44 Cold Finger Foods Perfect for Your Next Party

Updated: Jun. 10, 2024

Prep these hand-held finger foods as an easy assortment of appetizers or just a light snack with friends.

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Antipasto Platter

We entertain often, and antipasto is one of our favorite crowd-pleasing finger foods. Guests love having their choice of so many delicious nibbles, including pepperoni and cubes of provolone. —Teri Lindquist, Gurnee, Illinois

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Marinated Cheese

This special appetizer always makes it to our neighborhood parties and is the first to disappear from the buffet table. It's attractive, delicious—and so easy! —Laurie Casper, Coraopolis, Pennsylvania
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Savory Cucumber Sandwiches

Cucumber sandwiches are a classic finger food! Italian salad dressing is an easy way to add zip to this simple spread. You can also use it as a dip with crackers and veggies or a sandwich filling. —Carol Henderson, Chagrin Falls, Ohio
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Cranberry Endive Appetizers

You can pack a lot of flavor into an elegant appetizer just by using the right combination of ingredients. I created this blue cheese filling for a holiday gathering and everyone loved it. —Margee Berry, White Salmon, Washington
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Caprese Skewers

Trade in the usual veggie platter for these fun kabobs. In addition to preparing these for get-togethers, I often make these as snacks for my family. And because assembly is so easy, the kids often ask to help. —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California
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Brie Appetizers with Bacon-Plum Jam

Among my friends I’m known as the pork master, because I love to cook just about every cut there is. These appetizers combine soft, mild Brie cheese with a sweet-sour bacon jam that has a touch of Sriracha sauce. —Rick Pascocello, New York, New York
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Savory Stuffed Cherry Peppers

Our family’s holiday dinners include a giant antipasto, and my mom’s anchovy stuffed peppers are always the star dish. There isn’t a holiday that we don’t make them in her honor. Serve these finger foods cold with a nice loaf of Italian bread and a glass of wine. —Donna Scarano, East Hanover, New Jersey
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Chicken Salad in Baskets

When I first made these cute little cups, they were a big hit. Now my husband often asks me to fix these finger foods for meetings and parties. —Gwendolyn Fae Trapp, Strongsville, Ohio
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Pancetta, Pear & Pecan Puffs

I was recently at a wedding reception where the menu was all small bites. Here’s my rendition of the pear pastries they served. They're the perfect combo of savory and sweet. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois

These pretty puffs are perfect for a special occasion! Discover more with our bridal shower food ideas and anniversary food ideas.

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Marinated Sausage Kabobs

These flavorful and colorful appetizers are so fun they’ll be the talk of the party. And they’re so easy: Simply assemble the day before and forget about them! —Joanne Boone, Danville, Ohio
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Shrimp Cocktail

During the ’60s, shrimp cocktail was one of the most popular finger foods around. And it is still a crowd favorite. It’s the one appetizer that I serve for every special occasion as well as for munchie meals. —Peggy Allen, Pasadena, California

Need help with this one? Our Test Kitchen shows you how to clean shrimp.

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Smoked Salmon New Potatoes

Give twice-baked potatoes a rest this year and try these stuffed spuds. Smoked salmon and cream cheese blended with lemon juice and dill are simply piped into small red potatoes. Leftovers are even good with eggs for breakfast. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Watermelon Cups

This lovely appetizer is almost too pretty to eat! Sweet watermelon cubes hold a refreshing topping that showcases cucumber, red onion and fresh herbs. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Olive-Stuffed Celery

My grandmother taught both me and my mom this vintage appetizer recipe for stuffed celery. We always serve this finger food at Christmas and Thanksgiving. The stuffing is so yummy that even if you don’t normally care for the ingredients on their own, you’ll love the end result. —Stacy Powell, Santa Fe, Texas
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Best Deviled Eggs

Herbs lend amazing flavor to these deviled eggs, which truly are the best you can make! The recipe includes tasty variations that feature bacon, chipotle peppers and crab.—Jesse & Anne Foust, Bluefield, West Virginia

Do you know someone who’s celebrating a milestone? These eggs are one of our favorite retirement party food ideas.

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Zesty Marinated Shrimp

These easy shrimp look impressive on a buffet table and taste even better! The zesty sauce has a wonderful spicy citrus flavor. I especially like this recipe because I can prepare it ahead of time. —Mary Jane Guest, Alamosa, Colorado
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Smashed Olives

My best friend and I came up with this finger food recipe to bring back the wonderful tastes of Spain with us. When you are finished with the olives, use the flavored olive oil for a chicken or shrimp marinade. —Tiffani Warner, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
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Ham Pickle Pinwheels

My mom introduced me to this ham pickle pinwheels appetizer a number of years ago, and I’ve been making them for parties ever since. They are easy to make and are always well received by guests. —Gloria Jarrett, Loveland, Ohio
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Cranberry-Fig Goat Cheese Crostini

The blend of flavors in the crostini makes an absolutely scrumptious appetizer. —Barbara Estabrook, Rhinelander, Wisconsin
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Mini Cheese Balls

These mini cheese balls are the perfect quick appetizer for any party. Roll in toasted sesame seeds, fresh rosemary and/or paprika to add even more flavor to these finger foods. —J. Spivey, Ennice, North Carolina
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Zippy Party Roll-Ups

