Vegan Charcuterie Board

How To

With the holidays just around the corner, let’s put together a vegan charcuterie board! They are extremely versatile, customizable, and easy to prepare. I’ll show you how you can create the perfect charcuterie board for your next gathering.

Charcuterie board with fresh vegetables, fresh & dried fruits, chips, hummus, and vegan cheese.

So what the heck is a charcuterie board anyway? Well, it’s a large platter filled with finger foods of varying flavors, textures, and colors. It’s a feast for the eyes as well as the senses. Charcuterie boards make a fantastic appetizer for parties, holidays, and other large social gatherings. They are also a fantastic way to serve many different foods as an appetizer or light meal. Everyone is able to select what they would like and create their own spread. In this post, I’ll give you tips about how to put together the perfect charcuterie board.

What to include on your Charcuterie Board

The trick to having the perfect charcuterie board is creating layers. You want to have layers of flavors as well as textures. Think sweet, spicy, salty, savory. As well as creamy, crunchy, and smooth. Fruits, vegetables, spreads, dips, crackers, breads, nuts, meats, cheezes…all of these can fit into any number of those categories. So let’s brainstorm a bit to give you some ideas that might be a little out of the box.

Fruits

Select fruits that are in season. In the spring and summer think berries, peaches, nectarines, grapes. In the fall and winter months focus on figs, apples, persimmons, grapes, pomegranate arils. And don’t be afraid to add dried fruits. Sprinkle raisins over your board for a finishing touch. Or place dried apple rounds out since freshly sliced apples will brown too quickly.

Vegetables

Raw vegetables are definitely a must when making a charcuterie board. Think sweet bell peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, or cucumbers. If making a charcuterie board in the summer add grilled zucchini or summer squash. Even pickled or jarred vegetables will work. Think olives, asparagus, or artichokes.

Dips & Spreads

It’s easy to select fruits and vegetables when making a vegan charcuterie board. Obviously, those are vegan. But finding dips and spreads that are vegan can be a bit more challenging. If you don’t have access to a grocery store with a wide variety of vegan dips or spreads this may end up being the portion of the charcuterie board that you have to spend a little bit of time preparing. But don’t let that frighten you off. Most dips are very quick and easy to prepare. Allow me to give you some examples of both store-bought as well as homemade vegan dips and spreads.

Crackers

Choose crackers that have some personality. You should have some mild ones that will pair well with anything and some others that are for specific dips and cheeses. Think outside the box. I love the beet crackers and sweet potato crackers from Trader Joes. Off the Eaten Path has a fantastically salty and crunchy Veggie Crisp. There are also dried carrot, beet, and kale chips. All of which will add depth and interest to your charcuterie board.

Bread

Use your favorite artisan breads to enhance the texture of your board. Add breads with rosemary, hunks of garlic, or cranberries and walnuts to create even more flavor on your board. And don’t think you have to slice your bread either! Feel free to rip the loaves into large chunks to add texture and visual interest to your board.

Nuts

Including nuts in your charcuterie board will add visual interest and texture as well as flavor. Use raw, roasted, spiced, or candied nuts to further elevate the flavor profile of you board. Don’t underestimate the power that flavored and roasted seeds can have as well. I have three wonderful recipes for roasted squash seeds that would work perfectly in an autumnal charcuterie board.

Vegan Meats

A traditional charcuterie board will contain deli meats. Now, it is up to you to decide if you would like to include vegan meats in your own charcuterie board. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of vegan deli meat alternatives. I find them to be rubbery, extremely salty, and rather unappealing to look at. That however is just my opinion so please feel free to add whatever, if any, deli alternatives you find appetizing.

Vegan Cheezes

There are so many vegan cheeses available now! Check out your local grocery store or whip up your own nut-based cheeses at home. I love this feta recipe from Erin Ireland. It’s so simple and adds the saltiness to your board that definitely cannot be overlooked.

Extras

Now that you’ve determined what kinds of fruits, vegetables, dips, spreads, crackers, bread, nuts, “meats”, and cheezes you would like to include on your charcuterie board let’s take just a second to discuss the layout of the actual board. Some tips for creating a beautiful and inviting board are as follows:

  • Pick a board large enough to fit everything you want to include. But not a board that is so large that you will have lots of unfilled space. Empty space on the board will give it an unfinished, uninviting feel. You can, to some extent, fill empty space with herbs but you want to use fresh herbs sparingly as a garnish, not as a star feature.
  • Make sure that you provide utensils for spreading, cutting, spearing, and slicing the spreads, fruits, vegetables, meats, and cheeses. These can be fancy to add interest to the board. They can be your everyday serving utensils. Or you can use something as simple as toothpicks! There’s not need to go out and buy anything special.
Charcuterie board with fresh vegetables, fresh & dried fruits, walnuts, vegan deli meat, crackers, chips, hummus, and vegan cheese.

Charcuterie Board Steps

Once you have all the pieces of your charcuterie board puzzle figured out, it’s time to put them all together to create that visually appealing appetizer no one will be able to keep their hands off. Let’s go through the steps of laying out all your charcuterie board items.

