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Wellness for the Family: Holiday Party Platter Ideas

With the holiday season upon us and Christmas less than a week away, you probably have a few holiday parties in your future.

Michelle Dunaway and Grace Derocha show us some great party platter ideas for a fun and festive way to celebrate Christmas or ring in the New Year.

Polar Express Festive Veggie Train with Feta Avocado Dip

Ingredients:

  • Variety of bell peppers
  • English cucumber
  • Variety of vegetables or bread/crackers/tortilla chips

Feta Avocado Dip:

  • 1 avocado – diced and removed from peel
  • 4 oz feta cheese
  • 1 lemon – juiced
  • 2 or 3 scallions – roughly chopped
  • 1 large handful of parsley
  • 8 twists of black pepper (from a pepper mill)

Instructions:

  1. Get creative. Hollow out and clean bell peppers. Cut into cups to be train cars.
  2. Cut cucumbers into circle slices for wheels. Attach to pepper train cups with toothpicks.
  3. Chop vegetables and place in pepper train cups. Save one pepper cup for feta avocado dip.

To make dip:

  1. Add avocado, feta cheese, juice of one lemon, scallions, parsley and pepper to food processor.
  2. Pulse food processor until desired consistency. Put in bell pepper cup.
  3. Serve with veggies, bread, crackers or tortillas. Enjoy!

Healthy Holiday Wreath with White Bean Artichoke Spread

Ingredients:

  • Whole wheat baguette or loaf of garlic bread, sliced
  • Broccoli, finely chopped
  • Red pepper, chopped (optional cut a small red bow out of red bell pepper)
  • Green pepper, chopped (optional cut two holly leaves out of green bell pepper)
  • Tomato, diced
  • Cauliflower, riced

Dip Ingredients:

  • 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans (white kidney beans), drained and rinsed
  • 1 14-ounce can artichoke hearts (packed in water), drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon chopped fresh garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (or lime juice)
  • 3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling on top
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 cup (about ¼ ounces) finely shredded Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Several grinds of fresh pepper

Instructions:

  1. Combine the cannellini beans, artichoke hearts, garlic, and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. With the machine running, drizzle in the 3 Tablespoons of olive oil.
  2. Blend in the rosemary and Pecorino Romano, then salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight. Serve at room temperature.
  3. Cut garlic bread or baguette into slices. Place in a circle to illustrate a wreath. Spread white bean and artichoke dip over the bread in wreath.
  4. Sprinkle vegetables, bell peppers, tomato, broccoli and cauliflower on top of bread and spread.
  5. Place red bell pepper bow and green bell pepper leaves on wreath. Serve and enjoy!

 

Mini Christmas Tree Snacks

Ingredients:

  • Naan, cut into triangle shapes
  • Yellow pepper stars
  • Carrots, diced
  • Red and green bell peppers, diced
  • Pretzel sticks

Pesto cream cheese spread:

  • 8 ounces of low fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 Tbsp pesto

Instructions:

  1. Mix cream cheese and pesto. Spread on naan triangles.
  2. Insert pretzen stick into bottom of triangle. Decorate holiday tree with carrots and bell peppers. Enjoy!

Grace Derocha is a registered dietitian, certified diabetes educator and certified health coach with . For more tips on how to live a healthier lifestyle, .

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