This Christmas charcuterie board is one of my favorite Christmas food boards! It’s a dessert charcuterie board full of cookies, candy, fresh fruit, and other seasonal sweet treats! Make this Christmas candy charcuterie board for your next holiday gathering! And if you're looking for the best cookies to fill this board this holiday season, try my No Spread Sugar Cookies, my Key Lime Cookies, and my Ginger Crinkle Cookies!
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What is a Christmas charcuterie?
I've got just the solution for your holiday snacking needs -- this simple dessert charcuterie board filled with lots of cookies, candies, fruits, and everything salty, tangy, and sweet! It's the easy way to satisfy your sweet tooth and showcase all the holiday treats you've been working on this season. Definitely the best way to keep your Christmas crew happy!
What is usually on a charcuterie board?
Good question! Traditionally, a charcuterie board contains cured meats, sausage, pâtés, and other butcher shop finds. In fact, the word charcuterie comes from the French for "cooked meat." Over the years, the word has come to be synonymous for the contents of a meat and cheese platter.
And in more recent years, the meaning has expanded in general use even more to encompass various types of snacking and grazing boards. So strictly speaking, charcuterie is just meat. But in a broader sense they're meat and cheese boards, and in the broadest sense it's whatever you want to snack on! Which, in the case of this Christmas charcuterie board, is mostly cookies!
How do you plate a charcuterie board?
In my opinion, the only rule is to be creative and have fun! It's all up to how you want it to look and I like for my charcuterie boards to generally include:
- Both salty and sweet elements. In this Christmas cookie charcuterie board, we've got salty pretzels, spiced cinnamon palmiers, sweet cookies and cakes, and tart sugared cranberries.
- Sauces or jams for dipping. I was so surprised at how yummy graham crackers are dipped in frosting! I mean, it makes sense, but it was still a fun discovery! So I opted to use frosting as our dipping sauce on this Christmas charcuterie board. It's perfect for our graham crackers, our pretzels, or even to add a boost of sweetness to some of the cookies!
- A variety of textures. The perfect Christmas dessert board has to have a mix of textures: crunchy candies, crackers, and pretzels, balanced out with soft marshmallows, cookies, and cookie cake!
- Garnishes and decorations to balance out the look and match the theme. I chose dried grapefruit slices to complement the flavors in this Christmas charcuterie board, but you could also use rosemary, sprigs of pine, or Christmas lights to really add to the holiday look!
Christmas Dessert Charcuterie Board Ingredients Ideas
Since this isn't, strictly speaking, a recipe, you don't need to use exactly what I use! I love the idea of using this gorgeous dessert charcuterie board as a great way to showcase all the baking I've done recently, and I think that the cookies I used work really well together.
But there's no need to go all-out baking for this dessert platter! You can arrange an amazing charcuterie board with grocery store bought Christmas cookies and lots of low-key treats! Go wild! Whatever you like to enjoy this time of year is fair game. But here's what I would suggest for your Christmas charcuterie board shopping list, starting with some of my favorite recipes for homemade treats:
- No Spread Sugar Cookies - These simple, no-chill cutout cookies are, to me, the perfect Christmas Cookie! They deserve to be shown off on this charcuterie board!
- Christmas Oreos - Super easy no-bake treats that only take a few minutes to make! And the texture and flavors are SO good, and so festive!
- Salted Caramel Thumbprint Cookies with Cinnamon Sugar - These decadent little cookies are SO good and so easy! Perfect for this Christmas cookie charcuterie board!
- Christmas Cookie Cake - I knew I wanted to highlight this amazing cookie cake! It's filled with mini chocolate chips and decorated with frosting and sprinkles to really bump up the festive mood!
- Cranberry White Chocolate Shortbread Cookies - The tart flavor of cranberry and the smooth, rich white chocolate make these shortbread cookies perfect for any holiday treat board.
- Cinnamon Palmiers - SO easy with just 5 ingredients! These puff pastry cookies are full of brown sugar and spice, and are a simple addition to your cookie platter.
- Sparkling White Chocolate Peppermint Sugar Cookies - my first-ever cookie on my blog, these sugar cookies are SO good and so easy!
- Ginger Crinkle Cookies - these gingerbread crinkle cookies are made quick and easy with cake mix, so they come together so quickly.
- Brown Sugar Shortbread Cookies - these 4-ingredient cookies have such a deep brown sugar flavor!
- Thumbprint Cookies with Icing - the icing center is so festive and makes these some of my favorite treats!
