Throwing a fiesta when the weather gets nicer is basically required, and since we know you’ve got the bowl of guac covered, here are seven other Mexican appetizers to add to your list of party foods this year. They’re healthier versions of classic Mexican recipes, so you can feel a little better about the margs and tortilla chips that will most definitely be consumed. It’s all about balance, right?
1. Sheet-Pan Black Bean Nachos
Oh, nachos, how we love you. Is there anything better than cheesy, crunchy chips? Just ones that can be baked in the oven, making prep time short and sweet. These guys are covered in black beans, cheese, corn, pico de gallo, chicken, and jalapeños because an extra kick is always welcomed.
2. Spicy Pineapple Salsa
Sure, you could crack open a jar of store-bought salsa and call it a day. BUT, you could also serve tasty pineapple salsa in an open-faced pineapple, making you the best host ever. The correct option is pretty obvious, am I right? The fruity salsa inside uses lime juice, cilantro, and veggies.
3. Easy Shrimp Ceviche
Ceviche looks and sounds fancy but is actually super easy to make, especially when it’s shrimp-based like this one. Mix up shrimp, veggies, jalapeños, lime juice, and a few spices, and toss it all together in a big bowl. Serve as is or with crackers and chips to dip with. It tastes so fresh and light you’ll forget you’re eating party food.
4. Chicken Fajita Quesadillas
Honestly, who doesn’t love a good quesadilla? Take them from drunchie to an actually solid app by making them fajita-style. That means adding sautéed onions and peppers and a heap of spicy chicken. Stack them like Jo Cooks did to make them easy to grab and look extra ‘grammable.
5. Cauliflower Vegan Queso
I know I know, vegan queso?! It’s not as weird as it sounds, trust. And it’s way healthier than that aluminum tub of cheese from the grocery store aisle. This dairy-free dip is made with cauliflower, soaked cashews, nutritional yeast (a vegan cheese must), onions, and EVOO. Go ahead and try it, we dare ya.
6. Oven-Fried Chicken Taquitos
Yes, the frozen version is easier. But how accomplished will you feel once you make your own little taquitos? And since these get baked in the oven instead of fried, they’re a notch healthier. Inside, they’ve got chicken, onion, zucchini, pepper jack, and spices. A little chili, a little cumin, and you’re good to go.
7. Chicken and Avocado Pinwheels
Party pinwheels are usually made Italian-style or with ham and cheese, but this recipe gives ’em a Tex-Mex flair. Chicken breast, taco seasoning, avocado, cheese, and tomatoes all get wrapped up in tortillas and sliced into bite-size wraps for your guests. If you start with cooked chicken breast, they take about 10 minutes to make, so consider these a solid last-minute option. Serve with hot sauce or a dollop of Greek yogurt for a sour cream sub.