Whether it’s a holiday gathering, special occasion or just a spur-of-the-moment get-together, everybody loves to party! And what’s a party without delicious appetizers? The best appetizers are simple to make and serve, bring guests together and set the stage for a fun and flavorful time. Next time you are planning to feed a crowd, plan an intimate dinner party or bring something quick and easy to a potluck, these are the recipes that will make a BIG impression.

How do you choose what appetizer to serve?

Appetizers are amazingly versatile. You can have sweet, salty, savory flavor profiles – or a mixture of all of them to satisfy any palette or appetite. A variety of appetizers allows guests to choose from and they can decide how much they want to eat. Mix colors, textures, spiciness levels, proteins, veggies, starches, as well as serving both hot and cold apps.

Tip: if you’re hosting a crowd, and don’t know everyone’s dietary needs, serve a variety of appetizers that include options for vegan, gluten-free, kosher, and low carb. That way, you won’t have a guest with a growling stomach if they have restrictions.

So how do you know how many apps to make?

In general, we recommend having 2-3 appetizers for smaller groups and when you have a meal planned. When serving a crowd, or when appetizers are the main food, 7-10 appetizers work well. People will usually eat 3-5 pieces when a dinner or meal follows, and 10-12 pieces over the course of a party where appetizers are the main fare.

How do you serve appetizers at a party?

Another great thing about appetizers is that they can be served in many different ways. If you want to have ease of setup and cleanup, you can set up a buffet with all your appetizers in one place. If you’re concerned about folks standing in line, you can even set up multiple serving areas with one appetizer in each place. If you want to be able to mingle with guests, you can walk through with a platter.

Tip: Keep your apps bite-size and carry extra cocktail napkins if you go the route of serving off platters, so people don’t have to stand around holding a plate or hunt for a napkin.

Let’s Party!

Impress your guest with these appetizers that are easy to make and so delicious that you’ll want to throw another party just so you can eat them again. And the best part is, they are so simple that you can spend less time in the kitchen, and more time with your guests.

30 Minutes or Less

These appetizers are quick and easy – you can even get them ready in a pinch for impromptu gatherings.

Try this Sweet Pepper Cream Cheese
Sweet Pepper Cream Cheese
Try these Bacon Pepper Brie Bites
Bacon Pepper Brie Bites
Try this BBQ Chicken Flatbread
BBQ Chicken Flatbread
Try this Cinnamon Apple Butter Board
Cinnamon Apple Butter Board
Try this Champagne Berry Baked Brie
Champagne Berry Baked Brie
Try these Classic Ranch Oyster Crackers
Classic Ranch Oyster Crackers

Fresh & Light

These delightful apps are perfect when there is a large meal to follow, as well as for guests who are trying to eat healthier.

Try this Balsamic & Basil Appetizer Kabobs
Balsamic & Basil Appetizer Kabobs
Try these Avocado Egg Salad Canapes
Avocado Egg Salad Canapes
Try this Air Fryer Buffalo Cauliflower
Air Fryer Buffalo Cauliflower
Try this Citrus Raspberry Shrimp
Citrus Raspberry Shrimp
Try these Prosciutto Wrapped Pears & Cheese
Prosciutto Wrapped Pears & Cheese
Try these Everything Chicken Berry Satay
Everything Chicken Berry Satay

For a Crowd

Try these simple finger foods that are easy crowd pleasers. Your guests will be glad you did!

Try this Bountiful Beer Bread Bowl with Spinach & Herb Dip
Bountiful Beer Bread Bowl with Spinach & Herb Dip
Chicken Bacon Bites
Try these Deviled Egg Pumpkins
Deviled Egg Pumpkins
Try this Honey Teriyaki Peanut Dip
Honey Teriyaki Peanut Dip
Try this Everything Bagel Cheese Ball
Everything Bagel Cheese Ball
Try these Mini Wild Rice Quiches
Mini Wild Rice Quiches

Warm & Cozy

Perfect for fall and winter, when you want to wrap your guests in warmth and comfort.

Try this Cheesy Artichoke & Spinach Dip
Cheesy Artichoke & Spinach Dip
Try this Stuffed Chicken Parmesan Mushrooms
Stuffed Chicken Parmesan Mushrooms
Try this Baked Pizza Dip & Dippers
Baked Pizza Dip & Dippers
Try these Loaded Baked Potato Bites
Loaded Baked Potato Bites
Try this Disappearing Dip
Disappearing Dip
Try this Roasted Garlic & Red Pepper Artichoke Dip
Roasted Garlic & Red Pepper Artichoke Dip

Some Like it Hot

These spicy appetizers are a hit with guests who appreciate the spicy side of life.

Try these Bayou Chili Meatballs
Bayou Chili Meatballs
Try this Sweet Pepper Margarita Shrimp Cocktail
Sweet Pepper Margarita Shrimp Cocktail
Try these Bloody Mary Chicken Wings
Bloody Mary Chicken Wings
Try this Buffalo Chicken Pull-Apart Bread
Buffalo Chicken Pull-Apart Bread
Try this Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders
Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders
Try this Jalapeño Popper Cheese Ball
Jalapeño Popper Cheese Ball

Enjoy, and don’t forget – you can find more delicious recipes for easy entertaining on Tastefully Simple’s website, too.

Wishing you and yours “app-y” holidays, my friends!

– Jen