Cheese Board

How to Build the Best Cheese Board

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Do you know the difference between an oozy Camembert and a tangy blue? And what are the distinctions between cheese from a cow, sheep, goat or plant? Can you say vegan? And what is this thing called charcuterie?

Relax. Your cheese-ology is getting a boost.

Use this handy guide to learn how to build an amazing cheese board — one you can confidently bring to any gathering (if you’re on tap for nibbles) or impress with if you're the host. Either way, these fool-proof, best-in-cheese methods are sure to make you the hit of any party.  

How to Choose the Cheeses:

Depending on the size of your gathering, plan for 1–2 ounces of cheese per person. Pick 3 to 4 varieties that include an array of milks, styles and textures. Our favorites include:

Soft & Buttery (like MonS Camembert)MonS Camembert

Firm & Nutty (like Cypress Grove Midnight Moon)Midnight Moon

Aged & Savory (like Roth Pavino)Roth Pavino

Blue & Tangy (like MonS 1924)

MonS 1924

How to Pick the Pairings:

Complementary nibbles can help bring out the nuances and flavors of the cheese. Select something from all categories. You can’t go wrong.

Crunchy (like Leslie Stowe’s Rainbow Crisps or a hearth-baked baguette)Crackers

Fruity (like Bonnie’s Jams Bourbon Berry or seasonal apples)Conserve

Briny (like Divina olive mixes or Peppadews)

Meaty (like Creminelli Sliced Prosciutto or our In-House-Made Sausage)Proscuitto

How to Serve:

Unwrap 1 hour before serving. “Breathing time” brings out the cheese’s aromatics and nuances. Serve on a rustic board or natural stone. (Bonus points: Label cheeses with tasting notes.)

How to Store:

Cheese is alive! So wrap it neatly in cheese paper (or wax paper will do). That way, the cheese can get some air.

How We Can Help:

At Whole Foods Market, we have 300+ Certified Cheese Professionals in our stores — along with countless cheesemongers. And we’re constantly investing in our cheese smarts, so we’re at the forefront of what’s trending. In a nutshell, we eat, sleep and breathe cheese. (It’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it.) So ask us anything. We’re happy to answer any questions about your selections.

Looking for more ideas? This holiday season, we’re teaming up with expert Marissa Mullen of That Cheese Plate. Follow her on Instagram at @ThatCheesePlate and @CheeseByNumbers to see her series for Whole Foods Market, where she’s sharing tips for shopping our Cheese department, building cheese boards at home and more. She’s also showing us how to build a vegan cheese board — get her tips here.

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