How to Make a Simple Gluten-Free Dessert Charcuterie Board
Sweet, Stunning, and Simple. You can have them all on one easy dessert tray. Thanks to the magic of the charcuterie board, combining simple food items and turning them into a flowing work of art.
You will love how quickly you can make this gorgeous gluten-free dessert charcuterie board. And your guests will never suspect it is gluten-free!
These sweet dessert versions (a sugary spin on the classic, savory charcuterie board) are perfect for:
- Valentine’s Day
- Awards Night Viewing
- Movie Nights
- Dinner Parties
- Family Game Nights
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Gluten intolerance and celiac disease are no match for the dessert charcuterie. There are endless gluten-free options to fill your board beautifully and deliciously.
I’ve got you covered with this huge selection of gluten-free sweets. So many treats to inspire your own lovely dessert board!
Gluten-Free Desserts are the star of your board.
Cut larger items into pieces that can be eaten in 1-3 bites.
Gluten-Free Ready-Made Desserts:
If quick and easy is your goal, I recommend filling your board with ready-to-go store-bought options.
- Mini Cupcakes: Sprouts and Trader Joe’s sell gluten-free mini cupcakes. You can quickly embellish them to match your color or theme with Betty Crocker Sprinkles. Not all Betty Crocker Sprinkles are gluten-free. Those that are will state so on the container and/or the website.
- Lucky Spoon Brownie Bites or larger, gluten-free brownies cut into bite sizes.
- Graham Crackers: Pamela’s Honey Grahams or Simple Mills Honey Cinnamon Sweet Thins
- Starbucks gluten-free Marshmallow Dream Bars: cut each bar into 3-6 pieces.
- Delizza Gluten-Free Mini Eclairs or Cream Puffs: Delizza also makes gluten-full versions of these treats, so make sure you grab a gluten-free package. I usually find these in the freezer section at Sprouts.
- Katz Donut Holes
- Schar Gluten-Free Wafers: Vanilla, Chocolate, and Hazelnut Varieties
- Cookies: Tate’s Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies or Gluten-Free Oreos. Make sure the package says gluten-free, as both Tate’s and Oreos also come in gluten-containing varieties.
- Goodie Girls Mint Slims: just like Girls Scouts’ Thin Mints, but gluten-free!
- Pick up items from your favorite, local, gluten-free bakery! This doesn’t require a special trip (unless you are looking for an excuse). Most bakery items freeze well, so you can buy extra baked goods well in advance of your event and defrost them on the day of your party. Ask at the bakery which items are best for freezing.
Gluten-Free Homemade Desserts:
Trying to keep your dessert charcuterie board affordable? Rely mostly on homemade desserts to stretch your budget. Then add in just a few store-bought products that are on the less expensive side. In-season fruit, Hershey’s brand candy, gluten-free Oreos, and Snyder’s gluten-free pretzels are great for keeping costs down.
- Mini Cupcakes – Gluten-Free King Arthur Confetti Cake Fix is a fun option. To add color to your charcuterie board, tint the frosting or use colorful sprinkles to match your theme.
- Bars: brownies, blondies, lemon bars, and these delicious pumpkin cheesecake bars. Cut into bites.
- Mini Muffins: I made the healthy pumpkin muffins in the photos from a Simple Mills mix
- Cakes and Dessert Loaves: lemon tea cake, pumpkin bread. Cut into bite-size pieces.
- Crispy Rice Treats: start with any brand of gluten-free, crispy rice cereal. General Mills’ Rice Krispies are not gluten-free.
- Cookies: iced sugar cookies, chocolate-dipped sugar cookies, the most amazing chewy gingersnaps, or your family’s favorite recipe.
Candy & Chocolate
Charcuterie boards for the big candy holidays, like Valentine’s Day, Easter & Halloween, lend themselves easily to an assortment of candy. But, chocolate is a great addition to any dessert charcuterie board year round!
- Hershey’s products: Look for gluten-free noted right on the packaging. Hershey’s clearly labels gluten-free items.