  • Step 1: Gather your board, bowls, and food items. Place any dips or spreads into your selected bowls and place them on the board in the rough location that you would like them to be.
  • Step 2: Begin by placing your largest food items on the board first. Think large crackers, blocks of vegan cheese, fruits (such as this pomegranate half), and vegetables (the florets of broccoli). Ensure that the food is overlapping to prevent the board from showing through.
  • Step 3: Place medium food items around the larger ones. Think slices of vegan deli “meat”, smaller crackers, chips, and/or dried fruit.
  • Step 4: Place your smallest food items on the board last. If necessary, corral them onto the board by surrounding them with larger, sturdier foods and bowls to prevent them from rolling off the board. Think loose grapes, blueberries, or nuts.
  • Step 5: The final step is adding fresh herbs to your board. Top dips with parsley, dill or cilantro as appropriate. Stick sprigs of rosemary or sage out from under bowls. Don’t be afraid to re-arrange as you go. If something doesn’t look or feel right rearrange it or remove it from the board. Everything you intended on using might not fit and that’s ok. You can always have two charcuterie boards!

Bonus Tip

Make a dessert charcuterie board! Include your favorite cookies, cakes, chocolate hummus, fruits for dipping in chocolate, sugared nuts…let me know in the comments section what you include in your dessert charcuterie board.

I hope that you all have found this charcuterie board how-to informative and helpful. Know that any board you put together will be a hit with your party guest. I mean, who doesn’t love a bunch of fresh food sprawled out on a wooden board? Be sure to let me know in the comments if you make a charcuterie board.

Enjoy friends!

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Fig and Blueberry Cobbler for Two

A fig and blueberry cobbler for two with a sweet and tangy filling and a crunchy, buttery crumble. Vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, and prepped in 10 minutes this dessert is perfect for using up those delicious end-of-summer fruits.

Bowl of fig and blueberry cobbler topped with vegan whipped cream, figs, and blueberries

Is anyone else saddened by the thought that summer is almost gone? Don’t get me wrong, I love fall. The crisp, cool night air, shorter days, and the season of pumpkin treats brings a smile to my face. But for some unknown reason this year I’m reluctant to let summer go.

Labor Day is almost here and with the unofficial end of summer drawing near I find myself longing for the fresh, delicious fruits of the season. Take the often overlooked end-of-summer favorite the fig for example…

Figs are amazing. It’s a travesty that they’re only in season for such a short time. But that just makes us appreciate them more, right? Right! We’ve all seen them in salads or, of course, dried and used as a filling in cookies but sometimes you want to welcome fall early while still enjoying the fruits of summer.

Close up photo of fresh figs on a white marble countertop with a white background

Therefore I give you this fig and blueberry cobbler for two! The gooey, fruity filling is naturally sweet from ripe, fresh figs and blueberries as well as from a hint of maple syrup. And that deliciously crunchy textured top is achieved with the help of rolled oats and vegan butter.

Two bowls of fig and blueberry cobbler with fresh cut figs and a spoonful of blueberries

This dessert is the perfect end-of-summer treat for two. Using on 10 ingredients and ready for the oven in less than 10 minutes it leaves you plenty of time to enjoy the last little bit of summer. Finally, it’s best when served warm and topped with vegan whipped cream, lemon zest or fresh figs and blueberries. So from my kitchen to yours-Enjoy!

A spoonful of fig and blueberry cobbler

Ingredient Health Benefits

Oats: Vitamins A & B; calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, copper, zinc, iron, manganese; soluble and insoluble fiber; phytochemicals

Figs: High in fiber; rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iron; excellent source of polyphenols

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Fig and Blueberry Cobbler for Two

A fig and blueberry cobbler for two with a sweet and tangy filling and a crunchy, buttery crumble. Vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, and prepped in 10 minutes this dessert is perfect for using up those delicious end-of-summer fruits.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan
Keyword: 10-ingredients, dessert, for two, sweets, vegan
Servings: 2 people
Author: Erin

Ingredients

Fig and Blueberry Filling

  • 10 figs, fresh, trimmed and quartered
  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh
  • 1 medium lemon, zested
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp arrowroot powder

Crumble

  • ½ cup oat flour
  • ½ cup oats
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup cold vegan butter

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.

For Fig and Blueberry Filling:

  • Remove the stem and quarter figs. Add figs to remaining filling ingredients in a small bowl. Gently toss to coat.
  • Divide filling into two small oven-safe ramekins.

For Crumble Topping:

  • In a medium bowl mix flour, oats, salt, and maple syrup.
  • Cut in cold vegan butter with a pastry cutter (or 2 butter knives) until mixture is course and resembles wet crumbly sand.
  • Evenly top each ramekin with half the crumble topping mixture. Gently press down.
  • Place ramekins on a cookie sheet and check after 1 hour of cooking to ensure they're not burning.
  • If they're bubbling and golden they're done. If not, continue cooking for 10-15 mintues keeping an eye out to prevent over-cooking.
  • Top with: vegan whipped cream, lemon zest, or fresh figs and blueberries.
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