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Go Greek and you may get to attend one of these crazy parties
Kappa Sigma at Washington and Lee University’s annual Bahamas Party is a playground of fun. Think pools, waterslides and hundreds of people. Grab a drink (there was $3,000 worth of beer at the last party) and get ready for a Bahamas-inspired adventure.
Beer, Beer, and More Beer
Members of Boston University’s fraternity Zeta Beta Tau, aka Z.B.T., got in trouble for a series of wild parties where they and hundreds of partygoers engaged in less than favorable behavior. Frat members were arrested and jailed after one crazy party, where police officers found over 1,000 beer cans and marijuana. A Boston Police officer said these parties were “in the top 10 percent” of wild parties they’d seen.
Reggae Sunsplash Party
The Reggae Sunpash Party hosted by the Sigma Chi fraternity at San Diego State University is a collegiate beach party that’s tough to forget. Think sand, pools, Tiki torches, colorful décor, and lots of booze and Red Bull, one of the party’s sponsors.
Plan to get wet at the Volcano party organized by Pi Kappa Alpha (PIKE) at University of Arizona. The event features girls and guys in beachwear drinking beer and getting wet under waterfalls and wading in pools. There are water slides, pool noodles, and ice bars where partygoers can drink shots funnel down the ice.
Going to the University of Arizona is a dream for party animals. Pi Kappa Alpha’s foam party is the latest memorable bash for the frat that’s also known as PIKE. There’s drinking, dancing and lots of foam for frolicking.
This paint party, hosted by Alpha Epsilon Pi at the University of Maryland, is a wild celebration that has a lot of ingredients for a good time: paint, alcohol, beach balls and crazy lighting.
The Jungle Party at the University of Arizona doesn’t disappoint. Hosted by Sigma Alpha Epsilon, this tropical party takes months to plan.
Looking for beer, beach balls, and a festive vibe? Head to Ole Miss, where the party reputation precedes them —The Princeton Review lists the school as number 16 on its annual list of best party schools. The University of Mississippi’s Sigma Nu fraternity takes its spring Woodstock party so seriously that this year, they hired a professional drone company to shoot aerial video of the wall-to-wall party.
Pi Kappa Phi's 2013 Glow party at USC was so impressive that College Envy said it might have been the “best party of the year.” The frat from the University of Southern California didn’t miss any details, including entertainment by Riff Raff and Blastranauts. Online buzz says partygoers drove from all over California to attend this party.
With a mega-flame and a gargantuan pot, you can cook an ocean's worth of seafood in a fraction of the time it would take on the stovetop—without stepping foot in a steamy kitchen.
You don't have to garnish this dish with caviar and chive blossoms. But, if you do, make you you Instagram the hell out of it.
Since 1995, Epicurious has been the ultimate food resource for the home cook, with daily kitchen tips, fun cooking videos, and, oh yeah, over 33,000 recipes.
Party Hacks and Tips
Bring back those Real World: Las Vegas vibes by setting up a confessional in your house!
All you need is one GoPro, a walk-in closet and a big memory card.
Just hook your GoPro up to external power so it can record non-stop without the battery dying and station it in your walk-in closet.
Then clear out the closet and string up some Christmas lights for vibe and decoration (plus a little extra lighting for the camera).
Put a large clear sign on the door that says “Confession Booth” or “Confessional,” and announce it at the beginning of the party. Hit record, and capture pure gold on camera.
For bonus points, edit together the best bits and play it at your next party.
Lawn chairs are for schmucks. If you really wanna get luxurious (we’re talkin’ Cleopatra style), air mattresses are where it’s at.
Borrow air mattresses and blankets from everyone you know who has some. Set them up outside and layer sheets, blankets and pillows on top so your guests will have casual outdoor seating that’s actually comfortable.
It&rsquoll be hard not to kick back with a drink and gaze up at the stars.
Don’t have air mattresses? Blow-up kiddie pools work great too. Just stack those blankets in there.
Crown a party champ
You need people to help you get the party started (and keep it going).
No better way to incentivize good party starting behavior than by announcing you’ll be awarding a prize to the best partier!
The better the prize, the better the party.
Mason jar candle holders
Place your lit candles inside mason jars and lit your entire outdoor setting with them. It’ll look cooler, and the pots will protect the tiny flames from the wind.
You suck at decorating. That’s okay. When in doubt, more balloons.
