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The Value Guru Wants You...if You Want a Prize

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Are you a fan of The Whole Deal in-store value guide? If so, here's a sneak preview of the special December issue we're putting together. It will focus around giving and entertaining on a budget and feature several recipes for amazing "small bites" party food that cost less than 50 cents per piece-many much less than that!

I know, I know, it seems awfully early to be talking holiday parties, but to be ready to inspire and assist you when the time comes we have to start Christmas in July, so to speak. And this year we also want some help from you! Simply use the comments space below to share your own favorite value-focused "small bites" holiday appetizer recipe that costs less than 50 cents per piece. If your favorite is selected as our favorite of all the entries, we'll send you a $50 gift card and print your recipe in The Whole Deal. But, hurry up, the deadline is October 5th!

Good luck...I can't wait to get a taste of your ideas.

And, if you haven't already, be sure to sign up for The Whole Deal e-newsletter. You'll hear from us a few times each month about in-store specials and money-saving tips…and future contests, too.

Tune in to our Whole Story blog each Wednesday in October for a special value-focused weekly contest!

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585 comments

Comments

RobbinSuzanne OConnor says …

SWEET MUSTARD & HAM QUICK BITES (GLUTEN-FREE) 1- pkg round or square Rice Papers 1/2 lb. thinly shaved Turkey Ham 4 oz Dijon or Spicy Brown Mustard 2 or 3 tbl. Honey to taste 1- 8 oz pkg low fat Cream Cheese (let soften before using) 1 small tub soft/silken Tofu 6 medium green onions: cleaned,trimmed,sliced length in half Soften paper in warm water, lay on paper towel, pat dry. Mix mustard and honey, spread thinly. Layer 2 pcs Turkey Ham. Mix softened Cream Cheese and drained Tofu, use whisk or beaters until very soft and creamy. Spread over Ham (you will have some leftover to use as fruit dip). Lay half of Green Onion and roll up into cylinder, flipping sides inward as rolling. Cut in half, half again, or until 8 pieces. Makes up to 96 pcs. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

Sandy says …

A party favorite (especially here in Texas where we like things "HOT") are my stuffed jalapenos. 1lb. jalapenos (or more based on # guests) 1 container flavored cream cheese (I like the veggie or garlic) 4-5 pieces of cooked and crumbled bacon about 8oz. cheddar cheese (or your preferred melting cheese)grated 1. Cut the jalapenos' tops off and slice lengthwise. Remove membranes and seeds (or leave in a few for HOTTER bites) 2. Spread the cream cheese inside the hollow jalapeno 3. Sprinkle a few bacon pieces on each one. 4. Sprinkle grated cheese on top. 5. Put in oven just to heat through and melt cheese, @ 350, for about 15- 20 min. Most people can't get enough of these. They ALWAYS go fast, plus it's budget friendly. Enjoy!

Meredith W says …

Our holiday family gathering favorite. It is quick and inexpensive for a small bite before a big Thanksgiving dinner. 1 block of cream cheese, 1 small shallot-chopped, 5 or 6 rehydrated sun dried tomatos, 1 clove of garlic, salt, pepper and herbs d'provence. Put it all in the food processor. Pulse until blended, but still chunky. Serve in a nice bowl and spread on an inexpensive water cracker. Delicious!

Amy says …

These are really easy to make and healthy for you. 1 Bundle of Asparagus 1 Pack of Smoked Salmon 1 Pack of Roasted Seaweed (Each piece is about 1.5 inch in width) Wash all the spears of asparagus in cool water. Cut off an inch from the bottom of each spears, compost them. Cut the rest of the asparagus to 1.5 inch pieces. Using a steamer basket above boiling water, or a saucepan containing about 1/2 cup boiling water, add asparagus and cover pan. Cook until all pieces are tender, about 6 to 10 minutes. Slice the smoked salmon to 1 inch wide strips. Wrap each piece of salmon around 2 pieces of asparagus. Wrap the roasted seaweed outside of the salmon. If you run out of salmon, it will be perfect for the vegetarians! Simply wrap the seaweed around the asparagus, they taste almost as good! Arrange each "roll" around a plate and place more seaweed in the center of the dish.

