Every party, including a bridal shower, should offer guests delicious snacks. While guests are mingling, chatting and opening gifts, finger foods keep them satisfied, especially during a late afternoon shower that wraps up just before dinner time. Offer a variety of fruit, dairy, meat and vegetable-based appetizers so none of the bridal shower guests leave hungry.
A simple fruit tray of whole strawberries, pineapple chunks and large grapes served with colorful bridal-themed toothpicks will satisfy guests with health-conscious appetites. For a broader appeal, serve the fruit tray with a sweet caramel or peanut butter dip. Fruit kabobs served on skewers topped with wedding bells add to the fun of a bridal shower. Layering fruit that matches the wedding colors--such as watermelon chunks, green grapes and kiwi slices for a pink and green wedding--will have the bride blushing with delight.
Cheese quesadillas, cheese cubes and miniature yogurt cups add variety to a bridal shower appetizer buffet. Dipping sauces such as sour cream, fresh salsa or warm marinara sauces add flavor and texture to the cheese quesadillas, according to Taste of Home magazine. Whole blueberries, mandarin orange wedges or bright red cherries atop the yogurt cups add color and can coordinate with the shower theme or wedding colors. For more color coordination, serve cheese cubes on a platter lined with decorative napkins matching the wedding or shower colors.
Since bridal shower appetizers stay out for a few hours, keep meat-based snacks hot in a crock pot. Spicy miniature meatballs, bite-size sausages or bacon-wrapped dates stay warm--and safe to eat-- in the slow cooker. Appetizers made with cold cuts, such as roll-ups and miniature sandwiches, keep cool and fresh to eat when served on a tray resting on a cooling mat or atop a bowl of ice.
In addition to a fresh vegetable tray with creamy dip, treat guests to a varied relish tray. Michael Kabel at the My Wedding Favors website suggests serving an array of exotic olives. Add pickled pepper slices and miniature pickles for a savory treat. Jalapeno peppers, mushrooms or tomatoes stuffed with seasoned rice, cheese blends or sauteed meats also create a hearty appetizer for bridal shower guests.
Move over, red punch and sparkling wine. Thick, rich shakes topped with fresh fruit or creamy, homemade hot cocoa will impress bridal shower guests. When the weather turns cool or the thermometer rises to an uncomfortable high, let shower beverages comfort guests. For a fall bridal shower, serve warmed apple cider with fresh cinnamon sticks, and in the heat of summer opt for chilled ice tea with a buffet of mix-ins including fresh mint leaves, mango syrup or lemon wedges.
Angela Tague writes marketing content and journalistic pieces for major brands including Bounty, The Nest, Lowe's Home Improvement and Hidden Valley. She also provides feature content to newspapers and writes health and beauty blogs for Daily Glow, Everyday Health and Walgreens. Tague graduated from the University of Iowa with a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communications in 1999.