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If you are hosting a fancy dinner for Christmas, you need to plan it down to the last dessert. Your guests will be talking about the food you serve, so what you bring to the table (quite literally) needs to be delicious but unique. To help you impress your friends and family, we have curated a list of appetizers to serve at your Christmas party.
These Christmas appetizers are filling and full of various flavors. Vegans may often find it difficult to find recipes that suit their preferences, but there’s a treat for everyone on this list! So, without any further ado, let’s jump in and look at all our options for this Christmas’s lavish spread!
71 Festive Christmas Appetizers
1. Relish Tray
An eccentric platter of pickled vegetables makes a great side for your main course. This appetizer is effortless to prepare. If you’re looking for some last-minute additions to the table, just grab some veggies like carrots, olives, pickled onions, beets, or celery sticks, and arrange them on a tray. You can use your creativity and go wild with the plating!
2. Pigs In A Blanket
Pigs in a blanket never go out of style and are a classic appetizer for a nice Christmas dinner. You can get frozen ready-to-make puffs or prepare them from scratch if you enjoy cooking.
3. Spiced Olives
This appetizer is rich in flavor and a great choice if you prefer veggies over whole meat foods. A platter of spiced olives can be prepared in under 10 minutes and is best served warm.
4. Cheese Board
What’s a better combination than cheese and wine for a dinner party? Prepare an extravagant cheese platter with fruits and exotic veggies, but make sure you pick the right cheeses that go well with the wine you will be serving your guests.
5. Cheesy Bites
These cheesy balls are bite-sized and make for an easy starter. It is great finger food, and the cheese practically melts in your mouth. You can also add bacon or other meats to the yummy treat to give it a unique twist.
6. Deviled Eggs
A staple starter for the festive season, deviled eggs are loved by the young and old because there are so many variations you can prepare them with. Spice plays a significant part in this fun food; hence the name ‘deviled.’
7. Mashed Potato Balls
Finger food is great fun to eat, and cooking them is easy too! You can prepare the main ingredients well in advance if required. Like this item, if you have leftover mashed potatoes from another dish you were preparing, scoop them into tiny balls and fry them as another quick side.
8. Roasted Oysters
Preparing oysters can be challenging because shucking is an arduous task and not everyone’s cup of tea. A great alternative is oven-roasting oysters to crack their shells. Serve your oyster appetizers with homemade dips rich in herbs.
9. Figs In A Blanket
Yes, you’ve guessed it correctly. This is a version of pigs in a blanket, minus the bacon (or meat). Although these are aimed to appeal to a vegetarian crowd, the cheesy treat grabs the attention of ardent meat-eaters too!
10. Crab Lettuce Cups
Give your classic crab salad an innovative look by serving them in neatly cut lettuce cups. The salad plating looks very aesthetic on a dinner table and is a must-have at your Christmas dinner if you wish to impress your guests!
11. Cocktail Meatballs Serving
Some may say your appetizers decide the success of your dinner party. So, serving well-cooked meatballs with an equally appealing sauce is very important. This delicious sauce is sweet, salty, and has a smoky touch, all of which will have your guests asking for seconds in no time!
12. Fried Egg Rolls
Egg appetizers are fussy and may turn out messier than you want them to be. Frying your egg rolls is a great idea. It prevents any spillage; you won’t have to worry about your appetizer sogging and spoiling your plating. Serve them with mayonnaise and a herb or a barbeque dip.
13. Beet Red Hummus
This holiday special beet cashew hummus is an appetizer you can prepare well in advance and even store the leftovers in a tight jar for a couple of days. Scoop out some in a bowl and serve with pita bread and celery sticks, carrots, or any other munchable veggies.
14. Cranberry Cream Cheese Dip
If you’re running late with your dinner party preparations, whip up this easy dip that can be made in under 10 minutes. This red and green dip goes well with the festive theme as well. Serve with crackers or any finger food that you’ve already cooked.
15. Pear Pomegranate Salad
A platter of unconventional foods always works. Put together a quick salad with ingredients you have at your home. You will need some pears and pomegranate seeds, and then you can customize your salad to your liking. Blue cheese, some onions, and pistachios usually go well and balance the sweetness of the fruits.