Cindy Sutton says …

Chicken Salad Cups Boil some boneless chicken breasts. Drain water, and remove from pot. Let cool. When cool enough to handle cut into pieces and then place into a food processor with mayonaise, salt & pepper to taste, garlic powder, and some sweet relish. Blend well. Serve in phyllo dough cups. Yields about 30-50 cups depending on size of chicken breasts. Totally delicious!!

JoAn says …

Medjool Date Appetizers 12 Medjool dates 1 Organic Cream Cheese carton 24 Walnut pieces Cut dates in half. Put cream cheese in each date half. Top with a large walnut. Enjoy!

shana cooper says …

Made this up: Balsamic Blue Flatbread 1 refrigerated pizza crust 1 C Organic Balsamic Vinagrette 1 T roasted minced garlic 1 small sliced (thin) red onion 1 tsp red pepper flakes Pinch of Italian Seasoning Pinch of fresh rosemary 1/2 C Blue Cheese Set oven to 300. Unroll bread and brush to the edges with dressing. Spread garlic with a spoon on top, then sprinkle evenly with onion. Sprinkle dried herbs/peppers on that, then bake for 20-15 min until bread is puffed and bubbling. Remove and scatter blue cheese evenly, then garnish with fresh rosemary. Return to heated oven (but turn oven off) until ready to serve.

Mama Mel says …

I love making these easy stuffed mushrooms. It is such a simple recipe with only five ingredients, but so delicious! You really can use any stuffing mushroom you like. I love it with the baby portabellas, but when I make this as an hors d'oeuvre, I usually use the white stuffing mushrooms. Ingredients: 1 pkg (8 oz) white stuffing mushrooms, stems removed 1 pkg (12 oz) breakfast sausage (I like the Hot or Spicy kind) 1 pkg (8 oz) Neufchatel (or Cream Cheese) 1/2 cup green onions, finely chopped 1 tsp (2 cloves) minced garlic Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with non-stick spray, and set aside. Clean mushrooms by wiping with a damp paper towel. Make sure to remove any stems that are left on the mushrooms. Place mushrooms open side up in the baking dish. Cook sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat until browned. Add garlic and onions and cook another 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, and add neufchatel or cream cheese. Stir until cheese is soft, melted and combined well with other ingredients. Remove from heat. Spoon sausage mixture into mushroom caps, patting down to make sure it is "stuffed". You will probably have leftover sausage mixture. Bake in oven at 350 F for about 20 minutes. Recipe makes about 5 or 6 large sized mushrooms, or 12 to 18 smaller sized mushrooms.

Melanie Yunk says …

Smoky Quail Eggs 20 servings Prep time: 10 minutes Total time: 25 minutes 10 quail eggs, hard boiled, peeled and sliced in half 1 head red leaf lettuce, shredded Sea salt 1 to 2 teaspoons smoked olive oil or other flavored olive oil Place quail eggs on a serving plate garnished with lettuce, sprinkle with sea salt and drizzle oil over the top. Serve. (Eggs cost $1.29 for 10, plus a little sea salt and oil - approximately $0.15 each!)

Dwayne Huff says …

This is a favorite of my son and my nephews. I call it Mr. Potato Head . Its quite simple but my son and his cousins just cant get enough of it. They always ask for more and seconds please. I heat up a potato in the microwave by pressing the potato cook button. When the potato is done cooking in the microwave , I take it out and mash it with a spoon.I put some butter, salt and pepper on it with a slice of cheese. I mix it all up and serve. One of my nephews tried to make it on his own at home.But said," Uncle Dwayne, for some reason, I just dont make it as good as you do ! " Go Figure !

Stefanie Schmidt says …

I make a veggie christmas tree. I buy a styrofoam cone and attach romaine lettuce leaves on the outside. Then I stick on cherry tomato ornaments with toothpicks and it becomes a great appetizer for guests and a fun centerpiece.