Fill tons of black balloons with helium and cover the ceiling of your sub-par party location in them to give off the illusion that you know what you’re doing.
Also, hang balloons without helium from the ceiling at staggered heights to add depth.
Balloons are also one of those weird things that seem like they wouldn’t make a big difference, but you’ll notice just about every person in your party playing with them at some point throughout the night.
The sound split
Some people want to dance. Some people want to talk. Some people want to do both.
Split your party into at least two main areas. One quiet area where people can talk, and one area with loud music where people can dance or listen to a band, artist or DJ play live.
This gives everyone at the party a reprieve from just one type of environment, while still catering to what almost everyone finds fun.
Or go all the way and make a silent disco (see ‘Silent Party’ above).
Just about no one is going to expect this, but if you drop some surprise parting gifts on people as they leave the party, the memory will be seared onto the surface of their brains.
Don’t go expensive either. A couple of condoms or gag gifts wrapped up with some Costco candy packs you bought in bulk and dumped into a cheap mason jar will do wonders.
Throwing a pool party? Air mattresses double as impressive floats. Just make sure you’re not using electric air mattresses because you probably don’t want to die.
You can even use inflatable pools, in the pool. Mix it up.
Light it up
Attach Christmas lights to anything and everything. Use vibey lighting anywhere regular lights would be too bright. Try to stay away from candles in enclosed spaces where people are drinking though.
If you’re hosting a party, one of the easiest and most memorable things you can do is put on contests, games, and matches.
Handstand contests. Twerk competition. Who can put a condom on a banana the fastest using only their mouths?
Have prizes for the winners. Again, they can be cheap. Starbucks gift cards or a bottle of anything alcoholic will do the trick.
No one ever thinks of hiring a face painter for an adult party. Even better, a body painter.
A lot of what people think of as being a good party is just perceived value.
If you have a buddy who DJs on the side and doesn’t suck, put him up to it. Hire a bartender for a couple hours. Pay some Instagram models to come and make it look like you have attractive friends.
You can literally outsource anything nowadays. Take advantage.
Having a photo booth at your party will definitely draw a ton of attention. Plus, you can give all those Instagram boyfriends’ arms a rest.
You can actually rent out real photo booths, but why drop the bands when you can make your own for free?
Simplebooth is our favorite way to do it, but there are lots of excellent options out there.
Kids are an adorable nuisance. Let your guests pawn them off on a stranger so they can enjoy a night out without having to worry about finding someone to watch those cute little freeloaders.
Hire an on-site babysitter, and no one will have an excuse to miss out on your fantastic party.
Class up the keg
Kegs don’t have to be relegated to college frat parties. You can easily appear more worldly by reaching out to local liquor stores and seeing what kinds of non-traditional imports they have in keg form.
If you’re putting together an event, you may also be able to get the event sponsored by a local brewery who might hook you up with a keg or two for free (or at a hugely discounted rate).
Make everyone who didn’t show up regret it by creating your own party hashtag. #twerknomenon
Have all your guests use it whenever they post throughout the night.
You can even give away a small prize for the best photo.
Fog it up
Fog machines are just cool. You can pick up a cheap one on Amazon and add instant ambiance to any party.
Swing a bit
Not that kind of swinging. I mean we don’t judge.
Tie two long pieces of rope with a double running bowline knot from a high, sufficiently sturdy tree branch or supporting beam. It’s easier than it sounds.
Take a thick plank of wood as the seat, and bore two wide holes on either end, just wide enough for the ends of the rope to fit through.
Level the seat of the swing a few feet up from the ground and run the ends of the rope through the holes in the seat.
Knot off the rope so that the ends can’t be pulled back through the holes no matter how much pressure is applied.
This will be a huge hit with guests, and the higher up the branch or beam the swing is tied to, the more impressive it will look.
Fill a regular piñata with blush-worthy items like condoms, airplane shots, and anything else your depraved mind can think of.
Your guests will thank you.
Light up cooler
If you’re partying at night and you don’t have a fancy cooler, throw some glow sticks or LEDs in there so people can see while they’re trying to grab a drink. This is perfect for bonfires.
Elevate your ice
Regular ice is boring. It’s just water pretending to be something else.
Spice it up by putting slices of fruit in your ice tray before freezing it. Strawberries, kiwi, and pineapple will make you seem much more sophisticated than you actually are.
Use your tub
This one’s a given. Fill the tub up with ice and put all the drinks in there that can’t fit in your fridge.