16. Spinach Dip Breadsticks
The best thing about festive food is how specific your foods can look. This is the time for your inner chef to turn as innovative as possible. Sure, your regular spinach breadsticks will make a great appetizer, but shape them in a Christmas tree or a wreath, and watch the look of fascination on your guests.
17. Hummus Wreath
Another holiday-special treat is a hummus appetizer, plated like a wreath. If you have pre-prepared hummus, this appetizer is practically effortless to assemble. Use herbs, feta, and tomatoes to decorate your wreath-shaped appetizer.
18. Roasted & Spicy Cashews
Roasted nuts are a great snack to nibble on while you are conversing before dinner is served. You can buy spicy roasted cashews from a store and serve them directly, or you could even prepare them at home easily.
19. Quiche Lorraine
Quiches are an all-time favorite. They are preferred for dinner parties because you can prepare them well in advance and freeze them. They can be warmed up before serving, and it doesn’t affect the taste at all!
20. Cranberry Brie Bites
This yummy finger food looks so aesthetically pleasing that your guests won’t be able to resist coming back for more. The tangy cranberry evens out the saltiness of the brie cheese. These tart look-alikes are a must-have at your dinner table!
21. Creamy Crab Wontons
This crispy appetizer can be made at home easily. You can even prepare and fill the wonton skins days before your event, freeze them, and fry them right before serving. The creamy texture of the cheese goes delectably with your crab meat.
22. Grand Aioli
An aioli platter will add grandeur to your Christmas dinner. You can prepare aioli in advance and scoop some into a bowl for serving. Fill your platter with shrimp, boiled eggs, and fresh vegetables. The appetizer is traditionally French, so it is paired best with chilled champagne or wine.
23. Avocado Cups
This appetizer can be whipped up within minutes if you have all the ingredients available. You can use pomegranate seeds in the dressing to give it a vibrant look. Make your own recipes and try out your own unique dressings for the avocado cups.
24. Pull-Apart Cheese & Garlic Bread
Pull-apart bread is a delightful food to have on a dinner table. Everyone enjoys the cheesy mess that unfolds. You can prep the bread for baking a day before your dinner and put it into the oven a few minutes before serving.
25. Spinach Artichoke Dip
Take two kinds of cheese – mozzarella and parmesan – blend them together for this dip to reach excellence. The cheese melts in your mouth and brings an exciting flavor to the table. It is also advised to prepare your dips a day prior so you won’t have to rush around making them at the last moment. Serve with garlic bread or crackers.
26. Bacon Crackers
Crackers are an addictive snack. One cannot resist reaching for it and nibbling it down just to stay busy. Bacon is high on the list of ‘best additions to crackers.’ The cracker absorbs the bacon fat, so your snack is grease-free and fancy.
27. Tomatillo Guacamole
Appetizers that can be prepared using just a few groceries are a personal favorite of ours. If it’s one of yours too, then you will love this appetizer! With just avocado, lime juice, tomatillo salsa (that can be bought from any store), and some salt, you can make homemade guacamole within minutes.
28. Seeded Crackers
Store-bought crackers are good enough for a lavish dinner. No? Well, if you wish to give every item on your dinner table a personal touch, you can easily make crackers at home. Using just three simple ingredients – whole wheat flour, honey, and fennel or sesame seeds – bake your own homemade crackers. Just sprinkle the seeds on top.
29. Whipped Gorgonzola
If you are fond of cheesy dips, a Gorgonzola dip will suit your palate and your platter. Gorgonzola is a type of blue cheese and is best paired with veggies like cucumbers, radishes, and carrots. This is definitely a good alternative to an average salad.
30. Potato Fritters
A fried appetizer would pair well with your dip, and potatoes can be shaped and molded into anything you want! So, we definitely deemed this little snack worthy of your Christmas dinner. Supposing there are already too many potato servings on the table, you can go for sweet potato fritters instead.
31. Onion Tart
Tarts are one of the most under-appreciated snacks. They are filling and savory, and you can literally try hundreds of different tart recipes before running out. Make an onion tart this Christmas as an alternative to your regular apple or fruit pies.
32. Sticky Cauliflower Wings
A tasty starter for the vegans out there! These veggie wings will blow your mind with their unique maple-sesame savory flavor. These wings are gluten-free, so you won’t have to worry about preparing different appetizers to suit all your guests.
33. Cranberry And Walnut Pinwheels
This yummy treat is a cookie dessert but can be used as an appetizer because of the small servings. They are fun to eat, of course, but you will have fun baking them too!
34. Asparagus Puff Pastry Cigars
This appetizer is shaped like a cigar, which adds to the fun of the party. As it is vegan-friendly, this delightful puff pastry is a treat that everyone can enjoy.
35. Tomato Bites
Bite-sized appetizers are a smart choice for dinner parties because although they are delicious, your guests won’t feel full before your main course hits the table. One such fun-sized treat is a combination of tomatoes, some mozzarella cheese, and basil. You won’t need much prep for your tomato bites since they don’t require many ingredients or baking and frying.
36. Quinoa Balls
Give your regular quinoa balls a different flavor by adding spinach, feta, and red pepper. Ever so tasty, this finger food is a treat that will make people dive in with or without dips.
37. Veggie Cups
Cut small pieces of carrots, celery, and other veggies and add them to cups. Make sure you add small quantities of the dip to the cup before arranging your veggies. This is an excellent alternative to your veggie platter for a dinner party with a huge crowd.
38. Mini Taco Quiches
Miniature taco quiches are a wonderful bite-sized item to pass around at your Christmas dinner. You can make a beef quiche or a vegan one, depending on the crowd at your dinner.
39. Blue Cheese Tart
Pair cranberry chutney with your blue cheese tart for a great blend of flavors. Once your tart is baked and ready, cut it into small square pieces so you can plate and pass it around easily during your dinner.
40. Mushroom Puff Pastry
Puff pastries are a little slice of heaven, regardless of their filling. This wild or regular mushroom and cheese filling will make your puff pastries disappear from the table in seconds.
41. Caprese Salad Kabobs
The Caprese salad kabobs are a pleasant alternative to a meat or a veggie platter. It is very easy to assemble and requires around 3-5 ingredients. Have fun plating them in a fancy way!
42. Honey Lemon Asparagus
Veggie starters are a delight to simply munch on while chatting with friends. If you are a picky eater, you can also use turnip or parsnip instead of regular asparagus.
43. Broccoli Salad
Salads are an absolute must-have on a Christmas dinner table. If you are opposed to a quirky chicken salad, go back to the classic broccoli. The grapes add a tangy flavor to the salad. You can always add meat to this salad; it will just enhance the taste!
44. Cheese Balls
You must opt for an appetizer that compliments your main course. Cheese balls are evergreen if you are looking for a fun cheesy starter! Plate them shaped like a snowman to give them a Christmassy touch.
45. Marinated Mozzarella Sticks
Cut your cheese cube into small squares and combine all your herbs and spices. Refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes, and then put toothpicks through them. This appetizer makes for excellent finger food and can be prepared in no time.
46. Shrimp Salad
Your hors d’oeuvre set the mood for the rest of your dinner. If your guests approve of them, you are good to go. So impress your guests by making a dressing with celery and shrimp – they go surprisingly well together. Add crab meat if you like, some mayonnaise and herbs, and once the dressing is ready, place them on small lettuce cups.
47. Marinated Shrimp
The best part about marinated appetizers is that you can make them hours ahead of your dinner. Add your spices and herbs to the shrimp and refrigerate. The tangy taste of the citrus sauce will add a unique flavor to it.
48. Mini Antipasto Sandwiches
Antipasto is a great spread to have on your dinner table, but two salad appetizers on a single night? If you are already prepping for a different salad, turn your antipasto salad into small sandwiches. They are no less than little slices of heaven!
49. Roast Beef Sliders
Now, who doesn’t like mini burgers? These ones are especially delicious with a French dip that you can prepare with beef broth and Worcestershire sauce. Put them on the table and watch them disappear in seconds!
50. ‘Bloody Mary’ Skewers
These bacon skewers get the name ‘Bloody Mary’ from the grape tomatoes and celery topping. If you fancy the idea and have these ingredients ready, you can make this appetizer in no time!
51. Spinach Artichoke Cups
Turn the same old spinach artichoke dip into some cute finger food! Make your artichoke dip as you usually do, and then cut squares from your dough and fill the dip into the dough. Bake them to perfection, and taste the magic!
52. Cheesy Onion Bread
This perfect pull-apart cheese and onion bread would be a great addition to your Christmas dinner. Cut the bread into small pieces or serve it as a whole – they’ll both taste delicious!
