How to Make a Halloween Charcuterie Board Shaped Like a Jack-o’-Lantern

Our Halloween charcuterie board is overflowing with seasonal snacks and sweets. It'll be a hit at any Halloween party.

While the lead-up to Halloween is known for all things creepy, I prefer to participate in spooky season by sticking with kid-friendly activities like carving pumpkins, baking Halloween treats and snacking on plenty of candy at parties. If you’re anything like me, a Halloween “charcuterie” board shaped like a jack-o’-lantern is the perfect accompaniment to a not-too-scary movie: It’s more cute than creepy, and it’s loaded with themed snacks and sweets.

What You Need for a Halloween Charcuterie Board

Since we’re shaping the board like a jack-o’-lantern, we picked out mostly orange and black candies and snacks: Orange for the pumpkin parts and black for the “carved” eyes and smile.

Foods to Include 

Chewy candies: It isn’t Halloween without candy corn and mellocreme pumpkins! We also went for gummy peach rings, fall-colored gummy worms, and gummy vampire teeth. If you can find them, Halloween Peeps are a great addition to the lineup too.

Black licorice candies make it easy to distinguish the eyes and mouth from the rest of the pumpkin. Gumball eyeballs in the middle of each triangle “cutout” are a slightly spooky touch. 

Chocolatey candies: Pick out the orange candies from a bag of Halloween M&Ms and plan to pile them up—M&Ms always go quickly! A row of Oreos works for the stem, and Hershey’s Kisses wrapped in purple foil are a good contrast to the rest of the orange and black on the board. 

Other foods: Balance out all the sweetness with a few salty orange items, like Cheez-Its and Utz cheddar cheese balls. For a different texture, we added peanut butter popcorn balls, too.

How to Build a Halloween Charcuterie Board 

halloween charcuterie boardTMB Studio

Step 1: Start with the eyes and mouth  

First, arrange the licorice (we used black licorice cats, black licorice bites and black licorice jelly beans) into triangle-shaped eyes and a smile. Since the eyes and mouth are the defining elements of the jack-o’-lantern, putting these down first means you don’t have to make space for them later.

Put a gumball eyeball in the middle of each triangle and an Oreo where the nose should be.  

Step 2: Spread out the Hershey’s Kisses

Place a long, curved stripe of Hershey’s Kisses along the right side of the face, from the top of the board to the bottom.

To the right of the Hershey’s Kisses, put the popcorn balls and then fill in the space between the edge of the board and the popcorn balls with mellocreme pumpkins.

Test Kitchen Tip: If you want to make the peanut butter popcorn balls easier to grab and eat, put popsicle sticks in them.

Step 3: Outline the smile

Outline the black licorice smile with cheddar cheese balls on top and peach gummy rings on the bottom. Depending on the size of your board, the Hershey’s Kisses may already be touching the right edge of the smile.

Step 4: Fill in the gaps between the eyes and mouth

Load up the space between the eyes and mouth with candy corn and fill the gap between the eyes with orange M&Ms.

Step 5: Balance out the popcorn balls

Line the bottom of the left side of the board with pumpkin-shaped Peeps. They’ll balance out the board since they’re about the same size as the peanut butter popcorn balls.

Step 6: Finish with the rest of the candy

At this point, you should have Cheez-Its, gummy worms and vampire teeth gummies. Arrange them in the upper left.

Step 7: Set up other decor and serve!

Now is the time to break out the Halloween-themed napkins and plates and whip up a pitcher of something to drink.

If you want to decorate around your Halloween charcuterie board, you could cut out bat shapes from black construction paper or lay down a spiderweb runner. Any Halloween decorations you have at home will look great with your board!

Tips for Making a Halloween Charcuterie Board

What are some other ways to build a Halloween charcuterie board?

While we’re fond of the jack-o’-lantern shape of this Halloween charcuterie board, it’s easy to arrange the food in your favorite Halloween shape—like a bat, spider or ghost.

You can tailor your board to include your favorite Halloween candies, even if they aren’t orange and black. Halloween cookies (like these Frankenstein cookies) would be perfectly on-theme if you have time to make them!

What other charcuterie boards can you make?

If it’s a chilly night, have a hot chocolate board ready for after trick-or-treating. Throwing a Halloween party? Arrange dried fruits, vegetables and cheese in a cute pumpkin-shaped snack board, or turn a traditional charcuterie board into a themed platter by adding one or two Halloween appetizers like hot dog mummies or jack-o’-lantern empanadas.

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Lauren Pahmeier
Lauren is an associate editor at Taste of Home, focusing on search engine optimization. When she’s not making sure readers can find TOH’s recipes on Google, she’s practicing her food photography, consistently finding new recipes to try and hunting down the most indulgent treats in the Twin Cities.