Elevate Your Appetizers Epicurious Recipes for Small Bites

Are you tired of serving the same old appetizers at your dinner parties? Do you want to impress your guests with something new and exciting? Look no further than these Epicurious recipes for small bites. From mini crab cakes to bacon-wrapped dates, these recipes will elevate your appetizers and make your guests feel like they are dining at a five-star restaurant.

Understanding the Basics of Appetizers

Before we dive into the recipes, let’s take a moment to understand the basics of appetizers. Appetizers are the first course of a meal, and they serve to stimulate the appetite and set the tone for the rest of the meal. There are several types of appetizers, including hot, cold, sweet, and savory. When choosing an appetizer, consider the flavors and textures of the rest of the meal and choose something that complements them.

We’ve already covered why elevating your appetizers is important. In this section, we’ll give you an overview of what you can expect to learn in this guide.

The Best Ingredients for Epicurious Appetizers

One of the keys to creating delicious and impressive appetizers is using high-quality ingredients. In this section, we’ll go over some of the best ingredients to use in your appetizer recipes.

Top Techniques for Elevating Your Appetizers

There are many techniques you can use to take your appetizers to the next level. In this section, we’ll go over some of the top techniques, such as using creative presentation, playing with textures and flavors, and trying new recipes and techniques.

Recipes for Small Bites

In this section, we’ll share some of our favorite recipes for small bites. These recipes are perfect for appetizers and will impress your guests with their deliciousness and presentation.

In this final section, we’ll wrap up what we’ve covered in this guide and leave you with some final thoughts on elevating your appetizers.

The Best Ingredients for Epicurious Appetizers

Using high-quality ingredients is key to creating delicious and impressive appetizers. Here are some of the best ingredients to use:

Fresh Produce

Using fresh produce can make a big difference in the flavor and texture of your appetizers. Look for in-season produce at your local farmers’ market or grocery store, and consider using a variety of colors and textures to make your appetizers visually appealing.

High-Quality Meats and Cheeses

If you’re using meats and cheeses in your appetizers, make sure to use high-quality versions. Look for artisanal cheeses and cured meats that have complex flavors and textures.

Flavorful Condiments and Spreads

Condiments and spreads can add a lot of flavor to your appetizers. Look for flavorful options such as homemade pesto, hummus, or a spicy aioli.

Unique Herbs and Spices

Using unique herbs and spices can add depth and complexity to your appetizers. Try using fresh herbs such as basil or cilantro, or experiment with spices such as smoked paprika or cumin.

Top Techniques for Elevating Your Appetizers

Here are some additional tips for elevating your appetizers and making them stand out:

Creative Presentation

The way you present your appetizers can make a big impact on how they’re perceived by your guests. Try using unique serving dishes or plating techniques to make your appetizers visually interesting and appealing.

Playing with Textures and Flavors

Using a variety of textures and flavors in your appetizers can make them more interesting and enjoyable to eat. Try pairing crunchy elements with creamy ones, or sweet flavors with salty ones.

Trying New Recipes and Techniques

Don’t be afraid to try new recipes and techniques to elevate your appetizers. Experiment with new ingredients, cooking methods, and flavor combinations to keep things fresh and exciting.

Epicurious Recipes for Small Bites

Now that you understand the basics of appetizers, let’s move on to the main event: the recipes. These Epicurious recipes for small bites are sure to impress your guests:

Caprese Skewers

Thread cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, and mozzarella balls onto skewers for a classic Caprese salad in bite-sized form.

Mini Quiches

Make mini quiches by filling muffin tins with a mixture of eggs, cheese, and your favorite vegetables or meats. Bake until set and serve warm.


Top slices of crusty bread with a mixture of diced tomatoes, fresh basil, and balsamic vinegar for a simple and delicious appetizer.

Stuffed Mushrooms

Remove the stems from mushrooms and fill the caps with a mixture of breadcrumbs, cheese, and herbs. Bake until golden and serve warm.

Baked Brie

Wrap a wheel of Brie in puff pastry and bake until golden and melted. Serve with crackers or slices of baguette.


Top slices of toasted bread with your favorite toppings, such as goat cheese and fig jam, or smoked salmon and dill cream cheese.

Shrimp Cocktail

Serve cooked shrimp with a homemade cocktail sauce made from ketchup, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce.

Cucumber Cups

Scoop out the center of cucumber slices and fill with a mixture of cream cheese, smoked salmon, and dill.

Deviled Eggs

Mix cooked egg yolks with mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, and paprika for a classic and crowd-pleasing appetizer.

Charcuterie Board

Arrange a variety of cured meats, cheeses, olives, crackers, and fruit on a board for a visually appealing and delicious appetizer spread.

Mini Crab Cakes with Spicy Remoulade

These mini crab cakes are packed with flavor and are perfect for any occasion. The spicy remoulade sauce adds an extra kick that will have your guests coming back for more. To make these crab cakes, you will need:

  • 1 pound lump crab meat
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • For the spicy remoulade:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

To make the crab cakes, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Form the mixture into small patties and fry in a pan until golden brown. To make the spicy remoulade, mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl. Serve the crab cakes with the spicy remoulade on the side.

