Kitchn Love Letters

The $8 Tool That Makes Charcuterie Boards (and Even Hot Dogs!) So Much Better

published Aug 25, 2021
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

If you’re someone who loves condiments or enjoys making charcuterie boards, I’m going to turn you onto a tiny kitchen tool you’re probably sleeping on: espresso spoons.

These mini spoons, often with cute decorative handles, can do far more than stir espresso. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that’s probably their least important purpose. When I was growing up, my food-loving, always-hosting family had a set of espresso spoons in constant rotation — and never for stirring coffees.

That’s because the even more practical use for such teeny spoons is for scooping condiments. Have an array of little jars of mustards, jams, tapenades, and other spreads hanging out in your fridge? You now have a tool that’ll scrape every last bit out of the small jars, leaving none to waste.

Better yet, take that condiment energy and start using these when you’re serving dinner. Any dinner with toppings or sauces arranged in small plates or bowls, where diners serve themselves, will benefit from some espresso spoons. Using a tiny spoon is far more practical (and cute!) than trying to balance a normal-sized spoon in a miniature dish.

Credit: Shelly Westerhausen Worcel
See? Tiny spoons!

Espresso spoons will also be the MVP of a BBQ, where you’re serving up burgers or hot dogs or both. Those little bowls of ketchup, mustard, mayo, and relish need equally little spoons that your guests can use to serve themselves. Enter again: espresso spoons!

And then, of course, there are charcuterie boards, which is what I break out my espresso spoons for most often. They’re perfect for ladling out dollops of jam, chutney, tapenade, honey, pesto, and even small olives. And no matter what the sauce or condiment is — whether it’s an array of homemade dips and spreads or some store-bought mayo and mustard — if you add them to nice-looking bowls and toss a little espresso spoon in, it’ll look elevated and polished.

Have I mentioned that espresso spoons, generally, aren’t that expensive? My personal set costs $8 for eight little spoons, and they even have sweet little leaf designs built into the handle. A quick Amazon search yields tons of adorable, stylish options.

Because they’re so little, they also don’t take up much room in a silverware drawer either. Useful, well-priced, and easy to store? Basically, there isn’t a reason not to get a set.

Do you have a set of espresso spoons you love? Tell us about it in the comments!