New Years Eve Party Ideas: Last Minute Recipes For Drinks And Appetizers

BY Zachary Stieber TIMEDecember 31, 2014 PRINT

The New Year parties are revving up but some hosts and attendees are looking for last minute drink and appetizer recipes.

Check out some below.


1. Highland Punch

This recipe, which serves about 50 people, features a bunch of fruit along with alcohol. Peel rinds from three oranges and about a dozen lemons, and combine the rinds with two cups honey and one cup hot water. Stir and set aside.

Juice the peeled lemons, and any additional lemons needed to yield three cups. Mix with two 750-milliliter bottles of blended Scotch whisky, and one similarly sized bottle of gin-based fruit cup, such as Pimms.

Strain the original mixture that has honey, and discard the rinds. Combine with the other liquid.

Right before serving, add about four cups of ginger ale or ginger beer. Garnish with grated nutmeg, lemon wheels, fresh berries, and orange wheel halves.

2. Hot Spiked Cider

This recipe, which serves about six people, starts off with pouring a quart of water into a saucepan and bringing to a boil. Remove from heat and toss in three orange spice tea bags. Cover and steep for five minutes. 

Remove the tea bags and add 1/2 cup brown sugar, two cups apple cider, and 1 1/2 cups rum, along with two cinnamon sticks. Heat to steam.

Ladle the cider into six mugs and add 1/2 teaspoon butter to each. Add a cinnamon stick to each cup.

3. Clean Slate Vodka Cocktail

This recipe makes one cocktail but can be doubled or expanded even more for more people.

Combine 1 1/2 ounces of Ciroc Amaretto Vodka, one ounce St. Germain, one ounce Cherry Heering, 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice, and one ounce apple-cinnamon simple syrup in a cocktail shaker, and shake vigorously. To make the syrup, cut up four apples, boil in 2 1/2 cups of water, add two cinnamon sticks and stir for 0 minutes, then add 2 1/2 cups of sugar. Drain and double strain the syrup after five minutes over medium heat.

Double strain into a chilled wine glass rimmed with gold flake and sugar. Top with Champagne.

4. Grandpa Harry’s Holiday Punch

This recipe serves about 15 people. Put one 750 milliliter bottle of Burgandy wine in a punch bowl. Dissolve one cup sugar.

Stir in two 750 milliliter bottles of chilled champagne.

Stir in eight fluid ounces of brandy, and one quart of club soda.

5. Elit Midnight Millionaire Cocktail

This recipe makes one cocktail. Pour one ounce of Stoli Elit Vodka into a Champagne flute.

Fill the rest with Perrier Jouët Fleur de Champagne.

Drop a single raspberry in the glass for a garnish.

A variation of Queso Fundido. (Shutterstock)
A variation of Queso Fundido. (Shutterstock)



1. Queso Fundido

This recipe, which serves about 24 people, is cooked in a single skillet.

After preheating the oven to 350 degrees, crumble one pound of uncooked chorizo into a 10-inch ovenproof skillet. 

Add two cups of fresh or frozen corn, one large red onion chopped, and one poblano pepper. Cook over medium heat 6-8 minutes or until meat is fully cooked, then drain and stir in cheese–one cup cubed pepper jack cheese, eight ounces of fresh goat cheese, and two cups cubed Monterey Jack cheese. 

Bake the combination for about 15 minutes. Finish by sprinkling with a seeded and chopped tomato, and three green onions that are thinly sliced. Serve with chips. 

2. Fried Chickpeas

Combine two teaspoons of paprika and one teaspoon of cayenne pepper in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat six tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat in a 12″ skillet. Working in 2 batches, add chickpeas to skillet and sauté, stirring frequently, until golden and crispy, 15–20 minutes.

Transfer chickpeas to paper towels to drain, then place in a medium bowl. Sprinkle the paprika-pepper mixture over the chickpeas, and season with salt. Toss with two teaspoons lime zest.

3. Bacon-Wrapped Cherry Peppers

This recipe makes four to six servings. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Take six hot cherry peppers and halve them through the stem, seed, drain, and pat dry.

Stuff each pepper with a heaping teaspoon of cream cheese and wrap with a slice of bacon. Arrange in a large ovenproof skillet and cook over moderate heat, turning until the bacon is browned, 12 to 15 minutes.

Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for about five minutes.

*Punch image via Shutterstock

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.
You May Also Like