This will save you a ton of fridge space and keep everything fresh, make sure you do this in a bathroom people aren’t gonna blow up.
Want to get a night game in, but it’s too dark? Use Christmas lights and glow sticks.
If you want to get a game of volleyball in, string up Christmas lights all over the net and connect them via extension cord or by using a portable generator. The same works with soccer goals or really anything else.
Pro Tip - If you get a portable generator you can also use it to charge people’s phones and power speakers for music.
Use glow sticks around the rim of a basketball hoop and/or backboard if the court’s not lit. You can use the same trick to outline the edges of tables (especially for beer pong).
Leave a mark
Paint a single wall or surface with chalkboard paint. Leave out some chalk and have your guests sign it or leave a special message.
If you have a TV at your party location, you can create what we call a party window.
Basically, you hook up a GoPro anywhere in the party where things will get the wildest (not the bathroom).
If you made a confession booth, you could kill two birds with one stone (see ‘Confessionals’ above).
Livestream from the GoPro to a TV in a different part of the party. Not only will people get crazy for the cameras, but the guests in other parts of the party, wherever it’s being live-streamed, will be entertained too.
Just make sure to tell everyone as soon as they arrive, so they don’t feel violated.
Hang Christmas lights, LEDs or glow sticks under every horizontal surface. This is a crazy cheap way to add an extra dimension to your party and give it an impressive aesthetic.
Try to keep the same lighting style throughout the party by sticking to just one color for all the lighting.
Keep your drink
Dip the bottom of wine glasses or champagne flutes in chalkboard paint. Leave out some chalk near the glasses during your next get together and people will be able to write their names on their glasses to avoid mix-ups.
Leave some Instax cameras around the party for people to take photos with and pin up on a designated photo wall. Tell people in advance you’ll award a prize for the best photo.
Hanging drink seating
Partying outside without enough tables for people to put their drinks down on?
Run a string between two trees (or posts) and hang up a few beer sleeves so people can set their drinks down to play games or hop in the pool.
"A girl came to the Sigma Chi frat house and f*cked it up. She dumped paint on herself and ran through the house, [ruining] parts of the house and people's clothes." - student at Kent State University
"We saw this girl flirting with my friend's ex-boyfriend at the bar. Her and her friend went to the bathroom, so we obvi followed them just to see who she was. They were both way too intoxicated and were taking turns throwing up. THEN, they were freaking out because neither of them had gum. We saw them later in the night on the dance floor and SHE WAS MAKING OUT WITH THE EX-BOYFRIEND right after throwing up." - student at The University of Alabama
#SpoonTip: If you ever see someone at a bar or out at a party who looks like they need to go home or seek medical attention, don't be afraid to call for help! In many states, medical amnesty laws will protect your and/or them from getting in trouble. But either way, play it safe and make the call.
The best party songs: 60-41
60. ‘Take Me Out‘ – Franz Ferdinand
The stomping drumbeats and angular guitars of Franz Ferdinand&rsquos first hit drew comparisons to post-punk forebears like Gang Of Four or Wire. But the Scottish revivalists have a much poppier sensibility, and this 2004 track is a hook-laden toe tapper, sure to entice even your snootiest &lsquoI don&rsquot dance&rsquo friend onto the dancefloor. Amy Plitt
59. ‘Take on Me’ – a-Ha
Pop-idol pin-ups they may have been, but the members of Norwegian trio a-Ha also made great, genuinely inventive music in their mid-&rsquo80s heyday. The jewel in a-Ha&rsquos crown, of course, is the dazzling debut single &lsquoTake on Me&rsquo. This synth-pop gem is chiseled like a diamond, with a perfect keyboard riff and a melody that moves in and out of major keys just as singer Morten Harket&rsquos voice turns from desperate to hopeful and back again. Sophie Harris
58. ‘Latch’ – Disclosure featuring Sam Smith
Howard and Guy Lawrence from Disclosure originally reckoned that their 2012 single &lsquoLatch&rsquo was too odd to find mainstream success. How wrong they were. Mixing garage-infused house with a shuffle beat and Sam Smith&rsquos velvety croon made for a party classic. So thanks Disclosure, and sorry to anyone that&rsquos been nearby when we&rsquove attempted to hit those high notes. Kristen Zwicker
57. ‘Tainted Love’ – Soft Cell
It may deal with decidedly miserable subject matter (&lsquoI love you though you hurt me so, now I'm gonna pack my things and go&rsquo), but Mark Almond&rsquos version of &lsquoTainted Love&rsquo (the original was a hip-shaking Northern soul groover by Gloria Jones) is still an undisputed party song classic. Ever been hurt by someone you love? Course you have, so celebrate that kick in the teeth you received by throwing some seriously moody New Romantic shapes to this era-defining synthpop classic.
