50 Cheese Appetizer Recipes

Please any crowd with these fun starters from Food Network Magazine.

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Photo By: Justin Walker

Easy Party Bites

Create the ultimate party spread with Food Network Magazine's 50 Cheese Appetizers. Choose from dozens of tasty starters like cheese dips, crostini and more. 

 

Photgraphs by Justin Walker

Parmesan Cheese Straws (No. 1)

Beat 1 egg with 1 tablespoon water. Roll out 1 sheet thawed frozen puff pastry into a 12-inch square on a floured surface; brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle with 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 1/2 teaspoon each kosher salt and paprika, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne. Cut into 24 strips (1/2 inch thick); twist each strip. Bake at 375 degrees F until golden, 15 minutes.

Honey-Walnut Goat Cheese (No. 11)

Combine 1/4 cup each olive oil, walnut oil and chopped walnuts, 2 tablespoons honey, and pepper to taste. Pour over one 11-ounce log sliced goat cheese in a dish. Let sit 2 hours; top with chopped chives. Serve with crostini.

Ricotta-Pistachio Crostini (No. 12)

Beat 8 ounces ricotta, 2 tablespoons each heavy cream and grated Parmesan, and a pinch of salt until smooth. Stir in 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch each of red pepper flakes and chopped rosemary. Spread on crostini; top with orange marmalade and chopped pistachios.

Fig-Walnut Cheese Balls (No. 18) and Bacon-Chive Cheese Balls (No. 19)

18. Pulse 8 ounces softened goat cheese and 4 ounces gorgonzola dolce in a food processor until smooth. Mix in 3 tablespoons finely chopped dried figs; chill. Form into 1-inch balls; roll in freshly ground pepper and finely chopped candied walnuts.

 

19. Mix 8 ounces softened cream cheese, 1 cup shredded gouda, 2 chopped cooked bacon slices, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, and hot sauce to taste; chill. Form into 1-inch balls; roll in chopped chives.

Fig and Cheese Toasts (No. 20)

Cut rosemary focaccia into small slices. Make the Fig-Walnut Cheese Ball mixture (No. 18); do not chill or roll. Spread on the focaccia; sprinkle with Parmesan. Broil until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Top with chopped parsley.

Olive-Asiago Flatbread (No. 21)

Combine 1/2 cup each chopped green olives and parsley, 1/4 cup olive oil and 1 grated garlic clove; season with pepper. Spread onto 2 lavash flatbreads; top with 1/2 cup shredded asiago. Bake at 425 degrees F until crisp, 12 minutes. Cut into pieces.

Spanakopita Tartlets (No. 23)

Warm one 10-ounce package thawed frozen creamed spinach as the label directs. Stir in 1/2 cup crumbled feta and 2 tablespoons each chopped scallions and dill. Fill 30 frozen mini phyllo shells with the mixture. Bake at 400 degrees F until set, 15 minutes. Cool slightly.

 

Spanish Manchego Tortilla Bites (No. 31)

Mix 4 cups potato chips with 12 lightly beaten eggs; let sit until softened, 5 to 10 minutes. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a medium nonstick ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add half of the egg mixture, 4 ounces each cubed manchego and muenster, then the remaining egg mixture. Cook, undisturbed, until the bottom is golden, 5 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees F until set, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool; unmold and cut into squares.

Pepper Jack Latkes (No. 35)

Peel and grate 2 russet potatoes and 2 carrots; squeeze dry. Mix with 1 egg, 1/2 grated onion, 1 cup shredded pepper Jack, 1/3 cup breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons chopped parsley and 1 teaspoon kosher salt; season with pepper. Form into 2-inch pancakes; cook in vegetable oil until golden, 3 minutes per side. Sprinkle with salt; top with sour cream.

Cheddar Biscuits with Ham (No. 36)

Pulse 2 cups flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda in a food processor. Add 1 stick diced cold butter; pulse until crumbly. Pulse in 1 cup each buttermilk and shredded cheddar, and 1 chopped scallion. Roll out to 1/2 inch thick on a floured surface, fold in half and reroll. Cut out 1-inch rounds. Bake at 400 degrees F until golden, 15 minutes. Sandwich with fig jam and ham.

Arancini (No. 41)

Microwave 1 cup Arborio rice with 1 2/3 cups chicken broth, 1/3 cup white wine and 1/3 cup chopped onion in an 8-inch microwave-safe dish, stirring halfway through, until tender, 18 minutes; cool. Mix in 2 eggs and 3/4 cup each grated Parmesan and provolone. Roll into 1 1/4-inch balls; dredge in breadcrumbs. Chill. Deep-fry in 350 degrees F vegetable oil until golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Serve with marinara sauce.

Fried Ravioli (No. 42)

Mix equal parts all-purpose and semolina flour. Dip refrigerated cheese ravioli in beaten egg, then the flour mixture. Deep-fry in 375 degrees F vegetable oil until golden, 4 minutes. Serve with marinara sauce.

Beer Cheese Soup Shooters (No. 50)

Cook 1 chopped onion and 2 chopped garlic cloves in 1/2 stick butter in a large pot over medium heat until softened. Add 1/4 cup flour; cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Whisk in 12 ounces beer, 2 cups chicken broth, 1/2 cup heavy cream and 1 teaspoon each Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce; cook until thickened, 5 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in 1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers and 2 cups shredded cheddar until melted. Puree; season with salt and cayenne. Top with more peppers.