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Shockingly Healthy Appetizers Dietitians Love
Wild Blueberry and Pistachio No-Bake Brie
This make-in-minutes appetizer from my own kitchen skips the puff pastry and instead tops the Brie wheel with wild blueberry jam and shelled Wonderful pistachios. You save the calories of the puff pastry—and you get the satiating combo of protein, healthy fat, and fiber from the pistachios. Serve with sliced pears and apples for an even bigger nutrient boost.
Get the recipe: Wild Blueberry and Pistachio No-Bake Brie
Parmesan Roasted Campari Tomatoes
"These tomatoes are a tasty summer appetizer or a great addition to pasta dishes," says Lauren Harris-Pincus, M.S., R.D.N., owner of Nutrition Starring You. "They are gluten-free—and with only 62 calories per serving, you can certainly enjoy a few extra with no worries."
Get the recipe: Parmesan Roasted Campari Tomatoes
Black Bean, Corn, and Avocado Bites
"These bites pack in the heart-healthy goodness of legumes, including fiber, folate, and iron—as well as healthy fats from delicious, ripe avocado," says Lauren O'Connor, M.S., R.D.N., R.Y.T., founder of NutriSavvyHealth.com. "Antioxidant-rich tomatoes provide vitamin C, beta-carotene, and lycopene, excellent nutrients for skin and eye health."
Get the recipe: Black Bean, Corn, and Avocado Bites
Mozzarella and Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms
"These easy stuffed mushrooms are perfect for parties!" says Amber Ketchum, M.D.S., R.D., of Homemade Nutrition. "They have only five main ingredients and are ready in about 30 minutes from start to finish. If you have guests who are following a low-carb or gluten-free eating plan, these are also a great option that everyone can enjoy."
Get the recipe: Mozzarella and Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms
Tortilla Crusted Avocado Fries
"Crunchy tortillas and creamy avocado make these fries a perfect party appetizer," says Tracee Yablon Brenner R.D.N., nutrition director at Triad to Wellness. "The avocado provides nearly 20 essential nutrients, including fiber, potassium, vitamin E, folic acid, and other B vitamins. This appetizer is delicious by itself or with salsa, chipotle mayonnaise, or vegetarian refried beans."
Get the recipe: Tortilla Crusted Avocado Fries
Farmer's Cheese Crostinis
"These crostinis are a great healthy option for entertaining," says Katie Cavuto, M.S., R.D., chef of the Nourish.Breathe.Thrive blog. "The cheese itself is a soft, probiotic-rich curd that is creamy and delicious. All of the toast toppings are in season, which means they're at the height of their nutritional value and more budget-friendly. Dandelion greens are extremely nutrient-dense and detoxifying, while strawberries, honey, and asparagus are packed full of essential nutrients and antioxidants. Hemp seeds provide a little extra protein, which makes these party favors a well-rounded snack!"
Get the recipe: Farmer's Cheese Crostinis
Riced Cauliflower Tots
"The main ingredient of these vegetable tots is cauliflower, a cruciferous vegetable low in calories and packed with vitamins and minerals," says Kristen Smith, M.S., R.D.N., founder of 360FamilyNutrition. "Cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamin C, an antioxidant necessary for the growth and repair of tissues in the body and an important player in the collagen synthesis of skin."
Get the recipe: Riced Cauliflower Tots
Mini Avocado Fruit Toasts
Green Pea Hummus
"If you pushed green peas off your plate as a kid, it's now time to bring them back in a whole new way!" says Layne Lieberman, M.S., R.D., author of Beyond the Mediterranean Diet. "Green peas, whether fresh or frozen, are loaded with protein, fiber, anticancer phytochemicals, and an assortment of powerhouse vitamins and minerals including vitamin K. Try this yummy green pea hummus recipe, and peas may be your new favorite food."
Get the recipe: Green Pea Hummus
Gluten-Free Chicken Satay with Thai Almond Sauce
"These low-fat chicken satays are marinated in aromatic coconut milk with a rich Thai almond butter dip on the side," says Abbey Sharp, R.D., owner of AbbeysKitchen.com. "The lean chicken is an excellent source of protein to keep you satiated longer, while the almonds provide a satisfying hit of healthy monounsaturated fats."
Get the recipe: Gluten-Free Chicken Satay with Thai Almond Sauce
"Shishito peppers generally have a sweet taste, but 1 in 10 peppers will have a spicy kick," says Natalie Rizzo, M.S., R.D., owner of NutritionalaNatalie.com. "So eating this fun appetizer is like pepper roulette! With only 100 calories per 1/2-cup serving, shishito peppers are the perfect guiltless appetizer. They are also packed with vitamin C, providing more than you need in one day!"
Get the recipe: Shishito Peppers
White Bean and Roasted Garlic Dip
"White beans, roasted garlic, lemon juice, and fresh herbs come together easily for this delicious, fiber-filled dip," say Liz Weiss, M.S., R.D., and Janice Newell Bissex, M.S., R.D., who write the family food blog Meal Makeover Moms' Kitchen and cohost the iTunes radio podcast Cooking with the Moms. "Serve with lots and lots of crunchy veggies on the side for a nutritious appetizer or snack."
Get the recipe: White Bean and Roasted Garlic Dip