Nothing’s better than gathering friends and family together for a holiday party—except maybe having a celebration that the host can enjoy too. This season, use our handy guide to help you celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with a stress-free open house.
Celebrate with simple snacks
We love serving finger foods at parties, and we’re sure you’ll agree: They’re simple to assemble, they look enticing, and they offer the perfect opportunity to mix homemade items with store-bought ones. Guests can graze all evening, and it’s also easier to mingle when you’re not juggling utensils. Try these easy—but impressive—munchies.
- Guests will flock to a decorative tray piled high with colourful fresh veggies and garnished with seasonal extras like homemade beet or kale chips. Serve them with a selection of rich-tasting dips, both store bought and made from scratch.
- Who doesn’t love a cheese board? Make yours irresistible with a variety of cured meats and cheeses of different textures and flavours, from hard, sharp cheddar to creamy, mild brie. Crunchy flatbreads or mini crisps are an unexpected alternative to the usual crackers.
- Save time and satisfy appetites with Sensations by Compliments Shrimp Appetizers. From elegant and festive to chic comfort food, we have something for every taste—simply pop two trays at a time in the oven, then set up a self-serve station.
- To feed fussy crowds easily, we love a self-serve sandwich station. Set out platters of cold cuts, smoked salmon and roasted veggies, and let guests help themselves. Dress up your table with a basket filled to overflowing with fresh-sliced artisan breads, croissants or mini pretzel buns from our bakery department. Give your table a fun retro look by using small mason jars to serve condiments and extra toppings such as balsamic vinegar, olives and jams.
Keep the drinks flowing
The trick with drinks is to keep it simple: You don’t need a fully stocked bar to make your guests happy.
- Cover your bases by providing juice or punch, a few different special Italian-style sodas, sparkling water, beer, red and white wine, coffee and tea.
- Create your own signature cocktail that reflects the holiday theme. Chill a few premade pitchers in the fridge for guests to grab when needed. Or keep a warm mulled punch or festive latte in insulated bottles or simmering on the stove—your home will be even more inviting to loved ones dropping in.
- Garnishes can make a basic drink offering seem even more special. Trim your drink station with bowls of chilled berries, fresh herbs and sliced citrus fruits.
Indulge with easy desserts
Finish the party with an array of grab-and-go festive treats.
- Invite your guests to help themselves to bowls of holiday-themed treats and candies, like red and green jellybeans, mini candy canes and Belgian biscuits.
- There’s no need to get fancy when it comes to homemade sweets. Guests will be thrilled by freshly baked holiday cookies, candy-cane brownies, chocolate peppermint bark or old-fashioned whoopie pies with a festive twist.
- Kids of all ages get a kick out of a do-it-yourself sundae bar. Offer up a selection of ice creams; bowls of fun toppings such as chocolate and toffee chips, gummy bears, sprinkles and marshmallows; and a few sweet sauces to pour on top.