56. ‘Why’ – Carly Simon
Remember the 1982 film &lsquoSoup for One&rsquo? Nope, no one does, because it was terrible and it tanked. The film&rsquos only redeeming feature was a stunning soundtrack composed by Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards of Chic. Carly Simon&rsquos reggae-flecked ballad was the pick of the bunch. With one of the catchiest choruses in the history of catchy choruses, the only &lsquowhy&rsquo worth asking is &lsquowhy does it have to stop?&rsquo We suggest putting on the 12-inch edit and letting everyone get their groove on for as long as possible. Eddy Frankel
55. ‘Hypnotize’ – Notorious BIG
&lsquoSlicker than your average.&rsquo No, not Craig David, but Notorious BIG, whose defining hit proves just how well-lubricated the Brooklyn rapper&rsquos rhymes could be. Christopher George Latore Wallace (Biggie Smalls&rsquos less notorious real name), simply lulls the listener into a groove. Biggie was the victim of a drive-by shooting in 1997, just a year after &lsquoHypnotize&rsquo came out. In truth, party-friendly hip hop of this quality might never be heard again. Jonny Ensall
54. ‘Word Up’ – Cameo
Sucker DJs who think they&rsquore fly get put in their place with the title track of this trio&rsquos best-selling album &ndash and we grab ourselves a prime spot on the dancefloor every time this comes blaring out of our boombox. Blessed with a sleazy synth beat that&rsquos bouncier than a rubber band and funkier than the codpiece singer Larry Blackmon is wearing in the video (no, really), this &rsquo80s song still has the power to please crowds. Word. David Fear
53. ‘Uptown Funk’ – Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars
We defy anyone to keep their toes from tapping during this 2014 mega-hit. Don&rsquot believe us? Just watch. This &lsquo80s-inspired power-funk track from Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars broke records, won awards and got the entire world strutting and finger-clicking in unison. Go on, let it funk you up. Ellie Walker-Arnott
52. ‘Last Nite’ – The Strokes
They may have thrown us off the scent with their greaseballs-in-leather-jackets shtick, but one of The Strokes&rsquo greatest achievements was reminding the world that rock &rsquon&rsquo roll originally functioned as dance music. Few contemporary songs make us yearn for the days of the sock hop more than the single that catapulted these New York faves into the big time. Nitpick re: the &lsquoAmerican Girl&rsquo similarities all you want, but the combination of Julian&rsquos disaffected yowl, Albert and Nick&rsquos chirpy chords, Nikolai&rsquos humble throb and Fab&rsquos unflappable bounce still carries a rare boot-scootin&rsquo charge. Hank Shteamer
51. ‘I Wanna Be Your Lover’ – Prince
You&rsquod better be prepared, because the great purple one always gets what he wants. On this 1979 disco-pop smash, he wants you to be loved, and he especially wants you to get funky. A single snare hit kicks it all in before a constant barrage of incessant funk guitars and deliciously sexy falsetto vocals take you on a groovy trip around the bedroom. Eddy Frankel
50. ‘Beat It’ – Michael Jackson
When we&rsquore talking parties, most Jacko tracks are likely to be busted out when the mood requires some uplifting, golden grooves to make people smile. &lsquoBeat It&rsquo, however, is a bit harder and rawer, mainly due to one Eddie Van Halen riffing and fretboard-wailing his way through it. Jacko, too, gets spikey in his vocal delivery, snarling his way through in a way that suggest you really should beat it, if you know what&rsquos good for you. And then the EVH über-solo kicks in. Ooft.
