Entertaining during the holidays should be a joy for the host or hostess as well as guests. Whether you’re accommodating a crowd for several days or throwing one seasonal bash, these easy appetizers will help you prep less and enjoy more.

A few tips for success:

Choose recipes that can be prepared in advance so that you’re not chained to the kitchen while everyone else is celebrating.
If your appetizers precede a meal, opt for recipes that complement the food you’ll be serving for dinner.
Plan a well-balanced selection of starters, including meats, starchy foods, fresh garden selections, snack foods, and dips or spreads.
Go for a mix of crunchy and creamy, hot and cold and ensure that there’s a variety of color and shape to create an attractive buffet spread.
To encourage your guests to mingle, make certain that the finger foods you prepare really are easy to manage in a crowd.
If you haven’t made a dish before, give it a test run before the party.

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Food Network

Rosemary Roasted Cashews

Coated with fresh rosemary, brown sugar, and spicy hint of cayenne, these roasted nuts from the Barefoot Contessa are fantastic when served warm from the oven.

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My Recipes

Pecan Rosemary Cheddar Buttons

Serve up a variation of the classic cheddar cheese straw with savory cookies bursting with the taste of pecan and rosemary.

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Food Network

Spiced Pecans

A sugar and cinnamon coating ensures that a bowl of sweet and spicy pecans won’t last long.

Taste of Home

Taste of Home

Sausage-Stuffed Mushroom Caps

Made with just four ingredients, you’ll love the simplicity of these delicious finger foods; your guests will love the taste.

Food Network

Food Network

Asian Shrimp Skewers

Hoisin sauce caramelizes on peeled shrimp to create delectable skewered tidbits.

All Recipes

All Recipes

Stuffed Jalapeno Firecrackers

With just the right amount of zest and the bacon wrapping, these jalapeno poppers will be the hit of your bash.

Food Network

Food Network

Ricotta-Stuffed Bacon-Wrapped Dates

This party favorite has been around for a long time and with good reason. The sweet and sticky dates pair wonderfully with savory and salty bacon. Then jazz it up with a stuffing of ricotta cheese. Yum!

BHG

BHG

Sweet and Sassy Meatballs

Barbeque and cranberry sauces combine deliciously in an easy make-ahead recipe.

All Recipes

All Recipes

Hot Spinach, Artichoke & Chili Dip

Jalapeno peppers and green chilies add just the right amount of heat to take a party fare staple up a couple of notches.

Cooking Light

Cooking Light

Mixed Olive Tapanade

A blend of olives, capers, and anchovies packs a lot of flavor into this simple spread.

Southern Living

Southern Living

Mini Caprese Bites

Try an appetizer version of the classic caprese salad for a fresh and tangy finger food.

My Recipes

My Recipes

Cheesy Masa Pancakes with Pico de Gallo

Corn-based masa harina gives this tasty hors d’oeuvre its distinctive flavor. Find it in your grocer’s bakery aisle.

BHG

BHG

Two-Tomato Bruschetta

Roma and dried tomatoes combined with feta, herbs, and garlic make a traditional toast topper with a twist.

Real Simple

Real Simple

Spicy Black Bean and Avocado Canapes

Scoopable corn chips hold a yummy mix of black beans, fresh avocado, and diced jalapenos. Easy and scrumptious.

My Recipes

My Recipes

Mustard-Dill Tortellini Salad Skewers

Pile a platter with quick-to-make skewers threaded with snap peas, tortellini, and tomato drizzled with a mustard and dill vinaigrette.

© Caruth Studio

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