13 Things Every Dedicated Cheese Lover Should Know

Sharpen your skills for National Cheese Lover’s Day.

Are you a dedicated cheese lover? You think so, right? But — what if you’re actually not? Gasp! After years of maintaining two refrigerator drawers OF my ever-growing collection of cheese, I had to learn the hard way that I was actually not all that dedicated. Sure, my devoted love was there, but my knowledge was lacking. That’s why today, I’m a proud advocate of cheese education. Just kidding. But really, learn some cheese skills, you turophile, you.

How to Make It

I mean, what if you get snowed in? Your cheese will obviously be gone in a matter of hours, so hone in on those pioneer skills now.

How to Make Cheese
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Assemble the Perfect Cheese Plate

Every true cheese whiz knows how to create a fabulous cheese plate for guests. Don’t let your party people down.

Cheese plate with fruit and bread

How to Set Up a Cheese Plate

Once all condiments, pairings and cheeses have been removed from their packaging and properly prepared for presentation, arrange them all together on an elevated vessel above the crackers, bread and condiments. This will allow the variety of cheeses to stand out as a culinary feature and provide easy access for guests. Serving Tips: Set out a separate knife for each type of cheese. Label each cheese with suggested accompaniments. Keep more pungent cheeses on a separate plate so they don't overpower the other cheeses. Take cheeses out of the refrigerator at least one hour before serving; they'll be more flavorful and easier to slice.

Photo by: Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

Create an Epic Meat + Cheese Spread

If you’re hosting a crowd, you should know how to add some serious meat to the mix. Make it epic with our foolproof tips.

Epic Meat and Cheese Spread
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Make Your Own Cheese Board

While you’re getting creative, you might as well make your own cheese board, too. (No art skills necessary!)

Bake a Cheese Straw

Master this crunchy crowd-pleaser for once and for all. Your friends will thank you.

Delicious Cheese Straw Appetizer

Delicious Cheese Straw Appetizer

A quick and easy appetizer of cheese straws can be creatively stacked for a charming display.

Make Homemade Pimento Cheese

Learning how to make this Southern staple will give you major street cred in the cheese department. The store-bought kind doesn’t even compare, I promise.

Pimento Cheese Fritters from Blackberry Farm

Photo by: Photo courtesy of Blackberry Farm and Beall + Thomas Photography

Make Killer Cheese Ball Bites

The only thing better than a succulent, savory cheese ball? Mini succulent, savory cheese balls with pretzel sticks for good measure.

Cheese Ball Bites
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DIY Your Own Cheese Wheel Wrappers

Giving the ultimate gift of love to another cheese enthusiast? Learn how to fancy it up with an easy-to-make cheese wheel wrapper.

cheese basket filled with cheeses, breadsticks and jam

Cheese Gift Basket

Gift the cheese connoisseur in your life with a slate or marble cheese board and a collection of nibbles such as meats, cheeses and cheese markers, olives, jams or spreads and fresh rosemary sprigs presented in an old vintage wooden cheese box

Photo by: Alexandra Frumberg, ALX Creatives

Alexandra Frumberg, ALX Creatives

Make the Best-Ever Beer Cheese

If you’re a cheese fanatic and a beer drinker, this one’s a no-brainer. Even if you don’t drink beer, this to-die-for dip is still worth a try.

Pretzels in Beer Dip and a Glass of Beer

Beer Cheese Dip

Have a couple of savory options available at your Halloween party. Serve pretzels along with beer cheese dip to keep adults at the party happy.

Make Grilled Cheeses for a Crowd

I won’t insult your cheese intelligence by instructing you on how to make a grilled cheese for yourself — I trust you know how to do that properly. Something I will instruct you on? The big-batch grilled cheese. Watch and learn, cheese fiends.

Easy Grilled Cheese for a Crowd
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Bake Brie Properly

I must confess — I failed miserably at this in my novice cheese days. I beg you; don’t serve bad brie (that is, a strange brie concoction you cooked up yourself).

Baked Brie 3 Ways
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Nail Cheese Dip Every. Single. Time.

Do I even need to explain why this is a necessary skill?

Cheese Dip

Bob's Cheese Dip

From Bob Cook | [Edmund's Oast](http://edmundsoast.com/) | Charleston, South Carolina This simple formula can be a base for just about any mix-in you can imagine. The chef recommends green onions, peppers, taco seasoning, or even diced bacon or ham. A splash of savory fish sauce adds some depth without imparting a fishy flavor. **[Get the recipe](http://www.hgtv.com/design/make-and-celebrate/entertaining/deliciously-simple-cheese-dip-recipe)**.

Photo by: Margaret Houston

Margaret Houston

Impress the In-Laws With Cheese Fondue

I’m just saying, cheese fondue looks super-swanky if you serve it in a pretty pot with fancy dippers.

Delicious Cheese Fondue

Delicious Cheese Fondue

Cheese fondue is a quick and easy appetizer, great for parties and celebrations.

5 Wintry Appetizers With One Thing in Common — Cheese!

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Add some new appetizers to your cheesy repertoire.

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Next Up

4 Ways to Make a Thanksgiving Charcuterie Board

From savory meat and cheese boards, to vegetarian-friendly fruits and veggies, to a dessert tray full of sweet-tooth delights, we’ve got charcuterie smorgasbord ideas that will satisfy all your guests.

How to Make a Thanksgiving Charcuterie Board

Serve a spread that has all the things you’d expect on a classic charcuterie board, but give it a seasonal flair to win the holiday.

How to Create a Platter of Classic Finger Food Appetizers

Make entertaining easy by serving a sampler board of classic, easy-to-assemble savory bites such as spicy wings, sweet-and-sour meatballs, loaded potato skins and more.

How to Make a Vegetarian-Friendly Cheese + Crudite Tray

This abundant cheese, fruit and veggie charcuterie board is perfect for potlucks, holidays, tailgates or any occasion you can think of.

How to Make a Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board

Whether hosting a dinner party, game night or looking for a special treat for the kids, you can’t go wrong with a big pot of hot cocoa served up with all the fixings, including candy, cookies and mounds of marshmallows.

How to Make a Movie Night Snack Board

Whether you’re having a quiet family movie night or hosting a movie awards show, take your snacking to the next level with this charcuterie-style board full of everyone’s favorite theater treats.

How to Set up a Charcuterie-Style Chili Bar

Whether you’re hosting game day or an awards-show watch party, spice up your gathering with a chili board, a charcuterie-style arrangement that revolves around the soul-satisfying goodness of warm chili.

How to Make a Vegetarian Turkey-Shaped Charcuterie Board for Thanksgiving

This creative platter offers a fun yet ironic way to keep turkey on the menu while surprising vegetarian guests with an array of meat-free delights.

How to Make an Easy Sweet and Savory Brunch Charcuterie Board

Wake up to a breakfast grazing board brimming with everything from decadent pastries to savory mainstays. This board takes the hassle out of hosting by using all pre-made and store-bought items that can be served at room temperature.

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