49. ‘All My Friends’ – LCD Soundsystem
It&rsquos your party and you can cry if you want to &ndash and there&rsquos no better catalyst for a few cathartic tears than James Murphy&rsquos eight-minute, one-chord ode to life and loss. The piano line at the beginning (a big shout out to Steve Reich) is your cue to grab your real friends, pull them in a big sticky huddle and never, ever let them go. James Manning
48. ‘I’m Coming Out’ – Diana Ross
Diana Ross&rsquos most ebullient hit is the perfect song to turn any party from tentative into full-on fabulous. Part of its potency is that it harks back to the days when disco was taking over the world, and dancers found new acceptance and openness on the floor: &lsquoI'm coming out &ndash I want the world to know, got to let it show,&rsquo goes the chorus. Small wonder it became a gay pride anthem. This 1980 track is yet another smash that Chic&rsquos Nile Rodgers had a hand in &ndash the prolific sod. Jonny Ensall
47. ‘Never Too Much’ – Luther Vandross
Long before Luther&rsquos waistline took a severe pounding from countless &lsquoLuther Burgers&rsquo (a hamburger that replaces the bun with a glazed donut &ndash whoa), he was busting out even sweeter jams like this. An incredible medium-pace groove, lush vocals and tight funk guitars all built for getting frisky at the disco. It really is never too much. Except for Luther burgers. You can probably have too much of those. Eddy Frankel
46. ‘What’d I Say’ – Ray Charles
Yeah, yeah, it&rsquos over 50 years old and your grandparents might&rsquove made out to it &ndash but good gosh if this isn&rsquot one of the sexiest, wildest party songs on this list. Released in 1959, &lsquoWhat&rsquod I Say&rsquo is widely regarded as the first &lsquosoul&rsquo single. The music-making process according to Jerry Wexler of Atlantic Records: &lsquoWe didn&rsquot know shit about making records, but we were having fun.&rsquo Do likewise. Sophie Harris
45. ‘Get Up I Feel Like Being a Sex Machine’ – James Brown
James Brown is a sex machine. Not in the sense of a latex gizmo you order online (and inevitably offers disappointing results), but in his sweating, grunting, thrusting human form he&rsquos made himself a ruddy rogering robot! It's impressive to say the least. But, more than that, it provides the energy that drives this funk masterpiece, backed with taut guitar picks, undulating bass and a fantastically minimalist yet totally titillating drum break. There are other classics we could have picked to honour the Godfather of Soul, but you won't find a more pneumatically powerful example of a funky good time than this. Jonny Ensall
44. ‘Funkytown’ – Lipps Inc
Composed by Minnesota&rsquos Steven Greenberg for his jokily named studio band, Lipps Inc, &lsquoFunkytown&rsquo expresses a simple, repetitive yearning for the pulse of a bigger city, goosed by a killer ten-note synth riff. &lsquoGotta make a move to a town that&rsquos right for me,&rsquo sings Cynthia Johnson in a robotic, vocoderized voice (a precursor to the Auto-Tune sound) before busting out an unmodified, soulful wail, pleading for a trip to the party destination of her dreams. Released in 1980, &lsquoFunkytown&rsquo came late to the disco party, but gave it a jolt of electricity. Adam Feldman
43. ‘1999’ – Prince
This is one of the most forward-looking, cash-making enterprises in music history. Back in 1982, Prince foretold that when the century turned, DJs around the world would desperately need songs about the occasion. If he wrote a winner, the PRS royalties would roll in, come Y2K. He nailed it. And because he&rsquos Prince, he did it subtly &ndash not all gauche like Robbie Williams and his 'Millennium'. Now when we hear it, we just want to be back in the last century when everything seemed to be all okay. God we miss you sweet, sweet Prince. Josh Jones
42. ‘Drunk in Love’ – Beyoncé featuring Jay Z
Like a switch that immediately turns the vibe to &lsquoraunchy&rsquo, &lsquoDrunk in Love&rsquo should come with a warning: everyone will be driven to winding and grinding while screaming &lsquosurfboard, surfboard&rsquo. Throw this on towards the end of the night as a reward for the party hardcore &ndash it will be messy and beautiful. Amy Smith
41. ‘Intergalactic’ – Beastie Boys
These lads fought for your right to party, so it&rsquos only right they&rsquore in this list. The only unfortunate thing about this 1998 banger is that, to really appreciate it and get in the spirit of the video, you'll need to do a quick party change into some hi-vis gear first. Josh Jones
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Before you Bring Home your Mezcal Souvenir: Enjoy a Mezcal Tasting with an Expert
If the world of artisanal Mezcal is new to you like it was to us, it’s best to get a lesson from an expert to learn about and sample all the different varieties. We recommend the charming restaurant La Cueva del Chango in the heart of Playa del Carmen as an ideal Mezcal tasting spot. Not only will one of the expert staffers guide you through the entire Mezcal tasting process, but you’ll also have a chance to sample their decadent, authentic Mexican dishes (see our slideshow at the end of this post for some snaps of our meal).
