Last-Minute Appetizers from the Pantry

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FoodNetwork_JarredOrCannedOlivesFinal_H

FoodNetwork_JarredOrCannedOlivesFinal_H

Photo by: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Renee Comet, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

We've all been there: Friends dropped by unexpectedly (yay!). You've nothing to serve them (boo!). Or do you? Odds are, tucked away in your cupboard or fridge are a few familiar ingredients that can easily be turned into tasty snacks. You just need to know what to look for. Here are simple ways to transform kitchen standbys into beyond-the-basics appetizers.

Ingredient: Jarred or Canned Olives
Appetizer: Marinated Olives

Warm in olive oil with seasonings of your choice — try red pepper flakes and garlic, fennel seeds and coriander, or orange zest and rosemary.

FoodNetwork_HummusFinal_H

FoodNetwork_HummusFinal_H

Photo by: Renee Comet ©Renee Comet

Renee Comet, Renee Comet

Ingredient: Packaged Hummus
Appetizer: Dressed-Up Hummus

Dress up this refrigerator staple by scooping it into a pretty bowl; drizzle it with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika or cayenne.

FoodNetwork_PopcornFinal_H

FoodNetwork_PopcornFinal_H

Photo by: Renee Comet ©Renee Comet

Renee Comet, Renee Comet

Ingredient: Popcorn
Appetizer: Spiced Popcorn

Skip the ho-hum salt; drizzle this no-fail snack with melted butter and a few shakes of something from the spice rack. Try seafood seasoning (Old Bay), five-spice powder, smoked paprika or herbes de Provence.

Check out the full gallery of transformed pantry ingredients.

Lygeia Grace is a Senior Editor in Food Network Kitchen.

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