Quick & Easy Low-Calorie Appetizer Recipes

Find healthy, delicious quick and easy low-calorie appetizer recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Peanut Butter Energy Balls

Rating: 4.2 stars 5
These healthy peanut butter and chocolate energy balls deliver a mixture of simple and complex carbohydrates to help fuel you up whenever you need a little boost. They're no-bake and easy to make with ingredients you probably have on hand, like oats and nut butter. Feel free to experiment with different mix-ins--for example, dried fruit or chopped nuts--in place of the chocolate chips and coconut.

Sriracha-Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Rating: 4.64 stars 14
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.

Peanut Butter-Oat Energy Balls

Rating: 4.67 stars 7
Sweet, sticky dates act as the glue for these no-bake energy balls. Perfect for hikes or during sports, this healthy snack travels well. For the best flavor and texture, use Medjool dates--the largest and most luscious date variety. Look for them in the produce department or near other dried fruits.

Baked Stuffed Shrimp

Rating: 5 stars 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.

Air-Fryer Crispy Chickpeas

Rating: 3 stars 2
Air-fried chickpea snacks are intensely flavored and incredibly crunchy. Drying the chickpeas is essential to a good crunch, so don't skip this step. If you have time, leave them out on the counter to dry for an hour or two before frying.

Lemon-Garlic Marinated Shrimp

Rating: 4.88 stars 5
Marinating precooked shrimp in garlic- and lemon-infused oil is a simple yet elegant appetizer.

Mushroom Pate

Rating: 4.75 stars 2
Serve this vegetarian pâté recipe as an appetizer with crackers and pickled onions or try it as a sandwich spread. Nutritional yeast, rich in vitamin B12, adds a cheesy flavor without any dairy. Look for the yellow yeast powder or flakes in natural-foods stores.

Mini Brie & Apple Quiches

Rating: 4 stars 4
We love the way Brie and apples taste together in these mini quiches. Mini phyllo cups make it swift and simple to create an elegant appetizer.

Cured or Smoked Salmon Appetizer Platter

Rating: 4 stars 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.

Mediterranean Tuna Antipasto Salad

Rating: 4.72 stars 28
Packed with protein and fiber, this tuna and bean salad is ready in a flash. For an extra kick, add a pinch of crushed red pepper or cayenne.

Homemade Trail Mix

Rating: 3 stars 1
Try this with portable mix with any combination of dried fruits and nuts.

Beef Lettuce Wraps with Chili-Garlic Sauce & Sesame Oil

Full of peppers and a broccoli slaw, these beef lettuce wraps are crunchy and delicious. Chili-garlic sauce brings a slight heat to the dish.
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Inspiration and Ideas

Microwave Potato Chips
Rating: Unrated 4
You don't need a deep fryer to make crispy potato chips. We toss thinly sliced potatoes with just a touch of olive oil, pop them in the microwave and voilà! Crispy, crunchy homemade potato chips with 8 grams less fat per serving than regular chips.
Greek Salad Nachos
Rating: Unrated 2
This vegetarian nacho recipe is a fun combination of two favorites--nachos and Greek salad. It uses whole-grain pita chips instead of the tortilla chips used in traditional nacho recipes, and it's loaded with the classic fresh vegetables in Greek salad as well as creamy hummus and salty feta cheese. And it doesn't even need the oven! Easily doubled, this makes a great appetizer or light dinner.
Mississippi Spiced Pecans
Rating: 4 stars
2

Make plenty of these mildly sweet and salty nuts--they are great to have on hand over the holidays.