30 Easy Party Foods To Impress at Any Occasion

Mini Shrimp Rolls
Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Sometimes, party prep is a matter of working smarter, not harder. Don't knock an easy recipe—sometimes, the simplest of dishes can be the biggest hits. Impress party-goers at your next gathering, no matter the occasion, with deceptively easy-going recipes to last the whole shindig. Guests will never even know how little effort your delicious party contribution took. Stir together straightforward, party-ready dips like Rotel Sausage Dip or whip up one of our grab-and-go snacks like Bacon Bowtie Crackers, hand-held for convenient mixing and mingling. When it comes to the main course, comfort food in a 9x13 casserole dish is fit for a crowd and sliders will never disappoint, especially when there's multiple options to choose from. With recipes as easy as ours, you don't have to pick just one to bring to the party. Close the night with an effortless, uncomplicated sweet treat like our Easy Peach Cobbler or Brownie Cookies. From appetizers to main courses and desserts , these fun, party-worthy recipes are perfect in a pinch and easy to tackle even for the most novice of chefs.

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Ham Delights

Ham Delights
Photographer: Jennifer Causey; Food Stylist: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Ham Delights

Ham and cheese prove their party potential in slider form. Toasted miniature sandwiches served on seasoned Hawaiian rolls are a simple, foolproof party success story.

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Bacon Bites

Bacon Bites
Oxmoor House

Recipe: Bacon Bites

When in doubt, bacon is a surefire way to turn heads at a party. Our recipe for Bacon Bites only asks three ingredients and most of the preparation is a matter of wrapping the bacon around pretzel sticks.

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Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise

Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise
Victor Protasio

Recipe: Mini Tomato Sandwiches With Bacon Mayonnaise

A tea sandwich take on a classic BLT, these tomato sandwiches use red and yellow heirlooms to make them tasty and pretty enough for the party. The hardest part of this recipe is taking the crusts off the bread.

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Basic Pimiento Cheese

Basic Pimiento Cheese
Jennifer Causey; Prop Styling: Christine Keely; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Basic Pimiento Cheese

Bring pimiento cheese to a party and one way or another, it'll be eaten up come closing time. This classic dish can be scooped onto crackers as a dip or spooned on to elevate sandwiches.

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Rotel Sausage Dip

Rotel Dip
Caitlin Bensel

Recipe: Rotel Sausage Dip

You're six ingredients away from cheesy, hearty dip. Olive oil, ground beef, chorizo, Velveeta, diced tomatoes, and green chiles add up to a dip that's as easy to make as it is delicious.

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Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches

Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches
Iain Bagwell

Recipe: Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches

With just a handful of ingredients, the most elegant baked brie will be the centerpiece appetizer at your event. Ripe peaches coated in a hot jalapeño pepper jelly mixture are the perfect complement for an already favored soft cheese.

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Bacon Bow Tie Crackers

Bacon Bow Tie Crackers
Photo: Hector Manuel Sanchez; Prop Styling: Lydia Pursell; Food Styling: Tami Hardeman

Recipe: Bacon Bow Tie Crackers

These snacks couldn't be simpler, and yet we've found that party guests can't put them down. Double this straightforward recipe so everyone can get a taste of buttery crackers and salty slices of bacon.

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Party Poppers

Party Poppers
Hector M. Sanchez Styling: Caroline M. Cunningham

Recipe: Party Poppers

This two-bite appetizer is everything you could ask for in a party snack. Hot jalapeño peppers are stuffed with chicken-cream cheese filling and wrapped in hickory-smoked bacon. The result is spicy, smoky, creamy, and oh-so tasty.

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Bloody Mary Poached Shrimp

Bloody Mary Poached Shrimp
Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer; Prop Styling: Christine Keely

Recipe: Bloody Mary Poached Shrimp

This spiked take on a classic will fool party-goers into believing that your shrimp dish is a hefty labor of love. Really, it's a matter of making a bloody Mary and giving your seafood some time to drink it in.

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Baked Pimiento Cheese Dip

Baked Pimiento Cheese Dip
Jennifer Davick; Styling: Lydia DeGaris Pursell

Recipe: Baked Pimiento Cheese Dip

Baked Pimiento Cheese may seem more elegant than its classic, no-bake inspiration, but it only asks one additional, hands-off step. Baking pimiento cheese is an easy way to serve up warm dip bursting with Southern charm.

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Hot Brown Party Rolls

Hot Brown Party Rolls
Victor Protasio; Food Stying: Rishon Hanners; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis

Recipe: Hot Brown Party Rolls

Load Hawaiian rolls up high with meat, cheese, and a dash of hot sauce, then throw them in the oven to pull everything together. That's it. That's the whole recipe.

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Slow-Cooker Grape Jelly Meatballs

Slow-Cooker Grape Jelly Meatballs
Caitlin Bensel; Food Styling: Ali Ramee; Prop Styling: Sarah Elizabeth Cleveland

Recipe: Slow-Cooker Grape Jelly Meatballs

These nostalgic party snacks have a not-so-secret ingredient: grape jelly. They have just the right amount of sweetness and will go fast at the party served with toothpicks for easy eating.

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Pulled Pork Nachos

Pulled Pork Nachos
Antonis Achilleos

Recipe: Pulled Pork Nachos

Nachos are a top-notch choice for party fare because preparation is a matter of throwing your favorite ingredients over chips and you can customize the toppings to reflect your party's preferences. The trick to cleverly easy nachos is picking up some shredded smoked pork from your favorite BBQ joint.

