Busy Girl's Guide to Entertaining

Happy Wednesday, dear readers! This week's DIY post is the first in a new series about busy people who still like having folks over. Sounds like me. Yep that's me. 

Busy Girl's Quick & Easy Apps

Hopefully this series will give you great ideas and a little confidence that despite having a busy schedule, you can have friends over without turning yourself into a rage-oppotomus. We will start with my favorite thing... appetizers! And I'm not just talkin about your veggie tray, chip-n-dip, Trader Joes apps. I'm talkin "hot damn did you make this?" kind of apps.

Crockpot Meatballs

I have gone back and forth with myself about posting this recipe. It is a go-to for me but I am a little ashamed to admit how easy it is given how UNBELIEVABLE it tastes. But here goes.

  • Bag of frozen Italian meatballs 
  • 1 jar grape jelly
  • 1 bottle cocktail sauce
  • Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes (optional)

Layer grape jelly, cocktail sauce and meatballs into crockpot. Set to high and stir regularly until meatballs are thawed and sauce is combined, maybe 25 minutes. Turn crockpot to low and season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste. That's it. Serve it with toothpicks for easy eating. I'll be over here wallowing in my shame and meatball sauce.

Now for some other delightful appetizer recipes (yes I have made all of these and yes they are all categorically delicious). 

Your guests will love these yummy little Cheese & Herb Stuffed Mini Peppers. And you will love how quickly they whip up! You have more important things to do. Like have a cocktail.

A BHG recipe via Recipe.com

A BHG recipe via Recipe.com

Another great last-minute appetizer are these Lemon-Thyme Bruschetta. They are an appetizer king among men. From the culinary geniuses at The Kitchn.

I realize now that most of these recipes involve cheese. I'm not sorry. Here is a delicious take on baked brie from Half-Baked Harvest. Real talk, this went like gangbusters at my last soiree served with french baguette and crackers. 

On the lighter side, skewers are always a favorite both with hostesses with better things to do and people with tastebuds. I love putting something a little unexpected on them, like your standard fruit salad favorites or these Prosciutto, Havarti & Blackberry skewer. Sign me up!

Photo by Sweet Root Village via Style Me Pretty

Photo by Sweet Root Village via Style Me Pretty

Of course, no appetizer post would be complete without a nod to the cheese plate. I personally love the cheese plate but cannot abide an poorly executed one. It's one of my things. I love this simple guide for creating a crowd-pleasing cheese plate. My personal fave? A combo of bleu cheese, harder cheddar and brie with salted almonds, herb crackers and balsamic roasted grapes (douse your grapes in balsamic and stick those babies under the broiler for 5ish minutes or until they look roasty). 

Do you have favorite appetizer recipes that are tried-and-true standbys? Share them on Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest with #bettybetatester! I am so hungry now. Who's with me? xo