Going to holiday parties is fun, right? Catching up with friends, exchanging gifts, eating yummy food . . . maybe. Truth be told, some of the parties I have gone to recently haven’t even offered one Keto-friendly option, let alone several.
This is frustrating for me if I’m hungry, but also for the host who inevitably notices me walking around empty-handed.
To help prevent this from happening, I like to bring an appetizer—or two—just in case. Since I don’t like to cook, this has meant having to get a little creative (and being okay with eating the same thing at each party).
If you are in a similar situation, below are the easy-to-prepare options I rely on.
Homemade Pimento Cheese and Cucumber Slices
Of all the dishes here, this one takes the most work but it’s also very tasty so that makes it worth it in my opinion.
To make the pimento cheese, mix together mayo and pimentos with a bag of pre-shredded cheese. You can buy pimentos in a small jar near the pickles. I prefer to use pre-sliced green olives with pimentos but I know not everyone likes green olives.
I don’t measure out the mayo, just adding it until I can stir everything together and it looks tasty. I usually add some of the brine from the pimentos too so I don’t have to use quite as much mayo.
While I’m mixing everything together, I add my favorite seasoning blend. For the batch pictured here, I used Old Bay seasoning but a Emeril’s Cajun blend is really good too.
I peel the cucumbers but that isn’t necessary. Peeled or not, just slice them thick enough to serve as a substitute cracker. Yum!
Cheese and Salami Hors d’oeuvres
Got toothpicks? Then pulling together this dish will take no time at all.
You can save money by buying a block of cheese and slicing it yourself. I personally buy pre-sliced cheese because my knife skills aren’t the best and it’s not a lot more to spend for appetizers people actually want to eat.
Also, if you don’t like salami, you can substitute rolled-up turkey or roast beef lunch meat. Since you are making these so you’ll have something to eat, I think it’s fine for you to pick the meat you like the best!
Cheese and Prosciutto Roll-Ups
These are fun because they really fancy up string cheese (and who doesn’t have string cheese in their refrigerator?).
And you can play around with them, too. For example, if you have some leftover tooth picks you can stick a cherry tomato on top.
Or, if you want to get really fancy, you can wrap the prosciutto around an asparagus stem and pop it in the oven for five minutes at 450 degrees.
Be aware that these can create a little bit of smoke so you’ll want to open a window or turn on the fan before you take them out of the oven (I accidentally set off the smoke alarm when I made them, freaking out my cat).
And Something Sweet Too!
While my taste buds have changed since I started eating Keto, and the candies and cookies I used to enjoy no longer taste very good, I do still feel sad sometimes when I can’t eat any of the sweets on offer.
My solution is to bring a Keto-friendly dessert: almonds with 86% Ghirardelli chocolate squares.
Now, don’t go crazy with the chocolates as they still have four carbs per square. However, it’s nice to have option.
At Least You Won’t Starve!
Okay, Julia Child I am not. And if you’re lactose intolerant, these obviously won’t work. But if you aren’t then at the very least, you won’t starve at the next party you attend!
What Keto-friendly appetizers do you like to take to parties? Let me know below!
P.S. Want advice on sticking with Keto during the holidays? Check out Keto and the Holidays: 4 Reasons to Stay Motivated.