Hosting a Mexican fiesta? Whether it’s for Cinco de Mayo or Taco Tuesday, you’ll definitely impress your guests with a Mexican charcuterie board.
What is a Mexican charcuterie board?
A Mexican charcuterie board is a food board (although not necessarily a charcuterie board in the strictest definition) that focuses on the theme of Mexico. It’s a creative way to incorporate Mexican cuisine and decor.
What goes on a Mexican charcuterie board?
The most common foods associated with Mexico are tacos, burritos and nachos. When making a taco, burrito or nacho board; don’t just make a bunch and pile it on a board. Otherwise, it can turn into a big sloppy mess.
Instead, make small amounts on separate boards, make them into bite-sized versions…or display them in a deconstructed manner (i.e. separate the ingredients) so your guests can assemble them the way they like.
To make your food board more well-rounded, here are some foundational food items that you can include:
- sliced/seasoned meats: chorizo, taco meat (ground beef or turkey), grilled chicken
- cheeses: cotija cheese, nacho cheese, manchego, panela, queso fresco, etc.
- tortillas and chips: flour tortillas, corn tortillas, tortilla chips etc.
- vegetables: sliced, lettuce, bell peppers, etc.
- nuts: Japanese nuts (used in Tostilocos), cashews, pecans, etc.
- dips & salsas: guacamole, nacho cheese dip, salsa fresca, etc.
If you’re looking for some more authentic Mexican ingredients and items to add to our board, you can consider these:
- chorizo: Mexican chorizo is a flavorful and spicy sausage that’s perfect for a charcuterie board. You can include both cooked and cured versions.
- nopales: These are tender cactus paddles that can be grilled and sliced for a unique addition to your board. They have a slightly tangy flavor and add a nice crunch.
- tamales: Mini tamales or tamale bites can be included to provide a taste of traditional Mexican cuisine. Consider a variety of fillings like chicken, pork, or cheese.
- pickled jalapeños: These add a spicy kick to your board and can be a great accompaniment to other items.
- Mexican street corn (elotes/esquites): Mini corn cobs coated with mayonnaise, cheese, chili powder, and lime juice can be a flavorful addition.
- ceviche: A seafood ceviche made with shrimp or fish can provide a refreshing contrast to the other items.
- chiles rellenos: Small, bite-sized chiles rellenos can be filled with cheese, meat, or beans and make for a unique addition.
- dried chili peppers: Include a selection of dried chili peppers for those who enjoy a spicy kick.
- Mexican spices: Small containers of Mexican spices like cumin, chili powder, or smoked paprika can be used for seasoning or dipping.
Besides the food, the decor is a big part of what gives extra life to your food board. It makes the theme more obvious.
colors, patterns and textures
Colors have different meanins in different countries and cultures. Here is a common color palette used in Mexican decor and the meaning of each of the colors in Mexico and Latin America.
- red – represents love, passion and the blood of those fighting for Mexican independence (one of the colors of the Mexican flag)
- yellow – represents maize, which Mayans believed was the staple food of life
- orange – represents enthusiasm and emotion
- green – represents hope and growth (one of the colors of the Mexican flag)
- blue – represents the cardinal direction South in Aztecan culture and sacrifice in Mayan culture
- purple – represents mourning or death (a prominent color for Dia de Los Muertos)
- white – stands for purity (one of the colors of the Mexican flag)
Hungry for more charcuterie platters? Find out everything you must know about food boards here!