Crowd-Pleasing Party Snack Ideas That Keep it Simple


Whether you’re planning a big blow out sports party or an evening gathering with twenty of your closest friends, you don’t want to spend the whole night in the kitchen.

But you also don’t want to just fill up a couple of bowls with potato chips and call it a night.

So where’s the happy medium when it comes to party snack ideas? Right here!

These party snack ideas will minimize the time you spend in the kitchen and get you back in the action.

And even if you have friends with food sensitivities, these relatively easy party snack ideas are varied across the board so you’re bound to find something that’ll fit the bill.

Chile and Lime Roasted Cashews

The house is clean and now you’re ready to kick off the party with these tangy and spicy cashews – a nice alternative to their plainer cousins. (Though you could always provide both.)

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups raw whole cashews
  • 1 lime, zested and juiced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ancho chile pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
  • 1 egg white

What you’ll do:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper and set it aside. Place the cashews in a large bowl and set aside.

2. Whisk together the lime zest, salt, ancho chile, chipotle chile and egg white. Pour the wet mixture over the nuts and toss to combine, making sure they are evenly coated.

3. Transfer the nuts to the baking sheet and spread them out in an even layer. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure even cooking.

4. Remove from the oven and drizzle the nuts with lime juice while they’re still hot. Let cool.

5. Once they are completely cooled, transfer the nuts to an airtight container and serve as needed.

Greek Salad Skewers

It’s a salad without all the mess. Or the commitment, for that matter.

What you’ll need:

  • 1/2 English cucumber, cut into four 1/2 inch thick diagonal slices
  • 8 ounces feta cheese, cut into 16 cubes
  • 16 pitted Kalamata olives, cut in half
  • 16 grape tomatoes, halved
  • 4 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper or mixed peppercorns
  • 16 toothpicks

1. Cut the cucumber slices into quarters.

2. Thread each toothpick with a tomato, Kalamata, feta, and then the cucumber piece.

3. Place the skewers on a serving plate and drizzle the assembled skewers with the olive oil.

4. Grind the pepper over the appetizers and serve them up!


Hummus Guacamole Dip

Can’t decide between guacamole and hummus? Then don’t.

What you’ll need:

  • Two 12oz packages of Guacamole or a couple of smashed avocados
  • 1 Pint of Hummus w/roasted garlic (or any flavor you want)
  • 1 15.5oz can black beans (slightly drained)
  • Chunky mild/medium salsa (about a cup)

What you’ll do:

Just mix them all up in a bowl and serve up with some pita or tortilla chips.

That’s it! One of the easiest (and tastiest) party snack ideas.

Creamy Smoked Salmon Rolls

You might consider these a little high brow and they certainly won’t appeal to everyone. These would be especially ideal for a brunch type gathering, though.

What you’ll need:

  • 10 ounces cold smoked salmon, thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup chives, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 box flatbread or water crackers, for serving
  • Fresh dill sprigs, for serving

1. In a food processor, combine cream cheese, lemon juice, chives, onion, salt, and paprika until mixture is smooth.

2. Lay down plastic wrap on a countertop or flat surface. Arrange salmon slices on to plastic wrap about 7 inches long and 3 inches wide.

3. Spoon cheese mixture onto salmon, spreading evenly.

4. Roll the salmon longways into a layered round. Cover with additional plastic wrap and chill for 3 hours, or for up to 2 days.

5. When ready to serve, use a sharp chef’s knife to cut the roll into 24 equal slices.

6. Set each slice atop a cracker and garnish with a sprig of dill. Or, for a more casual gathering, set the roll out and allow guests to slice their own appetizer.

Spinach Pinwheels

These require a little more work than the first four recipes. And since they’re best out of the oven, you may be relinquished to the kitchen. But only briefly.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 (8 oz) packages refrigerated crescent rolls
  • 1 (7 oz) package garlic herb cheese spread
  • 1 (10 oz) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained

What you’ll do:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

2. Split crescent dough in half along the center perforation. Flatten one rectangle, sealing perforations.

3. Spread with 1/4 of the cheese spread and sprinkle with spinach.

4. Starting with long side, roll the dough up, rolling back and forth several times to seal edges.

5. Cut into 3/4 inch slices (about 15 slices per roll). Arrange the slices one inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet.

6. Continue making the crescent roll ups until all of the ingredients are used.

7. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until lightly browned. Serve immediately or keep warm on a warming tray.


Baked Brie

If you have friends who don’t care for brie, this might change their mind. Everything is better when wrapped in puff pastry. And if you already love brie, then this is ecstasy.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 sheet frozen prepared puff pastry, 11 x 17 inches, thawed
  • 1 wheel Brie cheese, about 5 inches round
  • 2-3 tablespoons raspberry preserves
  • 4 tablespoon sliced almonds, toasted

1. Preheat the oven to 400° F.

2. Place the puff pastry on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread the preserves and sliced almonds in a 5-inch circle in the middle of the puff pastry.

3. Place the wheel of Brie on top of the preserves and sliced almonds.

4. Wrap the Brie with the puff pastry, making sure the ends are firmly pinched together, and flip the Brie over so the preserves and almonds are facing up.

5. Bake for 15-17 minutes until golden brown.

6. Serve with crackers, pita chips or crostini.

And when the sweet tooth starts kicking in, here’s one more sweet party snack ideas:

Bourbon Pecan Chocolate Popcorn

This popcorn has just a little kick of bourbon, some pecans and a lot of chocolate!

What you’ll need:

  • 8 c popped popcorn – air-popped or microwaved (plain flavor)
  • 1 c chopped pecans
  • 12 oz. dark or semisweet melting chocolate discs or wafers, or almond bark
  • ½ c bourbon

What you’ll do:

1. Place the popcorn in a large bowl and pour the pecans over the top. Don’t mix or toss because then the pecans will just drop to the bottom of the bowl.

2. Add the chocolate and bourbon to a bowl or top portion of a double boiler and set over a pot of simmering water on low heat.

3. Gently stir and melt the chocolate. (Melting the chocolate in the microwave is not recommended because the liquid may make it more likely to seize and solidify.)

4. Pour the melted chocolate over the popcorn and pecans and gently toss until it is evenly and thoroughly coated.

5. Spread the popcorn onto a silicone baking mat or wax paper lined baking sheet and allow to cool to room temperature and firm up.

6. Toss it in a big bowl and sweeten up your party.

Have a great time at your party. (If it’s your birthday, have a happy one!)

And let us know if you’ve got any other ideas for easy party snack ideas. We’d love to hear them.

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