Finger foods are always so fun to nosh on at a party! But ones that are COLD are the best kind of finger food since they require no reheating, PLUS they can be made in advance which is awesome for hosts like us!
Check out this list of finger food ideas, all of which can serve a crowd!
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Easy Cold Appetizers That Your Guests Will Love
The best appetizers are ones that don’t require reheating! This allows us to stress less and focus on the party more.
Small bites that actually TASTE delicious when they are at room temperature or even cold, are hard to come by. Most are lacking texture which affects the overall flavor. Mushy or soft food is not always appealing. The added crunch that most baked or fried foods have are what makes them that much more delicious!
With that said, the finger foods I chose to share below are ones that are not just meant to be served cold, but also have a crunch factor that I believe most people unknowingly appreciate.
Also check out these 14 Quick and Easy Appetizers!
These sweet toasts are made with a sweet cheese topping, caramelized onions and topped with fig honey. Those mini toasts are super crunchy too! The perfect bite sized appetizer!
These Pimento Cheese Stuffed Celery Sticks are so easy to make and can be made a day or two ahead of time! Stuffed with cream cheese and pimento peppers, I like to serve these during the day or as a brunch time snack!
Have you ever eaten a salad with your fingers? Well this is for you! Made with a light vinaigrette dressing and topped with crunchy pecans and sweet craisins.
These baby peppers are delicious cold. In fact, they are even better a day later! Stuffed with feta cheese, onion and sprinkled with oregano, they are simple but delicious.
These cucumber cups are the best parts of a Greek salad all in one bite! The creamy feta is what gets me every time. They are a fun way to eat a salad without a fork!
Roasted red peppers and fresh ricotta cheese spread over crispy garlicky crostini. A delicious appetizer that is best served at room temperature!
This appetizer is so flavorful and meant to be served chilled with lots of crispy bread for dipping! The peppers and garlic are roasted ahead of time and then meant to chill to allow all the flavors meld. Guests will LOVE this one!
Make Ahead Appetizers You Can Freeze
These appetizers are all easy to make and best of all, these are ones you can FREEZE and take out another day or week! They are best to have on hand for last minute guests who like to “drop in” without much notice.
This spinach dip is made without mayo and with cream cheese and sour cream. Cream cheese freezes well so this dip is great to make ahead. It is super creamy and can be served with everything from crackers, to pita bread to veggies and more!
Cheesy bread sticks made with refrigerated pizza crust and lots of melty cheese! These can be frozen and reheated later on!
A classic French baked pastry that we don’t see enough of! These are the perfect snack that pairs so well with wine! I love how easy they are to make considering how fancy they sound! Bake ahead of time and keep in a sealed container.
3 Ingredient Cold Appetizers
Appetizers that have just three ingredients are hard to come by but they are becoming more and more popular these days. Less ingredients is the way to go especially since some ingredients can be purchased from the store pre-made like pizza dough, puff pastry and phyllo dough!
These phyllo cup bites are made using only THREE ingredients and can be whipped up in less than 10 minutes! They look super fancy too!
Mini cheese balls are a fun and innovative way to serve cheese and crackers! These are made with cream cheese and cheddar cheese. The fun part is you can get super creative by adding any fresh herbs or spices to your cheese to kick it up a few notches!
These cups are made from melting Parmesan cheese in the oven for about 4 minutes to create these cute baskets! Then fill them with lettuce and Caesar dressing and serve! Easy, healthy and cute!
These biscuits are way too easy to make and technically are just 2 ingredients if you don’t include marinara sauce. But why wouldn’t you? Dipping is the best part of finger foods!
This crab dip is all about the crab. And when that’s the case, how can it be bad? Simple is usually best. Serve with crackers, mini toasts, or veggies.
Yes just ‘3’ ingredients! What a filling way to keep your guests tummies full! This appetizer is made with store-bought pizza dough so it is a simple shortcut that saves time and ingredients! I would serve this room temperature with a dipping sauce like ranch.
