From Google searches to Pinterest to Instagram, charcuterie boards were the digital and social media darlings of 2021.
The board buzz caught the attention of Batavia, Ill.-based Aldi U.S., which launched its first Charcuterie Board of Directors in October. The panel of charcuterie aficionados were charged with inspiring shoppers to create impressive, approachable and affordable boards throughout the holiday season.
But now it’s 2022, and inquiring minds and Aldi shoppers are hungry for charcuterie trends that will take them into the New Year.
Comprised of seven gourmet food and wine enthusiasts who specialize in food styling, recipe creation, flavor pairing and entertaining, Aldi’s Charcuterie Board of Directors—spearheaded by Kim Brazington, director of national buying, Aldi U.S., and American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professional—has identified the six top food boarding trends for 2022.
Here’s what she and a diverse mix of influencers, food bloggers, chefs, authors and sommeliers, including Sarah Crawford, Gaby Dalkin, Rosalynn Daniels, Kasim Hardaway, Marissa Mullen and Sarah Tracey, say consumers will crave in the year ahead:
- Wellness: Expect more vegan, dairy-free, plant-based and gluten-free boards to take health-focused eating to a new level.
- Reimagined Salad Bars: Veggie-loaded boards will serve as salad bowls, like lettuce wedges surrounded by toppings or cobb salads with rows of ingredients.
- Pickled Platters:Home pickling has picked up speed, making it easy to pack in a variety of pickled veggies and fruits.
- Melted Cheese:Whether in fondue pots, ramekins or mini grilled cheese sandwiches, melted cheese will be a hot trend, plus veggies, fresh bread or crackers for dipping.
- All Eyes on Fries: Built for a crowd, boards topped with french fries—from shoestring to waffle to steakhouse to tater tots—will be popular, as will fries made from other veggies.
- Kid-Friendly: From everyday lunches to holiday fun, kids won’t get bored of boards with shapes made of fruit, veggies, cheese, deli meat roll-ups and mini sandwiches.
Aldi’s Charcuterie Board of Directors also took a look back to the top charcuterie board trends of 2021. They included all forms of breakfast boards made with flapjack stacks, waffle wedges, toast triangles, smoked salmon and more. Sweet dessert boards with chocolate, candies, ice cream, s’mores, and DIY cookie decorating were also a hit.
With the pandemic still impacting larger gatherings last year, 2021 also saw a rise in single-servecharcuterie portions in glass jars or paper cones, the Aldi board said. Fruit-forward boards with fresh produce, fun shapes, dips and garnishes were also popular, as were boards that featured build-your-own tacos and fajitas.
Finally, “grazing tables”—where the entire table was the board—swept the nation as consumers sought Instagram-worthy ways to nosh.