Omar S says …

Fresh Basil Soft Pretzels 1 Tbsp. sugar 1 (1/4 oz.) package active dry yeast (2 1/2 tsp.) Warm water 3 3/4 cup to 4 cups all purpose flour 1 Tbsp. table salt 1 large egg, beaten 6 to 8 fresh basil leaves, minced 2 tsp. pretzel salt (or Kosher salt) In a glass measuring cup, warm 1 1/2 cups water to lukewarm in the microwave (105 to 110 degrees F), then stir in sugar and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. If the mixture doesn’t foam, it means your yeast died. Discard and start over with new yeast – watch your water temperature! In a large bowl, whisk together 3 1/2 cups flour and 1 Tbsp. table salt. Add yeast mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until it forms a dough. It will be very sticky. Dust a work surface with 1 Tbsp. flour, then turn out the dough and knead, gradually adding just enough flour to make a smooth dough (it will still be sticky), about 8 minutes. Don’t over-flour, that creates a tough pretzel. Return dough to bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled in size, about 45 minutes. The plastic wrap will have a bit of sweat. Clean and dry your work surface. Turn out the dough and, using a pizza cutter or dough scraper, cut into 8 equal pieces and set aside. Using the palm of your hands, roll one piece of dough on the dry work station back and forth, elongating it as you go. At this point, add a little fresh basil to roll into the dough, getting it to about 24 inches long, you may dust your hands lightly with flour to keep from sticking. This dough retracts again, thus the really long pieces. Twist the dough to pretzel-shape, transfer to an oiled baking sheet and form 7 more. Space them 1 1/2 inches apart. Let pretzels rest, uncovered, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Bring a large, wide pot of water to boil. Using your hands, carefully drop up to three pretzels, one at a time, into the boiling water (upside down on the first side). Boil 3 minutes total, turn over once half-way through. Remove from water with a spatula, drain on a rack and then place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment. Continue with remaining pretzels until all are boiled, drained and on the baking sheet. Brush pretzels lightly with beaten egg, sprinkle with additional fresh basil and kosher salt. Bake until golden brown and lightly crusted, about 35 minutes. Cool 15 minutes and eat within a day.

Lorraine Mabbett says …

Thanksgiving hors 'deuvres 1 bunch of celery 1 can Wholefoods cranberries (your choice whole or jellied) 8 ounces plain yogurt - not NON-fat 8 ounces cottage cheese or 4 ounces non-fat plain yogurt & 4 ounces cream cheese 1 tablespoon maple sugar powder candied pecan (optional) pieces Clean and remove strings from celery. (Use a sharp knife and "pull" a string down and across) Cut up Celery into chosen length of sticks. Blend yogurt, cottage cheese (or yogurt & cream cheese), pumpkin pie spice, and maple sugar powder Top each stick with a small amount of cranberries and pecan pieces.

Diane Brandt says …

Bake little squares or triangles of puff pastry dough and gently place/spread herbed goat cheese. Love this!

James Fletchall says …

These are a great snack for those weekend football games on TV. Cheese straws: 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 stick butter, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, dash of hot sauce. Mix well and form 2 or 3 balls. Refrigerate 1/2 hour. Roll out on floured surface very thin. Press grated parmesan cheese into dough. Cut into thin strips. Place strips on greased cookie sheet (twisted into sprials). Bake for 15 minutes in preheated oven at 400 degrees.

June says …

My favorite holiday appetizer is a cracker with melted cheese from any of the great cheeses at Whole Foods

Wendy L says …

Easy Black Bean Dip 1 Can Black beans drained 1 cup salsa 1 squeezed lime 1/2 tsp cumin Put in blender, serve with whole foods nacho chips, delicious and low fat too!

Megan says …

My favorite holiday appetizer is baked brie with crackers and baguette slices. Buy one brie wheel, whole wheat crescent roll dough, one bag of 365 crackers, whichever is your favorite, and one baguette. Wrap the brie wheel in the crescent roll dough and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes (or follow instructions on the package.) Pull it out of the oven, slice a small piece out of it revealing the soft warm cheese and arrange on a plate with the crackers and baguette slices. It's a huge hit! About $7 for the brie, $2 for the baguette, $2 for the crackers, and $2 for the dough. You total roughly at $13 getting at least 30-40 bites, making it less than $.50 a bite! Enjoy!

