Ultimate Vegan Charcuterie Board – Plant Based Appetizers for A Party
This vegan charcuterie board is going to be the highlight of your next gathering. Charcuterie has been all the rage lately, and I’ve seen some incredibly creative spreads. It can be daunting to think you could whip this up at home, but I’m here to help you learn how to build a charcuterie board. I wanted to showcase plant-based charcuterie since there are so many tasty options!
This board was so fun to curate. Can someone bring this to me for lunch?
Vegan Charcuterie Board Ingredients
I split the key ingredients for my board into four groups: vegan cheeses, sauces, pickled vegetables and dipping options. I’ve got photos showing the specific brands I used, yet no need to pick the same ones!
If you’ve got a local gift shop or a specialty food store you only go to during the holidays, then these are the places you’ll want to stop for your own ingredients. Get creative, try something outside your comfort zone and have fun!
Plant-Based Charcuterie Cheeses
I’m not saying vegan cheese is the healthiest or cleanest, yet if you’re making a charcuterie board, chances are it’s for an event that isn’t your everyday dinner. Have fun and give one of these delicious dairy alternatives a try!
- Bleu Cheese: crumbles
- Cheddar Cheese: slices
- Chive: spread
- French-Style Cheese: spread
- Feta: block, to slice or crumble
- Alternative Goat Cheese: spread
All these options are plant-based and passed my taste test. I tried to find a few that were easy to spread as well as a few that were more sliceable. The bleu cheese crumbles are easy to eat with a fork or as finger food. What are some of your favorite vegan cheeses?
Delightfully Vegan Sauces
If you know me, then you know I love a good spread. Sauce pretty much makes or breaks a dish in my opinion. For this plant-based charcuterie board, I featured:
- Herbed Tahini Sauce
- Hummus: I picked a Mediterranean style
- Bitchin’ Sauce: one of my favorite sauces!
- Zhoug Sauce: for those that love a spicy kick
- Vegan Pesto: so many ingredient combos, so pick your favorite
If you’ve got time and the desire to display homemade sauces then I’ve got the perfect recipes as well! These are all plant-based and perfect for a party:
- Hummus: I use this as the base recipe for snacks, dips, spreads and more.
- Citrus Tahini: This was originally created as a dressing, yet makes a great dip as well!
- Garlic Aioli: This elevated aioli is the perfect fancy addition to charcuterie.
- Nut/Seed Butter: Pick your favorite nuts/seeds and easily turn them into a creamy dip.
- Cashew Cream: Depending on the flavor you want, I’ve got a few versions.
- Pesto: Five different versions so you can find the perfect compliment to your board.
- Chipotle Ranch: This creamy, zesty dip can be spread on crackers, bread or used with veggies.
You can make any or all of these ahead of time, then give them a stir and add them to your charcuterie board.
Perfectly Pickled Vegetables
I believe charcuterie is the perfect time to experiment with flavor combinations, and pickled vegetables are an easy way to do that! Here’s what I included in my vegan charcuterie spread:
- Marinated Olives: both green and black
- Cornichons: small pickles
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes in olive oil (not pickled, yet goes in this section)
- Marinated Artichokes
- Peperoncini: A variety of pepper, use the peppers of your choice
- Fire-Roasted Red Peppers
Feel free to use your favorite brands/pickled veggies for your own board. Don’t forget to let me know what you used! I love pickled vegetables and am always looking for a new snack.
Now on to the fun part. Make sure your spread has both sweet and savory foods with this section of the vegan charcuterie board. Find fresh, seasonal fruit and vegetables that pair well with the sauces/cheeses you’ve added. Get creative! This is where you can add in those festive crackers you’ve been wanting to try from Trader Joe’s or uniquely flavored roasted nuts.
