5 Light Hors d'oeuvres To Kick Off a Meal

Whether you’re having a few friends over for a casual dinner, or hosting a more formal dinner party, it’s always a great idea to kick off the evening with some hors d'oeuvres while you get people mingling and the drinks pouring.

To make amazing hors d'oeuvres, you don’t need to spend a copious amount of time in the kitchen. In fact, there are quite a few crowd pleasers that take minimal effort.

Here are 5 delicious hors d'oeuvres that are quick and easy to whip up. 

Warm Olives with Garlic, Rosemary, and Lemon:

Try this super simple and yet ravishing recipe from Food & Wine. This is the perfect hors d'oeuvre that can be made ahead of time and refrigerated (up to 3 days) - merely warm it gently before serving! 

What You Need:

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small lemon (strips of zest from it)
  • 1 small rosemary sprig
  • 2 small garlic cloves (thickly sliced)
  • 1 pound mixed oil-and-brine-cured olives, such as Kalamata, Niçoise, Moroccan, cracked green Sicilian and Cerignola (3 cups)

To Make This:

  1. Combine the oil with the lemon zest, rosemary, and garlic in a medium saucepan over moderate heat until the garlic begins to brown (about 6 minutes).
  2. Remove from the heat and stir in the olives.

Let this sit for at least 15 minutes, and enjoy!

Avocado-Pesto BLT Bites:

Try these BLT bites from Inspired by Charm. Juicy, crispy, and just brimming with flavor, these charming BLT bites are a perfect spring hors d'oeuvre.

What You Need:

  • 16 strips cooked thick cut bacon (try brown sugar bacon)
  • 1/2 medium avocado (peeled, pitted, and chopped)
  • 2 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 2 tablespoons basil pesto
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 4 cups baby arugula
  • 48 cherry tomatoes
  • Toothpicks

To Make This:

  1. Cut each slice of cooked bacon into three equal pieces, and then set it aside.
  2. With a fork, mash the avocado, cream cheese, pesto, and lemon juice together in a medium bowl. 
  3. Put the mashed mixture into a piping bag or a plastic baggie, and cut off one corner of the baggie with scissors. 
  4. Put your bites together by piping a line of the avocado-pest mixture onto a strip of bacon, top it with 2-3 arugula leaves and a cherry tomato, and secure the bacon and arugula around the tomato with a toothpick (repeat for all the bites).

Be sure to share these zesty bites with your friends, and enjoy!

Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Chutney:

Try these bitty cheesy bites from Real Simple. Impress guests with a twist on a beloved comfort food and turn it into a fancy hors d'oeuvre.

What You Need:

  • 12 slices white sandwich bread
  • 12 ounces thinly sliced cheese (such as such as fontina or Gruyère)
  • 1 cup fruit chutney (such as cranberry, fig, or mango)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

To Make This:

  1. Form 6 sandwiches with the bread, cheese, and chutney.
  2. Over medium heat, melt the butter in a large skillet and cook the sandwiches (in batches) until the bread is golden and the cheese is melted (2-3 minutes per side). 

Cut each sandwich into quarters, and enjoy these mini melted beauties!

Avocado Cucumber Shrimp Appetizers:

Get down with this deliciousness from Natasha’s Kitchen. Whip these hors d'oeuvres up for bursts of flavor as well as texture with the juicy cajun shrimp, creamy avocado, and crisp cucumber. These can also be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 4 hours. 

What You Need - For Cajun Shrimp:

  • 1 pound large shrimp (peeled and deveined)
  • 2 garlic cloves (finely minced)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro (plus more to garnish)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

What You Need - For Avocado Spread:

  • 1 avocado
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice (plus more to squeeze over finished appetizers)
  • 1 English cucumber (sliced into 22 rings)

To Make - Cajun Shrimp:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, place the shrimp and pat it dry with paper towels. 
  2. Add the minced garlic, cilantro, paprika, cayenne pepper, sea salt, black pepper, and olive oil, and stir it well to combine it. 
  3. In a large pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat until the oil is hot, and then add the shrimp in a single layer (sauté 2 minutes per side, or until they’re cooked through). 

To Make - Avocado Spread:

  1. Mash the avocado, salt, and lime juice in a small bowl, until it’s creamy. 

Divide the avocado mix over 20-22 cucumber slices, top with a shrimp on each, squeeze fresh lime juice over the shrimp avocado bites, garnish them with more finely chopped cilantro, and enjoy! 

Easy Creamy Prosciutto Cracker Appetizers: 

Try these simple and savory tasty bits from Family Fresh Meals. Extremely easy to make, these hors d'oeuvres consisting of crackers, cream cheese, prosciutto, and honey will win over the hearts of any hungry crowd.

What You Need:

  • 7 ounces whipped cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 ounces sliced prosciutto
  • 40 crackers (Ritz are amazing for this)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parsley (finely chopped for topping)
  • Honey (for drizzling)

To Make This:

  1. In a small bowl, mix the cream cheese, garlic, olive oil, and salt and pepper together, and then set it aside.
  2. Cut the prosciutto into small rectangles.
  3. Thinly cover each cracker with the mixture.
  4. Roll up each prosciutto, and then place them on the crackers.

Top these off with a small drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of parsley, and enjoy!

Conclusion:

Now that you’re a pro at throwing together some hors d'oeuvres on the fly, check out how to plan a dinner party menu. If you’re going above and beyond and are hosting a more formal event, check out how to set the mood for your dinner party

 

Photo credit: Alesia Kozik


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