A guaranteed crowd pleaser, these zesty appetizers are an amazing way to pep up a party! This finger food recipe won a blue ribbon at the county fair, and even though I always double it, I never seem to make enough. —Dana Gonzalez del Valle, Battle Ground, Washington
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Fruit and Cheese Kabobs

We came up with this fresh and fruity summer snack idea. It's easy to make ahead and carry to the ballpark, beach or playground, and the cinnamon-spiced yogurt dip adds a fun touch kids love. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Garlic Tomato Bruschetta

I drew inspiration from my grandma’s recipe for this garden-fresh bruschetta. The crisp bread and tomato goodness make a great party appetizer, but the dish also works alongside your favorite Italian entree. —Jean Franzoni, Rutland, Vermont
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Shrimp Tartlets

Mini tart shells filled with a cream cheese mixture, topped with seafood sauce and shrimp make for a picture-perfect, tasty appetizer. You could also serve several as a fast, light meal. —Gina Hutchison, Smithville, Missouri
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Chicken Salad Caprese

This unique, flavorful salad and bread combo will get rave reviews—guaranteed. —Frances Pietsch, Flower Mound, Texas
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Dill Vegetable Dip

A friend gave me this zesty dip recipe many years ago, and now I serve it at our annual holiday open house. To make it mobile, spoon a serving of the dip in the bottom of a small cup, then garnish with fresh veggies. —Karen Gardiner, Eutaw, Alabama
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Greek Veggie Tartlets

The mixture in this recipe was originally a salad I made after a trip to Greece. When my husband suggested I serve it in phyllo cups, it became my most-requested appetizer!—Radelle Knappenberger, Oviedo, Florida
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Quick Tortilla Pinwheels

Prepare these easy, cheesy finger foods several days in advance if desired. Serve with your choice of mild or hot salsa or picante sauce. —Barbara Keith, Faucett, Missouri
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Garbanzo-Stuffed Mini Peppers

Mini peppers are so colorful and are the perfect size for a two-bite appetizer. They have all the crunch of pita chips but without the extra calories. —Christine Hanover, Lewiston, California
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Asparagus with Fresh Basil Sauce

Add zip to your party with this easy appetizer. The dip that can also double as a flavorful sandwich spread. — Janie Colle Hutchinson, Kansas
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Shrimp Salad Appetizers

This refreshing hors d'oeuvre has gained a big following since a friend shared her family recipe with me. My son says it best: The celery and shrimp are so good together. —Solie Kimble, Kanata, Ontario
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Mini BLT Appetizers

Five simple ingredients are all you need to wow friends and family with a tasty appetizer. I love to make these as much as I love to share them. —Nick Berg, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Cucumber Canapes

I always get requests for the recipe for these canapes whenever I serve them. They're delicate finger sandwiches with a creamy herb spread and festive red and green garnishes. —Nadine Whittaker, South Plymouth, Massachusetts
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Antipasto Kabobs

My husband and I met at a cooking class. We have loved creating menus and entertaining ever since. These make-ahead antipasto skewers are always a hit. —Denise Hazen, Cincinnati, Ohio
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Shrimp & Cucumber Rounds

I always make these appetizers for our get-togethers. They're easy to prepare and a snappy addition to any party. —Kelly Alaniz, Eureka, California
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Cream Cheese Ham Roll-Ups

Green onions and ripe olives give lively flavor to these bite-size appetizers from Kathleen Green of Republic, Missouri. “They’re quick to assemble and can be made the day before they’re needed,” she notes. “They’re very popular with my friends and family.”
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Pomegranate Pistachio Crostini

Pomegranate seeds intrigued me, so I sliced French bread, smeared it with cream cheese and added seeds, pistachios and chocolate. —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Spicy Crab Salad Tapas

I served these at a party and everyone went wild! These delicious finger foods have a crispy flaky outside filled with creamy sweet crab that has a little kick. I used scalloped-edge cookie cutters to cut my pastry, but you can use a small biscuit cutter. —Vanessa Mason, Summerdale, Alabama
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Cucumber-Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes

Besides being tasty, these little tomato poppers are extra awesome because you can make them ahead of time. At parties, I often triple the recipe because they disappear fast. —Christi Martin, Elko, Nevada
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Marinated Mozzarella

I always come home with an empty container when I bring this dish to a party. It can be made ahead to free up time later. I serve it with pretty frilled toothpicks for a festive look. —Peggy Cairo, Kenosha, Wisconsin
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Cheese/Grape Appetizers

These small bites are well worth the time they take. Serve them as part of an antipasto platter or as a cheese course alongside your favorite wine. —Eleanor Grofvert, Kalamazoo, Michigan
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Crab Phyllo Cups

I always like a little extra chili sauce on top of these easy snacks. If you're out of crab, water-packed tuna works well too. —Johnna Johnson, Scottsdale, Arizona
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Pickled Pepperoncini Deviled Eggs

It's hard to resist these adorable deviled trees on our buffet table. The avocado filling has pepperoncini and cilantro for extra zip. —Carmell Childs, Clawson, Utah
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Dill Vegetable Dip

A friend gave me this zesty dip recipe many years ago, and now I serve it at our annual holiday open house. To make it mobile, spoon a serving of the dip in the bottom of a small cup, then garnish with fresh veggies. —Karen Gardiner, Eutaw, Alabama