Best One-Bite Appetizer Recipes | SAVEUR

Our Best One-Bite Hors d'Oeuvres for Throwing the Ultimate Party

Keep your guests satisfied with these sophisticated appetizers

If you're throwing a cocktail party and want the perfect elegant snack, look no further than hors d'oeuvres. Oysters are a natural one-bite hors d'oeuvre, because they already come with a serving shell and are so versatile they can be served to kick off your meal during any season. Whether you're looking for a light bite to serve at your holiday party during the cooler months, like a dainty sweet potato crostini, or a casual finger food for game day, our best one bite hors d'oeuvres will surely keep your guess your guests satisfied.

Crab Toast

Crab Toast

Spreading mayonnaise on both sides of the bread before grilling yields a perfectly golden brown crust. Get the recipe for Crab Toast »

Marcus Nilsson

Grilled Oysters on a Bed of Salt

Grilling, Grilled Oysters

"You can grill any oyster you'd eat raw," says John Finger of California's Hog Island Oyster Co., "but bigger is better, since the longer they cook, the more they shrink." Rules of thumb: Opt for Pacific over Eastern, and look for 4–5-inch shell size. Have your fishmonger shuck one before you buy; the meat should almost fill the shell. Get the recipe for Grilled Oysters on a Bed of Salt »

Michael Turek

Broiled Oysters with Parmigiano and 'Nduja

Broiled Oysters with Parmigiano and 'Nduja

Whoever said fish and cheese don’t belong together has never had a broiled oyster. Fatty ingredients, such as crispy melted cheese or the garlic butter drizzled over oysters Rocke­feller, bring richness to oysters’ otherwise watery liquor. This recipe uses both, as well as an oily, spicy sausage from Calabria known as ’nduja. Get the recipe for Broiled Oysters with Parmigiano and 'Nduja »

Ted Cavanaugh

Olive-Oil Poached Green Almonds with Dill

Olive Oil-Poached Green Almonds with Dill

Green almonds are a rare spring treat; simmering them in olive oil, orange juice, and aromatics mitigates their slightly bitter exterior, making them an irresistible cocktail party snack. Get the recipe for Olive-Oil Poached Green Almonds with Dill »

Matt Taylor-Gross

Fried Stuffed Castelvetrano Olives

Fried Stuffed Castelvetrano Olives

Making for a substantial snack, Rosa Pepe stuffs olives with a simple beef and pork filling; then dredges them in breadcrumbs before crisping them up in the deep-fryer. Get the recipe for Fried Stuffed Castelvetrano Olives »

Romulo Yanes

Raw Oysters with Lemon Oil and Urfa Biber

raw oyster

You can do more with ​these mollusks than eat them raw. From broiling to frying, here are four ways to sharpen your shell game. Get the recipe Raw Oysters with Lemon Oil and Urfa Biber »

Ted Cavanaugh

Mozzarella Sticks

Mozzarella sticks

Crispy breading encases gooey melted mozzarella cheese in this classic appetizer. Get the recipe for Mozzarella Sticks »

Farideh Sadeghin

Abruzzo-Style Grape Focaccia

Abruzzo-Style Grape Focaccia

When this fluffy, oil-slathered dough bakes, the red and green grapes dotting it burst, releasing their sweet juices into the bread. Get the recipe for Abruzzo-Style Grape Focaccia »

Romulo Yanes

Greek Stuffed Grape Leaves With Rice and Herbs (Dolmadakia)

Greek Stuffed Grape Leaves With Rice and Herbs (Dolmadakia)

Dolmakadia, the Greek word for stuffed grape leaves, is one of the most iconic recipes of Greek cuisine and, although there are many varieties, the meatless version is the most common. In the warmer months, try to find and use fresh grape leaves; they are more tender and flavorful than the jarred types. Out of season, jarred leaves are a fine substitute (we prefer the Orlando brand). Get the recipe for Greek Stuffed Grape Leaves With Rice and Herbs (Dolmadakia) »

Matt Taylor-Gross

Chickpea Fritters with Coconut Chutney

Chickpea Fritters with Coconut Chutney

In this Goan-influenced starter, pillowy, onion-flecked chickpea fritters are served with a pungent chutney made from cilantro, tamarind, chile, turmeric, and freshly grated coconut. Get the recipe for Chickpea Fritters with Coconut Chutney

Evan Sung

Herbed Squash Confit

Herbed Squash Confit

The spongelike nature of summer squash makes it an ideal candidate to confit; pile the tender shreds on crostini for a summery appetizer. Get the recipe for Herbed Squash Confit »

