10 Cheap Party Appetizers Ideas for Entertaining at Home

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A close-up of the honey & feta filo rolls layered on a shallow deep bowl with dip sauce.

As someone who had to transition from college life to the grown-up life, I always felt like entertaining at home is something you do when your life is settled and you have money in the bank. Slowly I started realizing that entertaining is not only for the grown-ups ad riches. First, people never grow up and secondly entertaining shouldn’t be expensive. Which is why I’m sharing 10 easy and cheap party appetizers ideas that won’t break the bank.

Entertaining at home with a low budget requires some planning. Keep the bar limited to the favorites. During my time in the Netherlands, I learned that people only served coffee, tea, beer, wine, soda, and 1 or 2 types of juice. Spirits weren’t something the host would offer and often it was reserved for the last few guests who were either family or close friends. While I always try to add a cocktail in the mix, it highly depends on who I’m hosting and how many people there are.

Use the leftover ingredients from the cheap party appetizers in this list to create other appetizers. That’s when you’re making the most use of your ingredients and you’re not spending tons on groceries. Talking about groceries, when you’re shopping for goodies choose the cheapest grocery store. There is a time for choosing convenience and going to a more expensive store. That time is not when you’re creating appetizers for 50 people.


#1 Chili con Carne Dip Recipe with Nacho Chips

Chili con carne dip in a bowl with nachos on the side and cheese

A delicious dip that you can make in large or small quantity. This one is a huge party-pleaser and very easy to create. Not to mention that the ingredients are cheap and most you already have in your pantry.

#2 Honey & Feta Filo Rolls

A couple of honey & feta filo rolls layered on a shallow deep bowl with dip sauce.

This is literally a 4-ingredients recipe. This is what cheap party appetizers are made of, limited ingredients. The honey & feta filo rolls are so easy to make, even fun one can say, and taste simply delicious.

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#3 Garlic & Herb Crab Pinwheels

Garlic and herb pinwheel on a plate with a red and white napkin around the plate.

Puff pastry and distinctive flavors will always be a favorite at any party. This delicious garlic and herb crab pinwheels recipe is a match made in heaven.

#4 Mini Arepas with Cheese

A basket with mini arepas with cheese and 3 different sauces.

You wouldn’t think that an international dish would ever make the list of cheap party appetizers, but this recipe requires just 6 ingredients (and that’s including water) and is perfect to make for a crowd. Just one pack of corn flour will be enough to feed 30 people, if not more.

#5 Garlic Parmesan Baked Chicken Wings

Garlic parmesan chicken wings with a dip on the side and cucumber slices.

Chicken, Parmesan cheese, spices, and oven. That’s all you need for a finger-licking good appetizer. It’s great for game night, outdoor entertaining, or even a casual night with friends.

#6 Parmesan Herb Oil Dip

A small and shallow bowl with parmesan & herb oild dip with a bread slice dipped into the oil and bread slices on the side.

This appetizer is more for when you have people for a home happy hour or dinner party. You can place 1 or 2 bowls with your favorite fresh bread and let people away. The recipe is so simple and the taste mindblowing.

#7 Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches Recipes

If you think a grilled cheese sandwich is an inexpensive meal, imagine creating it in mini versions. Also, who doesn’t like a grilled cheese sandwich?

#8 Cream Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms

A cream cheese stuffed mushroom, baked.

This is for all my cheese lovers! Aren’t we all? I love an appetizer that is both delicious as it is easy to make. Especially if you can prepare it before your guests arrive and just warm it up before serving.

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#9 Baked Garlic Pepper Polenta Fries

A bowl of polenta fries with one polenta fries dipped into a red sauce.

What else can you do with cornmeal? Make polenta fries of course. Now you have 2 recipes you can make with the same ingredient. Talk about cheap party appetizers, huh?! Polenta fries are a unique appetizer to serve that everyone will love. They’re gluten-free and vegan.

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#10 Whole 30 Bacon Wrapped Scallops

A few bacon wrapped scallops.

Layering flavors is a great way to create a memorable appetizer and adding seafood will always take your appetizer to the next level. By keeping it simple you’ll not only let the flavors of the ingredients do their magic, but you’ll also keep the costs low.

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