8 Bite-Sized Appetizers You Can Make in a Mini Muffin Tin
1 of 8Heather Meldrom
Polenta Bites with Bacon, Dates, and Blue Cheese
A perfect combination of sweet, salty, and savory, these little polenta bites are sure to please. The polenta cups can be made up to two days in advance before filling and broiling. Simply cover the pan loosely with plastic wrap before refrigerating to keep them from drying out, and then uncover just prior to filling.
It’s easy to mix it up with these mini frittatas. Swap finely grated cheese or minced ham for the shallot. Or use feta in place of the shallot and chopped fresh oregano for the thyme. As long as you keep the mix-in ingredient amount to roughly ¾ cup, the possibilities are endless.
This tiny twist on classic Italian arancini is totally irresistible. Long grain rice yields a lighter, fluffier rice ball than traditional Arborio and a little egg is all it takes to keep it together. If you’d like to get a leg up on prep, the bites can be rolled, breaded, and kept refrigerated in the pan overnight prior to baking.
These pimento-flecked mac and cheese bites combine two comfort food favorites in one tiny package. Sharp cheddar cheese lends the mixture a rich, bold flavor, but if you’d like to add an even more “grown-up” edge, try swapping smoked Spanish paprika (pimenton) for the cayenne.
Adding a dollop of bright, springy citrus mayo gives these diminutive crab cakes an elegant finish. And while baking breadcrumb-coated items in the oven can sometimes lead to uneven browning, here toasting the panko breadcrumbs in a skillet ahead of time ensures that they stay golden and delicious.
Sundried Tomato and Rosemary Biscuits with Prosciutto
Salty, luxurious Prosciutto is paired with sweet and tangy sundried tomatoes in these addictive, savory biscuits. To give them extra depth of flavor, seek out tomatoes that have been cured in oil with spices. And remember that drop biscuits, though easy to make, can be prone to dryness, especially small ones like these. Our advice? Make them as close as possible to when you plan to serve them.
Everyone’s favorite dip is transformed into an elegant starter when nestled in a buttery phyllo shell. To ensure that the crust stays nice and crispy, it’s essential to drain the thawed spinach and artichokes very, very thoroughly. Place them in a colander and press down firmly, or wrap them tightly in a thin dish towel and squeeze out as much liquid out as possible.
These classy one bite nibbles are packed with creamy goat cheese and kissed with a tangy drizzle of balsamic. If microgreens are too fussy for your purposes, simply sprinkle the fresh thyme leaves over the tartlets rather than folding them into the compote.