan nut-based cheeses.
Ingredients and ideas for the perfect paleo charcuterie board
- Olives (baked, if you like them warm and luxurious!)
- Goat or sheep cheese (for those consuming dairy)
- Grain free crackers
- Grain free crostini
- All varieties of sliced cured meats. (For a non-refrigerated option try Niman Ranch products. Also, a great product for road trips!)
- Fermented or pickled veggies, such as cauliflower, sauerkraut, kimchi
- Primal Island cranberry sauce (on top of a cracker with goat cheese-heaven!)
- Grilled artichokes (you can typically find these in a glass jar)
- Marcona almonds, or any nuts you like (try warmed in the oven or a skillet)
- Avocado slices (I put avocado slices in my cured meat and roll it up like a burrito)
- Special mustards
- Sliced veggies
- Berries for a lower carb fruit option
- Toasted pumpkin seeds
- Artichoke dip
- Roasted garlic
- And, of course the darkest chocolate bar you can find for a bite of dessert
The best meats for a paleo charcuterie board
Not all cured meats are created equal, so you may be wondering what the best types are for your charcuterie board. Buying locally farmed, humanely raised meat is the best way to ensure your meat will be both delicious and paleo-friendly.
If you are buying non-local meats, make sure that you check the ingredients panel for hidden sugars.
Local cured meats can be expensive, but don’t be afraid to splurge on something special. Quality makes all of the difference when you are eating something so simple!
Making charcuterie boards for holidays and parties
Charcuterie boards are extremely popular for parties and holidays alike. Serve a charcuterie platter at your next cocktail hour, or as an appetizer on Thanksgiving day.
If you are making a platter for a cocktail party, keep in mind that you will want it to be as mess-free as possible. Make sure that everything is individually portioned — for example, if you are serving cheese, make sure that it is pre-sliced so that people can grab a cube and go.
For holiday spreads, consider adding in seasonal flavors. Toasted nuts and cranberry sauce are a great option for autumn and winter holidays, and fresh berries and fruits are perfect for a 4th of July barbeque.