- Strawberry Shortbread Cookies - another thumbprint recipe with sweet strawberry jam!
What fruits go on Christmas charcuterie board?
Then we can move on to some of my favorite fruits, and sweet and salty add-ons:
- Sugared Cranberries - I include an easy recipe below for sugared cranberries, an incredibly fun sweet-tart holiday treat that's perfect for this board!
- Red and Green Grapes are always a great idea and on theme! Also check out my Fruit Charcuterie Board post for more ideas!
- Christmas S'mores - With graham crackers, holiday marshmallows, and white chocolate, you can create a fun treat within your Christmas charcuterie board. It's a great twist on the classic s'mores!
- Pretzels - Adds that salty note to this board and works so well dipped in the frosting. Or you can use chocolate-covered pretzels!
- Candy Canes - they're such a classic and and must for any Christmas charcuterie board!
- M&Ms - M&Ms, or any small candy you like, can take the place of spiced nuts or olives that you might see in a more traditional charcuterie board. They add that crunch and visual interest that every great grazing board needs!
- Frosting or jam for dipping - I used a Pillsbury filled pastry bag to pipe frosting in a flash and give it a polished look. Best of all, it came with a packet of holiday sprinkles, which was a fun way to add to the festive mood!
The only piece of equipment you definitely need for this holiday dessert charcuterie board is, well, the board! I recommend a large cutting board or serving board in wood, slate, or marble. You'll also want some small bowls for your candies, nuts, frostings, and jams. Here are some great options:
Step by Step
- Start with a large cutting board or serving board and set it up where you plan to serve your Christmas charcuterie board.
- First, place any small bowls or dishes spaced out on your board.
- Then, start laying in your cookies or other treats in handfuls, starting near the outside of the board. Feel free to let them overlap and they don't have to be especially neat.
- Fill in gals with smaller or more free-flowing ingredients like crackers, pretzels, or candy canes.
- Feel free to include the same ingredient in multiple places on your board to achieve a balanced look.
- Finish with your garnish and any decorative elements, and serve! Have a merry Christmas!
Tips and F.A.Q.
Pretty much! Any holiday treat or finger food is perfect for Christmas food boards! Check out my 45 Best Cookies for Cookie Exchange + Cookie Exchange Ideas for inspiration, but feel free to add any of your favorite things to this sweet charcuterie board!
Your charcuterie board, whether it's this Christmas cookie charcuterie board or a traditional cured meat board, should be room temperature. So if you're using cookies that you've stored in the fridge, allow them to come to room temp before serving.
It's a French word, but when saying it in English you'd say shar-KOO-ter-ee. Here's a quick video on the English and French pronunciations.
It's hard to say, but I imagine it's because they're endlessly customizable -- you can make so many variations and really make them your own, and it's so easy to make them elegant and fun. The best Christmas charcuterie boards encourage us to gather in a fun, informal way, which is always welcome at holiday gatherings!
Of course! You can customize this themed dessert charcuterie board for Valentine's Day and include my Raspberry Chocolate Brownies or my Strawberry Cheesecake Cookies. Or make one for Halloween with my Halloween Chocolate Covered Strawberries or my Halloween White Chocolate Bark with Oreo Cookies!
If you try this recipe, I would love it if you could leave a star review rating and comment below! It’s so wonderful hearing your feedback! And don’t forget to share your creations with me by tagging @chenee_today on Instagram!
Equipment you may need
- large serving board
- small bowls or ramekins
Candies and Fruits
- Place cutting board or serving tray in the spot where you plan to serve your Christmas charcuterie board.
- Place bowls and dishes containing candy, jams, frostings, and sugared cranberries on board.½ cup holiday m&ms, 1 cup sugared cranberries, 2 tablespoon jam, ¼ cup Frosting, ¼ cup sprinkles, nonpareils, and/or sanding sugar
- Add cookies and other larger treats in groups.5 cutout sugar cookies, 5 gingerbread crinkle cookies, 3 christmas cookie cake slices, 5 cranberry white chocolate shortbread cookies, 8 cinnamon palmiers, 5 chocolate-covered Oreos, 4 peppermint white chocolate sugar cookies
- Fill in gaps with smaller items like crackers, marshmallows, and pretzels.1 cup holiday marshmallows, 6 graham crackers, 7 candy canes, 4 oz white chocolate pieces
- Garnish as you like, and serve!Dried citrus or rosemary
PIN this Christmas charcuterie board for later!
Last Updated on May 2, 2023 by Chenée Lewis