How to make a healthy charcuterie board

How to make a healthy charcuterie board

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Pictured recipe: Nordic Appetizer Board

From the classic plate of meats and cheeses to unique, fun twists like “jarcuterie” and charcuterie sticks, you’re almost guaranteed to find a version of a charcuterie board for every gathering you go to – and with good reason. Charcuterie plates are not only an easy starter to assemble, but they can also be made in advance. In addition, charcuterie plates offer a number of options, so everyone is required to find something they want to snack on. Learn how to make a healthy charcuterie board with these six easy tips.

Related: These will be the 6 biggest charcuterie trends in 2022, according to Aldi

How to make a healthy charcuterie board

Select Whole Grain

When it comes to bread and biscuits on a charcuterie board, choose whole grain versions. Whole grains have a wealth of health benefits, including being high in fiber, B vitamins and protein. Many whole grain biscuits often contain other ingredients such as nuts and seeds, which add texture, flavor and nutrition. For suggestions, check out the best biscuits to buy, according to a dietitian. Or, if you’re looking for an alternative to low carb, you can skip the bread and biscuits and make your own chips, like these cauliflower chips or parmesan chips.

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Pictured recipe: Winter charcuterie board

2. Add nuts

Nuts are a healthy snack at all times and they add a delicious crunch to any spread. Each nut type has its own nutritional profile, but as a whole, nuts are a good source of plant-based protein and have a high content of healthy fats, while being lower in saturated fat. To make it simple, you can add a bowl of nuts from the store to your next charcuterie board. Or take it up another level and make one of these spicy nut recipes, such as all-spicy almonds or rosemary-garlic pecans, to get a boost of flavor.

Related: 6 healthiest nuts to snack on

Fill up on fruits and vegetables

When assembling a charcuterie board, be sure to add plenty of fruits and vegetables! Not only do they go well with meats and cheeses, but they are also a healthy way to add color and nutrients to the board. Many charcuterie plates have dried fruit, such as apricots or figs, for a touch of sweetness. Just be sure to look for dried fruit that is unsweetened and check the label for added sugar. You can also choose fresh fruit.

When it comes to vegetables, the possibilities are endless. From carrot sticks to cucumber slices, add all the raw vegetables your heart desires! To make everything consistent, make sure they are cut into mouth-sized pieces so you and your guests can easily munch.

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Pictured recipe: Vegan Charcuterie Board

4. Choose the right meat and cheeses

The selection of meats and cheeses is without a doubt the most important part of any charcuterie table. When it comes to choosing meat, we recommend limiting cold cuts like turkey or ham, which can be high in sodium and saturated fat (not the best if you follow a heart-healthy diet). Instead, look for meats that are leaner or labeled with reduced or low sodium content. Meanwhile, options like prosciutto and salami may not be healthiest choices, but they are popular on a charcuterie board and we are big fans of eating everything in moderation (you just do not have to eat a charcuterie board every day).

Whether it is soft, hard, smelly or spreadable, there are many options when it comes to cheese. While budget is certainly a factor, any cheese you choose is bound to be delicious. In addition, cheese has some great potential health benefits, such as improving cholesterol and lowering the risk of developing diabetes. For suggestions, check out the six healthiest cheeses you should buy, which include charcuterie table favorites like goat cheese and mozzarella.

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Pictured recipe: Ni├žoise Party Board

5. Make the pickled item yourself

Salted items like olives or pickles help cut through the rich meats and cheeses. However, the purchased versions of these ingredients can often be high in sodium, so making homemade pickles is an easy, healthy way to control your salt intake. Whether it’s cucumbers, peppers or tomatoes, learn how to pickle anything with this step-by-step guide. Not only can you customize your spices, from ginger pickled carrots to dill pickles, but your homemade pickles can be used off the board on sandwiches, as an accompaniment and more.

6. Do not eat off the board

OK, this one is not so much a tip for choosing the ingredients of the charcuterie board, but it’s just as important. It’s easy to stand by the charcuterie and snack straight from it while socializing, but it’s not great for a few reasons. First, it is not the most hygienic option if the fingers are constantly touching the food. Plus, when you eat straight from the board, you may not realize how much you are eating, which can cause you to get full before the main course is even served, causing you to overeat. Instead, grab a plate to fill with your favorite ingredients and walk away from the board so you are less tempted to pamper yourself.

Related: This beautiful charcuterie board has zero Weight Watchers points

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