5 Mouth Watering Party Appetizers

Have you ever been told to bring an appetizer to a party and drawn a blank on what to prepare? I’m the one who brings a fruit plate and/or dessert as party appetizers. But not anymore!

To celebrate two of my friends’ birthdays, I hosted an Apps-Luck girls’ night. It was a great time, with mouth watering appetizers!

5 Great Party Appetizers

1. Leila’s Tuna Poke


  • Gourmet Grocery prepared tuna poke (she gets hers at Bristol Farms)
  • Sesame rice crackers
  • Avocado

It’s important to get rice crackers because they perfectly compliment the tuna. Adding fresh avocado gives this dish a great finish. Each time this is served, everyone eats it up right away.

2. Joni’s Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus


  • 1lb or 2 dozen trimmed asparagus; thick is better to hold shape
  • 10 slices fresh prosciutto from deli counter
  • Freshly sliced parmigiano-reggiano

The key to this dish is to use the freshest ingredients. Joni loves to shop at our local Manhattan Beach Bristol Farms.


Blanche asparagus until bright green and then immediately submerge in ice bath

Cut slices of prosciutto in half or a size to wrap around 2 times

Shave FRESH parmigiano-reggiano with a slicer and sprinkle on top.

3. Jill’s Famous Pretzels


  • 1 Envelope dry yeast
  • 1 tbs Sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cups Flour (any kind)
  • 1 egg for glaze
  • Coarse Salt (or cinnamon sugar)

My friend Holly made her mom’s recipe for hot pretzels and they were delicious! She walked in with them fresh out of the oven. What a great way to enjoy this comfort food. And it does not look too hard to bake. I love how she made them with her daughter who made round shapes because she had a hard time making the pretzel shape. These were made with love. Thanks for the recipe to Holly’s mom, Jill!


Dissolve yeast in 1.5 cup warm water in a bowl

Add sugar, salt

Blend in flour with your hands

Lightly flour the board and knead dough until smooth

Cut off dough, roll into pretzel shape

Put onto lightly greased (use spam) cookie sheet

Brush egg and salt

425 for 12-15 minutes (will rise in oven). Convection oven works great

4. Blue Apron Mexican-Spiced Beef & Rice Casserole

Joni has been talking about the Blue Apron service that delivers fresh ingredients with recipes to your door. Initially, I was like “yawn,” because there are so many of these companies these days and people seem to get excited in the beginning and then quickly lose interest.

But you have to understand, Joni makes dinner almost every night and is a great cook. So I was curious why she was using this “fresh meal” service when she could make her own great recipes instead.

She brought over this Blue Apron Spiced Beef and Casserole and I was impressed. I wouldn’t have thought jasmine rice would be such a great compliment with Mexican food, but it made the dish! There was a layer of lime rice on the bottom followed by spicy, saucy beef and beans, cheddar cheese and topped off with oven-toasted corn tortilla strips. It turned out to the most eaten dish of all. Interesting, right? I may have to give them a try.

5. Tin Roof Brussel Sprouts

Luella brought these delicious brussel sprouts. She has a secret family recipe for the dish she couldn’t share. Her dish looks and tastes a lot like Tin Roof‘s (local restaurant I love) dish. The following is their public recipe.


  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts
  • 3 T. butter
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. minced anchovy (optional but in my opinion, important)
  • 1 T. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. capers
  • 1 tsp. chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 slices of ciabatta bread
  • 3 T. extra virgin olive oil

I’ve made this dish several times and it’s so good. The only difference in recipe from the restaurant? The restaurant briefly deep fries them. I found the hardest part about this recipe is getting all the ingredients. Once you have everything ready and chopped, it’s easy.


Preheat oven to 350º.

Remove ends and rough outer leaves from Brussels sprouts. Cut in half lengthwise.

Put in bowl and add 2 T. olive oil. Toss Brussels sprouts in oil and then lay out on sheet pan.

Roast for 20-25 minutes until lightly caramelized. The more caramelized the better.

Brush ciabatta with 1 T. olive oil. Grill or toast ciabatta.

When Brussels sprouts are roasted/caramelized, heat up small saute’ pan.

Melt butter and add garlic and anchovy. Cook for several minutes until garlic turns a golden color.

Add lemon juice, capers, parsley and salt & pepper. Toss sprouts in sauce until thoroughly coated.

Put grilled ciabatta in bottom of bowl. Pour Brussels sprouts over bread.

So there you have it. A round up of 5 great party appetizers. Some easy, some take a little work. But all party worthy. Will you try any? I can’t wait to hear which ones you like.

Flavor Your Life with an Ounce of Salt. A lifestyle blog by Jen Oliak.