by Senior Reviewer Maytal Wichman
Entertaining during the holidays is fun but who has time to come up with ideas for what to serve? And honestly, who really has the time to make everything from scratch? Not to worry! I recently attended an event that’s all about entertaining and creating quick appetizers and I’ve got some tools and products to share so that if you’re planning on hosting a party, you’ll be prepared!
First off – you need the tools. A blender that can make sauces, dips and soups…margaritas, anyone? The Ninja Blender Duo Auto IQ is the perfect blender for whipping up quick and healthy appetizers. The set comes with three cups with lids that you can take on the go, a processor bowl, a recipe book and the best-selling book “Eat to Lose, Eat to Win” by Rachel Beller, MS, RDN. This super-powerful (1500 watt) blender can crush ice and extract vitamins & nutrients in seconds. You can whip up a quick hummus appetizer in five minutes and serve with pita chips or veggies. The Butternut squash soup recipe takes only 10 minutes to prep but makes a wonderful dish to serve in small ceramic cups along with thinly sliced baguette.
Every host or hostess knows quality bakeware is key to the success of a dish. SilverStone bakeware has pans than combine nonstick with ceramic coating – pure genius! I tried making salmon patties and they came out perfect each time and with no oil whatsoever. The patties didn’t stick at all and the bakeware won’t chip or flake, plus it’s PFOA & PTFE free. These affordable pans ($9.99-$19.99) come in a variety of sizes and shapes, such as round and rectangular cake pans, cookie pan and more. The cookie pan is perfect for holiday cookies, as well as classic savory appetizers such pigs in a blanket.
Speaking of pigs in a blanket, forget everything you know about mayo and ketchup. Lee Kum Kee has Sriracha-flavored mayo and ketchup! For those who love a little (or a lot) heat in every bite these condiments are perfect! The ketchup is great for everything from mini hot dogs and burgers to fries and potato wedges. The mayo is simply out of this world! I have been using it on pretty much anything at home – sandwiches, crackers, veggie patties, fish, you name it! Although it’s real mayo, because of the spicy sriracha I just put a little dab so I don’t use as much mayo as I normally would use. That’s a win in my book! Check out Lee Kum Kee’s collection of Asian sauces and condiments.
When I host a party or get-together I almost always like to have some chips as an appetizer. Beanitos are chips made of beans – but without the “side-effects” that come with eating beans. Beanitos are high in fiber, low in fat, sodium and carbs and are simply delicious. Plus your vegan guests and those that are gluten-free will love them!
A cheese platter with crackers and grapes makes for a beautiful presentation at an affordable price. Try Roth cheese for some great options, such as Havarti, Gouda or Petite Swiss. Pair the cheese and crackers with grapes or strawberries for a quick and easy appetizer that everyone loves.
For moms on the go who want to impress guests without all the work – Saffron Road is a company that has delicious exotic frozen appetizers, such as Crispy Samosas with Vegetables or Turkish Figs and Goat Cheese Phyllo Pastries. Just heat them up in the oven and you’re all set.
For dessert, if you’re short for time but don’t want to skimp on quality look for Bahlsen cookies in your local grocery store. The German-made cookies look elegant and taste heavenly – and with no GMO’s or preservatives! And what goes great with cookies? You guessed it – hot cocoa! Peanut Hottie “peanut butter & chocolate” is an instant drink – just add boiling water! So easy and so incredibly delicious. Scrumptious cookies and hot cocoa…a delicious end to a fantastic party!
I was not compensated for this post. I received some samples.
Senior Reviewer Maytal Wichman is the owner of Mama’s Bites and has also written for The Huffington Post. She has been living in New York City for thirteen years and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature as well as a Law Degree, but blogging is her true passion. Maytal is a stay-at-home mom to three kids (ages 7, 5 and 2) and loves finding great products that make her family’s life easier.