Pre-Spring Small Plates for Indoor Entertaining

Our patio furniture is waiting for us, but it is still a little chilly here in Raleigh for dinner parties al fresco. With pollen and spring rains, indoor entertaining is a bit more attractive.

Keep the grill covered and the citronella candles unlit–we have several ingredients and menu ideas if you’re looking for healthy appetizers to serve family and guests indoors!

Stuffed Mushrooms. Crab or cheese? Your choice may depend on your preference or your guests’ palates. Opt for crab-stuffed mushrooms if your main meal also features items from the sea. Balance cheese-stuffed mushrooms with a light spring salad made from organic greens.

Butternut Squash Recipes

Butternut Squash Spring Salad

Butternut Squash Salad. Still trying to find ways to use up the season’s tail-end supply of butternut squash? Cube and roast the squash with garbanzo beans and garlic, then mix with olive oil and slivered almonds and chill until serving. This is super healthy and sweet!

Simple Shrimp. Mix classic and spring with a traditional shrimp cocktail. Prepare individual cocktail cups out of melons (a nice hint at summer fruits ahead) and perch cooked shrimp on the edge. Very little prep work involved.

goat cheese

Locally-made cheese!

Goat Cheese. Have you looked for a local cheesemaker? Here in North Carolina’s Triangle-area we have several local cheesemakers: Chapel Hill Creamery, Hillsborough Cheese Company, and Celebrity Dairy (which specializes in goat cheeses). Goat cheeses spread simply and work well on crackers while guests are socializing.

avocado recipes

Avocado Recipes

Avocado Pudding. Your guests will not be able to tell the difference between this chocolate avocado pudding recipe and a traditional chocolate pudding! Simply mix the ingredients in a food processor and garnish with your favorite accents. Let your guests decide the garnish. The recipe suggests orange zest, coconut, or almond—but don’t forget about raspberry or peanut butter! This is great to include if you are only serving appetizers as it gives guests a healthy sweet option—otherwise they would miss out on dessert!

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