Quick Easy Recipes for Simple Appetizers

Recently, I was asked by a friend for quick, easy recipes. She was tired of making the same 'ol things all the time and needed some new ideas. I'm a busy mom and I'm not much of a cook, so quick and easy recipes are what I like. I provided several to her, and then decided to publish a series of quick and easy recipes while I had my collection out. I have a very large 3-ring binder that houses all my favorite recipes - quick easy recipes from friends, family members and some from cook books and magazines as well. Anytime I find a recipe that meets the requirements of being quick, easy and good, it gets copied or written or typed up and placed into a clear protective sleeve and into the binder.

So here it is! I'll start off with appetizers here. Next will be quick easy dips, then quick easy side dishes, followed by quick and easy main dishes / dinners, more dinner ideas and quick easy desserts will wrap it up. Be sure to check the links at the bottom of the page for more great recipes that I've previously published!

Chile Relleno Squares

3 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1 (4oz) can diced green chiles

4 eggs, beaten

Into an 8” square baking pan, sprinkle the cheese and chiles evenly. Pour eggs over the top and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until set. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting into 1.25” squares. Place squares on a serving plate and serve warm. Makes 3 dozen.

My sister gave me this recipe years ago to use when I had a buffet type get-together and they were perfect and delicious!

This is a Rachel Ray recipe and it's so simple and delicious!
This is a Rachel Ray recipe and it's so simple and delicious!

Cheesy Corn Bites

8 oz cream cheese, room temperature

1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese

1 large egg

½ cup frozen corn kernels

48 scoop-shaped tortilla chips (one 10oz bag)

Chopped chives or cilantro for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese, pepper jack, egg and corn.  Arrange the tortilla chips on a large baking sheet and place about 1 teaspoon of the corn mixture in each chip.  Bake until the filling sets, about 20 minutes.  Remove, sprinkle with chives or cilantro and serve warm.

To kick these up a notch, you can add a fresh jalapeno slice at the bottom of each chip before adding the corn mixture.  You can also mix salsa, black beans or olive tapenade into the filling. 

Mini Nacho Cups

18 scoop tortilla chips

½ of a 15 oz can of black beans, rinsed and drained

1/3 cup salsa

½ cup shredded, reduced-fat cheddar cheese

1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Put the chips on a baking dish or sheet (if you have kids, they can do this part for you!)  In a small saucepan, combine the black beans and salsa and heat on medium heat.  Spoon some of the mixture into each chip.  Sprinkle on the cheese, then bake in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the cheese melts.  Place the nacho chips on a plate and add a dollop of sour cream on top of each one.

These make a great appetizer or anytime snack!  I love these! 

Did you know?

Seeds and nuts, both shelled and unshelled, keep best and longest when stored in the freezer. Unshelled nuts crack more easily when frozen. Nuts and seeds can be used directly from the freezer.

Salami Crisps

24 (1/8 to ¼-inch) slices Italian dry Genoa salami (about 4 oz)

1/3 cup sour cream

3 tbsp thinly sliced fresh basil leaves

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Line two large baking sheets with aluminum foil, then arrange the salami slices in a single layer on the sheets.  Bake until the salami slices are an amber brown; watch closely to make sure they brown evenly – should take about 15 minutes.  Transfer the salami crisps to a paper towel-lined baking sheet so the excess oil can be absorbed.  Set them aside to cool.  Once cooled, spoon a dollop of sour cream on top of each salami crisp, then sprinkle the basil over top and serve. 

Tip:  you can make the salami crisps up to 8 hours ahead; store them in airtight containers and keep at room temperature. 

Sausage Balls

This is a great make-ahead appetizer!

4 cups Bisquick

1 pound sausage (room temperature)

1 pound grated sharp cheddar cheese

dash of salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients together and roll into small balls.  Freeze.  When ready to bake, place frozen balls on a baking sheet and bake in a 350 degree pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. 

Seasoned Oyster Crackers in bowl
Seasoned Oyster Crackers in bowl

Dill-Ranch Crackers

¾ cup canola oil (or vegetable)

1 pckg Ranch dressing mix

2 tsp dried dill

1 box/bag oyster crackers

Mix the first three ingredients together and pour over the crackers. Toss well in a bowl to coat. Transfer crackers to a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until they are lightly browned. Be sure to toss them a couple of times with a spatula while they are in the oven. These can easily be made the day before, just store them in an air-tight container.

This sounds simple, and it is, but it is also delicious!

Spinach Nuggets

1 box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained

1 ½ cups soy sauce

½ cup wheat germ or bread crumbs

1 tbsp Italian seasonings

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all the ingredients except the bread crumbs together and form into small balls.  Flatten each ball with the bottom of a glass and then roll in the breadcrumbs.  Bake on a non-stick baking sheet for 15 minutes.  Serve with sour cream and/or ranch dressing for dipping.  

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8 comments

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Made my mouth water. Thank you.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 6 years ago

Great recipes. I love to prepare a bunch of finger foods when I have friends over. Thanks for the new ideas.


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 6 years ago from East Coast Author

Any time! Thanks for stopping by!


Nelle Hoxie 6 years ago

Those Dill-Ranch Crackers look so good. I wish I had some now. I've copies the recipe into a word document and I think I'll try them tomorrow night for "movie night."


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 6 years ago from East Coast Author

Hi Nelle! They are delicious and they would be perfect for movie night ... a family friend used to always put out a bowl of these together with other appetizers when we'd go to her house and I always loved them and didn't realize how easy it was to prepare until I asked her for the recipe!

It's also great for "on the fly" when unexpected company arrives because the ingredients you can make sure to keep on hand...

Let me know how you like it.


Nelle Hoxie 6 years ago

The Dill-Ranch Crackers are fanastic and were quite a hit at Movie Night. We split the cost of a season of "24" DVD with two other couples and each Saturday night we getogether at one of the houses to watch two or three episodes and have snacks. Everyone want's me to bring them again, but I said you had more recipes. I'm thinkin' Salami Crisps next week!


Lily Rose profile image

Lily Rose 6 years ago from East Coast Author

Yay! I'm glad to hear they were such a hit! Your movie night sounds like a lot of fun. The salami crisps are sooo good (unfortunately not so good for your waistline) - just make sure to watch them closely because if they're really thin they can burn easily....looking forward to hearing how you all liked it!


sanjeeta kk profile image

sanjeeta kk 6 years ago from India

Love those recipes. thanks for sharing. Great hubs.

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