100 Super Fast Finger Foods to Serve a Crowd
Hosting a party or headed to a potluck? You'll want to take a look at these easy, fast, and portable finger food recipes first. No spoons or forks required.
Cheesy Sausage Roll-Ups
These southwestern-style roll-ups require just 5 ingredients.
Grilled Stuffed Jalapeños
Searching for that perfect, crowd-pleasing appetizer for you next get-together? Look no further than these stuffed jalapeño poppers. The rich and creamy combination of bacon, cream cheese, and cheddar nicely contrasts the muted spice of grilled jalapeño peppers. This grilled appetizer recipe is a healthy, fresh alternative to the popular breaded and fried version. If you’re looking to keep your stuffed jalapeño poppers vegetarian-friendly, you can eliminate the bacon or replace it with coarsely chopped nuts, like smoked almonds or toasted pecans.
French Onion Soup Bites
Easy to assemble and perfectly portable, these French Onion Soup bites are the perfect addition to any holiday party spread. They’re like your favorite Trader Joe’s freezer aisle find, but tastier.
These Crunchy Air-Fried Corn Dog Bites Have Just 82 Calories
Who doesn’t love a corn dog? These whimsical, perfect little bites of smoky hot dog goodness come with a crunchy cornflake coating that will make party guests smile. Look for high-quality uncured hot dogs at upscale grocery stores such as Whole Foods, Fresh Market, or Sprouts. Mustard is best friends with corn dogs, so pick out your favorite to serve with these fun and festive snacks.
Pigs in an Everything Blanket with Cream Cheese Dip
Two finger food favorites collide as pigs in a blanket get an everything bagel makeover. Rather than the traditional canned biscuit or croissant dough, the "blanket" of this playful appetizer is made with fresh pizza dough that is first boiled, brushed with egg wash, and rolled in an "everything" seasoning blend (poppy seeds, sesame seeds, dried minced onion, dried minced garlic, and coarse salt) before being baked. Using a yeasted dough and this double cooking method is what gives these tailgate-ready bites their bagel personality. Serve them up with a tangy cream cheese dip for a party-perfect snack platter.
Bacon Bow Tie Crackers
These tender, buttery snack rolls are akin to cinnamon buns in structure… but they’re full-on pizza perfection in flavor. Using canned crescent roll dough and prepared marinara sauce keeps both the prep time and ingredient list short, making these cheesy, kid-friendly bites easy to whip up at a moment’s notice. Of course, you can also prep them ahead to enjoy as after-school snacks or on-the-go breakfasts throughout the week. Feel free to customize you homemade pizza rolls with your own favorite toppings.
Chicken Sausage Puffs with Creamy Mustard Dipping Sauce
Easy Party Pizza Sticks
If you’re searching for an easy and inexpensive appetizer for a crowd, the hunt stops here. These crispy, cheesy pizza sticks are the perfect snack to whip up for a Super Bowl spread, birthday party, or a casual family get-together. Besides being inherently kid-friendly, these tasty pizza sticks are endlessly customizable—just pile on your favorite toppings!
Lemon-Caper Parmesan Potato Salad Bites
Turn "jacket potatoes" into irresistible potato salad bites. Capers offer a twist on traditional relish; they're actually pickled flower buds and add bright, briny flavor to this appetizer.
Mini Potato Skins
This party-perfect appetizer will be gone before the last guest even arrives. At a dinner party or holiday gathering, the main dish and a few incredible sides are really the stars of the show. But we can’t imagine a supper club or Christmas dinner without something to snack on as guests arrive, pour cocktails, and catch up before the meal is served. This five-ingredient recipe makes a bite-sized appetizer that every guest will rave about, and it has a high yield for your biggest crowds. But appetizers aren’t just for dinner occasions—For an at-home or away tailgate, you can’t beat an easy and portable snack like Mini Potato Skins. Our Test Kitchen professionals said these Mini Potato Skins pair well with beer, so cheers! A tip from the Test Kitchen: Place the sour cream in a piping bag for a nice neat dollop. If you don’t have a piping bag, simply cut off one corner of a ziplock plastic bag. These appetizers were made to travel. To take them to a party, prepare the recipe through Step 3 and place potato skins in a container. Complete Step 4 before serving.