53. Shrimp Cocktail
Mix your shrimp with olive oil, salt, parmesan, and other herbs and bake them. Serve with marinara sauce to give your appetizer a zesty tinge.
54. Garlic & Parmesan Soft Pretzels
Give your regular pretzels a twist with this cheesy garlic addition. This garlic delight will surely brighten your dinner table.
55. Candied Pecans
These are regular pecans baked with spices and salts to balance the sweetness. They are gluten-free, so all your guests can enjoy these little treats while they await the main course.
56. Christmas Tree Roll-Ups
Shaped like a Christmas tree, this creative take of tortillas on toothpicks will make for excellent finger food. They are very appealing to the eye, and the cheesy delight melts in your mouth instantly.
57. Baked Chicken Wings
Frying chicken wings makes them greasy and unlikable to many. Choose a healthier option by baking your chicken wings. Serve them with a dip of your choice and a veggie platter.
58. Buffalo Chicken Dip
Who says your dips always have to be the same tiresome vegetarian savory? With lots of cheese and chicken, this dip is creamy and cheesy, and all your guests will enjoy their garlic bread and veggies with it!
59. Ham & Cheese Sliders
Ham & cheese sliders are a classic holiday snack. You can serve them with a dip, or without – your guests won’t notice, being too occupied with these delicious treats!
60. Pickled Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts are an item that you’ll find on every Christmas dinner table. But instead of stir-frying or roasting, why not pickle them? Pickled brussels sprouts really compliment a cheese board. They take 4 days to completely absorb the tangy flavors of your basils, so make sure you start a little in advance.
61. Yeast Rolls
A bread roll assortment is an absolute must for your holiday dinner. These puffy yeast rolls are light and airy buttery perfection, and you will enjoy baking them.
62. Deviled Potatoes
A perfect blend of deviled eggs and potato salad, this item is unique enough to get your guests salivating and in immediate awe of the combination and your creativity!
63. Cheesy Wafers
Cheesy wafers are an age-old party favorite. You can get this crunchy snack made in less than an hour. Be sure to make enough, though – we get through these little treats very quickly.
64. Beef Nachos
Cook beef with beef broth, garlic, and peppers for a juicy topping. Top your tortilla chips with beef, tomatoes, cheese, olives (and any other items you want) and bake them for ten minutes. Once baked, garnish with basil leaves, and voila – delectable goods!
65. Chicks In A Blanket
A twist on the classic pigs in a blanket, this appetizer requires just mini smoked chicken sausages and crescent rolls. The rest will depend on your pigs in blanket-making skills!
66. Rosemary Focaccia Bread
Making homemade bread is not everyone’s cup of tea; it requires a lot of patience and work. But the results are worth it all, especially with the smell of freshly baked bread and rosemary wafting through your kitchen.
67. Turnip Green Pesto
Now we also have something for you to pair with your rosemary focaccia bread. Make a creamy pesto with a perfect blend of parmesan, turnips, and honey; it will pair beautifully with the bread. Start your evening with these – they’ll definitely get you the green light from your guests.
68. French Fries
French fries are considered a kids’ favorite. But we all know how adults love gorging on them too! Give a twist to your regular French fries by mixing them up with salt and pepper. You can also serve them with a mayo dip.
69. Ham & Cheese Pinwheels
These delicious puff pastries look so appetizing, that you might have to stop yourself from feasting on them before your guests arrive! Unlike popular belief, they are pretty easy to make and can be done in an hour or two, depending on how many batches you bake.
70. Cheddar Popovers
These cheesy popovers are an excellent alternative to the focaccia bread we mentioned. They turn very puffy once baked and go amazingly with a spot of butter on the side.
71. Corn Fritters
Corn is not a typical staple food for Christmas dinners, but when cooked the right way, you can turn them into a crowd favorite. These corn fritters are similar to potato fritters, so we can assure you that they will be easy peasy to make.
Christmas is a wonderful time for love, joy and kindness, family and friends, and most importantly – food! Dinner parties are a big part of Christmas, and the appetizers and hors d’oeuvres bring all the fun to them. So this Christmas, make some holiday exclusive appetizers you found on this list to enjoy with your friends and family! Merry Christmas!