Jeanne Reaves says …

My favorite appetizer is very simple: a small piece of day-old French bread spread with fresh mozarella cheese, a thin slice of fresh tomato, and a fresh basil leaf. This reminds me of the Marguerita pizza I ate in Italy which is named after Queen Marguerita. There's no substitute for fresh in either the "bites" or the pizza!

Karen Smith says …

I recently discovered people love it when I wrap bacon around whole water chestnuts and bake them until crisp. One year I accidently bought the sliced water chestnuts and ended up making tiny skewers out of toothpicks and weaving the water chestnuts and bacon onto them, but that wasn't as popular.

Ellen says …

This Southwestern dip is the star of our appetizer bar at every party, brunch or dinner time - hearty, quick, inexpensive: 1 pd turkey or pork sausage (cooked and drained) 8 oz light cream cheese 1 pd Velvetta Cheese 1 15-oz can chopped tomatoes with chiles Lightly salted 365 Restaurant Tortilla Chips Melt cheeses in large pot on stove. Add tomatoes and sausage. Stir well and serve warm (fits a small crockpot) with chips.

Susan C says …

Dates wrapped in bacon 1 package of pitted dates 1 lb of bacon Preheat oven at 350. Cut bacon slices into thirds and wrap each date. Place on cookie sheet and bake ~15-20 minutes until bacon is crispy. Place on dish with some toothpicks and enjoy! Dates wrapped in bacon has been a Holiday treat my Mom has made for years.

Valerie says …

Mini Vegetarian Quiche 8 eggs well beaten 16 Barbara's Rite Lite Round crackers(not cheese) 4 small jars marinated artichokes or 2 large cans of mushrooms (stems and pieces)-cut into small pieces 2 large onions chopped finely 8 oz of mild cheddar cheese, shredded Beat eggs, sauté onions in artichoke juice or in margarine if mushrooms are used. Sauté mushrooms/artichokes slightly Crush crackers, add salt and pepper to taste Add cheese, vegetable, then eggs and mix. Fill small tart pans 3/4 full. Bake 325 for 30 minutes. Amount: approximately 60 mini quiches

Valerie says …

Easy and Excellent!

Matt F. says …

For the past few years we have been making almond stuffed dates wrapped in bacon. It gives a good contrast of salty and sweet and is incredibly easy to make (3 ingredients and a short time in the oven).

lisa says …

Cut haloumi cheese in one inch squares. Put under the grill until golden brown on one side, turn and do the same for the other side. You can also fry it (deep fry or pan fry). Take out and sprinkle with some fresh lemon juice. Serve warm along with ripe cherry tomotoes, and a little butter lettuce to help pick the haloumi pieces up with. If you want a bit of spice, sprinkle with chili flakes.

Susan C. says …

I make Mini Pumpkin Muffins that are festive, delicious and cheap. The three ingredients include: 1 box of Spice Cake Mix, 1 can of pumpkin, 1/4 cup of orange juice. Mix these ingredients together. Spray a mini-muffin tin with a light coating of cooking spray. Fill a cake accent decorator (mine is from Pampered Chef) with the muffin mix and then squirt the mix into each muffin cup, filling to the top. This makes a really cute top to the muffins. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes and then cool on wire racks. If you really want to make the muffins a hit at the party, you can include a surprise taste in each one. Once the muffins are cooled, take a small paring knife and cut an "x" into the bottom of each, about halfway through the muffin. Put cream cheese frosting in a ziplock bag and cut a small hole in the corner of the bag. Squirt just a "dollop" of the frosting into the bottom of the hole in the muffin. The muffin will puff up and when that happens, you know you have put in enough. When your guests bite into the muffin, they won't be expecting that burst of flavor! This has become the most requested dish I make, no matter what time of year! And at $0.12 per muffin, it's cheap!!

Ann Marie says …

Little Bitty Bites Halved walnuts: laid out with rounded side down Feta Cheese:rolled out into a little ball and pushed on top Garnish: a little sprink of za'atar & eat. Yum!

