Charcuterie boards exploded on Instagram back in 2018 — still, consumer interest in these shareable platters continues to skyrocket. The fact that they're so visually impressive yet don't require extensive prep is just one reason why curiosity in charcuterie has grown 15% in the last two years.

Creative, seasonal charcuterie boasts the potential for major profit margins and gorgeous social media content — exactly what you need to ring in a profitable new year.

Rise and Shine

Kick off your holiday brunch service with sweet and savory boards that appeal to groups with mixed tastes. Stack various pancakes — cranberry, gingerbread, and chocolate chip (bonus points for snowmen shapes!) — then tuck in ramekins of cardamom orange zest butter and piping hot real maple syrup, along with peaks of homemade whipped cream. Holiday sprinkles add festive flair!

On the savory side, lay ribbons of lox along smears of whipped chive cream cheese and a sprinkle of capers. Fill spots with halved medium-boiled eggs and a heaping spoonful of bacon onion jam. For the perfect vessel, consider Heritage Ovens® Olive Fougasse — similar to focaccia, this beautiful, twisted bread is laden with kalamata olives and thyme, and requires only ten minutes in the oven.

What's App-ening

Skip the basic baskets for displays of fan favorites that you can upcharge. Scoop out your russets (save the filling!) and bake the salted skins with cheddar until crispy. Stack around a bowl of West Creek® Buffalo Chicken Dip, chopped scallions, fried bacon bits, and blue cheese crumbles. Don't forget a sampling of hot sauces and a smattering of crunchy celery sticks.

Elevate french fries by dusting them with different seasonings on a board, then providing a slew of sauces for dipping, like meaty chili or West Creek Queso Blanco. Whip up your own garlic aioli to forever change your fry game. For an easy seasonal garnish, dip fresh rosemary sprigs in water and roll in white sugar. Let dry and you'll have snowy trees!

Dinner for Two — or Twenty-Two

Planning for big holiday parties can be cumbersome, especially with last-minute changes to the numbers. Efficiently accommodate large parties or corporate functions by offering a menu of boards to sample from.

Great dinner themes include: flavors that celebrate your region’s heritage, nostalgic holiday comfort foods, or trending cuisine like Japanese or Filipino. Ensure everyone is covered by offering a full-on vegan board and the option of going gluten-free. You can even include party games on your boards — like a bowl of "Finish the Christmas song lyric" cards or a holiday version of "Would you Rather."

Offer a holiday prix fixe date-night package to bump up business on slower nights. A shellfish and oyster board would pair beautifully with a bottle of chilled Champagne. Or try sushi and sake. Couples will appreciate the romance that kindles when sharing a board of finger foods.

Reimagine Dessert

For a sweet spin on the trendy "butter board," pipe vanilla buttercream onto your board in the shape of a tree. Decorate with dried fruits, nuts, or candy "garland," and unfrosted mini red velvet cupcake and small cutout cookie "ornaments.”

Place a tiny tabletop s'mores roaster in the center of your board and let guests roast their own star-shaped marshmallows and make cozy holiday treats. Use gingerbread men instead of graham crackers and include seasonal goodies like white chocolate covered pretzels and peppermint bark.

Of course, there's always room to sneak in a cheese and wine pairing. A Magellan® Pub Cheese Selection features four European cheeses that already pair perfectly together, so there's one less thing to check off your list.

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