3 Appetizers For the Next Family Get Together

Sunrise Senior Living  |  July 14, 2016

Don't bore your family with the same old recipes - try one of these new ones!

Family get togethers pose the perfect opportunity to bond with your loved ones over a plate of delicious food. But there's no need to cook the same old platter year after year – it's time to get creative! Let your inner foodie out and create one of these delicious appetizers for the next family party – one bite and they'll be asking for the recipe!

1. Party Poppers
This recipe, courtesy of Southern Living magazine, has the perfect touch of spice wrapped in everyone's favorite breakfast meat – bacon.


  • 12 medium jalapenos
  • 1 8-ounce package of cream cheese – softened
  • 1 cup cooked chicken – finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh cilantro – finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 12 hickory smoked bacon slices – halved
  • 24 wooden tooth picks


First, heat your oven to 400 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with aluminum foil and non-stick cooking spray. Cut your jalapenos in half – lengthwise – remove seeds and set aside.

"This recipe has the perfect touch of spice."

In a large bowl, stir cream cheese, chicken, cilantro, lime juice and salt until fully combined. Grab your jalapeno halves and fill each with about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the mixture. Then, wrap each jalapeno with a bacon strip, securing with a wooden toothpick. Place on prepared cooking sheet, and move pan to the oven.

Cook jalapeno until softened and bacon begins to crisp – this should take about 25 minutes. Once the time is up, turn on broiler and cook for about 3 minutes. Remove from oven, let sit for about 5 minutes and enjoy!

2. Healthy Mozzarella Sticks
This classic appetizer is loved by everyone – but what if there was a way to eat it without feeling guilty afterward? Good news: Now you can with this healthy recipe from Food Network!


  • 10 whole-grain melba toasts
  • 1/3 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh oregano – minced
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 clove garlic – minced
  • 1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 8 sticks skin mozzarella string cheese – halved
  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 1/3 store bought marinara – or try your own recipe!


First, heat your oven to 475 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with aluminum foil and non-stick cooking spray.

Grab your melba toasts, place them in the food processor and pulse until coarse. Place in a medium bowl and mix with breadcrumbs, oregano, salt, pepper and cayenne. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites, egg, garlic, salt and pepper.

In a resealable plastic bag, place flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Grab your cheese sticks, place them in the bag and shake until well coated. Remove from flour mixture and place one cheese stick in the egg mixture at a time. Immediately place cheese stick in breadcrumb mixture. Repeat process until all sticks are coated in breading. Place in a parchment lined baking sheet and freeze for at least 15 minutes.

Once the time is up, grab the cheese stick out of the freezer and place onto the prepared cooking sheet. Generously coat the cheese sticks in olive oil cooking spray and cook in the oven for about 12 minutes.

For best taste, serve immediately for melty goodness. Enjoy with marinara!

3. Cheesy Spinach Crab Dip
Nothing screams appetizer quite like a dip. But you don't want just any ordinary kind – this recipe from Oxmoor House makes a delicious and unique dip that your family will love – and it's so easy to prepare!

Enjoy this dip with crackers or pita chips!Enjoy this dip with crackers or pita chips!


  • 1 1/2 cups lump crabmeat
  • 4 ounces shredded jalapeno cheddar cheese
  • 3 ounces grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup fat-free milk
  • 1/2 large onion – grated
  • 1/2 cup canola mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. ground red pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves – minced
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen spinach – chopped, thawed and drained
  • 1 8-ounce package fat-free cream cheese
  • 1 8-ounce carton fat-free sour cream
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon rind


What's the best part about this recipe? It's virtually labor-free! All you need to do is place all ingredients – excluding the lemon rind – into a 3-quart slow cooker, stirring well. Cover mixture and cook on low for at least two hours. Stir in lemon rind before serving. Enjoy this recipe with fresh baked pita chips!