Appetizers On A Stick
Eating ANYTHING on a stick is so much fun whether your a child or a grown adult. Theyare also easy to grab and usually less messy. These hors d’oeuvres on a skewer may look fancy but they are easy to prepare and even easier to store!
These appetizer bites are made with cranberry cheddar cheese! They are a flavorful and delicious appetizer, perfect for the cooler months since they are loaded with fall and winter flavors.
These caprese skewers are a fun twist on the caprese salad! They are super easy to make and fun to eat! The flavor combination is unique and would go perfectly with drinks!
Marinated Antipasto Skewers
These marinated skewers are flavorful and include the most popular bites from your traditional Italian antipasto platter! Make these ahead a few days to give them time to marinate!
You can be sure that because these bites have bacon, they will not be lacking in flavor. Add the pesto, and I bet your guests wont stop at one. A refreshingly light bite for any occasion!
Pasta Salad Ravioli Skewers
These pasta salad skewers are a fun skewered appetizer made with mini ravioli, some veggies and a light creamy dressing.
Make Ahead Finger Foods
When your expecting company and need to focus your efforts on the main meal of the party, appetizers and snacks that can be made ahead of time and pulled out last minute are the key to stress-free entertaining! Here are some delicious dips and savory bites your guests will love!
This recipe is a simple way to prepare shrimp that’s also incredibly delicious. The shrimp are succulent, buttery and garlicky with a fantastic spicy finish. Make them a day ahead and serve chilled!
Need a go-to appetizer that is fast and last minute? This is it! Ready in minutes but stores well in the refrigerator so you can make it a day or two in advance and serve it cold!
These bites use canned biscuit dough as the base. Topped with a creamy cheese spread and some fresh herbs, you’ve got a deliciously easy appetizer that is perfect to serve at room temperature!
This bread dipping oil has been around my family for years. We never get sick of it especially because of how the flavors get better as the herbs infuse the olive oil.
These grilled polenta cakes are topped with mozzarella cheese, balsamic vinegar and fresh tomatoes! The grilling step adds a huge flavor bonus here!
Make Aheads That Travel Well
Planning on taking food to-go? Well, whether your going to a potluck or a family party, it is always nice to know your appetizers will not be destroyed by the time they get there! The foods below will be sure to stay in tact the entire trip!
These are a Greek staple. Grape leaves are stuffed with rice and herbs and lots of fresh lemon juice! Best when served cold, they transport incredibly well!
These bacon wrapped peaches are so flavorful! Grilled and then drizzled with balsamic vinegar! Such as easy appetizer that is is delicious served at room temperature and even easy to transport!
These roll ups are perfect for transporting! Just roll them up, cut and stack them in layers separated with parchment paper! Perfect!
Crisp, biscuit-like Italian crackers! These are called “Taralli” and are similar in texture to a breadstick or a pretzel and are totally addicting! Transportation? No problem!
It’s all about the grilled corn here. Your best bet is making the salsa ahead of time and keeping it in a separate container. Add the pre-sliced bread in a separate bag and set out when you arrive! Guests can serve themselves!
These every bagel stuffed celery sticks are one of the easiest breakfast or brunch appetizers! Made with just 3 ingredients, they are hard to mess up and hard to resist!
This cold, tasty snack is so easy and can be made in advance! Pickles are wrapped in ham, ranch dressing, and a cream cheese filling. They are always a hit at parties and could not be easier to make!
Cold Party Foods You Can Make in Advance
I hope you were able to find at least one that made you drool just a little. Remember, the appetizers that are served on top of bread or crackers are meant to be served crispy. So if you let them sit with cold, wet food on top for more than an hour or so. They may get soggy! With that said, even though your making most of these recipes ahead of time, you may want to finish assembling some last minute!
I am a big believer in WHITE dishware as it seems to make food look more appetizing and clean.
Here are my favorites!!
Here are more cold appetizers you may like!
Have you checked out my Finger Food Guide? I share tips on how to serve finger foods and ideas on what to serve.