Make These Fancy Riffs on Party Snacks to Treat Yo'self

Pull out the fancy china

Want to become the host(ess) with the most(est)? Take your parties to the next level with our trumped-up versions of your favorite party snacks. Whether you're looking to jazz up common potluck recipes or just planning a lavish Super Bowl affair, these elegant versions of party appetizers will be sure to turn heads (and don't forget to pair your classy bites with some party cocktails). From buffalo chicken rillettes to homemade cheese dips, we've rounded up our favorite fancy canapé and party snack recipes here.

Pork Roll Canapes
Pork Roll CanapésMatt Taylor-Gross

Take New Jersey pork roll (a.k.a. Taylor ham) to new heights with these upmarket snacks perfect for a cocktail party. Get the recipe for New Jersey Pork Roll and Caviar Canapés »

Buffalo Chicken Rillette
Buffalo Chicken RilletteMatt Taylor-Gross

This party snack from Eric W. Bolyard of Compagnie NYC keeps all the best parts of buffalo chicken—juicy meat, hot sauce, and crisp fried bits—in a neat and tidy package. Get the recipe for Buffalo Chicken Rillettes With Schmaltz Toasts »

cheese gougeres

Cheese Gougères

Cheese gougèresChristina Holmes

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 »

Cranberry Crostini

Cranberry crostini
Cranberry crostiniMatt Taylor-Gross

Tart, colorful cranberries are not just for cooked and canned sauces. Paired with rich whipped ricotta spread and toasted baguette slices, the raw fruit has a punchy flavor and crunchy texture that's a light, bright complement to crostini. Prepare the dip up to one day ahead and store covered in the refrigerator. Stir or buzz in the food processor briefly before spreading onto toasts. Get the recipe for Cranberry Crostini »

Nut and Cheese Gougères

Pecan gougeres
Pecan gougèresMatt Taylor-Gross

This recipe is adapted from cookbook author Dorie Greenspan. You can portion and freeze these gougères in advance, then bake them just before guests arrive (you may need to add a few minutes of baking time). This recipe makes soft gougères that are custardy in the center. If you prefer a firmer puff, use 4 eggs. Get the recipe for Nut and Cheese Gougères »

Olive Oil Crackers

olive oil crackers
Olive oil crackersMatt Taylor-Gross

Adapted from Anya Fernald's Home Cooked, this recipe for delicate, whole wheat-flecked crackers makes enough to feed a party, or last all week in your pantry. "The key to [their] crispiness is to roll out the dough extremely thin," the author writes. If the dough springs back at all while rolling, let it rest at room temperature for 5 minutes, then try again. Get the recipe for Olive Oil Crackers »

Fromage Fort

Fromage Fort
Fromage FortMatt Taylor-Gross

Meaning "strong cheese" in French, fromage fort is a classic way to use up all the leftover ends and mismatched scraps of cheese in your fridge. In Julia Turshen's version, which we adapted from her Small Victories cookbook, a little butter and a few splashes of wine round out the salty cheeses and help them become spreadable enough for topping toast or crackers. Get the recipe for Fromage Fort »

Pigs in a Blanket with Herbed Mustard Dipping Sauce

pigs in blanket
Pigs in blanketMatt Taylor-Gross

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 »

Salmon Rillettes

salmon rillettes
Salmon rillettesChristina Holmes

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 »

Vinegar-Marinated Potatoes with Olives and Capers | Francis Mallmann

Vinegar-Marinated Potatoes with Olives and Capers

Vinegar-Marinated Potatoes with Olives and CapersPaul Sirisalee | Food Styling: Eugene Jho

This flavor-packed hors d'oeuvres from Francis Mallmann is topped with an umami-rich relish of capers, anchovies, and kalamata olives. For a burst of bright acidity, Mallmann drizzles red wine vinegar slowly over the cooked potatoes so that they soak in every drop, like dressing a still warm potato salad. Get the recipe for Vinegar-Marinated Potatoes with Olives and Capers »

eggplant and walnut frittata (badimjan kükü)

Eggplant and Walnut Frittata (Badimjan Kükü)

Eggplant and walnut frittata (badimjan kükü)Jason Lang

This hearty Azeri egg dish—which can be served in small pieces as an appetizer or side, or cut into larger wedges as a main—is loaded with ground walnuts, onions, and eggplant, giving it a nutty, meaty consistency and color. Get the recipe for Eggplant and Walnut Frittata (Badimjan Kükü) »

Caramelized Onion and Sunchoke Dip

Caramelized Onion and Sunchoke Dip

Caramelized Onion and Sunchoke DipMatt Taylor-Gross

Nutty, buttery sunchokes add a chic, decidedly grown-up twist to this classic slumber party staple. Get the recipe for Caramelized Onion and Sunchoke Dip »

Herbed Squash Confit

Herbed Squash Confit
Herbed Squash ConfitMatt Taylor-Gross

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 »

Mexico City Spiced Edamame
Mexico City Spiced EdamameFarideh Sadeghin

We first had this spicy dish, dusted with plenty of cayenne pepper and brightened with lime, as a starter at Brooklyn's Xixa, a Mexico City-inspired restaurant from the owners of Traif. It makes a great simple snack with an ice-cold beer. Get the recipe for Mexico City Spiced Edamame »

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

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

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) »

Olive-Oil Poached Green Almonds with Dill

Olive Oil-Poached Green Almonds with Dill
Olive Oil-Poached Green Almonds with DillMatt Taylor-Gross

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 »