At our tasting, we learned that Mezcal is best enjoyed straight up, and finished with a wedge of juicy Mexican orange, dipped in some “sal de gusano” (literally worm salt–a mix of ground worm larvae, ground chili peppers and salt). While I could never stomach swallowing a slimy worm, I found that when dried and pulverized into a powder, worms are quite delicious.
To recreate the full Mezcal experience back home, hit a large liquor store in Mexico for the best selections (we liked the well-stocked one in the new mall in the heart of Playa Del Carmen). The array of Mezcal selections can be dizzying, so if in doubt, find a helpful staff member to provide recommendations. You can also pick up some tasty worm salt here, a must for the true connoisseur.
Souvenir Finder Bonus Tip: Don’t Miss La Cueva del Chango in Playa del Carmen
When visiting Mexico’s Riviera Maya, don’t miss dining at La Cueva del Chango, one of the area’s oldest restaurants. We drove directly here after touching down at Cancun airport, en route to Tulum— it’s the perfect pit stop and easy to get to from the main road. While La Cueva del Chango is famous for their breakfasts (locals and tourists alike line up out the door) I can vouch that their lunch of authentic Mexican dishes was fabulous– my favorite meal of the entire trip. Watch our slideshow for some of our tasty dishes we enjoyed:
Have you tried Mexican Mezcal? Tell us about it in the comments below!
What to Buy: Mezcal and (worm salt)
Where to Get it: We hit a large liquor store in Playa Del Carmen for a large assortment of artisan liquors, but you can find Mezcal all over Mexico.
What to Know: To make your souvenir more meaningful, sample Mezcal with a pro first– we loved our tasting (and decadent lunch) at one of Playa del Carmen’s oldest restaurants, La Cueva del Chango.
Grains and nuts are great at balancing the bitterness of broccoli rabe.
Recipes you want to make. Cooking advice that works. Restaurant recommendations you trust.
3. Frat Suspended Over Voyeuristic Facebook Page
In 2015, police received a tip about a private Facebook group page operated by Penn State&rsquos Kappa Delta Rho members that allegedly contained voyeuristic photos. The page was primarily a means of sharing&mdashwithout consent&mdashnude photos of women who were passed out, sleeping, or otherwise incapacitated. The group, with 144 members, was titled &ldquo2.0&rdquo because the original page was taken down after a woman threatened to report the group for posting nude photos of her. Upon the page&rsquos discovery, the chapter was promptly suspended for a year.
Appetizers are important: They set the tone for the meal or party to come. But they're never more important than they are during the holidays, when there are more occasions requiring pre-dinner snacks, appetite enhancers, and small plates accompanied by festive cocktails or cups of punch. Even now, in the age of COVID-19, when holiday gatherings will be far smaller than usual, the importance of celebrating these special occasions is clear. That's why we've taken the liberty of putting together a stellar selection of holiday appetizers. There's something for everyone, from the traditional to the adventurous.
If you're looking for Martha-level recipes for holiday appetizers, you're in luck: We're sharing some you'll actually find at our founder's festive gatherings (we're looking at you Shrimp and Crudité Platter with Two Sauces). For something that's simple to make but still so classy, the Gouda Puff Pastry Bites shown here are your answer. Made using store-bought puff pastry, these impressive one-bite snacks require just 15 minutes of hands-on time, but your loved ones will never know it. Of course, there are also the classics&mdashwe'd be remiss if we didn't include a recipe for deviled eggs. They're one of those appetizers that define the party, and since they're so delightfully versatile, we had a hard time choosing just one variation to highlight here. In the end, our traditional take was the winner, since it's a guaranteed crowd-pleaser, but we have many other tasty deviled egg ideas to explore. Our wildcard entry just might be the ultimate high-low hors d'oeuvres: Fried Macaroni-and-Cheese Bites. These cute cubes with a crispy panko exterior and a soft, rich mac-and-cheese interior have been a sure-fire hit at all our holiday parties.
Also in this collection are celebratory holiday bites that are super easy to make (think: two-ingredient wonders like smidgeons of smoked trout atop rounds of cucumber and olives warmed in olive oil with cracked coriander) as well as dips (one made with caramelized onions and fennel is an addictive take on classic onion dip) guaranteed to wow.
Try all of these holiday appetizer recipes as you celebrate the season in delicious fashion and look forward to a new year with friends and family.