45 Easy Outdoor Appetizers Made for Sunny Skies
Longer days mean more time to eat outdoors, and who doesn’t love an easy outdoor appetizer you can enjoy at barbecues, picnics, and tailgates? This season, commit to learning how to cook some of our easy summer appetizers. Perfect for entertaining outside, this collection of finger food features meats served straight off the grill and cool dips with no-fuss presentations.We’ve got a smorgasboard of options to suit any taste bud. There are easy shrimp recipes for seafood lovers, like our Buttery Garlic Shrimp, or if you’re a TexMex fan, you can spice it up with our Southwest Black-Eyed Pea Dip. One thing is consistent though: these are all super easy outdoor recipe ideas that are sure to take summer entertaining up a notch.
When Entertaining Moves Outside, Call on These Easy Apps
Buttery Garlic Shrimp
Recipe: Buttery Garlic Shrimp
Ready in just 15 minutes, this quick appetizer is perfect for last-minute company. When making the sauce in Step 2, whisk in the butter 1 Tbsp. at a time--the key technique in making the sauce velvety.
Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise
Recipe: Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise
A Southern spin on a BLT, these heirloom tomato sandwiches are effortless.
Tomato, Peach, and Corn Salad
Recipe: Tomato, Peach, and Corn Salad
Vibrant, freshly tossed fruits and veggies are sure to draw a crowd to the appetizer table.
Tropical Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Recipe: Tropical Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Easier than your average app but still impressive enough for a party, this no-cook dish has a tropical twist.
Recipe: Potato Skins
A party hit every time, these potatoes take it up a notch with a simple, tangy-spicy sour cream sauce.
Southwest Black-Eyed Pea Dip
Recipe: Southwest Black-Eyed Pea Dip
Serve this hot and bubbly baked mix of summer flavor with plenty of your favorite tortilla chips.
Classic Pimiento Cheese
Recipe: Basic Pimiento Cheese
This classic Southern recipe is foolproof for a reason. Whether you serve it as a dip, spread, or all by itself, this recipe belongs at every summer gathering.
Queso-Filled Mini Peppers
Recipe: Queso-Filled Mini Peppers
Who needs chips for queso? These peppers are bite-sized and brimming with cheese.
Cheeseburger Egg Rolls with Special Sauce
Two party favorites collide in this reimagined takeout dish.
Recipe: Ham Salad
Give your typical warm-weather chicken salad a break with these mini ham salad sandwhich.
Recipe: Rotel Dip
In this recipe, simplicity (and Velveeta) is key. Just make sure you have enough chips on hand.
Fried Green Tomatoes
Recipe: Fried Green Tomatoes
A Southern summer classic, this recipe's not-too-heavy batter is the key to getting this appetizer just right.
Mini Shrimp Rolls
Recipe: Mini Shrimp Rolls
Mini but mighty, these cute little sandwiches are packed with shrimp, celery, and pickled jalapenos.
Deviled Egg Salad and Asparagus Tartines
Recipe: Deviled Egg Salad and Asparagus Tartines
Fresh asparagus and egg salad make this laid-back finger sandwich a summertime staple.
Golden Corn Fritters
Recipe: Golden Corn Fritters
These crispy poppers are reminiscent of hush puppies, just lighter and richer in taste.
Egg Salad Sandwiches
Recipe: Egg Salad Sandwiches
A summer picnic staple, these finger sandwiches are made with the usual suspects—celery, pickle relish, and mayonnaise—but they have a few unexpected additions, too.
Recipe: Spinach-and-Vidalia Dip
Take a moment to meet your new favorite appetizer. This twist on the classic spinach dip is sure to please even the most particular guests. Just like classic spinach dip, the recipe mixes together spinach, sour cream, and chives to achieve that cool, onion flavor with a kick.
Fried Deviled Eggs
Recipe: Fried Deviled Eggs
Who says a classic can't be fried? Amp up your everyday deviled egg this summer with a fried crispy coating.
Recipe: Watermelon Salad
Start your party on a bright note with this refreshingly simple salad.
Recipe: Homemade Pretzels
Top them off with whatever you'd like, from sesame seeds to kosher salt.
