March 14, 2022
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When it came down to planning the food for my sister-in-law’s baby shower, the group of hostesses wanted an option that would feed a crowd, could be displayed beautifully, and would appeal to lots of taste buds. We settled on a charcuterie board spread which not only checked all of those boxes, but also was something I felt confident in being able to pull off for the shower.
In the weeks leading up to the baby shower, I was looking for inspiration for the cheese boards. I knew I wanted to use multiple wooden boards of varying shapes and sizes. I wanted to display the items on the boards in an elegant way, and I was looking for a color palette that would nicely compliment the organic colors of the party color palette.
I ultimately found the inspiration I was searching for in Meg Quinn’s The Cheese Board Deck. I had received this as a gift for the holidays (ironically from my sister-in-law!) It’s a set of large cards that have all kinds of different board inspiration images and shopping lists, including holiday themed boards and non-traditional ingredients! Each card was so thoughtfully put together and beautifully photographed. I ended up combining three of the shopping lists into my own unique list of exactly what I wanted to purchase for the party.
I also enjoyed watching Honeysuckle’s YouTube video where she puts together two different charcuterie boards at two price points. She shows some food arrangement techniques that I wanted to recreate.
Shopping for a Trader Joe’s Charcuterie Board
I have had so much luck purchasing all of my ingredients for past boards from Trader Joe’s, so I knew that’s exactly where I wanted to shop for this one. Here is exactly what I got and how much it cost.
With 17 guests, I ended up purchasing 8 cheeses. I chose a mixture of soft and hard cheeses so that the boards would appeal to a large variety of taste buds.
- Asiago Cheese with Rosemary & Olive Oil - $5.12
- Parmesan - $5.31
- Brie - $4.22
- Chevre with Honey Goat’s Milk Cheese – $2.99
- Chevre Fine Herbs Goat Cheese – $2.99
- Trader Joe’s Cheddar & Gruyere - $4.72
- Manchego Cheese – $7.91
- Comte - $6.00
Total spent on cheese: $39.26
I selected 3 different meats that would be delicious while adding variation in color and texture to the board.
- Prosciutto - $3.99
- Calabrese Salame - $3.29
- Italian Dry Salame Log - $4.99
Total spent on meat: $12.27
Everyone has their own cracker style (see some cracker recommendations here), but I prefer simple crackers to be paired with cheeses so that the flavor of the cheese is more prominent than the cracker I’m eating it on. That’s why I chose these organic naan crackers from Trader Joe’s.
- Organic Naan Crackers - $2.99
Total spent on crackers: $2.99
I chose a mix of fresh and dried fruits to add to the boards. I love the sweetness that this adds to the meats and cheeses.
- Raspberries - $3.49
- Red Seedless Grapes – $5.99
- Dried Apricots - $3.99
Total spent on fruit: $13.47
I selected three accoutrements that I knew would pair wonderfully with the other flavors on the board. Almonds and kalamata olives are classic choices, and the peanut butter filled pretzels just looked fun! Plus, all three had totally different visual textures from each other.
- Peanut Butter Filled Pretzel Nuggets - $2.49
- Guara Almonds with Extra Virgin Olive Oil & Sea Salt – $4.99
- Greek Kalamata Olives - $2.79
Total spent on accoutrements: $10.27
When it came to selecting a garnish, this was all about color! I wanted to add a green onto the boards because I knew it would tie the theme together. Rosemary was the obvious choice, plus it smells so good on the board!
- Rosemary - $1.69
Total spent on garnish: $1.69
Grand total spent on food at Trader Joe’s: $79.95
I was expecting to spend $100 on the baby shower charcuterie board ingredients, so this was a huge win to come in $20 under budget!
Assembling the Baby Shower Charcuterie Board
The shower was in the afternoon, so I started prepping for the board assembly a few hours ahead of time. In the morning, I sliced all of the cheeses (except for the goat cheese logs) so that they’d be ready to assemble on the board and easy for guests to grab. I allotted one hour for myself to actually put the boards together. I started with the largest board I was using and placed the cheeses and ramekins down first. Some cheeses were “braided” together. I placed the triangular-shaped cheese slices in opposing directions. The remaining cheeses were loosely placed in the board. Next, I placed the meats on the board to create “rivers.” I then placed the fruits on the board and filled the ramekins with their respective accoutremonts. The last thing that went on the board was the rosemary. I ended up filling three boards in total following these steps.
I placed a few cheese knives next to the boards for the goat cheeses. The crackers went in nearby bowls for guests to access.
What Else We Served With the Charcuterie Board
This was a baby shower, so of course we paired the charcuterie board snacks with some treats as well! We served cupcakes and a variety of drinks including a really fun mocktail. Guests also left the shower with a decorated cookie.
I could not be happier with how the baby shower charcuterie board spread turned out! It was visually stunning at the party. Having three boards filled out the table nicely, and the amount of food was perfect for 17 people. There was some food left over at the end, but the boards had been substantially grazed. I would recommend a Trader Joe’s charcuterie board for your next party!
If you don’t have a Trader Joe’s near you, we have shopping lists for some other grocery stores: