Stress-free Appetizers for Holiday Party Hosting

Hosting a party can be a lot of work. You’ve got to worry about decorating, the guest list, and most importantly, the menu. Rather than fuss over complicated recipes, consider opting for these appetizers for holiday party festivities. With simple ingredients and minimal prep, finger foods allow you to plan your party with ease.

Holiday appetizers are also great because they allow guests to move around and socialize while still being able to eat. Keep your guests happy and satisfied with these appetizer ideas.

Cranberry Meatballs

It wouldn’t be a holiday party without meatballs! These appetizers for holiday party fun are satisfying enough to fill hungry guests, and the addition of cranberry sauce adds a festive touch to help celebrate the Christmas season.

To make, simply prepare your favorite meatball recipe as you normally would. A combination of pork and beef often make one delicious meatball. Once the meatballs have been cooked, combine 1 16-ounce can of cranberry sauce with 1 18-ounce jar of barbecue sauce in a large saucepan or dutch oven.  Add 2 tablespoons of brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of orange juice and stir to incorporate. For a sweeter meatball, add less of the barbecue sauce and more cranberry. Simmer on low heat for about five minutes, and then add the cooked meatballs and simmer for at least one hour more.

You can also make these in a crockpot and allow the meatballs to cook throughout the day. Serve with toothpicks.


Camembert with Honey Roasted Figs

Cheese is a wonderful pre-dinner snack and makes a splendid addition to your spread of appetizers for holiday party festivities. The complex flavors of camembert pair nicely with the sweetness of fresh figs, and the colors are great for the holiday season. Another positive note: this cheese is beautiful and simple to prepare. Feel free to get creative with the garnish; we like using fresh herbs for a hint of green.


  • 8 ounces of french Camembert cheese
  • 3–4 fresh figs, washed and quartered
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 3–4 sprigs of desired herbs (rosemary or thyme)
  • Honey to taste
  • Chopped walnut to garnish
  • Crackers (for serving)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Unwrap the cheese and use a knife to scratch the top of the cheese, removing a bit of the skin. Finely chop the herbs and sprinkle them on top of the cheese. Place the cheese on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, and bake for 20 minutes.
  2. While the cheese bakes, melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the chopped figs and brown sugar, stirring until soft.
  3. Remove the cheese from the oven and pour the figs on top. Garnish with the chopped walnuts. Add a drizzle of honey. Serve with crackers or crusty bread slices.


Shrimp Cocktail Shooters

Classic and fresh, shrimp cocktail is always popular choice for one of your appetizers for holiday party celebrations. Add a unique twist and consider serving your shrimp cocktail in shot glasses. The presentation is perfect for a holiday gathering, and the shot glass-style make it an easy appetizer to serve for a large amount of guests.

To prepare, peel, devein, and cook 2 to 3 pounds of shrimp as directed on the package. Mix the cocktail sauce by combining 2 cups of ketchup, 2 teaspoons of worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and 2 teaspoons of horseradish (you can adjust this to your tastes). Pour the cocktail sauce into the shot glasses. Slice up some fresh chives or parsley, and sprinkle the herbs on top of the cocktail sauce. Dip a shrimp into each shooter, so that the tail end sticks out. Serve with fresh lemon wedges.

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