Matt Taylor-Gross

Smoked Trout Blinis with Crème Fraîche and Dill

Smoked Trout Blinis with Crème Fraîche and Dill

The smoked trout that tops these mini pancakes gets a slight kick from cayenne pepper. Get the recipe for Smoked Trout Blinis with Crème Fraîche and Dill »

Maxime Iattoni

Fennel Seed Taralli (Italian Olive Oil Crackers)

Taralli

Crisp, biscuit-like Italian crackers, taralli taste best baked until dry and golden-brown: the toastiness brings out and complements the flavors of the spices and fruity olive oil. Baking them atop a drying rack helps ensure an even browning all around, but if you don’t have one, dry the taralli briefly on clean kitchen towel and bake them on a parchment-lined sheet. You can omit the fennel seed and replace with 1 ¼ tsp. coarsely ground black pepper if desired, or leave the dough plain. Get the recipe for Fennel Seed Taralli (Italian Olive Oil Crackers) »

Stacy Adimado

Cheese Gougères

cheese gougeres

These gougères are custardy in the center, with a little nuttiness and crunch from optional walnuts. Get the recipe for Cheese Gougères »

Christina Holmes

Virginia Ham and White Cheddar Croquettes

Virginia Ham and White Cheddar Croquettes

Crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside, potato croquettes filled with a combination of white cheddar and salty ham are the ultimate two-bite party snack. Get the recipe for Virginia Ham and White Cheddar Croquettes »

Anna Stockwell

Homemade Jalapeño Poppers

Homemade Jalapeño Poppers

Packed with a spicy, cheesy filling, roasted and fried jalapeños gain depth from charring under the broiler and a crispy crust from the bread crumb coating. Get the recipe for Homemade Jalapeño Poppers »

Todd Coleman

Salmon Rillettes

salmon rillettes

Made with both smoked and cooked fish for textural contrast, salmon rillettes became a New Year's staple once I discovered that my husband wasn't the only non—oyster eater among us. Pack into jars the night before entertaining—the flavors improve with time. Get the recipe for Salmon Rillettes »

Christina Holmes

Goat Cheese Crostini with Fig-Olive Tapenade

Goat Cheese Crostini with Fig-Olive Tapenade

A tangy-sweet tapenade made with dried figs, kalamata olives, and capers is the perfect foil for mild goat cheese in this easy appetizer. Get the recipe for Goat Cheese Crostini with Fig-Olive Tapenade »

Signe Birck

Three Cheese Gougères

Chablis Three Cheese Gougeres

Three distinct cheeses are incorporated into this classic savory pâte à choux snack. More cheese is sprinkled over the tops of the gougères to produce a golden crust. Get the recipe for Three Cheese Gougères »

Ingalls Photography

Smoked Bluefish Pâté with Hardtack Crackers

Smoked Bluefish Pâté with Hardtack Crackers

Bluefish gets the haute cuisine treatment at Puritan & Company in Cambridge, where chef-owner Will Gilson serves it as a smoky paté. Get the recipe for Smoked Bluefish Pâté with Hardtack Crackers »

Landon Nordeman

Marinated Anchovies with Candied Citrus, Pickled Raisins, and Chile

Marinated Anchovies with Candied Citrus, Pickled Raisins, and Chile

Chef Giorgia Goggi, a self-­proclaimed anchovy lover, marinates her own fillets and sun-dries raisins from local grapes to make this delicate sweet-sour dish. Store-bought marinated anchovies work perfectly well, and when they’re soaked in the dish’s pickling liquid, even grocery-store raisins will take on a juicy plumpness. Get the recipe for Marinated Anchovies with Candied Citrus, Pickled Raisins, and Chile »

Eva Kolenko

Pão de Queijo

Pão de Queijo

If you can't find sour tapioca starch to make this Brazilian cheese bread, sweet tapioca starch will yield equally delicious results. Get the recipe for Pão de Queijo »

Todd Coleman

Oysters DuPont

Oysters DuPont

Crabmeat, feta, and capers are broiled atop garlic-and-herb-dressed oysters in this salty-sweet dish. Get the recipe for Oysters DuPont »

Ingalls Photography

Roasted Tomato and Grape Toasts with Fava Bean Puree

Roasted Tomato and Grape Toasts with Fava Bean Puree

Dried fava bean purée is served all over Puglia, typically with cooked bitter greens and fried or toasted bread. Giorgia Goggi adds lemon juice and miso, and uses it as a base for crostini. Leftovers are an excellent dip for raw vegetables. Get the recipe for Roasted Tomato and Grape Toasts with Fava Bean Puree »

Eva Kolenko

Roasted Garlic and Sweet Potato Crostini

Garlic and Sweet Potato Crostini

Sweet and savory, crunchy and creamy come together on little toasts, which pair cubes of sweet potato with a flavorful spread featuring lemon zest, capers and sour cream. Get the recipe for Roasted Garlic and Sweet Potato Crostini »

