Fun & Festive Candy Cane Charcuterie Board for The Holidays!

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Are you ready to spread some holiday cheer this season? If your answer is yes, then I’ve got a wonderful idea for your next party: a Candy Cane Charcuterie Board!

Not only will this make a fantastic addition to your buffet table during the holidays, but it’ll also give everyone something delicious and visually appealing to snack on.

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A variety of cured meats, cheeses, olives, and fruit laid out to look like a candy cane, with a bowl of red pepper jam, jar of hot honey and crackers. The text overlay says"Candy Cane Charcuterie Board". Similar photos of the recipe from various angles are used throughout with different text overlays unless otherwise described.

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Candy Cane Charcuterie Board

The whole ingredients list and instructions are in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions, to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required and understand the steps and timings involved.

Over the past few years, charcuterie boards have exploded in popularity, and if you’ve been on Pinterest you will no doubt have seen many gorgeous boards covered with all kinds of charcuterie.

The word charcuterie (pronounced shar-KOO-tər-ee), is a French term for a branch of cooking devoted to prepared meat products, such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, ballotines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork. Source: Wikipedia.

But the word charcuterie is used a lot more loosely these days, often describing any kind of finger food – sweet or savory, displayed on a platter.

That may be a traditional wooden board, a ceramic plate, or even a tabletop, filled with a beautiful display of tasty bites. You might also hear the term grazing board to describe pretty much the same thing.

Candy Cane Charcuterie Platter

Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe

While most ingredients can be bought in grocery stores, for your convenience, any specialized or notable ingredients and equipment needed for this recipe have been linked to Amazon or other stores if available online.

The complete list of ALL ingredients with measurements is found on the recipe card at the end of this post.

Ingredients Needed For A Candy Cane Charcuterie Board

The hardest aspect of creating any charcuterie board is deciding what goes on it; the rest is fairly easy! I ADORE creating them for parties.

This charcuterie board “recipe” is really just a guide on how to set up a board of delicacies to serve at your next holiday gathering.

The items listed below are used in the board featured in this post.

But if you can’t source a particular element, don’t like something, or want to switch to something else – you totally can. You could visit a local deli counter and see what’s good!

Thanks to Wiki for the description of the various ingredients…

Cured Meats

  • Prosciutto – Italian uncooked, unsmoked, and dry-cured ham.
  • Soppressata – a southern Italian dry salami.
  • Pepperoni – an American variety of spicy salami made from cured pork and beef seasoned with paprika or other chili pepper.

TIP! Buying your cured meats ready-sliced will make the setting up of your candy cane-shaped charcuterie board a lot easier.

Cheese

  • Cheddar – a relatively hard, off-white, and sometimes sharp-tasting cheese originating from the English village of Cheddar in Somerset.
  • Colby Jack Cheese – an American cheese made from Colby and Monterey Jack. It is classified as semi-hard in texture and is mild due to its two-week aging process. In the UK, you could substitute Colby Jack for Gouda which is a sweet, creamy, yellow cow’s milk cheese originating from the Netherlands
  • Fontina – an Italian cow’s milk cheese,  semisoft to hard in texture and mild to medium-sharp in flavor. It is distinctively nutty and savoury. If you struggle to find Fontina, try Gruyère or Emmental.
  • Mozzarella Pearls – a southern Italian cheese traditionally made from Italian buffalo’s milk. The pearls are perfect for charcuterie boards, but you could also tear up a larger ball of Mozzarella if you prefer.

MONEY-SAVING TIP! Aldi and Lidl (UK) are great places to shop for your charcuterie produce, especially continental meats and cheeses, as they often have a big variety to choose from at affordable prices.

Fruit, Vegetables & Olives

  • Raspberries – check for bruising and use the best berries for your charcuterie plate.
  • Baby Tomatoes – you can use whatever type of baby tomato you like – cherry, grape, or baby plum. You could even use different colored tomatoes if available, but I think the red ones lend to the festiveness of the charcuterie board.
  • Olives – use your favorite kind of olive. Use whole olives – pitted or unpitted, stuffed or unstuffed – your choice.
    • Green Olives – often stuffed with pimentos, garlic, or lemon rind.
    • Kalamata Olives – a very popular Greek olive.
    • Black Olives – includes Kalamata, but other tasty varieties are Niçoise, Mission, and Amfissa.

TIP! Ensure that you use fresh fruit rather than frozen which will end up being mushy on your board.

Condiments & Crackers

  • Red Pepper Jelly – you can of course use any kind of complimentary condiment, dip, or chutney that you like.
  • Hot Honeyhot refers to the heat of chilies that have been infused into the honey.
  • Ritz Crackersor any type of crackers or breadsticks that you like.

You will also need some Cinnamon Sticks to decorate the plate with.

Equipment Needed For This Recipe

  • Large White Platterbut you can use a wooden board or even a tray if that is what you have at home.
  • Wooden Skewers
  • Small Bowl – to serve the condiments in. You could also use a ramekin.
  • Sharp Knife
  • Chopping/Cutting Board – to cut and prepare the food.
  • Small Plates – for guests to eat from. This might be ceramic plates, or paper plates, which will depend on your event.
  • Charcuterie Utensils – knives, tongs, spoons, etc. You will need them for guests to cut cheese, and pick up foods from the charcuterie board, as well as utensils to eat with.

Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog use cup measurements and/or weighted measurements. American cups and kitchen food scales are handy pieces of equipment to have in your kitchen as it means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog. I try to give American, imperial, and metric measurements in my recipes. Please note, that you can mix cup measurements with weighted measures, but never mix imperial (pounds, ounces, pints, etc.,) with metric (kilograms, grams, liters, etc.,).

More Festive Appetizer Recipes

Here are some more appetizers for serving at a holiday party:

Festive Charcuterie Board Shaped Like A Candy Cane!

How Do I Set Up A Candy Cane Charcuterie Board?

The printable recipe card has the full ingredients list and instructions and can be found at the end of this post.

This candy cane meat and cheese plate is an assembly job rather than a recipe as all the items are bought ready-made.

Step 1: Use an edible food pen to draw out a candy cane shape on your platter. This will help you with the placement of all of the elements.

Step 2: Make skewers of tomato and cheese alternating the order. Make three skewers with Mozzarella pearls and tomatoes, and three skewers with cubes of Fontina and tomatoes.

Lay the skewers at angles around the candy cane shape (use our photo below as a guide), this will create spaces for you to fill in with the other ingredients.

When happy with the placement you can cut the wooden skewers down to size

Step 1 - Candy Cane Layout

Step 3: Place rolled-up slices of the cured meats in between the cheese and tomato skewers. Group the same meats together.

Step 3 - Add the Meat

Step 4: In the two remaining spaces between the cheese and tomato skewers, pile in the cubes of Colby Jack and Cheddar cheese.

Step 4 - Add Cubed Cheese

Step 5: At the straight end of the candy cane, add a pile of green olives, and pile the black olives at the hooked end.

Step 5 - Add Olives

Step 6: Outline the meat and cheese candy cane shape with raspberries.

Step 7: Add a small bowl to the plate and fill it with red pepper jelly. Line up some Ritz crackers on the platter, then add the small jar of hot honey if using, along with some cinnamon sticks for garnish.

Step 6 - Lining Candy Cane Charcuterie with Raspberries

What is the Best Board To Use for Charcuterie?

It’s a common misconception that a charcuterie board must be displayed on a wooden board.

But you can use slate, marble, ceramic, and glass, and even line a counter or table with parchment paper and lay everything out direct. (Very popular on TikTok!)

Take a look at your trays and platters – I’m sure there are plenty you could use.

There are really no hard and fast rules – use what you have, or invest in a good quality non-porous hardwood or bamboo board to use for charcuterie.

Hardwoods such as olive, black walnut, teak, and acacia are best.

Softwoods like oak or ash are not good to use as a charcuterie as they’re too porous and the oils and aromas will leak into the wood.

No matter what shape it is – square, rectangle, round, or otherwise – reserve the board you’ll use to serve cheese and meats solely for that use. Don’t chop food on it as well.

More Charcuterie Boards To Make

We love charcuterie boards here on The Purple Pumpkin Blog! Check these ones out next.

There are 500+ Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog for you to enjoy – please feel free to check them out too.

Candy Cane-shaped Charcuterie Board

Candy Cane Charcuterie Board Recipe Card

The printable recipe card below has the full ingredients list and instructions. To save ink, any demonstration photos do not print.

Candy Cane Charcuterie Board

Candy Cane Charcuterie Board

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This Candy Cane Charcuterie Board is fantastic during the holidays, giving everyone something delicious and visually appealing to snack on!

Ingredients

Cured Meats

  • 6-12 slices prosciutto, rolled
  • 6-12 slices soppressata, rolled
  • 6-12 slices pepperoni, rolled

Cheeses

  • 12 fresh Mozzarella pearls
  • 8 oz /225g Cheddar Cheese, cut into cubes
  • 8 oz /225g Colby Jack Cheese, cut into cubes
  • 8 oz /225g Fontina, cut into cubes

Fruit, Vegetables & Olives

  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 18 baby tomatoes
  • ¾ cup green olives
  • ¾ cup Kalamata olives

Condiments & Crackers

  • ¼ cup red pepper jelly
  • Mini jar of hot honey
  • Ritz Crackers
  • Cinnamon sticks, optional decoration

Instructions

  1. Use an edible food pen to draw the shape of a candy cane onto a large white platter.
  2. Use wooden skewers to make 3 skewers of Mozzarella pearls and baby tomatoes, and 3 skewers of Fontina cubes and baby tomatoes. Place the skewers at angles around the candy cane shape. Use the images below as a placement guide. Cut the excess skewer away when happy with the placement.

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  3. Place rolled-up slices of the cured meats in between the cheese and tomato skewers. Group the same meats together.
  4. Place cubes of Cheddar and Colby Jack in the two remaining two gaps between the skewers.
  5. Place green olives at the straight end of the candy cane, and black olives at the hook end.
  6. Line individual raspberries around the candy cane shape.
  7. Add a small bowl to the platter and fill it with red pepper jelly. Add the small jar of hot honey next to the bowl, as well as a line of crackers. Add cinnamon sticks as garnish if desired.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 964Total Fat: 68gSaturated Fat: 34gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 29gCholesterol: 190mgSodium: 2548mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 5gSugar: 16gProtein: 52g

This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.

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The Create the Holidays series on The Purple Pumpkin Blog features free printables, crafts, recipes, and more for Christmas and the Winter Holidays. Check out Create the Holidays (formerly Create Christmas) from 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016201520142013, and 2012.

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This charcuterie board features in Twinkl’s 8 No-Bake Recipes blog.

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