Melted Manchego Tortas with Romesco and Chorizo
Spanish flatbreads, or tortas, are a tapas staple. Make these with thin sandwich round halves and a 1 1/4-inch circular cutter. You'll only use 1/4 cup of the romesco, but the remainder makes a great sauce for meats, vegetables, or fish.
Bacon Endive Tomato Bites
Multicolored grape tomatoes shine in these little bites. Prepare this appetizer when the tomatoes are at their ripest, sweetest, and juiciest. This starter makes for a bright and fresh starter that is bursting with flavor and color. On the light side, this appetizer will ensure that you and your guests don't get too full before the main course.
Pimiento Cheese Squares
We take the flavors of the South's favorite spread and make into savory bites of Pimiento Cheese Squares--perfect for parties or gifts.
We loved the classic caprese salad so much, we transformed it into a vibrant summer “salsa,” so that we could top just about everything with it. The simple, but so satisfying, flavor combo of ripe, juicy tomatoes, fresh basil, and rich mozzarella cheese is the perfect path to amping up any number of your favorite summertime staples. Serve this fresh and flavor-packed topper over grilled steak or chicken, use it as a burger relish, or spoon it onto crostini or grilled bread for an awesome and easy appetizer.
Melon, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Skewers
Put out half of the skewers, and keep the remaining chilled until ready to serve. Everyone loves a good melon salad, so we took that idea and "skewer-ed" it. Salty cured ham meets creamy, fresh melon for the ultimate savory/sweet combination. With the addition of smooth mozzarella cheese, these skewers are texturally satisfying and not shy on flavor. Your guests will absolutley the easiness and accessibility of these skewers, and you'd be surprised at how impressed they'll be.
All-Purpose Entertaining Crackers
Why buy something that you can make easily and more deliciously at home? Make these all-purpose crackers as they are, or top with Asiago cheese, sea salt and black pepper, Italian herbs, or sesame seed oil after rolling the dough and before cutting it into desired shapes. Note that if you choose to make larger, 2" crackers, the yield is around 60 crackers, which serves 30 people.
Usher in the warm days of spring and summer with Strawberry Bruschetta. This refreshing mixture of nectarine, grape tomatoes, strawberries, and basil are served over baguette slices with slatherings of goat cheese.
Unlike classic pesto, there's no oil in this filling. Once everything is minced in the food processor, though, it develops a paste-like consistency. Thaw the pastry in the fridge overnight, or leave out at room temperature for an hour or two.
Mini Cheese Balls
Almond milk cream cheese is delicately nutty, with a buttery-rich texture and zero grams of sat fat. Find it at Whole Foods stores nationwide. You can substitute 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, which adds 1.6g sat fat to each serving.
Everything Cream Cheese Jalapeño Poppers
We all know that the addictiveness of the savory everything spice blend is amplified when paired with smooth cream cheese. Each popper is bursting with flavor and a variety of optional toppings keeps each bite interesting (and makes for a gorgeous platter). It seems you've found your new go-to party appetizer. Make sure that the jalapenos are par-cooked before adding the cream cheese filling to ensure that the cream cheese doesn't burn.
Goat Cheese Poppers with Honey
In addition to being a delicious appetizer that feels special, these Goat Cheese Poppers with Honey make for extra awesome croutons on salads and as "meat" balls for vegetarian pasta dishes. Be sure to bring your oil to the right heat before adding the poppers--if the oil is not hot enough, you will end up with a soggy, greasy mess instead of crisp poppers. Available at most stores that carry kitchen equipment for around $10, a kitchen thermometer is an incredibly worthy investment.
