As the weather gets colder, we are plunged into a world of red and orange trees, crispy leaves, and extra pairs of socks. Whether you're reading this at the start of autumn or a few days before Christmas, we never need an excuse to get excited about Christmas food.
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5 savoury Christmas nibbles
Christmas dinner may be the main focus of the festive season. But there is plenty of time to enjoy Christmas snacks, too. When you're enjoying Christmas drinks, a little savoury snack is perfect for bringing out the flavours of your homemade mulled wine. We've picked five of our favourite ideas for those simple, delicious, fun Christmas nibbles. Most of these can be prepared beforehand or whipped up on Christmas Day. You can serve these as finger food or appetisers.
These bite-sized savoury pancakes are the ultimate Christmas nibble. Blinis are great because you can make the batter the night before and cook them right before serving. We've even seen recipes that say you can make blinis in advance and freeze them, then defrost them on the day. Results may vary with this technique, however. Jamie Oliver suggests using smoked salmon, but you can top blinis with many other things. For example, they are great with avocado, goat's cheese or prawn mayo. Serve these with a side of horseradish for another twist of flavour.
Cheese and bread are a winning combo for Christmas. The great thing about this recipe is that you can modify it to your liking. You can prepare your own bread or buy ready-made sourdough rolls for convenience. Mix up some brie and cranberry sauce, spread it into little cuts you've made on the bread and bake it.
You can also use any cheese you get as a Christmas gift with this recipe. If you're not a fan of brie, then feel free to use camembert or goat's cheese.
3. Dips and crudités
Crudités usually go down a treat without ruining main meals! The word crudité comes from the French word cru, which means raw. Crudités are usually raw vegetables that you dip in hummus, vinaigrette, or your favourite chutney. You can buy dips from the supermarket or whip up your own hummus using this easy recipe. Cream cheese is also a delicious dip for crisps and crackers!
Christmas party food can taste good and look gorgeous. You can create this Christmas wreath with delicious antipasto skewers. You simply need to fill mini cocktail sticks with antipasto - we're talking different cured meats, olives, veggies and various kinds of cheese. You can use your own imagination when displaying the skewers!
Your festive party food can include more than just traditional Christmas flavours. You could turn up the heat with these quirky mini tacos. You can make them extra cheesy, swap ground turkey for chorizo and even use some Thai seasoning for a fusion-style nibble. These side dishes are bound to be a hit with the kids!
5 sweet Christmas nibbles
Fantastic finger food isn't just about savoury flavours. You should also include sweet treats in your festive party repertoire. These sweet canapé recipes are just the food ideas you need for treating yourself this holiday season!
These dark chocolate truffles will put any leftover cooked Christmas pudding to good use. The recipe is short (but very sweet!) and only calls for dark chocolate, white chocolate, double cream, and a few edible decorations.
Traybakes can be fun and festive! The mouth-watering gin and tonic traybake is the perfect pick for a sweet treat to your dinner party. The traditional sponge cake is infused with alcohol and topped with white chocolate drizzle and lemon zest.
This white chocolate traybake is excellent if you want something for the whole family to enjoy. The recipe comes from Bake-Off champion Nadiya Hussain and is sure to please adults and children alike. You get a nice mixture of traditional mince pies flavours with refreshing white chocolate ganache.
Beetroot makes an excellent base for cakes. If you are looking for a tasty vegan nibble for Christmas, look no further. These cupcakes aren't too difficult to make, and the comments suggest the results are fantastic. If you want, there is also a gluten-free version available.
Christmas shortbread is an excellent treat for Boxing Day. You can pour yourself a Christmas cocktail and sit down to watch the telly while enjoying these little treats. The great thing about this recipe is that the shortbread is baked in the shape of a Christmas tree! You can make these treats in advance with the kids and let their imaginations run wild when decorating the shortbread.
Creating your Christmas nibbles platter
We spoke to Eb Gargano from Easy Peasy Foodie, who told Age Times: "Some great ideas here! Smoked salmon blinis are a real favourite of mine and dips + crudités always go down well with guests. I love to serve 2 or 3 kinds of homemade hummus: a classic hummus, plus maybe a red pepper one and a roasted pumpkin one, together with lots of raw veggies.
"Absolutely delicious and reasonably healthy too! I really love the sound of the pull-apart brie and cranberry bread too – bread and cheese is always a winner and cranberries add that touch of Christmas. I’m more of a savoury than a sweet person, but I could definitely be tempted by those gin and tonic squares!"
The best thing about party food is that you can create a nibbles platter with almost any dish. Looking for a stress-free solution? Cut sausage rolls into smaller pieces and serve with your favourite chutney, blue cheese, and pâté. Place a dollop of pesto on puff pastry or make crisps from leftover roast potatoes. Christmas food doesn't need to be the latest trending tarts and canapés. It's all about having a good time and enjoying the little things in life! You can even get away with buying snacks like samosas or a premade prawn cocktail to make your day a bit easier.
Are you looking for more inspiration? Have a look at this guide on making your own mulled wine!