Photo Tips: How I Build The Perfect Charcuterie Board for the Holidays

  Posted by - December 14, 2018 - Uncategorized

Nothing gets me more excited than a bomb ass charcuterie board and an epic photo op! I mean… how amazing does this look??

During the holidays, I have more people over than usual. And since “cooking + cleaning”  for 8 people isn’t my idea of a good time, I prefer to make EPIC charcuterie boards (that I can also Instagram afterwards) and I get to spend more time with the people I love!

Now here are the basics for the ultimate holiday charcuterie board. No matter what size your finished board will be, make sure to have a mix of both sweet, savory and COLORFUL snacks.

Step 1: Choose your meats:

To make your life easier, get the Columbus charcuterie sampler… where you have mild meat and some with some heat! Columbus Craft Meats makes it really easy to get a delicious mix of cured meats!

  • Calabrese is a zesty salame made with red bell peppers. Enjoy it with a hard cheese like Parmigiano Reggiano.
  • Genoa is a mild salame seasoned with wine and garlic. Add a softer cheese, like fontina or fresh goat cheese for a different texture.
  • Italian Dry is their San Francisco classic salame that pairs well with a hard sheep-milk cheese like pecorino romano. And it was actually cured by the San Francisco Fog!
  • Sopressata brings flavors of sweet fennel and chili pepper. Combine with a harder cow cheese like Grana Padano.

Step 2: Add your accompaniments

  • Cheese. My favorites and pictured above are an 18 month old Gouda, Brie, and an Wensleydale with cranberries somerdale. Um hello, can you say FESTIVE?! I’m drooling.
  • Artisanal crackers or baguette; Toasted plain baguette, pita bread, water crackers and breadsticks. One of my favorites is the Raincoast crisps pictured above.
  • Spreads: Mustard spreads, sweet and savory jams, and olive tapenades. My favorites include: fruit chutneys, fig jams, kalamata tapenades.
  • Olives and pickled vegetables: these are always great additions and adds character to your photo.
  • Fresh seasonal fruits are a must. Personally I love keeping it simple with berries. In the winter dried fruits including apricots and figs are always a hit and compliment the flavors of the meat and cheeses.
  • Nuts. Walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, Marcona almonds, even candied nuts. You cannot go wrong here. My favorite are pistachios as they are quite mild.

Step 3: Now for the finale, let’s stage your IG pics!!


  1. Find props before you start assembling your board. Find a board to put your salami on, buy some flowers, greenery, pine cones or even little white plates for olives!
  2. Begin to add everything to the board while making sure you have nice pops of color everywhere (ie: cranberries, oranges, nuts, pistachios, etc)
  3. Make sure you fill the space! For this particular shot, I like to make sure the frame is completely filled with cheese, meats, fruits and nuts. For any empty space, or the space surrounding my charcuterie board… I added tons greenery and flowers.
  4. Shoot by a window or somewhere with natural lighting! This type of photo will work best as an overhead shot.
  5. Tag me and @ColumbusCraftMeats in all of your customized charcuterie boards, I’d love to see what you guys come up with!

Cheers and happy holidays!



This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Columbus Craft Meats. As always, the opinions are all mine. I always keep it real for you guys.


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  • Cindy December 17, 2018 - 10:49 am Reply

    I’m going to try to impress my friends and make this for our annual Christmas party! I’ll keep you posted

  • Christine December 16, 2018 - 9:12 am Reply

    Amen to not cooking and cleaning for 8+ people. I feel you on that!

  • Cheryl December 15, 2018 - 3:09 pm Reply

    This makes me want to throw a party just to make a fancy charcuterie board! Love these ideas

  • Tinger December 15, 2018 - 2:13 pm Reply

    These are great tips and photos, Cyn!

    • CynEats December 16, 2018 - 9:38 pm Reply

      Thanks girl!! I hope I get to see you soon!

  • Matt December 14, 2018 - 6:46 pm Reply

    Do you have recommendations on what drinks I should pair with all these treats? :)

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