Who can resist a charcuterie board in the shape of a Christmas tree?! This is the perfect appetizer for the holidays that is sure to be a crowd pleaser! Just layer your favorite meat, cheese, and tasty accoutrements on a board in the shape of a Christmas tree!
Why I love this recipe
Around the holidays, there is nothing better than a simple appetizer that has a lot of “wow” factor. Creating a charcuterie board in the shape of a Christmas tree does just that! It’s so easy, yet has a lot of visual impact!
Even better, this is a great make ahead recipe that you can prepare in advance so you can enjoy time with your friends and family during Christmas instead of in the kitchen.
Plus, it’s so easy to customize to your tastes and dietary restrictions. There are so many options with this easy charcuterie board.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- star shape cookie cutter
- large board
- Olives – I like to use green olives because the color is so great for a Christmas tree, but you can substitute with black olives or kalamata olives instead. Stuffed olives would be delicious, too!
- Prosciutto – Salami, Capicola, or other thinly sliced cured meats are a great substitute for prosciutto since they are easy to fold over and provide some shape.
- Fresh Rosemary – The rosemary is great because not only does it look like a little Christmas tree, it helps to keep ingredients that are round and tend to roll (olives and grapes) in their section. If you can’t find fresh rosemary, twigs of fresh thyme would work, too.
- Apple – I made the star out of an apple because it has good surface area to get a substantial sized star. If you are making this ahead, either cut the apple right before serving so it doesn’t brown OR you can brush your apple with lemon juice to prevent browning. You can also make a star shape out of yellow bell pepper or cheese if you don’t want to worry about an apple browning.
It only takes about 10 minutes to throw together this easy Christmas tree charcuterie board. Choose your meats, cheeses and veggies and you’ll be set to make this adorable holiday appetizer!
- Cut up all of your ingredients into bite size pieces.
- Slice a green apple, about 1/3-inch thickness. Then with a small star-shaped cookie cutter, cut a piece of apple in the shape of a star.
- Starting the with the trunk, start arranging your ingredients in the shape of a Christmas tree. Each row should get slightly shorter as you go up the tree.
- Top the tree with the apple star.
- I like to use a jelly roll pan or board with sides to keep everything from rolling off the tray. You could even use a half sheet pan.
- Have some backups of crackers ready to go for serving so that you don’t run out. I sometimes like to just put out a bowl of crackers next to the board so there is enough for serving.
- If you make this ahead, be sure to cover the board tightly with cling wrap because cheese tends to dry out.
Yes, just use gluten-free crackers and pretzels. Also, ensure the meat you use is gluten-free and does not contain any gluten fillers.
Yes, just omit the meat and add some vegetables or vegetarian sides in its place.
The vegetables will start to curl a little bit if left too long, so I prefer to make this board the morning of my party at the earliest to keep everything at its freshest. Prepare your charcuterie board and then cover with cling wrap to keep it as fresh as possible.
Christmas Tree Charcuterie Board
- 1 slice of granny smith apple
- 1 cup crackers, plus additional for serving
- .75 oz rosemary
- 8 oz cheddar cheese, cubed
- 4 oz bite sized salami
- 1 cup red grapes
- 4 oz white cheddar cheese, cubed
- 4 oz prosciutto
- 1/2 cup olives
- 1/2 cup pretzels, plus additional for serving
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- Slice the apple about 1/3-inch thick. Lay flat on a cutting board. Use a small star cookie cutter to slice the apple into the shape of a star. Set aside.
- Start assembling your Christmas tree from the trunk up. Use crackers to create the trunk.
- Lay two sprigs of rosemary horizontally to create the base of the tree.
- Then add cubes of cheddar cheese in a straight line from edge to edge of the platter.
- Continue with the salami, red grapes, provolone, prosciutto, green olives, and pretzels, making each row narrower than the row before until you finish with the dried cranberries at the top. Place more sprigs of rosemary in between any sections that have round ingredients, like grapes or olives, to keep them from rolling onto other sections.
- Once you’ve finished the tree, top with with the apple star that you made earlier.
- Serve with additional crackers and pretzels.
- To make this recipe gluten-free, use gluten-free crackers and pretzels. Also be sure to check that the meat is gluten-free.
- To make this recipe vegetarian, omit the meat from this recipe and substitute with additional cheese, vegetables, or nuts.
- If you make this recipe ahead, either wait to cut the apple into the star just before serving or brush the sliced apple with lemon juice to prevent it from browning.