These Individual Charcuterie Cups are easy to assemble, versatile and perfect for parties, game days and holidays. These are also easy to hold and carry more portable than a traditional Charcuterie Board.
Move over big and bulky charcuterie boards, these adorable Individual Charcuterie Cups are here! These cups are easy to make and a must for any party or get together. These can be easily customized with different, meats, cheese, fruit, or nuts to create your perfect appetizer.
These can also be made ahead of time to save on prep and stress right before any gathering. The holidays are right around the corner, so impress your friends and family with the unique and innovative appetizer!
Meat Options: Any dried or cured meats are a must for any charcuterie. Some great options include pepperoni, salami, prosciutto, or pancetta. You could also add in a high quality sliced turkey or ham for some more variety.
Cheese Ideas: Cheeseeeeee, my personal favorite when it comes to any charcuterie. You could use a variety of hard and semi-soft cheeses in your appetizer cups but I do not recommend using a very soft cheese like goat cheese or blue cheese. These will get all over your other elements and leave a mess. Some good options include any type of cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, chunks of asiago, gruyere, Havarti to name a few. I always like to have a few different variety in each cup as well. If you are looking for some more involved cheese ideas check out my Everything Bagel Cheese Balls and my Marinated Mozzarella Balls. Both make great additions!
Fruit Suggestions: My go to is always grapes or berries. You do not have to worry about slicing them and they store well. They also are more hearty and won't get smashed in the cups. Another good option is slices apples, but be sure to add these right before serving so that they do not get soft and brown.
Vegetable Ideas: Vegetables always add in a nice variety and balance from all the hearty meats, cheese and nuts. I usually keep mine simple with some sliced cucumbers, baby carrots, grape tomatoes, black olive or pickles. Also, I only had a few to each cup and do not overload as most people prefer more cheese, meat and crackers.
Nuts & Seeds: I have used every variety of nut and seed imaginable. Anything goes here from spicy almonds, pistachios, a candied pecan or keep it simple with a basic nut mix.
Crunch Options: Every good charcuterie needs some carbs involved! You could keep it simple with some crackers, bagel chips, toasted bread, or small breadsticks. Other options include some Garlic Parmesan Pretzels, or pita chips.
Why These are a Party MUST!
Versatile: Great as a Party Appetizer, Game Days, Holidays & More!
Easy to Make: No Special Skills or Cooking Required
Crowd Pleaser & Customizable
- Begin my prepping arranging all of your ingredients. I like to begin by laying all my cups out, slicing any cheese I am using, then slicing any fruit last. If you are adding in any specific recipes that requires more prep work I recommend doing that ahead of time. See above for some of my recommendations!
- Once everything is prepped, you can begin to fill the cups. I like to put heavier items (like nuts, seeds, dried fruit and grapes on the bottom) then add in crackers, cheese, meats and any others ingredients on the top. Depending on cup size ( i used 9 oz. plastic cups), I will add a hand full of nuts/seeds/dried fruit, 2 pieces of meat, 2-3 crackers, 4-6 pieces of cheese, a few grapes, berries or sliced fruit, then a couple extras like a baby carrot, black olives, or small pickles. I also like to roll or fold meat to save on space, and make the Charcuterie Cups more visually appealing. Additionally, I like to incorporate large toothpicks to hold things like cheese balls, black olives and mini pickles. This helps separate items and keep things less muddled and separate. A lot of the prep will depend on what ingredients you want to add and what your guests enjoy. This is a rough outline and I encourage you to get creative and add in different things if you wish.
As far as storage goes, I do not recommend saving any leftover Charcuterie Cups. When all the different ingredients and textures are mixed together they do not store well. To avoid a lot of leftovers I recommend making 1-2 cups per person.
I recommend keeping the charcuterie cups in the fridge until ready to serve. To avoid the meat and cheese from drying out I recommend prepping these no more than 2 hours ahead of time. Additionally, add any slices fruit and crackers right before serving.
At max a charcuterie board or cups should sit out at room temperature for up to 4 hours. This is to avoid any potential bacterial growth or food from spoiling. Dispose of any leftovers that have sad out longer than the above time frame.
For plates, platters and cups, add ice to a clean plastic or metal tub and place your charcuterie on top. This will keep everything cold, fresh and won't take up too much space.
Charcuterie is a French word used to describe any of a variety of cold cooked or cured meats. When served on a board for entertaining, it's often served along side cheese, crackers and/or bread, nuts and fruits.
Suggested Kitchen Tools
I like to use clear plastic cups so you can see what is inside each appetizer cup, and they are easy to clean up and dispose of. The cups I used were 9 ounces.
Large toothpicks work great for skewering certain ingredients and helping your guests eat their cup easier.
A large serving tray or platter adding some more presentation points and makes it easier to carry/serve the individual appetizer cups at parties.
When putting the appetizer cups together I like to layer them and put heavier items on the bottom, then more fragile foods on top. For example, nuts and dried fruit work great as the bottom layer while crackers and cheese work better near the top.
When putting together the cups I like to put things close together that a person would naturally eat together. So I like to pair crackers near the meat and cheese, an olive off to the side for a crisp bite and nuts on their own so people can snack on those at their leisure. You don't want people to have to dig around the cup to put together a bite.
Presentation is Key
Just like a traditional Charcuterie Board, these scaled down cups should also be pretty and a little "extra". Of course you can go more all out if you want, but some simple ways to add drama without a lot of effort is folding/rolling the meats, slicing the fruit nicely, adding toothpicks or skewers for height and making it easier for your guests to eat.
You May Also Enjoy...
- 36 Crackers
- 12 Slices Salami or Pepperoni
- 12 Slices Ham or Turkey You could also sub in prosciutto
- 12 Slices Thick Cut Cheddar Cheese I then slice mine into smaller pieces
- 12 Slices Havarti Cheese I then slice mine into smaller pieces
- 24 Cubes Asiago Cheese
- 60 Grapes
- 1 Small Fuji Apple Sliced Thin
- 24 Whole Black Olives
- 12 Baby Carrots Optional
- 1 ½ Cups Nuts, Seeds and Dried Fruit See Notes
- Begin my prepping arranging all of your ingredients. I like to begin by laying all my cups out, slicing any cheese I am using, then slicing any fruit last.
- Once everything is prepped, you can begin to fill the cups. I like to put heavier items (like nuts, seeds, dried fruit and grapes on the bottom) then add in crackers, cheese, meats and any others ingredients on the top. Depending on your cups size, I will add 2 tbsp of nuts/seeds/dried fruit, 2 pieces of meat, 2-3 crackers, 4-6 pieces of cheese, 5 grapes, berries or sliced fruit, then a couple extras like a baby carrot, black olives. I also like to roll or fold meat to save on space, and make the Charcuterie Cups more visually appealing. The above ingredients are meant to be equally divided among 12 cups.
- Additionally, I like to incorporate large toothpicks to hold things like cheese balls, black olives and mini pickles. This helps separate items and keep things less muddled and separate. A lot of the prep will depend on what ingredients you want to add and what your guests enjoy. This is a rough outline and I encourage you to get creative and add in different things if you wish.