19 Summer Appetizers for Your Next Outdoor Party

19 Summer Appetizers for Your Next Outdoor Party

Summer’s bounty of garden-fresh produce stars in these warm-weather appetizers. Packed with tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant, and more, our summer party snacks include seasonal flavors and bright ingredients. Make one of these delicious summer appetizers for your next potluck, party, or pool day!

Baba Ghanoush Flatbread

Jacob Fox

Pizza loaded with cheese can be a bit heavy on a scorching-hot day, so may we suggest a lighter Mediterranean swap? This colorful flatbread is fitting to share with vegans since it’s topped simply with eggplant spread, cherry tomatoes, toasted hazelnuts, and fresh mint. Dress up the presentation when you serve it on a wooden platter (similar to this Better Homes & Gardens Acacia Wood Rectangle Tray with Gold Color Handles, $20, Walmart).

Air-Fried Soy Ginger Shishito Peppers

Antonis Achilleos

Shishito peppers are mild, most of the time. About one in 10 will bring the heat. Eating these is a delicious game of roulette, especially when they are tossed in a sweet ginger and honey soy sauce.

Avocado-Poblano Salsa

Jason Donnelly

Showcase in-season peppers, onions, and tomatoes in this easy summer salsa recipe. If you like more heat, toss in a diced jalapeno pepper. Prefer a mild salsa? Use a poblano instead.

Zesty Fajita Bites

Keep your kitchen cool and your oven off—this fajita chicken comes together in your slow cooker. Stack atop tortillas with summery sweet peppers, roll, and prepare to accept all the rave reviews.

Lemony Ricotta Summer Squash Galette

Lemony Ricotta Summer Squash Galette.

Filled with three types of cheese and a sprinkle of lemon juice, this flat pastry makes a pretty potluck centerpiece. Use garden-fresh summer squash and refrigerated piecrust to take the work out of the light appetizer.

Pineapple-Black Bean Guacamole

Blaine Moats

A fruity combination of fresh pineapple and savory black beans gives new life to classic guacamole. The much-loved Mexican party dip uses salsa verde to spice things up a bit.

Farro Salad-Stuffed Avocados

Stuffing creamy avocado halves with a hearty farro and cucumber salad makes for a filling summer appetizer that won’t leave you feeling weighed down. If you’re packing this appetizer up potluck-style, it’s easy to assemble at your final location. Simply halve the avocados and stuff them with the pre-made filling.

Fresh Corn Cakes with Garden Relish

A mixture of red sweet pepper, fresh corn, onion, and basil tops these easy-to-make corn cakes. Filled with fresh summer sweet corn, the tasty appetizers are just as excellent prepared on the stove as they are in a cast-iron skillet on the grill.

Thai Shrimp and Cucumber Lettuce Wraps with Rice

Carson Downing

Hunger is a wrap when you serve this well-balanced shrimp appetizer. In addition to shrimp (which can be served warm or chilled), each lettuce leaf is filled with a scoop of rice, shrimp, and cucumber for a refreshing and light starter. Serve this light fare on patio-friendly dishware (such as this Better Homes & Gardens 12-Piece Eco-Friendly Bamboo Melamine Dinnerware Set, $26, Walmart).

Plank-Smoked Portobello Mushrooms

Andy Lyons

Enliven stuffed portobello mushrooms by grilling them on a cedar plank. Filled with a blend of baby spinach, bread crumbs, cheddar cheese, and pecans, the appetizer gains mellow, fruity smoke flavor from the plank.

Blueberry-Peach Focaccia

This salty-sweet bread is great served as a side or starter. To bring out the flavor of the fruit, blend vanilla with olive oil and drizzle over the focaccia before baking.

Grilled Strawberry Salsa Fresca

Carson Downing

Rather than tomatoes, this savory salsa recipe starts with a pound of fresh strawberries. Classic salsa ingredients like jalapeno, onion, and cilantro balance the sweetness while a squeeze of fresh lime brightens up each bite. Finish this summer appetizer recipe with coarsely chopped peanuts for crunch.

Chicken Nachos with Wasabi Guacamole

Kelsey Hansen

A platter of these spicy wasabi chicken nachos is a surefire way to wow your summer party guests. As one reviewer raves, “This was so awesome. My kids have always complained that the nachos never had a great kick! They don’t anymore.”

Matcha-Cucumber Crostini

Carson Downing

If you have a bumper crop of cucumbers this summer, put them to good use in this easy summer appetizer idea. Slice them thin and serve them on top of a creamy matcha goat cheese. Add edible flowers or chive blossoms for a truly party-worthy presentation.

Creamy Cashew and Onion Dip

Blaine Moats

Rather than a heavy sour cream or mayo-based dip, serve up this creamy cashew and caramelized onion sauce. It’s the perfect dipper for grilled summer veggies like carrots, radishes, cucumber, zucchini, and green beans.

Grilled Eggplant Tartines

Carson Downing

A tartine is an open-face sandwich often topped with vegetables, salmon, cheese, or meat. Here, we’re topping toasted baguette slices with gilled eggplant, fresh roma tomatoes, and creamy mozzarella. Heat it on the grill until the vegetables are warmed through and the cheese melts.

Shrimp Skewers with Aji Verde

Victoria Pearson

Aji verde is a Peruvian sauce made from cilantro, jalapeno peppers, sour cream, and olive oil. It’s a fresh, spicy dip for lime-marinated grilled shrimp and the perfect summer appetizer recipe.

Avocado-Stuffed Mushrooms

Andy Lyons

Swap the heavy breadcrumb filling you typically see in stuffed mushroom recipes for a mix of toasted hazelnuts, avocado, and rosemary. This appetizer for summer comes together in just 30 minutes.

Air-Fryer Coconut Shrimp

Jason Donnelly

Turn to your air fryer to make the crispiest coconut shrimp. A quick dredge in egg whites and cornstarch helps the flaked coconut stick. Serve the golden brown shrimp with sweet chili sauce and sliced green onions.