10 Make-Ahead Appetizers for a Streamlined, Stress-Free Holiday

A few years back, I came to the realization that the star of my holiday table is not in fact the turkey, or the ham, or even the crown rib roast. Though we all ostensibly come together for the picture-perfect moment when Dad carves up the big bird, or …

A few years back, I came to the realization that the star of my holiday table is not in fact the turkey, or the ham, or even the crown rib roast. Though we all ostensibly come together for the picture-perfect moment when Dad carves up the big bird, or slices up the roast, the real excitement is the flurry of activity that happens around cocktail hour. Regardless of what's on the dinner menu, everyone jumps for the tartlets, canapés, and mile-long cheese board I place out hours before dinnertime. Who doesn’t love tasting different bites of cheesy, gooey, savory snacks before all the mashed potatoes and gravy?

I also realized that as much as my guests and I love appetizers, I seem to dread my appetizer prep each year (let’s face it—making 100 of anything can be time-consuming and just a little stressful). But, knowing I couldn’t give up my favorite little bites (give the people what they want!), I thought about what I could do to get them checked off the list well ahead of the big day. It soon dawned on me: If I chose wisely, many of my cocktail nibbles could be made weeks ahead of time and stockpiled in my freezer.

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7 Smart Tips That Make Thanksgiving Shopping Soooo Much Easier

While it may feel like we were just slathering on sunscreen and packing a bag for a long day at the beach, summer is sadly behind us. Now, leaves are falling from the trees, seasonal wreaths are hanging from our doors, and holiday planning mode is offi…

While it may feel like we were just slathering on sunscreen and packing a bag for a long day at the beach, summer is sadly behind us. Now, leaves are falling from the trees, seasonal wreaths are hanging from our doors, and holiday planning mode is officially beginning. For me, as soon as my kids start suiting up for the big trick or treat, I have one thing on my mind: Thanksgiving.

It may sound like I’m jumping the gun a bit, but Thanksgiving is quite honestly my favorite holiday of the year—the one day everyone celebrates with enthusiasm. And while it doesn't involve any gift-giving, it does require some thoughtfulness and preparation in other ways. As the annual host for my large family's Thanksgiving dinner, I have learned that I can't start planning early enough.

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