Mary Beth says …

This is super simple, economical, and delicious! Mix cottage cheese and chopped chives to taste. Serve on cucumber slices or crackers. You can add a piece of basil or pimento for color! Enjoy!

Krista says …

Take one whole wheat baguette, cut on the bias into slices. Place in oven at 350 degrees while you make topping. Throw the following into food processer or blender: 1 can black olives (drained), 1/2 tsp cumin, 2tbs olive oil/coconut oil, a few turns of pepper grinder of black pepper (to taste), approx 6 prunes. Spread mixture onto slices of toast and top with a leaf of fresh cilantro on each. Enjoy your Twisted Bruchetta!

JACQUE KING says …

The first time I had these were at a wedding reception. They were presented on a big mirror and made a very pretty presentation. They're so easy I don't know if it rates but they're so delicious, I just had to share: Boil little red potatoes whole - cut them in half - scoop out a little of the potato - chill - pipe in sour cream - garnish with a small dollop of caviar - add a sprig of cut chive or dill.

Kim Abels says …

Holiday Appetizer Tear up raddichio into cracker size pieces, top with a slice of feta, drizzle with honey, sprinkle with fresh cracked pepper. Pretty and tasty!

Belinda says …

Delicious Fig, Prosciutto, and Goat Cheese Bites 6 slices of prosciutto, sliced thin 5oz goat cheese, plain 24 whole figs Remove stem ends from figs. Make a cut into the middle of each fig (go about halfway through the fig, but DO NOT cut it in half). Press goat cheese into the "slots" in the figs. Cut each slice of prosciutto into quarters. Wrap the prosciutto around the fig & goat cheese bites and place eash bite on a broiler safe pan, seam down. Broil the bites on high for 2 - 3 minutes, until prosciutto begins to brown. Remove from oven and serve. These are not only easy, they are a delicious blend of flavors that make you feel like a gourmand with very little effort or cost. Enjoy!

maria says …

A small bite appetizer would be: white bean dip on a small crouton. You would need, a can of cannellini beans, 1 1/2 tbsp chopped parsley,1 small red onion chopped finely, 1 1/2 tbsp. of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of red wine vinegar, salt and pepper for taste Pulse for a few seconds in mini food processor and place on toasted bread crouton to serve.

David L. says …

Smoked Salmon Quesadillas: These are a GREAT holiday appetizer as they are not only delicious and a huge hit every time we make them, but they are also simple to make and festive in color. If those aren't enough reasons already, they also give the illusion of being an expensive treat when they are actually quite affordable to make. Ingredients: Whole Wheat tortillas Neuchatel or cream cheese (room temp) Green onions or chives, (washed, dried and chopped) Smoked Salmon - I get the packaged bits and peices- very cheap. Cooking oil Salsa Verde (optional) Spread a thin layer of Neuchatel on tortillas, sprinkle with a little smoked salmon and green onion, and put together like sandwiches. Cook with a little oil in a pan on medium heat till browned on both sides, salting lightly. You can cut these in wedges or small squares once they cool a bit, depending on how large your party is. Serve with salsa verde for a dipping sauce if you like, but these are great all by themselves.

cj says …

I take spinach tortillas and red pepper tortillas (red and green),spread with hummus (a chipolte on the green and a artichoke spinach on the red) sprinkle each with organic chopped green onions, canned diced chili's if desired,diced tomatoes Roll each tortilla up, slice 1/2 to 1 inch wide they look like festive colored pinwheels! The possibilities are endless, sub a cheese spread, raw veggies , or guacamole and pico (whole foods homemade)! So easy , so good , so cheap!

Helyn says …

I take my left over chicpea salid and make fritters. My salid consits of 1 can of drained chickpeas, carrots(matchstix cut), bunch of fresh parsley, red onion, garlic clove, red peper flakes. I put the salid in a food processor. then put ingredants in a mixing bowl. Add 2 eggs, 2 cups of water and 1 cup of chickpea flour, mix. Use a spoon or spider to gently drop spoonfuls of the fritters into the oil. Fry the fritters until golden brown.

