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5 Quick and easy appetizers

Suzi Milovanovic has been a mother of all kinds: stay at home mom, work from home mom, and go-the-office working mom. She blends all these perspectives in her contributions to various local and national print and online publications, tel...

Anytime appetizers

Appetizers are the opening act for a fabulous dinner party. A great selection of appetizers can even be the main attraction and a sure-fire crowd pleasing favorite. Check out some of our favorite appetizer recipes that can be quickly tossed together with a minimum of ingredients and fuss. Some of these can be made ahead and frozen to save even more time.

Hummus appetizer

Grilled pesto baguettes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of a 12 ounce baguette, cut horizontally in half
  • 2 tablespoons refrigerated pesto
  • 1/2 cup part-skim Ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes

Directions

  1. Turn grill to medium.
  2. Brush cut side of baguette with pesto.
  3. Combine ricotta and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl.
  4. Place baguette on grill, cut sides down and cook 2 minutes or until toasted.
  5. Transfer to a cutting board and spread Ricotta mixture on the grilled sides of the baguette.
  6. Top with sun-dried tomatoes and serve after cutting into equal pieces.

Bacon-wrapped water chestnuts

Ingredients

  • 1 pound bacon
  • 2 cans (8 ounces each) whole water chestnuts
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • Toothpicks

Directions

  1. Drain water chestnuts and place in a small mixing bowl or zippered plastic bag.
  2. Pour soy sauce and brown sugar mixture over chestnuts, adding water if needed to cover them.
  3. Cover bowl or seal bag and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  5. Drain chestnuts again and cut bacon slices in half or thirds to create 3-inch strips.
  6. Wrap a strip of bacon around each chestnut, using toothpicks to secure.
  7. Place wrapped chestnuts in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  8. Bake chestnuts until bacon is evenly browned and crisp; about 14 minutes.

Basil's mushrooms

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup diced jarred roasted red bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup diced pitted green olives
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 2 diced scallions
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1 pound white button mushrooms (cleaned and stemmed)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the roasted bell peppers, olives, cheese, scallions, olive oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Place mushrooms on a parchment-lined baking sheet, cavity side up.
  4. Spoon filling into the cavity of the mushrooms.
  5. Bake until mushrooms are tender; about 20 minutes.
  6. Place mushrooms on serving platter and sprinkle with chopped basil.

Easy hummus

Ingredients

  • 2 (15.5 ounce) cans no-salt added chick peas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions

  1. Place beans and garlic in a food processor, pulsing 5 times or until chopped.
  2. Add 1/2 cup water and remaining ingredients, pulsing again until smooth.

Deviled eggs o'gherkin

Ingredients

  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped sweet gherkins, plus 1 teaspoon brine
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped tarragon, with 12 tarragon leaves for garnish
  • Salt and fresh cracked pepper

Directions

  1. Place eggs in small sauce pot and add cold water to cover eggs about 1 inch.
  2. Bring the water to a boil over medium-low heat, cover and let set for 10-12 minutes.
  3. Cool the eggs in cold water, then peel and split lengthwise.
  4. Remove the yolks to a bowl and reserve the whites.
  5. Using a fork, mash the yolks with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add Dijon until smooth.
  7. Add the shallot, gherkins, brine and tarragon and stir.
  8. Spoon mixture into a re-sealable plastic bag or pastry tube and add mixture to egg white halves.
  9. Top each with a tarragon leaf.

A party appetizer clasic

Betty's cocktail meatballs recipe

In this video, Betty makes her wonderful Party Cocktail Meatballs. These are little meatballs that are covered with a tangy sauce, and placed in a slow cooker until ready to serve with crackers.

More party recipe ideas

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