Holiday Finger Foods
Perfect for socializing and catching up, these no-fuss finger foods are easy to pick up and chow down.
Pinched for time? Swap the dough for frozen mini-phyllo pastry shells.
Recipe: Bacon-Fig Tassies
These festive tarts are the perfect sweet treat for grazing guests. You can make them up to a day ahead, and store, covered, in the fridge.
Recipe: Sweet Potato Tartlets
Make these a few days ahead, and chill in an airtight container.
Recipe: Benne-Maple Roasted Pecans
A welcome change from the ubiquitous hamburger slider, this mini sandwich has all the flavor of a great Cuban. The key here is to crisp the bread by warming the sandwiches in a hot jelly-roll pan and adding weight on top of the bread.
Recipe: Cuban Sliders
Dangerously delicious, this is the new popcorn for tree trimming—if you don't eat it all first.
Recipe: Fried Hominy
A big batch of these antipasti will last in the refrigerator up to a week. It's the perfect snack to keep on hand to serve unexpected holiday company.
Recipe: Marinated Olives and Almonds
Serve on a pretty cutting board with a cheese knife, and let guests cut their own portions.
Recipe: Orange-Basil Baked Brie
Flaky puff pastry envelopes a rich mix of cream cheese, mushrooms, onions, and Parmesan cheese. You can even assemble and freeze these ahead of time.
- Recipe: Mushroom Puffs
Tortellini Caprese Bites are drizzled with a basil vinaigrette and are so simple to prepare. The no-mess presentation makes these appetizer skewers ideal for parties.
- Recipe: Tortellini Caprese Bites
If you like yours less spicy, use the smaller amount of red pepper.
- Recipe: Cheese Straws
A creamy tuna-apple mixture fills mini-phyllo pastry shells and is topped with Havarti cheese slices to make a tasty, bite-sized appetizer.
- Recipe: Tuna-Apple Mini Melts
Making these meatballs ahead and freezing them is a great way to save time during the holiday months.
- Recipe: Cranberry Meatballs
These snacks are as simple as sliced cheese. Prepare them ahead of time to allow ample chill time. Be sure to garnish with a sprig of parsley or rosemary for a bit of panache.
- Recipe: Marinated Mozzarella
Tie these bundles with a fresh chive to put the perfect touch on this edible package.
- Recipe: Beef-and-Asparagus Bundles
We've taken garlic bread up a notch. These tasty toasts make perfect entertaining starters. For a light meal, serve them with a salad and glass of wine. Mix spreads the day before, and refrigerate overnight. You'll only need to slather them on French bread and bake for a super-quick presentation. So skip the carb counting, and crunch into something delicious.
With all the flavor of a traditional tomato pie, these tiny tarts will be a hit at your party.
- Recipe: Tiny Tomato Tarts
This salty, satisfying appetizer sets a great tone for the rest of your meal. Garnish with torn basil leaves.
Cheese straws are like deviled eggs—every Southern cook wants to make great ones. Our best tip for successful cheese straws is to shred your own cheese. It’s stickier and blends better than preshredded cheese.
These tasty strips have the shape of bread sticks but the crisp texture and cheddar-filled taste of cheese straws.
- Recipe: Spicy Cheddar "Long" Straws
Spicy, sweet, and totally addictive, this easy appetizer starts with preseasoned fries.
Make party-perfect savory cookies by rolling cheese straw dough into festive shapes.
- Recipe: Spicy Cheddar Appetizer Cookies
Small, thin rounds of cornbread baked in muffin pans replace baguette slices as a tasty base for Southern-style crostini.
- Recipe: Cornbread Crostini
Complement any menu with this no-fuss party appetizer.
- Recipe: Bacon-Arugula-Apple Bites
Fresh, chilled Caesar Salad Bites are tasty, super-easy make, and perfectly suitable for eating out of hand.
Turn these appetizers into a pretty salad by layering veggies and croutons in a clear ice bucket or trifle dish and topping with dressing and parsley.
- Recipe: Caesar Salad Bites
This scrumptious appetizer is easy to prep. Simply roll a log of creamy goat cheese in fresh chopped thyme, parsley, tarragon, and mint in advance. Then, just before serving, spread onto fresh toasted baguette slices and top with sun-dried tomatoes and basil leaves.
- Recipe: Herbed Goat Cheese Bites
These starters look elegant on a serving platter--guests will be fooled by how quick and easy they really are. Assemble up to one hour ahead, cover with damp paper towels, and chill. Serve coarse-grain mustard or chutney alongside the skewers.
- Recipe: Ham-and-Cheese Skewers
These salty cheese straw balls are rolled in finely chopped pecans and baked until crisp and delicious. They're sure to become a new party favorite.
- Recipe: Pecan-Cheddar Buttons
Serve andouille with wooden toothpicks to create bite-size appetizers.
- Recipe: Smoked Paprika-Glazed Andouille
This is an updated version of a recipe that used ham, cheese, and mustard. Eyes lit up at our tasting table when these came out of the oven. These crowd pleasing sandwiches will surely delight guests.
- Recipe: Hot Roast Beef Party Sandwiches
You can serve these hearty bites between biscuits, brioche, or artisan dinner rolls for an elegant presentation.
You'll love the unexpected flavor combination of creamy avocado and fresh dill atop roasted potatoes.
For bacon-wrapped bliss, turn to these inventive small bites featuring some of our favorite Southern staples.
- Recipe: Bacon-Wrapped Bourbon Figs
Japanese breadcurmbs add a satisfying, but light, crunch to these flavorful grits triangles.
- Recipe: Grits Spanakopita
Upgrade a typical holiday shrimp cocktail by wrapping the juicy bites in satisfyingly salty bacon.
- Recipe: Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp
These pretty bites have both green and red pepper jelly melted on top for an indulgent treat.
- Recipe: Pepper Jelly-Goat Cheese Cakes
Save time and pick up brisket and sauce from your favorite barbecue joint to use in these party bites.
- Recipe: Brisket Shooters
A satay is an Indonesian version of kabobs: thinly sliced marinated meat grilled on a skewer and served with lip-licking peanut sauce.
Recipe: Chicken-and-Bacon Satay
Make these crunchy treats several hours ahead of time and serve at room temperature.
- Recipe: Pepper Jelly-Pecan Rugelach
You can bake the crostini up to a couple of hours ahead of time, top just before guests arrive and place in the oven to finish.
- Recipe: Grits Crostini
You can keep the queso blanco warm in a fondue pot or 1-qt. slow cooker. These are hearty, and would be a winner for a tailgate too.
Pepper jelly adds a nice sweet-hot note to chicken salad. And you'll love the extra zing from lemon zest and ground red pepper.
- Recipe: Chicken Salad Pitas
Wow your guests with this 6-ingredient twist on the iconic finger food.
- Recipe: Pepper Jack Grits Poppers
Capture the iconic flavors of New Orleans in these easy-to-make tarts.
- Recipe: Grits-and-Gumbo Tarts
Sparked by the leisurely pleasures of the cocktail-and-canapé Mad Men era, smørrebrød (Danish open-faced sandwiches) are the latest craze in stress-free entertaining. With a little clever prep, you can set out an impressive DIY spread in under an hour. Now we'll toast to that. Skål, y'all!
- Recipe: Southern-Style Smørrebrød
To get ahead, make these appetizers through Step 2 and freeze up to 1 month. Go straight to the oven from freezer; simply add 5 to 10 minutes to the bake time.
Recipe: Apple Butter-and-Cheddar Puffs