Elizabeth H says …

Jalapeno Poppers: Pre-heat the oven to broil. Take whole jalapenos. Cut them in half. Scoop out the seeds and veins (or leave in the veins for more spice). Fill the jalapeno halves with cream cheese. Place the filled jalapeno halves a baking sheet and broil for five minutes, checking frequently. Enjoy! If you don't have cream cheese (or don't like cream cheese), I've found any white cheese (or a mixture of white cheeses) works equally as well!

Jan M says …

I love Prosciutto wrapped canteloupe bites. They are salty and sweet and easy to prepare!

Kelly Weger says …

My favotire holiday appetizer is a gorgeous red hummus, rouged with beets. You can make it from scratch or, for a last minute crowd-pleaser, simply mix roasted beets into your prepared hummus for a splash of festive color! The perfect compliment to this is my garlic toasted baguette. I buy a whole wheat baguette, slice it diagonally, toast it for 5-10 minutes in the oven, then rub the slices with raw garlic clove halves. The garlic practically melts into the crusty bread and infuses it with a flavor that goes great with my holiday hummus! You could also try homemade tortilla chips for dipping!

Heidi M. says …

One of my family's favorite "made-over" appetizers are our Baked Crab Rangoons. I use fat free cream cheese and Light Miracle Whip(or Fat Free Mayonaise) to lighten these up a bit. Soften the cream cheese before mixing all the ingredients together. You need 1 12 cup muffin tin for baking. Cooking spray. 1 (4 oz) package of cream cheese. 1/4 cup of Mayonaise. 1 can of white crabmeat. 2 scallions. 12 wonton wrappers. Spray the muffin tins with the cooking spray. Heat oven to 350 degrees and mix cream cheese, mayonaise, crabmeat and scallions together until everything is really combined. Put 1 won ton wrapper in each muffin cup and fill the cups with the cream cheese mixture. Bake about 20 minutes or until the wonton edges are brown and crispy.

Judy Cohen says …

My Mother-in-law always makes meatballs for hanukkah. She shared the recipe with me. They are sweet and sour. Meatballs: ground turkey or ground beef, add some finely chopped onion, some oatmeal, salt and pepper and 1 egg, mix this together. Shape into small balls. Pour one can of tomato soup and one can of whole cranberries into a pan and heat through, mix. When that is heated add the meatballs and cook for about 20 minutes. They are ready to serve.

Martina says …

My favorite healthy tip is one or two Fuji organic apples from Whole Foods each day for lunch with a few small slices of a huge variety of cheeses also from Whole Foods, together with five or six Woven Wheat crackers.This is a quick lunch that takes 30 seconds to grab as I run out the door and I always feel great...

Barbara P says …

Tortilla Rollups with Salsa This crowd pleaser disappears in a flash wherever I take it. Whole Foods ingredients have made it more delicious. Mix into one 8oz tub of Zaussner's Amish Whipped Cream Cheese: Finely minced jalapeno pepper(seeds and ribs removed), 3 or 4 finely minced scallions, a handful each of fresh chopped cilantro and fresh flat leaf parsley. Spread mixture evenly on about 4 large white flour tortillas (Maria & Ricardo's), roll firmly the long way and slice into bite size rounds.(3/8"-1/2") Serve with (Green Mountain) mild salsa for dipping. Double it for a big crowd. For greater economy spread or slice thinly to increase the number of rounds.

Nancy Santiago says …

I make this recipe every Christmas holiday as it's an economical, delicious, versatile appetizer. It's always a hit, and my guests request the recipe everytime. I cut them in triangle, bite size pieces. Sweet and Savory Cornbread 1 1/4 Cups Sugar 1 stick or 1/2 cup unsalted Butter, room temperature 3 large Eggs 2 Cups Water 2 Cups 365 Yellow Cornmeal 2 Cups 365 AP Flour 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder 1 teaspoon Salt 1/2 Cup frozen corn that has been thawed *The savory can be a little chopped cooked bacon, ham, sun dried tomatoes, etc. Or you can leave the savory out for vegetarians. 350 oven - Approximately 35 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake as this is a moist cornbread. Butter a 13 x 9 glass baking dish. Beat sugar and butter, add eggs and beat until blended. Beat in water and cornmeal. In separate bowl, mix dry ingredients and then add to wet and stir just until blended. Fold in corn. Bon Appetit!

