Cheese Board Pairings to Take Your Spread to the Next Level
Putting together a cheese board? Learn all about the types of cheese to choose, along with serving and pairing tips for the ultimate spread.
The soft, creaminess of Brie is entirely appealing, and it’s an easy way to elevate any board. This French cheese most commonly made from cow’s milk is found in a round. It’s best served at room temperature and cut into small wedges or warmed as a whole, like a baked brie.
Because Brie is creamy, with a hint of nuttiness and sweetness, it pairs well with a variety of snacks including apple and pear slices, fruit preserves, honey, nuts, prosciutto and crunchy crackers or crusty bread. For the perfect sip, pair Brie with a crisp white wine such as sauvignon blanc, a rich, oaked chardonnay or a glass of your favorite bubbles.
Make sure to check out our favorite charcuterie board books to inspire your next soiree.
Sharp cheddar cheese is one of the most versatile options for a cheese board. This hard cheese is typically purchased in a block and can be cut into slices or cubes for simple serving.
A complex sharp cheddar is delicious on its own but adding fruits such as strawberries and apples to the mix, along with tangy mustards, pickles and salami creates the cheese board ideal pairing. As for what to sip with it? A strong cheese needs a bold wine as its match, such as a malbec or cabernet sauvignon. Don’t miss our tips for how to make a charcuterie board perfect for any party.
Pecorino Romano is a hard, Italian cheese made from sheep’s milk. And while it’s often shredded to top a bowl of pasta, it’s also a great addition to a charcuterie board.
It’s most often found in large wedges at the grocery store and can be served whole with a cheese knife or broken up into chunks. Thanks to the time it spends aging, this bold, salty cheese pairs beautifully with salty salami or soppressata. It also provides a great contrast to sweeter options such as fruit jams or candied walnuts. Enjoy it with a wine option that’s not sweet, such as dry zinfandel or chardonnay.
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Think you can’t include your favorite goat cheese when you’re building a cheese board? Think again. This soft, fresh cheese is perfect for serving in a whole log, sliced into discs or whipped into a spread.
Serve it with a sliced baguette or flatbread crackers and pair its mild flavor with apricots and figs, as well as pepperoni and Marcona almonds. Enjoy a crisp, bright white such as sauvignon blanc or a bubbly rosé to cut through its creaminess.
Gorgonzola is an Italian cheese made from cow’s milk with a striking blue marble appearance. It’s soft and crumbly with a robust flavor and the whole wedge can be served with a cheese knife.
Its pungent flavor is best paired with sweeter items for contrast such as fresh grapes, honey, almonds and pistachios. Pair gorgonzola with a sweet riesling, Moscato or a bold port to match its strong flavor.
Parmigiano Reggiano doesn’t only have a place as a pizza or pasta topping. Its hard, dry texture and sharp flavor makes it a great cheese board staple as well. Made from cow’s milk, it’s typically found in wedges and can be served in rough chunks on a board.
Pair its bold flavor with tangy stoneground mustard and salty-sweet prosciutto. Enjoy it with your favorite Prosecco or Champagne, or choose a high acidity red such as a Barbera. For a fun twist, try adding it to a pizza charcuterie board.
Burrata is the surprising cheese that will impress your guests. A lesser-known type of cheese, it’s an incredibly fresh cheese made from cow’s milk. The outer shell is soft mozzarella, but the interior features a gooey curd. It should be served whole at room temperature, preferably on a small plate or in a small bowl on the board.
Serve it plain or drizzled with a balsamic glaze or pesto and pair it with crackers or crostinis. Its light, creamy flavor pairs with anything from salami and prosciutto to grapes and tomatoes. It can also be made in a burrata pizza recipe. Match its flavor with a light-bodied pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc.
Havarti is a wonderfully creamy cheese made from cow’s milk. Its sharp flavor and fine texture make it a great complement to just about anything. Serve it on a cheese board in slices or chunks with crackers.
Pair Havarti with crisp, sweet fruits such as pear and apple slices, along with salty soppressata and dill pickles for great contrast. Sip on a glass of riesling or an oaked chardonnay to match its buttery flavor.
Gouda is the ideal cheese if you want to add something sweet and creamy to your board. This cow’s milk cheese from the Netherlands is incredibly versatile and can be served in a round cut into small triangles, a large wedge or cut into chunks.
It’s delicious paired with both salty and nutty options such as salami, walnuts and pecans, as well as pickled vegetables. Pair gouda’s buttery, nutty flavor with a glass of chardonnay or cabernet sauvignon.
Mozzarella serves as one of the most approachable and versatile cheeses on a board. This soft, fresh Italian cheese can be served in thick slices, cubed or as small mozzarella balls. Get creative with these individual charcuterie boards for any occasion.
Its incredibly mild flavor allows you to pair and dress it up with anything. Serve it with fresh basil and tomato, tapenades, fresh fruits and salty meats. Match its light flavor with a light-bodied chardonnay or pinot grigio.
Also check out these 13 easy food and wine pairings everyone should know.
While Camembert and brie look similar, Camembert has a stronger, earthier flavor. It’s typically sold in a round, and this soft, creamy cheese should be served at room temperature cut into triangular wedges.
Because of its decadent texture, it pairs well with items that offer contrast such as tart, dried cranberries, fruit jams and honey, along with sliced baguette and crackers. Match its creamy, earthy qualities with a light-bodied pinot noir, Chenin Blanc or Champagne. Don’t miss our cheese board ideas for building the best spread ever.
Manchego is a sheep’s milk cheese from Spain. It’s incredibly firm, but with a buttery texture and rich salty-sweet flavor. It can be served in a large wedge with a cheese knife or displayed on the cheese board in thin triangular slices.
Pair it with salty meats such as salami and prosciutto, along with olives, sun-dried tomatoes and almonds. Serve it with a fruit-forward red such as a malbec or syrah or a sparkling cava.
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