Halloumi-and-Summer Vegetable Kebabs
These veggie kabobs with grilled Halloumi cheese are a winning formula for outdoor fun.
Mini Potato Skins
Recipe: Mini Potato Skins
Oh-so-poppable and made for summer crowds, this five-ingredient recipe is a no-fail with guests of any age.
Pork Tenderloin Sliders
Recipe: Pork Tenderloin Sliders
Mustard-and-thyme-marinated pork tenderloin on dinner rolls makes for a hearty handful ready for any alfresco affair.
Grilled Pork Meatball Kebabs
Recipe: Grilled Pork Meatball Kebabs
Get the party started with a masterful balance of sweet and heat.
Tuna Pasta Salad
Recipe: Tuna Pasta Salad
This fresh take on an old-school tuna pasta salad is as bright as the season.
Easy Catfish Tacos with Slaw
Recipe: Easy Catfish Tacos with Slaw
You can't go wrong with a tortilla topped with slaw, avocado, and catfish.
Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches
Recipe: Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches
Pepper jelly and peaches pair with brie for a dish that was made for the outdoors.
Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad
Recipe: Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad
Tossed in a simple vinaigrette, this multicolored mix of cherry tomatoes and small fresh mozzarella balls comes together in a snap.
Recipe: Hush Puppies
One of the ultimate Southern finger foods, these hush puppies were made for an outdoor party.
Roasted Broccoli Salad
Recipe: Roasted Broccoli Salad
Combine the flavors of Dijon, mayo, honey, apple, and fennel for a side that travels easily and is at home anywhere.
Tomato Salad with Grilled Shrimp
Recipe: Tomato Salad with Grilled Shrimp
Look for beautiful and tasty heirloom tomatoes in a rainbow of colors at your local farmers' market, and keep them at room temperature until you're ready to slice and serve.
Grilled Cajun Shrimp Kabobs with Sausage
Grilled to perfection and ready to party, these Cajun skewers come together in under 20 minutes.
Pickled Tiny Tomatoes
Recipe: Pickled Tiny Tomatoes
Use a mixture of baby tomatoes such as 'Sweet 100,' 'Yellow Pear,' or 'Sun Gold'—all are available at farmers' markets in summer months. This dish uses 3 pints of tomatoes, but feel free to halve the recipe.
Fresh Fruit Salad
Recipe: Fresh Fruit Salad
This classic fruit salad is an essential (and super easy) part of any summer spread.
Deviled Crab Melts
Recipe: Deviled Crab Melts
Kick off a summer party with these loaded, crunchy crostinis.
Grilled Pizza with Summer Veggies and Smoked Chicken
Take pizza off the main table and let summer guests have a slice from the grill during happy hour.
Corn and Jalapeño Dip
Recipe: Corn and Jalapeño Dip
With sweet corn, spicy jalapeño, and bacon, this loaded dip needs a sturdy chip.
Buttermilk-Ricotta Cheese Dip
Avocado Fritters with Lime Cream
Recipe: Avocado Fritters with Lime Cream
Crispy-on-the-outside and creamy-on-the-inside, these fried avocados are guaranteed to disappear fast.
Bacon Bow Tie Crackers
Recipe: Bacon Bow Tie Crackers
With just two ingredients, this salty-buttery app is the ultimate hostess party hack.
Creamy Overnight Fruit Salad
Recipe: Creamy Overnight Fruit Salad
You won't have to worry about bananas browning before guest arrive with this nostalgic overnight recipe.
Recipe: Fig Flatbread
Turn store-bought pizza dough into a crowd-worthy flatbread that's anything but typical.
Pickled Shrimp and Vegetables
Recipe: Pickled Shrimp and Vegetables
There's nothing like a cool, pickled shrimp to beat the summer heat.
Recipe: Cornbread-Stuffed Zucchini
Ready in less than an hour and sure to be devoured far quicker.
Recipe: Party Poppers
This quick and easy appetizer, with just a few ingredients and even fewer steps, will make entertaining easy without the hassle of fussing over the oven all day and night. For those who like it hot, swap mini sweet peppers for spicy jalapeños.