Here’s what I included in my plant-based charcuterie:
- Fresh Fruits: mandarine oranges, pears, apples, pomegranate and grapes
- Fresh Vegetables: radishes, cucumbers, bell peppers and sugar snap peas
- Chocolate: squares of vegan dark chocolate, espresso beans and chocolate-covered raisins
- Nuts/Seeds: Pecans, peanuts, cashews, almonds, pistachios, pepitas and trail mix
- Breads/crackers: I raided the cracker section of Trader Joe’s and found items like bagel chips, a variety of crackers (both plain and flavored) as well as some crusty bread sliced into small pieces
- Dried fruit: dried apricots, cranberries and dates
And don’t forget the greenery! I used a variety of fresh herbs to provide a pop of color yet are also palatable additions that you can totally eat.
How to Build A Charcuterie Board
- Find the right board and get out serving dishes. Depending on the size of your plant-based charcuterie (how much you bought/made for this feast) you may not need a huge board. If this is for an intimate setting then don’t get a giant board. If it’s for a large party, you made need to split it between two boards or know that you may need to refill it throughout the evening.
- Arrange bigger items on the board. Look at the dishes you just pulled out and arrange them on your board. Feel free to try them in a few different variations, and swap in and out bowls/plates to see what works best together. Also, make sure the serving bowls you use to fit the food you’ll place on them. I like to decide what’s going in each bowl and then figure out where it will go so I know how much space is needed.
- Fill in the gaps between dishes. Grab the crackers of your choice, bread, fresh fruit and veggies and nuts to fill in anywhere you still see the board. These items can overlap each other, or be in more than one place on the board. You want the board to look full! Don’t forget about the space in and around the serving dishes.
- Dress it up. Once all the food items are arranged, it’s time for some pizazz. Use fresh herbs on top of cheeses or tucked into fruit, edible flowers and more.
The rule of thumb is 2-4 ounces of cheese per person, depending on if you’re serving your vegan charcuterie board as a snack or a meal. If you use a few spicy components, balance those out with some milder ones to accommodate all guests.
Vegan Charcuterie Board FAQs
Yes! Dairy-free, meat-free options abound in grocery stores today. I’ve piled my vegan charcuterie board high with creamy vegan cheeses, gorgeous dairy-free sauces and a wide variety of crackers, bread and fresh fruits for dipping.
I’ve included brand-side-up photos to show you how I built my plant-based board. There are so many amazing options.
I start with finding the right board and testing out the serving bowls and plates I want to use. Then I arrange them on my board and add in the food items that will go in those serving dishes. After the larger items are arranged, fill in the gaps with crackers, bread and fresh fruit and vegetables of your choice. Finally, top with fresh herbs and oils to finish the look.
Vegan Charcuterie Board
Charcuterie boards are all the rage and I’m here for it! We’ve assembled a beautiful, tasty plant-based charcuterie board with an assortment of non-dairy cheeses and dips along with fresh fruits and veggies and other snacks.
- 3-5 vegan cheeses
- 2-3 vegan dips
- 2-3 pickled vegetables
- dried fruit
- fresh fruit
- fresh vegetables
- crackers and bread
- fresh herbs
Arrange bowls/plates on a large platter.
Place cheeses, dips and pickled vegetables in serving dishes.
Add fresh fruits and vegetables, dried fruit and nuts to board to fill in any open gaps in and around serving dishes and the platter itself.
Add an assortment of crackers and bread for dipping. Make sure these aren’t touching any sauce/cheese that could make them go soggy before serving.
Top cheeses and tuck in fresh herbs for a pop of color.
Serve immediately. Fill in gaps with leftover ingredients throughout the evening.
- This template is for you to use with the ingredients you want. I took photos of what I used to help, but make this your own!
- If this is used for a party, check in with your guests to know of any specific allergies before creating a charcuterie board with foods that will touch each other. Note that many plant-based cheeses are made from nuts/seeds, so check the ingredients on those items as well.
- Along with fresh herbs, you can finish off your board with edible botanicals.
- I stuck to savory sauces for my board, however you can add in jams, chutneys (sweet and savory) and other spreads to your board as well.