Helen Rosner

Zucchini Fritters (Kolokitho Keftedes)

Zucchini Fritters (Kolokitho Keftedes)

Based on a recipe from author Nancy Harmon Jenkins, this Cretan meze dish can be served hot or at room temperature. Get the recipe for Zucchini Fritters (Kolokitho Keftedes) »

Todd Coleman

Eggplant Rolls (Nigvziani Badrijani)

Eggplant Rolls

This classic recipe is found throughout Georgia as part of the vegetable starters for a supra, but they’re great with drinks before dinner too. Small eggplants are sliced lengthwise, salted, rinsed, and lightly fried, before being spread with garlicy walnut paste and rolled up. Make the walnut paste while the eggplants are being salted. The main reason to salt them is to reduce the amount of oil they absorb during frying; the bitterness has been bred out of most eggplants nowadays. Get the recipe for Eggplant Rolls (Nigvziani Badrijani) »

Kat Craddock

Indian Vegetable Fritters (Pakoras)

Pakoras (Indian Vegetable Fritters)

Crispy chickpea-battered vegetable fritters are a popular street-food snack throughout India. This recipe calls for potatoes and onion, but cauliflower florets, eggplant slices, or plantains can also be used. Get the recipe for Indian Vegetable Fritters (Pakoras) »

James Roper

Spiced Ground Beef Patties (Shami Kebabs)

Spiced Ground Beef Patties (Shami Kebabs)

Ground beef is stuffed with a spiced onion mixture and then fried until crisp and savory in this favorite street food of Muslim Indians. Get the recipe for Spiced Ground Beef Patties (Shami Kebabs) »

Ingalls Photography

Pigeon Pea Fritters with Yogurt-Tomato Sauce (Vadai Pachadi)

Pigeon Pea Fritters with Yogurt-Tomato Sauce (Vadai Pachadi)

In Tamil-speaking households, a combination of fritters with sauce is referred to as vadai pachadi. Served for weddings and religious holidays, these spicy fritters get their signature crunch from yellow split peas and are topped with a creamy, tangy yogurt-tomato sauce. Get the recipe for Pigeon Pea Fritters with Yogurt-Tomato Sauce (Vadai Pachadi) »

Ingalls Photography

Cured Salmon with Thin Pancakes (Gravlax with Blinis)

Cured Salmon with Thin Pancakes (Gravlax with Blinis)

We persuaded the wife of a Norwegian fisherman to share her secret recipe for marinating a fresh side of salmon to silky-textured, subtly flavored perfection. Get the recipe for Cured Salmon with Thin Pancakes (Gravlax with Blinis) »

Maxime Iattoni

Shrimp and Rosemary Crostini

Shrimp and Rosemary Crostini

For this simple appetizer, shrimp are sautéed in smoky bacon fat and served on grilled bread with rosemary. Get the recipe for Shrimp and Rosemary Crostini »

Ingalls Photography

Stuffed Pepperoncini with Smoked Salmon

Stuffed Pepperoncini with Smoked Salmon

Spicy, briny, creamy, and salty, this simple, retro-inspired appetizer is an unabashed crowd-pleaser. Get the recipe for Stuffed Pepperoncini with Smoked Salmon »

Yossy Arefi

Smoked Salmon with Cream Cheese, Capers, and Red Onion

Smoked Salmon with Cream Cheese, Capers, and Red Onion

Cream cheese, capers, and red onions make for a lovely spread to pair with smoked salmon. Get the recipe for Smoked Salmon with Cream Cheese, Capers, and Red Onion »

Helen Rosner

Toast with Roasted Beet Dip, Smoked Salmon, and Watercress

Toast with Roasted Beet Dip, Smoked Salmon, and Watercress

Roasting beets and puréeing them with a little balsamic vinegar makes a sweet, earthy spread that's a perfect base for slices of smoked salmon and peppery watercress. Get the recipe for Toast with Roasted Beet Dip, Smoked Salmon, and Watercress »

Helen Rosner

Pan-Fried Salt Cod Chips (Fritas de Bacalhau)

Pan-Fried Salt Cod Chips (Fritas de Bacalhau)

A thin batter of salt cod, garlic, and onions is shallow-fried to make fine, crisp chips. Get the recipe for Pan-Fried Salt Cod Chips (Fritas de Bacalhau) »

Todd Coleman

Smoked Salmon with Fromage Blanc, Chives, and Pickled Celery

Smoked Salmon with Fromage Blanc, Chives, and Pickled Celery

Pickled celery balances the subtleness of fromage blanc in a simple and elegant canapé. Get the recipe for Smoked Salmon with Fromage Blanc, Chives, and Pickled Celery »

