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Unique Party Appetizers

by Aya Pauli, studioD

Great party appetizers need to do more than just appeal to guests; they need to help enforce the overall theme of the celebration. However, busy moms have little time for unique appetizers that require hours of labor. The key to creative party appetizers is to use premade products that speed up the process without sacrificing taste or nutrition.

Strawberry Flowers

Take advantage of a strawberry's natural shape to create delicate floral appetizers for a little girl's tea party or spring-themed celebration. Set a strawberry on the table with the tip sticking up. Carefully cut the strawberry almost in half from tip to top, leaving the area near the stem connected. Rotate the knife 90 degrees and slice the strawberry again, leaving the stem area connected. Push the slices apart and place a fresh blueberry or raspberry in the center of the flower. You could also slide a chocolate chip within the slices for a rich treat.

Deviled Snake Eyes

Deviled eggs are already the ideal shape to become a themed appetizer for a Halloween festival or a pirate-themed birthday party. Scoop the yolks from the boiled egg and mix with fat-free creamy salad dressing for a smooth consistency. Spoon the mixture back into each egg half to create a basic eyeball shape. Place a thin half-slice of black olive on the middle of each egg to create the appearance of a snake's sliver-shaped pupil. Use a whole olive slice to make the eyes look more human or half a cherry tomato to make the eyes look evil.

Shaped Finger Sandwiches

Keep party guests snacking during the winter holidays with uniquely shaped finger sandwiches. Use a star-shaped cookie cutter to cut out individual appetizers from each sandwich. Spread crab salad and cream cheese between two slices of honey-wheat bread for a creamy nibble or use tomato, basil and cream cheese between two slices of white bread for a Christmas-colored snack. Use a leaf-shaped cookie cutter to give a fall theme to a ham and cheese sandwich on whole wheat -- use creamy salad dressing instead of mayo. Try a snowman-shaped cutter on a PB&J; sandwich on white bread for a kid-friendly snack.

Apple Smiles

Stick mini marshmallows to apple slices to create a kid's party appetizer that literally brings a smile to each guest's face. Spread a light layer of peanut butter, jelly or marshmallow fluff on top of two apple slices. Press mini marshmallows into the spread on the first slice and top with the second slice to create lips around a toothy marshmallow grin. Use red apples and regular marshmallows to create a silly smile or green apples and chocolate marshmallows to create a monstrous smile.

About the Author

A writer since 2000, Aya Pauli has covered a variety of topics including food, fashion, beauty, health, parenting, education, decor and crafts. Her award-winning recipes have been published in food magazines such as "Taste of Home," and she is also the author of a salad cookbook. Pauli's craft projects appear in major manufacturer websites, including Dow Styrofoam. She also holds a CDA in early childhood education and works as a preschool teacher in Wyoming.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images