Party Food

Holiday Party Food Ideas

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Blogging in the party/entertainment arena, I see some amazing celebrations. Yes, I enjoy the eye candy. Fantastic décor, gourmet food, and lavish budgets are impressive but you don’t have to go over the top to entertain in style. Especially during the holiday season, people love to congregate. Here’s what I’ve found to make get-togethers doable.

Christmas Party Food Ideas
The truth is, good food matters! A wonderful group of friends can make a bag of chips and bottles of pop fun, but no hostess wants to stop there. Pull out your best time saving ideas and kitchen hacks to please guests and help you keep your cool.
New Year's Eve or Christmas Food Ideas
Eye and palate pleasing, a charcuterie board (or party platter) is a great starting point. A selection of dried/smoked meats that need no refrigeration makes it easy. Add a delicious honey-Dijon glaze and it’s a special taste treat.

Include favorite cheeses, fruits, and crackers and your main offering is ready. Extra points for a cool serving board like this slate beauty.

Johnsonville Original Sausage

I love Johnsonville Summer Sausage. Since it’s made with choice cuts of meat and a variety of flavors and spices, all you need to do is slice it and it’s ready to satisfy. Convenient!

Johnsonville Original Summer Sausage

Johnsonville takes time to give their sausage excellent flavor. They smoke their sausage over real hardwoods and take 24-48 hours to perfect the flavor. After making sausages for over 70 years, Johnsonville produces expert results so all you need to do is enjoy.

In addition to the charcuterie board I like to go with my rule of three. I offer three varieties of cookies, three kinds of candies, and three beverages.

My goal is to keep things festive, yet simple. I know from experience, hosting friends and extended family is more likely to happen if I don’t burden myself with unrealistic expectations during busy holidays.

Easy Honey Mustard Sausage

That means everything I serve might not be homemade. My goal is at least one of the cookies and candies comes from my kitchen. If I have time to do it all, I do.

What helps that work is the styling. A buffet that sparkles with candles and a few choice ornaments arranged around attractive platters and pedestals looks jolly enough for a Christmas or New Year’s Eve party.

Whether it is because of food sensitivities or because they want to make the recipe themselves, guests often want/need to know the ingredients of what you’re serving. A thoughtful solution for that is to display the recipe on a decorative food card right by the dish. That makes it easy for someone to capture a shot of the recipe, too.

Since holiday décor is already in place, a spiff-up is all that’s needed to make the house ready for company. Simmering potpourri and music help establish atmosphere so that’s always part of my party plan.

Easy Party Platter Idea

With everyone’s busy schedules, you know some gatherings are going to be almost a quick meet-and-greet. But other times, I plan for people lingering. For those occasions, I get a few games ready. Nothing too complicated and I always look for something that will involve everyone in light-hearted fun.

For me, a few tasty nibbles, a little sparkle, and a congenial guest list almost guarantee an amazing holiday celebration. No stress is invited!

Christmas Party Food Ideas

Here’s the simple recipe for the delicious glaze I used over the Johnsonville sausage (also wonderful with maple syrup instead of honey) for my presentation.



  • Author:


  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Johnsonville Summer Sausages


  1. Cut each sausage into 1/8 inch rounds but only cut ¾ of the way down.
  2. Mix together sauce ingredients and drizzle over the tops and in-between each slice.
  3. Place on a baking sheet lined with foil and bake at 325 for 30 minutes, basting again after 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oven and slice the rest of the way through.
  5. Place on a serving platter with crackers, dried fruits, apple slices and cheese. I chose sharp cheddar, whole wheat crackers, dried peaches, apricots and cranberries, fresh Granny Smith apple slices and nuts.


  • Calories: 800
  • Sugar: 123
  • Sodium: 1336
  • Fat: 28
  • Saturated Fat: 9
  • Unsaturated Fat: 17
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 127
  • Protein: 18
  • Cholesterol: 69

Visit for more recipes with Johnsonville’s Summer Sausage. There is also an online store so you can have it delivered right to your door in time for the holidays.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Johnsonville. The opinions and text are all mine.

Stephanie Keeping

Stephanie is in love with a boy named Sam. He has taught her that it’s okay to jump first and look later, to wear a dirty shirt to the park and to decide that today is a good day to take a nap in your rubber boots. She hangs out here blogging at Spaceships and Laser Beams and at our printable party shop on Etsy.