Gluten-Free Holiday Appetizers and Desserts
From savory appetizers to decadent desserts, win over any crowd with these delightful gluten-free goodies that are perfect for any occasion.
Coconut, Macadamia Nut, and Dark Chocolate Bark
Bittersweet chocolate morsels and creamy white chocolate morsels combine with crunchy dry roasted hazelnuts and toasted coconut for an incredibly easy and fast gluten-free candy the whole crowd will love.
Chocolate Orange Cookie Cups
These flourless cookie bites from Sunset reader Jennifer Loganathan, of Colden, NY, are a delicious cross between a brownie and a soft cookie—the orange zest adds a bit of contrast.
No flour is needed here; sweet corn syrup is the glue that holds this delicious holiday candy together. Pack in smoked almonds, pecans walnuts or peanuts for an extra salty crunch.
Mocha Truffle Cake
This flourless cake's prep is so easy, making it perfect during those busy holiday months. Its bold chocolate flavor is so satisfying that it's unlikely you'll be able to think about seconds.
Baked Brie with Honey
A drizzle of honey adds a bit of sweetness to savory Brie. Pair this Baked Brie with Honey appetizer with grapes, dried figs, or apple slices.
Bourbon Caramel Sauce
A big splash of whiskey flavors Bourbon Caramel Sauce to create one decadent topping for your favorite ice cream.
Perfect Poached Shrimp
Shrimp is always a popular appetizer item, and it also happens to be a great low-fat and gluten-free offering, particularly when it's poached. You can make this recipe a day ahead and keep chilled in the refrigerator until you're ready to serve.
Buttery toffee is topped with chopped whole almonds to add extra crunch in this gluten-free dessert. If you use other nuts, toast them first.
A little bourbon goes a long way in these delightful truffles filled with chocolaty goodness.
Cranberry-Whiskey Sour Slush
Is it a drink or dessert? Who cares? It satisfies both cravings. This garnet-colored slush has all the qualities of a delicious cocktail--a not-too-sweet combination of high-quality liquor and fruity tang.
A heavy meal sometimes needs a light dessert. AT 87 calories per serving, this homemade applesauce satisfies your sweet tooth without setting you over the edge at holiday meals.
Sausage Mushroom Caps
These sausage-stuffed mushrooms are the perfect 1-bite party food and are always a crowd pleaser. Use spicy sausage for more kick.
Pavlova, a golden pink-hued dome of meringue topped with whipped cream and juicy ripe fruit, is a seriously underappreciated dessert
Coffee Sundaes with Salted Peanut Butter Caramel
The sweet and salty combo in this sundae is truly amazing. Serve it to special guests, or treat the family to a weeknight splurge.
Cream Cheese-and-Olive Pecan Bites
These little cream cheese-filled pecan bites are the perfect combination of creamy and crunchy. You'll have a hard time stopping with just one bite.
Homemade Caramel Taffy
A gift of Homemade Caramel Taffy will be a sure hit for the caramel connoisseur on your list.
Salmon and Cucumber Bites
Dramatically cut the calories out of this simple canape by subbing crisp cucumber slices for bread. The freshness of the cucumbers pairs well with the smoked salmon and creamy topping.
Skip the store-bought stuff! Chai-Spiced Fudge is the perfect bite and makes a great gift, too.
Ham and Cheddar Potato Skins
This traditionally high-fat appetizer got a makeover using reduced-fat sour cream, a reduced amount of cheese, and smaller potatoes to keep these bites portion-controlled.
Brazilian Pecan-Cinnamon Truffles
These adorable gluten-free truffles only require five ingredients and have just the right amount of sweetness for the perfect bite-sized holiday treat.
Baked Chocolate Mousse
Serve this creamy decadent Baked chocolate mousse this holiday season for a no-fail treat the entire family will love. The texture is so incredibly light and fluffy, that it just melts in your mouth.
Warm Lemon-Rosemary Olives
Mixed olives are available at most groceries and make the easiest appetizer whether you’re gluten-free or not.
Chocolate Pots de Crème
This no-fuss dessert requires less than 15 minutes of prep time, and the finished product is sure to draw oohs and aahs from guests of all ages.
Savory Gluten-Free Tart Crust
Look no further for a perfectly portioned out gluten-free crust recipe. Filled with savory or sweet fillings, this crust is sure to satisfy with any holiday recipe.
Warm Mocha Pudding
If you've never tried a warm pudding, this is the one to try. The flavors are more up front when the pudding is warm.
Smoked Salmon and Cheese Mini Twice-Baked Potatoes
Potatoes make the perfect canvas for hearty gluten-free appetizers like these Smoked Salmon and Cheese Mini Twice-Baked Potatoes.
These bite-size treats only require 4 ingredients and 20 minutes of prep time.
Greek Yogurt with Warm Berry Sauce
Frozen berries make this a year-round treat and a perfect solution for a gluten-free guest.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Mango Bites
Ask for paper-thin slices of meat at the deli counter. To ease prep, look for a package of presliced mango in the produce section. We do not recommend jarred mango slices—they're too soft.
