'Tis the season for entertaining! OK, so maybe you're only "entertaining" your immediate family this year. And that feels... odd. It's definitely going to look and feel different, but we can still have some entertaining fun with delicious holiday recipes.
These are two of my favorite holiday brunch recipes because they make the morning seem special, but are easy to put together.
Quiche is a dish that comes together quickly and then bakes in the oven while you sit back and enjoy a cup of coffee. Cheddar and broccoli quiche is featured here, but there are lots of other combinations you can do. I've included a couple suggestions in the recipe notes.
Chocolate for breakfast is always a win for me. And this chocolate cream cheese banana bread can be made ahead of time. Way ahead if you want - just freeze it! Another win, especially during a busy holiday season.
Happy Hour Sips
We all know how I feel about cocktails. (Hint: YUM!!) Both of these cocktails are slightly tart to help offset all the sweet, rich, and creamy foods of the holidays. Blackberry Vanilla Martinis feature vodka and lime, while Bee's Knees cocktails have gin and fresh lemon.
Want something a little more festive? Garnish a classic Cosmopolitan with some fresh, frozen cranberries. Or mix up this sweet and cinnamon Holiday Spice martini, one of my favorite holiday cocktail recipes.
Appetizers and Snacks
Take your happy hour to the next level with delicious snacks! These slow cooker savory spiced nuts are the perfect bar mix. Full of fresh rosemary and garlic, make a batch up ahead of time and then just set out small dishes for your guests. Looking for something heartier? Three cheese artichoke dip is a hot, creamy appetizer that comes together quickly. Just add crackers!
Pitchers of Cocktails
Whether you're entertaining a group or just want cocktails at the ready, there's no better time of year to make a pitcher of cocktails - or mocktails! Apple cider sangria is white wine based and full of fall holiday flavor. My pitcher cocktails recipe is SUPER simple and includes instructions for both cocktails AND mocktails. I love making a pitcher of each when entertaining.
Fancy, holiday desserts are so beautiful and tempting, but after a big meal, small, sweet bites are more my style. Like many of my other recipes, both of these desserts can be made ahead of time, which is important during such a busy time of year.
Soft, buttery cranberry shortbread cookies are a must-have on any holiday cookie try. They freeze beautifully, which means you can (and should) make them up to a month in advance (hint, hint), and then store them in the freezer until you need them.
You don't want to freeze peppermint bark, but you can make it a few days ahead of time and then keep it in the pantry until you're ready to gift it or serve it.
Of course, there's always dessert cocktails. I love this espresso martini as an alternative to after dinner coffee. And if you prefer your peppermint and chocolate fix in liquid form, look no further than a peppermint mocha martini.
Every year, I strive to make more recipes ahead of time so I can spend more time enjoying the holiday season and time with my family. What about you? Do you like prepping in advance or do you find enjoyment in cooking for your guests day of? What holiday recipes are must-makes for you? Tell me in the comments!