Erin says …

Ham,cream cheese and pickles! Take a piece of ham (somewhat thickly sliced), spread some whipped(easy to spread)cream cheese on it, top with a pickle (cornichon). Roll it up, then slice it into bite size pieces!

Jennifer says …

One of my favorite holiday appetizers (or year round for that matter) are little filo cups with brie, pear and prosciutto. Get a package of the little pre-made filo cups and fill with a cube of brie and slice of pear and a small strip of prosciutto. Place in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes (till filo dough is crisp and golden and brie is slightly melted. Once out for an extra kick a drizzle of honey is DELICIOUS! Sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy--the perfect appetizer! (If you would like to tone down the saltiness add the prosciutto once out of the oven--heating prosciutto brings out the fatty saltiness of the meat!) Quick, easy and a little below 50 cents a piece for about 24 pieces.

Chris Hollis says …

"Crabbies" are a favorite both at home and my most requested recipe to bring. 12-15 English muffins; 1 can of crabmeat (nothing fancy needed - I have used Chicken of the Sea even); 1 cup mayonaise; 2 cans Old English cheese; garlic powder; salt and pepper to taste, a couple of shakes of Worcesteshire sauce. Mix all ingredients together, spread on English muffin, bake at 350 for about 18-20 minutes or until crisp and bubbly. Before serving cut English muffin into quarters. These appetizers freeze excellent and since you are quartering them, they are both the perfect bite size and they go a long way. Enjoy!

Julie says …

Mini Sweet-Potato Pie Bites (A throw-back to my Southern Roots) Filo cups 1 large sweet potato Melted butter (enough for brushing the filo) brown sugar maple syrup pecans (or walnuts) shredded coconut Bake (or boil) sweet potato until fork tender and then mash until smooth with 1 pat of butter and 1 Tbs of maple syrup. Brush the melted butter onto the filo cups and fill with sweet-potato mixture (you can pipe or spoon it into the cups). Then toss a liberal Tbs. of brown sugar with chopped pecans and shredded coconut and sprinkle this on top of each sweet-potato filled filo cup. Pop into a 350 degree oven for about 10-12 minutes until the filo is golden and the coconut is toasted. And Voila! Yummy little sweet potato pies...festive, easy and extremely Inexpensive!!!

Carrie Rockette says …

Fiesta Pinwheels are a holiday favorite with kids and adults. They take about 10-15 min to make and are very cost effective. This recipe will make 3-4 dozen depending on how thick you cut them and can be done a few hours in advance and stored in the fridge. I love this recipe because it is quick, easy, and uses up left over food items hanging out in the veggie drawer, condiment rack and or from ‘taco night’ Ingredients: * Whole wheat or Spinach wrap shells * 2 -8 oz. packs of low fat cream cheese * Left over veggies - peppers, onions, scallions, cauliflower, carrots or broccoli...any combo will do * Spices - to taste (I like Garlic powder or Mexican chili powder) *Salsa - can be homemade or store bought (Optional – left over taco meat or shredded cheese) Directions: Dice up the veggies you plan to use. I like red & green peppers, shredded carrots & onions but will use whatever I have in the veggie bin. Mix the diced vegetables in a bowl with the cream cheese. I then add a sprinkle of Mexican chili powder for color and flavor or a pinch of garlic powder depending on the guest list. (Paprika is good if you want more color than flavor) Spread the mix over a soft wrap shell about 1/8 in thickness. Roll the shell up like a log. Place in freezer for 10-20 min (This isn't required but definitely makes the logs easier to handle.) Cut into 1/4 in wheels and lay in a circular pattern around a salsa filled bowl for dipping. For an extra twist add in left over taco cheese or cooked taco meat. Enjoy!

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