6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (2024)

We’re all probably eating way too much this time of year, but there’s just soooo much good food around! Plus there are adorable ideas like the ones below to try for your holiday entertaining. I’m always keeping an eye out for new ideas to try, cute themed appetizers, and delicious bite sized party food.

I love entertaining, pretty food and it MUST taste good. I can’t wait to try the recipes below…maybe one or twoover the next couple of weeks as I spend cherished time with friends and family!

Here are some of the cutest recipes I found while looking for ideas (recipes are at the end of the post):

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (2)

{Christmas Tree Appetizers from Cheif 187 Chatter}

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (3)

{Cranberry Baked Brie from Chef in Training}

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (4)

{Pigs-in-a-Blanket Wreath from Free Fun Christmas}

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (5)

{Pillsbury’s Pesto Crescent Swirls}

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (6)

{Tortellini Skewer Picture from My Dirty Aprons}

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (7)

{Tomato MozzarellaSkewers with Basil Oil from thekitchn.com}

At the last minute, I found this recipe for Christmas Sangria from Cake-n-Knife as well…can’t wait to try it… so pretty and it sounds delightful! I’ve added the recipe below as well. Merry Christmasand happy hostessing! Hope Santa is good to you. Enjoy this time with your family and friends!

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (8)

Ok, and now for the recipes….

Christmas Tree Appetizers


1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
½ cup chopped drained roasted red bell peppers (from 7.25-oz jar)
¼ cup chopped ripe olives
¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
4 spinach-flavor flour tortillas (8 to 10 inches in diameter)
Ripe olive pieces


1. In medium bowl, mix all ingredients except tortillas and olive pieces. Divide mixture among tortillas, spreading to edges of tortillas. Roll up tightly. Press each tortilla roll into triangle shape, using fingers. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 2 hours but no longer than 24 hours.
2. To serve, cut rolls into 1/2-inch slices. Place olive piece at bottom of each triangle to look like tree trunk; secure with toothpick.

Cranberry Baked Brie

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (10)


  • 1 (16 oz) circle shaped Brie Cheese
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • ½ cup craisins
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons maple syrup


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Place chopped pecans on a clean baking sheet and bake until toasted and fragrant. About 7-10 minutes.
  3. Place cheese on an oven safe dish with sides. Sprinkle and lightly pat ½ cup brown sugar over it and on the sides.
  4. Bake 15-20 minutes until cheese is soft.
  5. While cheese is baking, In a small sauce pan over medium heat, bring 3 Tbsp brown sugar and 3 Tbsp maple syrup to a boil. Simmer until foamy, about 1-2 minutes.
  6. After cheese has baked, sprinkle chopped pecans and craisins over the cheese. Then drizzle sauce over.
  7. Serve with baguette or crackers.

Pigs-in-a-Blanket Wreath


  • Mini Sausages
  • Refrigerated Crescent Dough Rolls
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Diced Rosemary
  • 1/3 cup Butter
  • 1/2 cup BBQ Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce


  1. Preheat the oven to the temperature specified on the package of Refrigerated Crescent DoughRolls. Drain the liquid off of the mini sausages.
  2. Unroll the crescent dough and separate at the perforations to create 4 rectangles. Press togetherthe remaining perforation in each rectangle. With a knife or pizza cutter, cut each rectangle lengthwise into 8 strips making a total of 32 strips.
  3. Wrap one strip of dough around each mini sausage. Lay out the crescent-wrapped sausages withtheir sides touching on an ungreased cookie sheet in a circle forming a wreath shape.
  4. Bake for 11-15 minutes or until golden brown. Melt 1/3 cup of butter and brush the butter on top ofthe crescent-wrapped sausages. Sprinkle the rosemary on top of the butter.
  5. Cut a red bell pepper into a bow shape for garnish. Combine the BBQ sauce and cranberry saucein a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until heated through. Serve with wreath for dipping.

Pillsbury’s Pesto Crescent Swirls


  • 1 can Pillsbury™ refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
  • 1/4 cup basil pesto
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomato or roasted red pepper pesto
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil leaves


  1. Heat oven to 400°F. Unroll dough; separate into 2 long rectangles. On 1 dough rectangle, spread thin layer of basil pesto. Reroll dough; cut roll into 6 (1/2-inch) slices. Place slices on ungreased cookie sheet.
  2. Repeat with remaining rectangle of dough and tomato pesto.
  3. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or just until golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet to serving platter. Garnish with a sprinkle with basil. Serve warm.

Tortellini Skewers

A note about this app: I have used this at many a gathering. The picture came from my dirty aprons, and clicking the link above will get you to the site with the author’s instructions. The instructions below are mine. These are very festive and VERY easy! You can do three sauces – marinara, pesto and alfredo – for extra festive-ness!


  • Tortellini noodles (fresh or frozen – both work great)
  • Mini-skewers – find these in the picnic aisle of your grocery store. I keep all three sizes on hand at home for various uses.
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic Salt
  • Pepper
  • Sauces of your choosing (I suggest a marinara, a pesto, and an alfredo)
  • Mini-crock pots


  1. Follow directions on package of tortellini noodles. DO NOT OVERCOOK.
  2. Drain in sink in strainer, and coat lightly with olive oil, add garlic salt and black pepper to taste.
  3. Let cool for a few minutes so you can handle the noodles, and then put 3-5 per skewer.
  4. Use miniature crock pots to warm various sauces and serve!

Tomato Mozzarella Skewers with Basil Oil

Directions from thekitchn.com:

We bought bocconcini, bite-sized mozzarella balls, to make the process even quicker, but you could also cut a big ball of mozzarella into chunks. On each skewer, we put three grape tomatoes and one piece of cheese.

For the basil oil, we blended a couple of handfuls of fresh basil leaves in a blender with enough olive oil to make it fluid and creamy. We put it through a strainer, thinking we’d get clear green oil on the other end, but most of the basil bits came through the sieve. Next time we won’t bother with that step; the bits of basil are a nice pop of color anyway.

Note from me:

I’ve done this without the basil oil, but adding one or two basil leaves on the skewer. Once assembled and plattered to your liking, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil, or just use a pre-assembled balsamic vinaigrette dressing. These are so pretty and always a hit!

Christmas Sangria


Rosemary, cranberries, and apple make this sangria the perfect Christmas drink that goes with any holiday meal!

Serves: 10-12


  • 2 bottles Pinot Grigio
  • ¾ cup sparkling apple cider
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup cranberries, halved
  • ¾ cup cranberries, whole
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, chopped
  • 3 rosemary sprigs


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher and stir together with a large wooden spoon to help the sugar dissolve. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving. Serve chilled or over ice.

Merry Christmas! Wishing many blessings to all of you and your families. God bless!

Lauren is a Sr. Designer of Product Graphics for an international manufacturing company by day and a creativity crusader, designer, planner extraordinaire, artist and blogger in her “free” time. Follow her and The Olive Shoe on Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram! Please subscribe to receive emails, of course, come back and visit again soon!

Please visit Lauren’s online art gallery {Art by LAC} and Etsy Shop too!

6 Festive Appetizers for Holiday Entertaining with Recipes (2024)


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