Healthy New Year's Appetizer Recipes

Ring in the New Year with these lightened-up versions of your favorite party appetizer recipes.

Staff Picks

Sriracha-Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Rating: Unrated
10
This recipe for spicy Buffalo cauliflower bites is a great vegetarian alternative to Buffalo wings. Roasted cauliflower stands in for chicken and provides more fiber and fewer calories. Serve this easy appetizer with carrot sticks, celery and your favorite ranch or blue cheese dressing.

Lemon-Garlic Marinated Shrimp

Rating: Unrated
16
Marinating precooked shrimp in garlic- and lemon-infused oil is a simple yet elegant appetizer.

Crab-Stuffed Mushrooms

Rating: Unrated
1
This crab-stuffed mushroom recipe is perfect for Christmas, New Year's Eve and other holiday parties or any other time you need a quick and easy appetizer. The filling is light and fresh thanks to hearts of palm, a tender vegetable with a mild flavor (similar to artichokes) that doesn't mask the rich, sweet flavor of fresh crabmeat.

Cured or Smoked Salmon Appetizer Platter

Rating: Unrated
2
This smoked salmon platter requires little effort but the spread makes a big impression. Served with all the fixings--capers, hard-boiled eggs, cucumber and more--a smoked salmon platter is the ultimate make-ahead appetizer. Lay out everything listed in the ingredients below or just a few of the elements along with an assortment of crackers, cocktail bread and/or sliced baguette.

Creamy Spinach Dip

Rating: Unrated
6
Try this light spinach dip made healthier with reduced-fat cream cheese, nonfat yogurt and low-fat cottage cheese instead of full-fat cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream. It will save you a whopping 84 calories and 10 grams of fat per serving when compared to traditional versions. Serve it with pita chips and crunchy vegetables or spread it on a sandwich.

Chile-Lime Peanuts

Rating: Unrated
8
These spicy nuts were inspired by ones sold by street vendors across Mexico. If you can only find salted peanuts, omit the added salt. Add the maximum amount of cayenne pepper if you want an extra hit of spice.

Slow-Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip

Rating: Unrated
1
This creamy, crowd-pleasing dip comes together with ease in your crock pot. Leave it in the slow cooker all party long to keep it warm for serving with perfect, melty cheese in every bite. Whole-wheat bread and raw veggie dippers allow you to dig in without the guilt.

Baked Stuffed Shrimp

Rating: Unrated
1
Stuffed shrimp make a quick and easy appetizer perfect for holiday parties. The trick to great stuffed shrimp? Make sure your shrimp are large enough to hold the filling. We recommend jumbo shrimp, which easily encase the savory filling of scallions, breadcrumbs and bacon with just a hint of spice from cayenne pepper.

Thai Chicken Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce

Rating: Unrated
10
Spicy peanut sauce is the perfect match for these Thai-marinated grilled chicken strips.

Pear-Pecan Cheese Ball

Rating: Unrated
3
Sweet pear, salty Cheddar cheese and crunchy nuts make this healthy cheese ball recipe an alluring holiday treat. Serve with an array of crudités and crisp party crackers.

Pear & Camembert Crostini

Rating: Unrated
1
Up your appetizer game with this fruit-topped cheese crostini recipe. Warm preserves give the pears a shiny glaze and prevent them from browning.

Polenta Wedges with Tomato Tapenade

Rating: Unrated
2
Crispy pieces of polenta topped with a tangy sun-dried tomato tapenade makes a pretty and tasty appetizer.

Inspiration and Ideas

Oysters on the Half Shell with Mignonette Sauce

It may seem a little intimidating to open an oyster, but after a little practice it gets easier. Classically oysters are served raw on the half shell with a little mignonette sauce, which refers in French to “black pepper,” but you can also enjoy them without any sauce at all.

3-Ingredient Cream Cheese & Cherry Pepper Bites

Need a super-easy holiday-party hors d'oeuvre? These tasty little cream cheese and cherry pepper tartlets come together in a snap, thanks to premade pie dough, which is pressed into a mini muffin tin to make the tart shells--then all you have to do is fill the cups with cream cheese and chopped cherry peppers. Chopped herbs add a nice hit of color, but these are just as tasty as-is. Consider making a double batch--these bites are sure to go quickly.