Smoked Trout, Arugula, and Granny Smith Stacks
Crisp apples serve as a base for Smoked Trout, Arugula, and Granny Smith Stacks, lending crunch and flavor to these healthy bites.
Chicken Salad Tarts
This appetizer recipe for Chicken Salad Tarts is perfect for any occasion and (almost!) too pretty to eat.
Bruschetta with Peach Salsa and Melted Brie
Place the cheese in the freezer for about 20 minutes for easier cutting. To make this appetizer in advance, you can prepare and refrigerate the salsa up to a day ahead. Toast bread and assemble just before serving.
These savory little gems will be the first party appetizer to disappear. Make ahead the day before and refrigerate, or you can freeze them up to 3 weeks in advance. If frozen, pop in the oven straight from the freezer and increase the bake time by 10 minutes. We find that sharp cheddar works best for creating a super cheesy flavor, but feel free to experiment with your favorite flavor of cheddar--an aged white cheddar would be amazing here. These are guaranteed to be one of the best easy appetizer recipes you've ever made.
Creamed Spinach Phyllo Cups
Turn a beloved side dish into a cute and savory appetizer. Frozen phyllo shells speed prep time, as does bagged baby spinach (rather than frozen). Toasting the phyllo cups keeps them crisp longer after being filled.
Skewered Persimmon and Herb Bites
The combination of persimmons with Southeast Asian herbs and dunk sauce comes as a surprise in these quick appetizers, and it's totally addictive. You'll need 20 short (3 1/2 in.) bamboo skewers; cut bigger ones if you can't find this size.
Broccoli-and-Cheddar Mini Quiches
Who needs a pie pan or pastry dough when you've got muffin tins? This quiche recipe combines the standard custard mixture with steamed broccoli and cheddar cheese baked into muffin-sized mini quiches. These are the perfect breakfast treats for your little ones—especially if you have a daily broccoli battle on your hands!
Little quiches fit perfectly in little hands. Best of all, they can be served for any meal of the day. If you're feeling brave, try adding other fresh vegetables or leftover meat to this recipe.
Pepper Jelly-Goat Cheese Cakes
Microwave pepper jellies in a microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 20 to 25 seconds or until melted.
Egg and Anchovy Crostini
Chris Cosentino—chef at San Francisco's Incanto restaurant and author of Beginnings; My Way to Start a Meal (Olive Press; $25)—likes his eggs with soft yolks, and here he nestles them into lemon-scented toasts. Instead of using ordinary canned anchovies, he uses marinated white anchovies, which have a fresher, cleaner taste.
Caramelized Onion-Apple Bites
These savory hors d'oeuvres can be assembled in advance—ideal for relaxed entertaining. Prep and Cook Time: 1 1/2 hours. Notes: The onion-apple topping can be made up to 2 days ahead. The triangles can be prepared, covered, and chilled the morning of a party, then popped into the oven when guests arrive. They can also be frozen, wrapped well, for up to 3 months (do not defrost before baking).
Creamy Wild Mushroom and Goat Cheese Cups
The filling can be made and refrigerated up to a day in advance, then brought to room temperature before filling the cups. Phyllo shells come conveniently prebaked, so they're ready to fill once thawed.
Easy Cream Cheese Truffles
For an easy pick-up dessert, make these easy sweet cream cheese truffles with cream cheese, sugar, chocolate, and coat in cocoa, almonds or coconut.
Peaches and Cream Mini Cupcakes
Petite and almost too cute to eat, these miniature cupcakes are infused with the sweet flavor of summer's juiciest fruit.
Crab Cake Hush Puppies
Serve these Crab Cake Hush Puppies with your favorite rémoulade or cocktail sauce for tasty appetizers. Hush puppies, a Southern classic made by deep-frying a cornmeal batter gets a seafood makeover. Served with a creamy, thick dipping sauce, these salty critters are a great option for a potluck meal or an appetizer that serves to impress. Freeze any leftovers and defrost up to 3 months later.