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.
Spicy Herb Roasted Nuts
This roasted nut recipe is perfect for the holidays as it features herbs traditionally used at Thanksgiving and Christmas, such as sage, thyme, and savory.
Stuffed Baby Potatoes
Stuffed Baby Potatoes pack plenty of favor in bite-size portions.These savory appetizers also present a touch of elegance to your party table. If you don't have chives on hand, minced scallions will do the trick.
Bittersweet Fudge with Sea Salt
Sprinkled sea salt surprises the palette and brings out rich, dark chocolate flavor in Bittersweet Fudge with Sea Salt. Atop this fudgy treat, flaky types of salt shaped like pyramids or thin shards show up the best and won't overpower the sweet.
Brussels Sprout and Prosciutto Skewers
Pickup appetizers are ideal for cocktail parties; they're individually portioned and don't require any plate balancing while your guests enjoy. Try this new spin on the prosciutto skewer. It's delicious and can be made ahead to save you time on the day of the party.
Serve this dip with assorted vegetable dippers.
Roquefort Cheesecake with Pear Preserves and Pecans
Roquefort Cheesecake with Pear Preserves and Pecans is ideal for large gatherings--it makes 12 appetizer servings. Pear preserves balance the tanginess of the Roquefort cheese, and toasted pecans add nutty flavor to this herb-and-pecan cheese spread.
Buttery Toasted Pecans
Patiently roasting pecans (the entire 25 minutes!) at 325° to coax out their flavor and essential oils takes them from good to great.
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.
Rosemary Salt-and-Vinegar Chips
A homemade brine gives these chips a more delicate vinegar tang than mouth-puckering bagged varieties.
Smoked Salmon Salad in Cucumber Cups
Substitute gravlax or even flaked canned salmon in this appetizer if you prefer salmon that has not been smoked.
Crisp Persimmon with Ricotta, Honey, Pecans, and Mint
Unlike soft, plum tomato shaped Hachiya persimmons, squat, round Fuyu persimmons are crisp with an earthy sweetness.
Pepita Pesto-Stuffed Mushrooms
Mushroom caps make one delicious vessel for gluten-free appetizers all year long, but they will also be a huge hit at your holiday party this season.
Treat yourself to fresh marshmallows dipped in chocolate and topped with sweet and savory delights like coconut or pistachios.
Date, Walnut, and Blue Cheese Ball
Prepare this retro-chic snack up to two days ahead, and serve with veggies for a complete gluten-free appetizer.
For an easy side dish, serve guests Stuffed Celery. This stuffing is also great as a dip.
Polenta Toasts with Balsamic Onions, Roasted Peppers, Feta, and Thyme
Gluten-free and versatile, polenta is delicious toasted and makes a great base for appetizers throughout the holidays.
Bacon-Wrapped Bourbon Figs
These hearty bacon wrapped potatoes are a great appetizer that men will love too.
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.
This simple appetizer of Cumin-Roasted Cashews is full of flavor and will subdue an appetite until the feast is complete.
Black Pepper-Goat Cheese Log
Keep a few logs of goat cheese in the refrigerator during the holidays and you'll always be ready with a quick appetizer. All you have to do is sprinkle the cheese with pepper and drizzle with olive oil.
No cooking required for this colorful 3-ingredient appetizer. Serve with tortilla chips for an appealing contrast between salty and sweet. If you have any left over, you can use it as a topping for fish or chicken.
Pomegranate-Poached Pears with Cream
Firm pears will take longer than ripe pears to cook. To test for doneness, slide a skewer or small knife into the centers. The pears are done when the skewer slides effortlessly through the thickest part of the pears. Use extra cooking liquid in cocktails and fizzy drinks, or drizzle over yogurt.
Cranberry Baked Brie
Make an easy and elegant holiday appetizer by topping a round of baked Brie with sweetened cranberry sauce and toasted pecans.
Wine-Poached Pears with Raspberries
For an impressive but fast dessert, serve Wine-Poached Pears with Raspberries. Simmered in sweet white wine, they deliver in flavor and sophistication.
This old-school candy reminds us of divinity and other traditional homemade Southern sweets. The recipe is a testament to the genius of thrifty cooks who based the confection on leftover mashed potatoes.
Try unsweetened coconut flakes for a not-too-sweet topping.
Red Velvet Fudge
If you like red velvet cake, you'll love this fudge.
Cheesy Sausage Balls
To make ahead, cover and refrigerate unbaked balls up to 24 hours; or place in a heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag and freeze unbaked balls up to 1 month. Bake frozen balls at 375° for 22 to 25 minutes or until done.
Chocolate Olive Oil Cake
Fudgy brownies meet a light and fluffy cake in this gluten-free melt-in-your-mouth Chocolate Olive Oil Cake.
Peppermint-White Chocolate Candy Slabs
Make the easiest candy ever for this holiday season's gifts. You only need three ingredients and a loaf pan.