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Brownie Cookies

Brownie Cookies
Photography: Caitlin Bensel, Prop Styling: Audrey Davis, Food Styling: Rishon Hanners

Recipe: Brownie Cookies

Why choose between bringing cookies or brownies to the party when you can pull off both with only 15 minutes of hands-on prep? After helping themselves to small plates and snacks galore, these brownies in cookie form will satisfy every sweet tooth at the gathering.

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Easy Peach Cobbler

Easy Peach Cobbler
Iain Bagwell; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe: Easy Peach Cobbler

This unpretentious dessert is always a hit among a crowd of Southerners. Six ingredients and ten minutes of hands-on time is all you need for the dish that will be the star of the party's dessert spread.

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Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies

Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies
Southern Living

Recipe: Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies

With this recipe kept on hand, you'll always have a last-minute dessert at the ready. You probably already have each of the four ingredients you need to pull off these incredibly easy, but absolutely scrumptious, cookies.

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Cheddar Cheese Straws

Cheddar Cheese Straws
Photo: Lee Harrelson

Recipe: Cheddar Cheese Straws

Cheddar Cheese Straws are a Southern go-to snack for a reason. They're savory and rich with a touch of black pepper, and fantastically simple to throw together before a party.

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Herbed Goat Cheese-Melon Party Bites

Herbed Goat Cheese-Melon Party Bites
Jennifer Davick

Recipe: Herbed Goat Cheese-Melon Party Bites

Believe it or not, these elegant party snacks are easy as can be. Watermelon and goat cheese are a refreshing pairing that will please party guests to no end with a sprig of basil and a twist of cracked black pepper.

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Bacon-Pimiento Guacamole

Bacon-Pimiento Guacamole
Hector Manuel Sanchez

Recipe: Bacon-Pimiento Guacamole

Spruce up a bowl of classic party dip and watch the eager hands dive in with chips at the ready. Guacamole is already a certain crowd-please, but this Southern twist is a game-changer.

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Herbed Breadcrumb-Topped Macaroni and Cheese

herbed breadcrumb topped macaroni and cheese
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch Stelling; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

Recipe: Herbed Breadcrumb-Topped Macaroni and Cheese

We challenge you to find someone at the party who will turn down a helping of this stunning mac and cheese. A well-seasoned, buttery panko breadcrumb topping and cubes of cheddar cheese throughout the dish take this comfort food classic from good to great.

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Mini Muffulettas

Mini Muffulettas
Jennifer Davick; Styling: Amy Burke

Recipe: Mini Muffulettas

Throw together layers of cheese, cold cuts, and pickled vegetables for tasty grab-and-go sandwiches that will fly off the platter. These sliders store well overnight and will make it to the party good as new.

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Easy Buffalo Chicken Dip

Easy Buffalo Chicken Dip
Jennifer Causey; Food Stylist: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen

Recipe: Easy Buffalo Chicken Dip

This recipe will become your go-to for many parties to come. Creamy, spicy dip is loaded with four gooey types of cheese inside a 9x13 casserole—perfect to feed a hungry crowd who will come back for seconds.

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Shrimp on Seasoned Crackers with Pepper Jelly and Cream Cheese

Shrimp on Seasoned Crackers with Pepper Jelly and Cream Cheese
Antonis Achilleos; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke

Recipe: Shrimp on Seasoned Crackers with Pepper Jelly and Cream Cheese

These loaded cracker snacks are made party-worthy by simple, zesty shrimp. Beneath the seafood awaits the well-loved and easily smeared combination of pepper jelly and cream cheese.

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Jalapeño Popper Dip

jalapeno popper dip
Photographer: Jennifer Causey Food Stylist: Melissa Gray Prop Stylist: Kay Clarke

Recipe: Jalapeño Popper Dip

You can bring jalapeño poppers to the party... or you can impress with our dip version. Pickled jalapeños and ultra-rich cheese will be a guaranteed crowd-pleaser scooped up with tortilla chips.

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Spicy Bisquick Sausage Balls

Spicy Bisquick Sausage Balls
Photography: Caitlin Bensel Food Styling: Ali Ramee Prop Styling: Sarah Elizabeth Cleveland

Recipe: Spicy Bisquick Sausage Balls

Our recipe for sausage balls has a bit of a kick and a shortcut. We use Bisquick to pull together these classic bites of hot ground pork sausage.

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Black Bean and Corn Salsa

black bean and corn salsa on a wooden cutting board
Photographer: Jen Causey, Prop Stylist: Christine Keely, Food Stylist: Ana Kelly

Recipe: Black Bean and Corn Salsa

What's a get-together without chips and salsa? This beans and corn version seems like a fancy take, but really it's a matter of throwing together a few simple ingredients—some of which come canned.

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Mini Caprese Bites

Mini Caprese Bites
William Dickey

Recipe: Mini Caprese Bites

This classy appetizer is fresh as can be with almost no effort. Slide fresh tomatoes and cheese onto wooden skewers, whisk together a simple glaze, and you're ready to party.

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Mini Shrimp Rolls

Mini Shrimp Rolls
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Recipe: Mini Shrimp Rolls

Toss together an easy shrimp salad that has a bit of kick. Spooned between top-sliced mini brioche rolls, these sliders will be devoured come party time.

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Cranberry Brie Bites

Cranberry Brie Bites
Southern Living

Recipe: Cranberry Brie Bites

We love a recipe that only has one step. Yes, you read that right: one step. Just arrange your ingredients as desired and pop them in the oven.

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Melon, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Skewers

Melon, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Skewers
Jennifer Davick

Recipe: Melon, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Skewers

No cooking necessary, this recipe just takes a few simple ingredients and a little elbow grease. Slide alternating pieces of prosciutto, mozzarella balls, cantaloupe, and honeydew onto wooden skewers and party-goers will thank you for it.

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