For an easy side dish, serve guests Stuffed Celery. This stuffing is also great as a dip. In your food processor, blend until creamy for the right consistency and serve with crudites or pita chips.
Sweet and Spicy Nut and Pretzel Mix
Set a timer to remind you of the nuts toasting in the oven.
Herbed Onion Parmesan Toasts
An all-Chardonnay blanc de blancs has an herbal quality that loves the green onions and dill in this appetizer, a brioche layer that echoes the toast itself, and a bright acidity that cuts through the rich mayo and cheese.
Mini Corn Cakes with Smoked Salmon and Dill Crème Fraîche
Make these in the morning, and top with salmon and crème fraîche just before your guests arrive. Tight on time? Use store-bought blini instead.
Brie with Jeweled Fruit Compote
This lovely appetizer is about as quick and easy as it gets--as tasty, too. You don't even need to let the cheese come to room temperature first; the warm fruit that goes on top will soften it up. Serve with crostini or crackers.
Modern Cheese Balls
These are not your mother's cheese balls. First, they're made with goat cheese and shaped into bite-size balls, making them super easy to serve and eat. Also, they're rolled in a variety of tasty toppings: wasabi-coated peas, crushed gingersnaps, granola, and a Parmesan-fennel seed mixture.
Fig and Goat Cheese Bruschetta
Prepare the fig jam for this savory-meets-sweet appetizer up to three days in advance, and store in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature, and assemble bruschetta just before serving. For smaller groups, use half the amount of bread. Leftover jam is great on toast at breakfast.
Classic Shrimp Cocktail with Red and Green Sauces
For convenience, make this dish ahead, and refrigerate until time to serve.
Endive Stuffed with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
This elegant first course showcases a marvelous partnership between slightly bitter endive, creamy goat cheese, and sweet orange juice. From pretty presentation to fantastic flavor, you can't go wrong with this simple appetizer.
Goat Cheese Tarts with Lemon-Fig Compote
These dainty little bites are surprisingly simple to prepare. The phyllo pastry shells are sold in the frozen food section in the supermarket; thaw before filling. The lemon-fig topping lends a subtly sweet note to the savory goat cheese filling. Prepare the compote up to two days in advance, and store it in the refrigerator.
Onion Frittata Bites
Sweet caramelized onions and salty Parmesan cheese flavor these bite-sized appetizers. Bake the day before the party; cover and refrigerate in the baking dish. Shortly before guests arrive, reheat at 200° for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, garnished with sour cream and chives.
Barbecue Pizza Bites
Panko-crusted Crab Cake Bites with Roasted Pepper-Chive Aioli
Crab cakes crusted with panko—coarse Japanese-style breadcrumbs—are super easy, elegant appetizers that are perfect for any occasion.
Yummy Sausage Cups
These yummy sausage cups are the perfect morning treat. Easy to grab and go, these little cups will be a hit at your next brunch.
Pigskins in a Blanket
Using puff pastry instead of crescent roll dough to wrap up the sausages adds a great deal of richness and flavor. And replacing the pig in this version of pigs in a blanket is fully-cooked chicken sausage.
Mini Peppermint and Chocolate Chip Cheesecakes
To cut this recipe in half, just omit the egg whites from the filling.
Start with frozen puff pastry to make these 6-ingredient Mediterranean-style appetizers featuring the savory goodness of tomatoes, kalamata olives, and feta cheese.
Crunchy Pecan Pie Bites
Made in under 30 minutes, this is such a quick and easy breakfast addition. Freshly shredded cheese is a must for these sausage balls, which have become a traditional favorite during the holiday. This three-ingredient recipe is the perfect finger food for Christmas morning when children are too excited to sit down for breakfast, but it's also a great choice for breakfast and brunch any time of the year.