Helen Rosner

Shallot and Pancetta Tortilla Crisps

Shallot and Pancetta Tortilla Crisps

Ultra-crisp tortilla pizzettes, developed by SAVEUR test kitchen director Farideh Sadeghin, can be tailor-made with just about any ingredients. We like them topped with creme fraiche, shallot, and pancetta, a flavor profile not unlike alsatian tarte flambee. Get the recipe for Smoked Salmon with Shallot and Pancetta Tortilla Crisps »

Yossy Arefi

Sage Tempura Shiitake Mushrooms

Sage Tempura Shiitake Mushrooms

Earthy sage enhances the woodsy flavor of shiitake mushrooms in this simple fried appetizer. Get the recipe for Sage Tempura Shiitake Mushrooms »

Maxime Iattoni

Robiola-Stuffed Figs with Pomegranate

Robiola-Stuffed Figs with Pomegranate

Pungent Robiola cheese can be substituted with brie, ricotta, or any other soft cheese in this simple no-cook appetizer. Get the recipe for Robiola-Stuffed Figs with Pomegranate »

Maxime Iattoni

Saganaki Bites with Sun Dried Tomato Tapenade

Saganaki Bites with Sun Dried Tomato Tapenade

Kasseri cheese, a type of sheep's milk feta, is fried and topped with zesty olive and sun-dried tomato tapenade. Dipping the cheese in cold water before coating them with flour is essential; it helps the flour to adhere and prevents the cheese from leaking into the oil as it fries. Get the recipe for Saganaki Bites with Sun Dried Tomato Tapenade »

Maxime Iattoni

Broccoli Rabe, Cannellini Bean, and Ricotta Crostini

Broccoli Rabe, Cannellini Bean, and Ricotta Crostini

Crusty, garlicky toasted bread is topped with creamy ricotta, rosemary-accented beans, and spicy sautéed broccoli rabe in this quick, satisfying Italian appetizer. Get the recipe for Broccoli Rabe, Cannellini Bean, and Ricotta Crostini »

Andre Baranowski

Broiled Oysters with Spinach and Brown Butter Hollandaise

Broiled oysters with Spinach and Brown Butter Hollandaise

Instead of using clarified butter in his hollandaise, as is traditional, Global Village chef Martin Bealin browns butter, rendering it nutty in flavor. Choose briny—not creamy—oysters (ask your fishmonger), and be sure to make the mignonette: The salinity of the oysters in combination with the pungent shallots and vinegar are a welcome contrast to the richness of the hollandaise. Get the recipe for Broiled Oysters with Spinach and Brown Butter Hollandaise »

Michelle Heimerman

Cheese Gougères

cheese gougeres

This recipe makes gougères that are custardy in the center, with a little nuttiness and crunch from optional walnuts. If you prefer a firmer puff, use four eggs instead of five. I like a mix of cheeses, but one cheese makes great gougères, too—even a very un-French cheddar. Feel free to scoop out and freeze the dough in advance, then bake gougères directly from the freezer, adding a few minutes to the baking time. Get the recipe for Cheese Gougères »

Christina Holmes

Pigs in a Blanket with Herbed Mustard Dipping Sauce

pigs in blanket

The dough, a variation on a Southern-style biscuit dough, is rolled out and folded several times to ensure delicate layers. Leftover dough and scraps can be rolled out again and cut and baked into biscuits. The dough can also be made in advance and refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen until ready to use. Get the recipe for Pigs in a Blanket with Herbed Mustard Dipping Sauce »

Matt Taylor-Gross

French Piped Potatoes (Pommes Duchesse)

French Piped Potatoes (Pommes Duchesse)

Elegant potatoes are brushed with an egg wash before baking for color and crunch. Get the recipe for French Piped Potatoes (Pommes Duchesse) »

Ingalls Photography

Swiss Fondue Fritters (Malakoffs)

Swiss Fondue Fritters (Malakoffs)

A decadent mixture of Gruyere, garlic, wine, and kirsch is scooped onto bread rounds and fried to perfection—golden and crisp outside, gooey inside—in this recipe for classic Swiss cheese fritters, which first appeared in our October 2013 issue with the article Pleasure Dome. Get the recipe for Swiss Fondue Fritters (Malakoffs) »

Penny de Los Santos

Beet "Tartare"

Beet "Tartare"

Earthy roasted beets are brightened by fresh orange zest and tangy balsamic in this clever appetizer, which looks beautiful presented in individual endive spears. Get the recipe for Beet "Tartare" »

Yossy Arefi