Baked Brie with Pecans and Brown Sugar

This baked brie is the perfect combination of sweet and savory. The melted cheese pairs perfectly with the crunchy pecans and sweet brown sugar. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 1 wheel of brie cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter

To make the baked brie, preheat your oven to 350°F. Place the brie cheese in a baking dish and top with the chopped pecans and brown sugar. Dot with butter and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with crackers or sliced baguette.

Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Goat Cheese

These bacon-wrapped dates are a classic appetizer with a twist. The sweet dates are wrapped in salty bacon and stuffed with tangy goat cheese. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 16 large Medjool dates, pitted
  • 8 slices of bacon, cut in half
  • 4 ounces goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 16 toothpicks

To make the bacon-wrapped dates, preheat your oven to 400°F. In a small bowl, mix together the goat cheese and chopped walnuts. Stuff each date with a small amount of the goat cheese mixture. Wrap each stuffed date with a half slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Place the dates on a baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the bacon is crispy. Serve immediately.

Crostini with Roasted Tomatoes and Basil Pesto

These crostini are a simple yet delicious appetizer that are sure to impress your guests. The roasted tomatoes add a burst of flavor and the basil pesto ties everything together. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 1 loaf of French bread, sliced into 1/2-inch thick rounds
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup basil pesto

To make the crostini, preheat your oven to 400°F. Place the sliced bread on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil. Bake for 5-7 minutes or until the bread is toasted. In a separate bowl, toss the halved cherry tomatoes with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast the tomatoes in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until they are soft and slightly caramelized. To assemble the crostini, spread a dollop of basil pesto on each slice of bread and top with a few roasted tomatoes.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus with Parmesan Cheese

This elegant appetizer combines the earthy flavor of asparagus with the salty richness of prosciutto and Parmesan cheese. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 16 asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 8 slices of prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

To make the prosciutto-wrapped asparagus, preheat your oven to 400°F. Wrap each asparagus spear with a half slice of prosciutto and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and Parmesan cheese. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the asparagus is tender and the prosciutto is crispy. Serve immediately.

Mini Caprese Skewers

These bite-sized skewers are a fun and fresh twist on the classic caprese salad. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 16 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 16 mini fresh mozzarella balls
  • 16 fresh basil leaves
  • Balsamic glaze, for drizzling
  • 16 toothpicks

To make the mini caprese skewers, thread a cherry tomato half, a fresh mozzarella ball, and a basil leaf onto each toothpick. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and serve immediately.

Crispy Artichoke Hearts with Lemon Aioli

These crispy artichoke hearts are a flavorful and indulgent appetizer that is sure to impress your guests. To make this recipe, you will need:

  • 1 can of artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

To make the crispy artichoke hearts, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk together the beaten eggs. In a third bowl, mix together the seasoned breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dredge each artichoke heart in the flour mixture, shaking off any excess. Dip each artichoke heart in the beaten eggs, then coat in the breadcrumb mixture. Fry the coated artichoke hearts in the hot oil for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Drain on paper towels. To make the lemon aioli, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Serve the crispy artichoke hearts with the lemon aioli for dipping.

Tips for Elevating Your Appetizers

Now that you have some Epicurious recipes for small bites, here are some tips for elevating your appetizers:

Use High-Quality Ingredients

The key to any great dish is using high-quality ingredients. Use fresh herbs, premium meats, and artisanal cheeses to take your appetizers to the next level.

Experiment with Different Flavors and Textures

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different flavors and textures in your appetizers. Combine sweet and savory flavors, add a crunchy element, or try a new spice to add some depth to your dishes.

Presentation is Key

The presentation of your appetizers can make all the difference. Use decorative platters, garnishes, and colorful ingredients to make your dishes look as good as they taste.

Consider Dietary Restrictions

When planning your appetizers, consider any dietary restrictions your guests may have. Offer vegetarian, gluten-free, and dairy-free options to ensure that everyone can enjoy the meal.

Focus on quality ingredients

When it comes to appetizers, quality ingredients are key. Choose the freshest produce and highest quality meats and cheeses you can find to ensure that your appetizers are delicious and flavorful.

Play with textures and flavors

Combining different textures and flavors can take your appetizers to the next level. Try pairing something crunchy with something creamy, or something sweet with something savory. Experiment with different flavor combinations to find what works best for you.

Use creative presentation

How your appetizers are presented can be just as important as how they taste. Use decorative platters, garnishes, and unique serving vessels to make your appetizers look visually appealing and impressive.

Try new recipes and techniques

Don’t be afraid to try new recipes and techniques when it comes to making appetizers. Browse cookbooks, online recipe sites, and food blogs for inspiration, and experiment with different cooking methods and ingredients to create something unique and delicious.


Elevating your appetizers with Epicurious recipes for small bites doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming. With a few high-quality ingredients, some creativity, and these tips and recipes, you can create delicious and impressive appetizers that your guests will love. So the next time you’re planning a party or get-together, try out some of these recipes and tips and see how they elevate your appetizer game.

Congratulations, you’ve now learned how to elevate your appetizers with Epicurious recipes for small bites. By using high-quality ingredients, trying new techniques, and experimenting with new recipes, you’ll be sure to impress your guests and create a memorable dining experience. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, cocktail hour, or simply want to elevate your everyday meals, these tips and recipes are sure to come in handy.

Thank you for reading and we hope you found this article helpful. Be sure to check out our website for more delicious recipes and cooking tips.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *