How To Build The Perfect Cheese Board

Elevate Your Soirees with a DIY Cheese and Charcuterie Masterpiece!

Are you ready to take your entertaining and cheese board game to the next level? Look no further! From our kitchen In the heart of Los Angeles, we're here to guide you through the creation of a show-stopping DIY edible centerpiece that will leave your guests in awe. With $100 worth of delectable snacks and treats from Trader Joe's, you'll transform your gatherings into unforgettable experiences. Let's dive into the world of elevated indulgence with tips from our founder Kori Jones.

Unleash Your Culinary Creativity:

Say goodbye to ordinary appetizers and hello to a charcuterie board that doubles as a stunning centerpiece. With our easy tutorial, Kori reveals the secrets to crafting a hearty and visually captivating nosh board that will steal the spotlight at your next party.

  1. Quality Ingredients from Trader Joe's: Start your culinary adventure by selecting premium ingredients from Trader Joe's. From artisanal cheeses to savory cured meats, Trader Joe's offers a diverse array of flavors that will elevate your charcuterie game. Our $100 budget ensures you get the best of the best without breaking the bank.

  2. Balancing Flavors and Textures: Kori's expertise shines through as she shares her insights on creating a well-balanced charcuterie board. Learn the art of pairing creamy cheeses with crunchy crackers, sweet fruits with savory meats, and the perfect harmony of textures that will tantalize your taste buds.

  3. Stylish Presentation: Transform your charcuterie board into a masterpiece with Kori's tips on stylish presentation. Discover creative ways to arrange your snacks, incorporating fresh herbs, edible flowers, and decorative elements that will turn your spread into a work of art. Impress your guests not only with taste but also with a feast for the eyes.


Follow this rule of thumb:

8 - 12 People

  • 2-4 Nut varieties
  • 3 cheese varieties - a hard or aged + soft + strong flavor or color
  • 2-3 meat varieties
  • 2 Cracker/bread Varieties
  • Dried Fruit & Olives - use seasonal picks here and try to offer colors    

12 - 20 People

  • 3-5 Nut varieties
  • 3-4 cheese varieties be sure to have a hard or aged + soft + strong flavor or color + fresh goat cheese
  • 2-3 meat varieties
  • 2-3 Cracker/bread Varieties
  • Dried Fruit & Olives - use seasonal picks here and try to offer colors    

20 - 40 People

  • 3-5 Nut varieties
  • 3-5 cheese varieties be sure to have a hard or aged + soft + strong flavor or color + fresh goat cheese
  • 3-4 meat varieties
  • 3-5 Cracker/bread Varieties
  • Dried Fruit & Olives - use seasonal picks here and try to offer colors    

Trader Joes Shopping List

You don’t have to get everything from the list.


  • Candied Walnuts 
  • Candied Pecans
  • Dry Roasted & Unsalted Oregon Hazelnuts
  • Roasted & Salted Truffle or Rosemary Marcona Almonds
  • Sweet & Spicy Pecans
  • Dry Roasted and Salted Pistachios in the shell
  • Dark Chocolate Turbinado sea salt Almonds

Greenery for Garnish

  • Eucalyptus
  • Sage
  • Rosemary
  • Oregano

Dried Fruit & Olives

  • Apricots
  • Golden Berry Blend
  • Sweetened Dried Orange Slices
  • Dried Cherries
  • Dried Golden Figs (sliced in half, vertically)
  • Conversation Olive Trio
  • Cornichons

Crackers & Bread

  • Fig & Olive Crisps
  • 3 Seeds Sweet Potato Crackers
  • Peruvian Potato Chips
  • Baguette
  • Olive Fougasse Bread, if available
  • Pita Bite Crackers


  • Mango Chutney
  • Whole-Grain Dijon Mustard
  • Spicy Uncured Charcuterie Selection
  • Prosciutto
  • Uncured Salami
  • Seasonal fruit varieties (apples, pears, citrus, pomegranates, persimmons, cherries, etc)
  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Red or green Grapes (bunches trimmed into small bundles)


  • Brie
  • Gorgonzola Dolce
  • Mini Basque Cheese or a hard cheese, like gruyere or English cheddar (cut into ½ inch wedges)
  • Herbed Goat Cheese Log
  • French Brie or Camembert 
  • Aged Manchego sliced
  • Aged Gouda


Select a board or platter that is large enough to accommodate all your cheeses and accompaniments

Use a long, narrow cheese board or a round charcuterie board, depending on the table you will place it on. We have several in our shop. 


Wooden charcuterie board with olives, dips, and grapes

Step One
: Start by adding  ramekins and bowls filled with dips and olives on the board then small clusters of red grapes around the board nestled in with the ramekins. By putting these on first, you create some structure to build around. Set larger bowls around the centerpiece for crackers and chips. 


Charcuterie board with olives, dips, grapes, and cheeses
Step Two:
 Place the largest cheese wedge as an anchor on the board. Use a balance of whole-cheese wedges or rounds, cut pieces, and varying textures (soft and hard) across the board. Make sure to leave enough space between cheeses for fruit and nuts. For visual interest and to avoid an overly symmetrical appearance, use an odd number of cheeses. 


Charcuterie board with dips, olives, grapes, cheeses, and folded meats

Step Three: Fold meat slices in half, then half again. Arrange them along the charcuterie board in a “ribbon” effect. Start by propping the first piece against a ramekin, then add the folded meats until you have about 6-7 inches. 

To add dimension to the board, fold larger slices of meat into in half and then roll into a cone shape. thirds.

Fold spicy capicola or prosciutto slices in half, roll them up, and place them on their end. 


Charcuterie board with dips, olives, grapes, cheeses, folded meats, dried fruits and nuts

Step Four: Place nuts in the gaps between the meats and cheeses.

Hot Tip: Arrange the nuts in flavor pairings. Dark pecans next to goat cheese; candied walnuts next to Gorgonzola Dolce; and chocolate-covered almonds near the a hard cheese. Be sure to keep the clusters separated by dried or fresh fruits.


Charcuterie board with dips, olives, grapes, cheeses, folded meats, dried fruits, nuts, and fresh fruit
Step Five:
 Add sliced apples or other seasonal fruits to the ends of the boards or to add color near nut clusters. Scatter seasonal berries across the board in small groups or one-by-one. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds (if available) on top of the creamy brie or other cheeses.


Completed charcuterie board with olives, dips, grapes, cheeses, meats, nuts, dried/fresh fruit, and garnishes
Step Six:
 Distribute slices or hunks of bread and crackers in baskets around your charcuterie platter. Make sure to add a fork or knife next to each cheese.

Place small bundles of herbs in the dips and olives to add a pop of color. 

Scatter dried orange slices and eucalyptus sprigs to add color and decoration to the table and board. 

Light a few candles and add a stack of napkins nearby. Voila! Your snacking feast is ready to begin.