Go Back
+ servings
ploughman's lunch arranged on a wooden cutting board
Print Recipe
4.55 from 11 votes

How to Make a Ploughman's Lunch

Ploughman’s lunch is a traditional British meal that is perfect idea for your next party.  Fill a large, rustic platter with cheese, bread, meat, pickled and fresh vegetables, chutney, boiled eggs, and fruit.  Guests can enjoy a wonderful sandwich with a side salad.  It’s a simple but brilliant dish for entertaining!
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time6 mins
Total Time46 mins
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: British
Keyword: ploughmans lunch, sandwiches
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 374kcal
Author: Brooke


Key Ingredients

  • 4 thick slices of white crusty bread
  • 2 wedges aged English cheddar
  • 1 wedge Stilton cheese
  • 2 thick slices ham
  • ½ cup strong chutney like Branston pickle
  • 6 gherkins
  • 10 silverskin onions or cocktail onions

Secondary Ingredients

  • 2 boiled eggs peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 sweet apple sliced and brushed with lemon juice
  • 2 thick slices of Lincolnshire plum bread
  • 1 ¼ cup watercress
  • 2 large radishes thickly sliced
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves rinsed and patted dry



  • Put the butter, mustard, chutney, onions, gherkins, and watercress in separate bowls.
  • Boil the two eggs by placing them in a saucepan full of cold water.  Bring to a boil, then cook for 6 minutes.  Immediately plunge the eggs in a ice water bath for 10 minutes.  Crack the shells all around, then gently peel them and rinse off any tiny shells.  Blot them dry with paper towel and cut in half lengthwise.  If desired, sprinkle the eggs with salt and pepper.
  • Rinse and dry the radishes and celery, then cut the radishes into thick slices.  Cut the celery into 2-inch pieces.
  • Slice the apple, then brush each slice with lemon juice to prevent browning.
  • Cut the ham into slices that are 1 ½ inches in length.
  • Keep all the ingredients, except the butter and the bread, in the fridge until needed.
  • Half hour before serving, take it out of the fridge so it can warm up to room temperature.
  • Arrange all the ingredients on a large wooden cutting board or charcuterie board and serve immediately.


  • Make sure there are sweet, sour, and salty items set out.
  • Want happy guests?  Serve a variety of food items for grazing.
  • Hit all the main categories: bread, cheese, meat, pickled veggies, additional protein, salad, fruit, and condiments for a successful lunch.
  • Use a large wooden platter to artfully arrange the food.
  • This tastes best when served at cold or room temperature.
  • Need this gluten free?  Ploughman's pickle is a tasty GF option.


Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 129mg | Sodium: 678mg | Potassium: 280mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 846IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 247mg | Iron: 2mg