- See’s Candies is my go-to source for gluten-free seasonal candy, from chocolate bunnies to Valentine’s Day licorice. In See’s Candies’ Allergy Statement, the company explains that no gluten ingredients are used in its factories and lists the handful of products from other producers that may not be safe.
- Chocolate-Covered Acai & Blueberry
- Gourmet Chocolate Bars: the possibilities are endless for creative, gluten-free chocolate bars. I usually walk down the aisle at Whole Foods and grab whatever piques my interest.
- Glutino Chocolate-Covered Pretzels
- Glutino Yogurt-Covered Pretzels
- Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups: look for the gluten-free label, seasonal shapes are usually not gluten-free.
- Nestle White Chocolate Chips: Nestle notes these are gluten-free, right on the package.
Fruit is naturally gluten-free. It can easily fill half of your dessert board, and will pair beautifully with the dips.
Many guests will prefer fruit for a lighter dessert option, or would rather mix healthier fruit with a couple of small bites of their favorite indulgences.
- Fresh berries
- Sliced apples and pears
- Dried Fruit: mango, dates, figs
- Chocolate-dipped strawberries (or any fruit): these are so quick and easy to make.
Savory items help to balance out all of the sweets on your board. Consider adding:
- Nuts: serving nuts in their shells adds more volume and texture, and allow guests to slow down and savor their food.
- Gluten-Free pretzels: traditional pretzel shapes or pretzel sticks.
- Cheese: with its wonderful salty flavor and variety of textures. Cheese has a legitimate place on a dessert charcuterie. In France, a cheese plate is sometimes served in lieu of dessert.
- Cream Cheese Caramel Apple Dip: make this 3-ingredient dip in 5 minutes.
- Caramel Dip: Trader Joe’s sells a thick caramel dip labeled gluten-free.
- Chocolate Hummus
- Marshmallow Dip: old-fashioned Marshmallow Fluff is labeled gluten-free and Smucker’s Marshmallow Topping has no gluten ingredients.
- Serving board: large serving trays, marble or wooden cutting boards, slate snack boards, decorative storage trays, cake stands, and large platters are all great options. Use what you have!
- Parchment paper or wax paper: I use this when protecting a wooden board from ingredients that contain moisture or if using a board that is for decorative use and may not food-safe.
- Small bowls and dishes: for serving dips or gathering small items.
- Serving utensils: butter/cheese knives, mini forks, spoons, honey dipper (if serving honey).
- Metal nutcracker: if serving nuts.
- Small plates & napkins: for your guests.
How to Assemble Your Gluten-Free Dessert Charcuterie
Arrange dip bowls (and any platters holding small items) in separate areas of the board.
Spacing out the dips helps to balance out the board visually.
An odd number looks better. If you only have 2 dips, that’s fine. Gather one of your smaller items in a small plate or bowl, to make a third focal point. A bowl of pistachios, dates, or chocolate-covered acai would be perfect.
Fan your dessert items around the board.
It’s time to place your baked goods: cookies, mini-cupcakes, pastries, and cheesecake bites.
Imagine them flowing across the board like a river or a stack of fallen dominoes. Give thought to color and flavor when placing your items.
If a particular dessert goes well with one of the dips, fan that dessert out next to the dip, as a subtle hint to your guests.
For visual contrast, place white cheesecake bites by a chocolate dip. Brownie bites stand out next to a white marshmallow dip.
Create color blocks with colorful fruit.
Fruit is one of the loveliest things about a charcuterie dessert board. Vibrant fruit adds color. Strategically place those beautiful colors in open spaces around your board.
Place red strawberries separate from red raspberries to create a more colorful board.
Start to fill in the large empty spaces. Apple slices can be fanned out. Lay a bunch of grapes so they fill up one or more open spots. Place a pile of berries next to taller desserts, which serve as a wall, containing them in place.
