Skip to Content

Tips, ideas and side dishes for a tasty raclette

Raclette is a convivial, comforting meal, ideal for a winter evening at the chalet, or a romantic dinner.

Discover how to organize the perfect raclette, with tips and ideas for original side dishes.

What is raclette?

Raclette: guide and tips for a successful raclette dinner

Raclette, a traditional Swiss meal, features a Swiss cheese of the same name.

Raclette is a Swiss cow’s milk cheese from the canton of Valais.

For a successful meal, cut raclette cheese into thick slices and prepare to melt it over a variety of tasty accompaniments.

The origins of raclette

Cheese wheels

The history of raclette goes back to the Swiss shepherds who enjoyed it by melting cheese by the fire.

Today, raclette has evolved, offering different tasting variations:

  • the traditional Swiss version involves scraping the cheese as it melts with a scraper and serving it on a plate, accompanied by marinades, cold meats and potatoes;
  • In Quebec, raclette meals are more often served in small electric ovens, with a grill on top and small dishes at the bottom to melt the cheese.

Why choose raclette?

Raclette has many advantages: little preparation, personalized portions and more time to enjoy your guests.

Equipment you might need for a raclette meal

Choosing cheeses for raclette: quantities and varieties

Which cheeses to choose for a raclette? Here are 3 varieties: classic raclette, mustard raclette and pepper raclette.

Quantity of cheese to serve

In terms of the quantity of cheese to serve, plan for about 200 g per person. Depending on the appetite of the guests, this figure may vary.

If there’s more than one person at the table, it’s a good idea to include a few extra cheeses.

Which cheeses to choose for raclette?

It’s best to choose 2 or 3 varieties of cheese, to offer a wide range of flavors.

There are a multitude of cheeses that can be used for raclette: mustard, pepper, beer and even blue cheese varieties.

For a good balance of flavors, we recommend at least one variety of classic raclette cheese and two varieties of more original cheeses.

Here are just a few examples:

  • classic raclette cheese: Valais raclette, Swiss raclette or Quebec raclette.
  • other varieties of raclette cheese: mustard raclette, Compton raclette with pepper, a Montboissié with a creamier texture, a Bleu Bénédictin or even a Brebis cheese from the Abbaye de Belloc, which has the advantage of being lactose-free for those who are intolerant.

And there’s nothing to stop you using other cheeses for your raclette, such as Louis d’Or, aged cheddar or even mozzarella cheese. The most important thing is that the cheese melts well!

Raclette side dishes

Meats, cold cuts and side dishes for raclette

One of the pleasures of raclette is the variety of accompaniments it comes with.

More classic accompaniments

Here are a few more classic accompaniments for a raclette meal.

Cold cuts

  • Bernese or white ham
  • a dry sausage
  • Grisons meat (air-dried beef)
  • chorizo
  • the Lyon rosette
  • coppa
  • prosciutto

Vegetables and fruit

  • baked new potatoes (about 3 per person)
  • blanched vegetables: asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower
  • zucchini slices (marinated in a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar)
  • mushrooms
  • cherry tomatoes

Other raclette accompaniments

  • bread
  • marinades: sweet onions and Gerkins pickles
  • condiments: pepper, paprika, smoked paprika, mustards and fondue sauces
  • nuts

Original side dishes for raclette

Raclette cheese melted on potatoes in a dish

If you’re looking for creative ideas for your next raclette party, the possibilities are endless.

Potatoes, charcuterie and pickles are a must, but to take your raclette to the next level, you can round things off with a few original accompaniments.

As for vegetables and fruit, for an original touch, you can serve :

  • apple or pear slices
  • figs, excellent with blue cheese
  • sautéed mushrooms
  • caramelized onions
  • grilled asparagus
  • roasted peppers.

For a change from cured meats, try these meats and seafood:

  • shrimp marinated in a drizzle of olive oil, with chopped garlic and parsley
  • cooked and sliced sausages: Italian, chorizo, Toulouse and fine herbs
  • Greek-style marinated chicken strips or steak marinated in a little olive oil and steak spices
  • fondue meat (which cooks quickly)
  • smoked salmon

Starters and desserts to serve with a raclette meal

Green salad to serve with raclette or as an appetizer

Since raclette is a fairly rich meal, it’s best to include a lighter starter, such as soup or a green salad.

The same logic applies to dessert.

Choose something light and fresh, like sorbet, fruit salad or a dessert board where everyone can eat according to their appetite.

The aim is to create a balance between the rich flavors of raclette and lighter dishes before and after, ensuring a balanced culinary experience.

Tips for a successful raclette

Raclette meal

To make meal preparation easier, here are a few tips to help you organize your dinner party.

What can you prepare in advance?

  • It’s best to pre-cook certain foods, such as vegetables, so that all that’s left is to grill them, if desired, during the meal:
    • blanch certain vegetables: asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower
    • cook sausages and potatoes in advance
    • marinate meats.
  • For meat and seafood, use strips, fondue meat and other cuts that cook quickly on the grill.
  • Turn on the raclette oven 15 minutes before the start of the meal, to allow it to preheat.

How to eat raclette

  1. Several plates of vegetables, cold meats, meats, seafood, marinades, cheeses, etc. are laid out on the table.
  2. People are then free to grill or not to grill the side dishes, and to prepare raclette domes to their liking, which can then be gratinated.
  3. To each his own: you can grill your food on top of the grill, then gratinate it with raclette cheese, or simply melt the cheese under the grill while the food cooks on top.

What to do with leftover cheese and cold cuts?

Finally, if you have any cheese left over after your meal, you have several options.

It can be used for gratins, sandwiches, grilled cheese or croque-monsieur.

Bon appétit!


* This website makes use of sponsored and/or affiliate links. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. It means that a small commission may be paid if a purchase is made through these links at no extra cost to you. It help us to cover the costs of maintaining this website and to offer you content free of charge.

Partager

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.