18 of Our Best 10-Minute Appetizers
You could just open a bag of chips...or you could whip up any one of these spur-of-the-moment, homemade snacks.
By Lynn Andriani
Canned Tuna's Other Calling
Tuna is a tried-and-true pantry sandwich filler—but it also happens to be a savory, hearty appetizer ingredient, too. Buy top-quality tuna packed in olive oil and stuff it into jarred, roasted Spanish piquillo peppers for a lovely accompaniment to sangria or Cava.
Get the recipe: Piquillo Peppers with Mediterranean Tuna Salad
Photo: Lara Robby/Studio D.
The Brilliant Mash-Up of Two Foods (Almost) Everybody Loves
Pizza and popcorn may not be standard cocktail-party fare. Combined, though, they're an irresistible snack with a glass of wine or a soda. You simply pop the kernels and then sprinkle them with grated Parmesan, dried oregano, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, red-pepper flakes and garlic powder.
Get the recipe: Pizza Popcorn
Figs Stuffed with Gorgonzola and Walnuts
Even if you don't love figs, give this appetizer a try. The fruit, cheese and nuts melt into a toasty bite that might just turn you into a convert.
Get the recipe: Figs Stuffed with Gorgonzola and Walnuts
This Southern appetizer mixes the bright flavors of cantaloupe and mint with a little hit of black pepper.
Get the recipe: Cantaloupe Balls
Orange and Fennel Marinated Olives
Acclaimed chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten tempers olives' saltiness with the anise aroma of fennel, the sweetness of orange and a little heat.
Get the recipe: Orange and Fennel Marinated Olives
Feta Dip with Cucumber and Pita Chips
Rachael Ray blends feta and walnuts to create a creamy dip. Serve with store-bought pita chips and sliced cucumbers.
Get the recipe: Feta Dip with Cucumber and Pita Chips
Tuna Tartare on Potato Chips
Dress up a simple potato chip with ruby red tuna tartare.
Get the recipe: Tuna Tartare on Potato Chips
Crostini with Wild Mushrooms and Mozzarella
While the garlic, mushrooms and wine are cooking on the stove, you can bake the slices of cheese-topped bread. Less than 10 minutes later, top the crostini with the mushroom mixture.
Get the recipe: Crostini with Wild Mushrooms and Mozzarella
Devils on Horseback
Built on the premise that anything wrapped in bacon will make the crowd go wild, this classic appetizer consists of a blue cheese–stuffed date surrounded by a little blanket of bacon and roasted.
Get the recipe: Devils on Horseback
Clear Chilled Tomato Soup with Jicama and Cherry Tomatoes
Ken Oringer, who runs eight Boston-area restaurants, serves this soup in martini glasses. It looks impressive, but only you have to know it was as simple as pureeing tomatoes in a food processor.
Get the recipe: Clear Chilled Tomato Soup with Jicama and Cherry Tomatoes
Goat Cheese and Sun-Dried Tomato Crostini
You can make this simple, elegant hors d'oeuvre in the mini bowl of your food processor or a mini chopper—or just mince the sun-dried tomatoes and chives by hand and then mash them in a bowl with the cheese and oil.
Get the recipe: Goat Cheese and Sun-Dried Tomato Crostini
Caramelized Peach and Brie Quesadilla with Honey
Chris Santos, chef and owner of New York City hot spots the Stanton Social and Beauty & Essex, created this sweet, savory, crunchy double-decker quesadilla.
Get the recipe: Caramelized Peach and Brie Quesadilla with Honey
These no-cook skewers make for a colorful, pantry-friendly appetizer you can vary according to your guests' tastes. You can use any combination of pickles, cocktail onions, olives, anchovies, tuna, artichoke hearts or pepperoncini.
Get the recipe: Banderillas
This is a classic vegetarian tapas dish that's always on the menu at Sazerac, chef Jason McClure's restaurant in downtown Seattle.
Get the recipe: Garlic-Sherry Mushrooms
You can make these with scallops or shrimp. Either way, the pancetta will moisten and flavor the seafood without overwhelming its rich but delicate flavor.
Get the recipe: Pancetta-Wrapped Scallops
Little Brioche–Aged Cheddar Bites
You'll love this finger food because of this surprising reason: You don't have to butter the bread since brioche has enough in it already to prevent it from sticking to the pan. Your guests will love it because it's basically a mini grilled cheese sandwich.
Get the recipe: Little Brioche–Aged Cheddar Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Smoked Chicken–Stuffed Yellow Pepper
This makes a perfect hand-held appetizer: Pepper strips hold what's essentially a simple chicken salad made with chicken you buy already cooked. The sweetness of the yellow pepper beautifully contrasts with the smoked meat.
Get the recipe: Smoked Chicken–Stuffed Yellow Pepper
Photo: Rockhead Entertainment, Inc.
Half-Cooked Carpaccio, Two Ways
Flash-fry thin slices of high-quality beef with garlic, and serve them with arugula, shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano, lemon juice, salt, pepper and olive oil. Guests can pick the ingredients up with toothpicks, or you can lay them out on pieces of baguette.
Get the recipe: Half-Cooked Carpaccio, Two Ways
Throw a Mad Men–inspired cocktail party