Nothing is glued down. As you add more items, nudge others around a bit until you are satisfied with the look. It’s like painting with broad sweeping strokes. Variety of color, shape, volume, and texture all add to the beauty.
Add the rest of the ingredients to fill up any open spaces.
You can spread or scrunch items as needed, until you are satisfied with your work of art.
Gluten-Free Dessert Charcuterie Board Ideas for Holiday Parties
Once you’ve made your first charcuterie board, you will suddenly start seeing the opportunity to make one for every occasion.
A dessert board is the perfect way to feed a crowd at holiday gatherings and themed parties throughout the year. Here’s a little inspiration to get your creative juices flowing.
New Year’s Eve Dessert Charcuterie Board: black and white themed charcuterie with dark and white chocolate-dipped fruit and gluten-free pretzels, white cheesecake bites (made with gluten-free graham crackers), and gluten-free brownie bites
Valentine’s Day Charcuterie Board: gluten-free heart-shaped cookies, gluten-free conversation candy hearts, heart-shaped York Peppermint Patties (labeled gluten-free)
St. Patrick’s Day Dessert Charcuterie Board: green apples, See’s gold coins, (rainbow) Mike & Ike candy (labeled gluten-free), homemade gluten-free mini cupcakes with green frosting
Easter Dessert Charcuterie Board: See’s chocolate eggs, Jelly Belly jelly beans, homemade pastel chocolate-dipped strawberries, egg-shaped York Peppermint Patties (labeled gluten-free), and Peeps (also labeled gluten-free)
Mother’s Day Dessert Charcuterie Board: gluten-free lemon desserts cut into bite sizes or scooped into individual appetizer/dessert cups, and homemade chocolate-dipped strawberries in Mom’s favorite color
Fourth of July Dessert Charcuterie Board (and other Patriotic holidays): red, white & blue dipped strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and gluten-free cookies with red, white, and blue sprinkles
Halloween Dessert Charcuterie Board: apples with caramel dip, Jelly Belly candy corn, Albanese gummy worms, banana ghosts, cutie-oranges for pumpkins or jack-o-lanterns, and spiders made with gluten-free mint Oreos and gluten-free pretzel sticks
Thanksgiving Dessert Charcuterie Board full of homemade desserts: decadent, gluten-free pumpkin cheesecake bars (cut into bite sizes), mini pumpkin pies, mini pecan pies, and salted caramel mini cupcakes
Christmas Charcuterie Board: gluten-free Christmas cookies gathered by variety, and fudge
Winter, Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board: dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate, mini marshmallows, Peep Christmas marshmallows (confirm they are still labeled gluten-free at the time of purchase), and Yum Earth mini candy canes
Gluten-Free Dessert Charcuterie Board Recipe
- 2-3 Gluten-Free Dips cream cheese caramel dip, gluten-free caramel dip, chocolate hummus, honey, gluten-free marshmallow dip/sauce
- Variety of Gluten-Free Desserts (ready-made or homemade) mini cupcakes, brownie bites, bars, graham crackers, gf crispy rice treats, donut holes, mini eclairs, dessert loaves, mini muffins, and cookies
- Variety of Fruit fresh berries, sliced apples & pears, mangos, pineapple, dried fruit, chocolate-dipped fruit
- Variety of Candy & Chocolate (labeled gluten-free) gluten-free Hershey's products, See's Candies, chocolate-covered açaí & blueberry, gourmet chocolate bars, Glutino chocolate and/r yogurt pretzels, Reese's peanut butter cups, Nestle chocolate chips (milk, dark, white)
- Variety of Savory and Salty Items nuts, gluten-free pretzels, cheese
- Arrange dip bowls (and any platters holding small items) in separate areas of the board, for visual balance.
- Cut any larger baked goods into small pieces. Fan your baked goods around the board, similar to fallen dominoes.
- Start to fill in large spaces with colorful fruit. Strategically place items to create visual interest with a variety of colors and textures.
- Add the remaining ingredients to fill in any open spaces. Gently shift items around as desired, until you are satisfied with your work of art.