Last Updated on June 24, 2019 by Ellen Christian
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Looking for festive appetizer recipes? The holidays are the one time of year where everyone takes time out to spread some Christmas cheer. There are family get-togethers and office and club parties galore. And wherever people gather, it’s usually around food.
4 Festive Appetizer Recipes
Appetizers are the perfect holiday food no matter what the event. Bite-sized and always easy to serve, they’re the ideal pairing with drinks for an informal cocktail party or as a starter to set the tone for a fabulous Christmas dinner. Here are some of the best appetizer recipes I’ve come across.
Another plus with appetizers is that they call for few ingredients — typically seven or less — and can be served with whatever chips, crackers or even vegetables you already have on hand. These festive appetizer recipes can be ready in no time at all.
When a snack is so quick to make and just as versatile you may not want to wait for the holidays to whip up some tasty munchies to bring some cheer to a less jolly occasion like movie night. You may want to try my pizza puff appetizers for a kid-friendly appetizer idea.
Even if you already have some tried and true go-to appetizer recipes in your repertoire, here are four exceptional festive appetizer recipes that are crowd pleasers and are sure to join the ranks on your favorites list. And, yes, they meet the criteria for the perfect Christmas appetizer: they’re simple, fast and festive. Looking for something sweet? These Simply Sensational Truffles are amazing and should be added to your appetizer list.
Quick Tips for healthy appetizers
Reduce the fat in any appetizer recipe that calls for cream cheese by substituting Neufchatel. It has about 1/3 less fat but has the same consistency as cream cheese.
If you’re short on time but want to make a layered appetizer, cut down on prep time by combining the ingredients instead of placing them in the dish one at a time. Bake or serve cold as directed; your appetizer will still taste wonderful.
Hot or cold, any appetizer can be prepared ahead of time and refrigerated or frozen to have on hand for last-minute guests. Recipes that aren’t served hot can be served directly from the fridge or quickly defrosted in the microwave. Hot appetizers can usually be baked as directed or for those that are only broiled, 20 to 30 minutes in a 400° Fahrenheit oven will defrost and heat them through.
Christmas Cream Cheese Spread
- 1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese softened
- 1/2 cup apricot preserves
- 1 Chipotle pepper in Adobo sauce, finely chopped
- 2 Tbsp. water
- 1 green onion, finely chopped
- Spread cream cheese onto bottom of pie plate.
- Cook preserves, peppers and water in a saucepan on medium-low heat 5 min. or until preserves are melted, stirring occasionally. Stir in onions; spread over cream cheese.
- Serve with crackers.
One of my favorite Christmas vegetable appetizers.
- 1-1/2 cups hot water
- 1 pkg. (6 oz.) stuffing mix for chicken
- 40 fresh mushrooms (2 lb.)
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, well drained
- 1 cup shredded low-moisture part-skim mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat oven to 400ºF.
- Add hot water to stuffing mix in large bowl; stir just until moistened. Set aside. Remove stems from mushrooms; chop stems. Melt butter in skillet on medium heat. Add chopped stems and garlic; cook and stir 5 min. or until tender. Add to stuffing with spinach and cheeses; mix well.
- Spoon into mushroom caps. Place, filled-sides up, in a shallow pan.
- Bake 20 min. or until mushrooms are tender and filling is heated through.
Layered Artichoke and Feta Delight
- 1 pkg. (8 oz.) Neufchatel cheese softened
- 1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts, drained, chopped
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small red pepper, chopped
- 1 pkg. (3.5 oz.) crumbled reduced fat feta cheese
- 1 Tbsp. sliced black olives
- pita chips
- Heat oven to 350°F.
- Mix first 4 ingredients until blended.
- Spread into 3-cup ovenproof dish; top with peppers and feta.
- Bake 20 min. or until heated through; top with olives.
- Serve with chips.
Cheese and Olive Loaf
- 1 pkg. (8 oz.) natural Italian cheese crumbles
- 3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
- 2 Tbsp. chopped Spanish olives
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 loaf French bread (24 inches), cut lengthwise in half
- Heat broiler. Mix first 4 ingredients.
- Spread onto cut sides of bread; sprinkle lightly with paprika.
- Broil, 6 inches from heat, 1 min. or until cheese is melted. Serve warm.
Ellen is a busy mom of a 22-year-old son and 27-year-old daughter. She owns 5 blogs and is addicted to social media. She believes that it doesn’t have to be difficult to lead a healthy life. She shares simple healthy living tips to show busy women how to lead fulfilling lives. If you’d like to work together, email firstname.lastname@example.org to chat.