10 Party Food Ideas on a Budget

Downsize Dessert

Imagine a platter of chewy cookies. Now add little rounds of red velvet cake with puffs of cream cheese frosting. Ring it all about with chocolate-coated strawberries and pineapple chunks. Are you drooling yet?

Miniature desserts have a special allure. And by offering just a taste, you can stretch a single dessert or two into abundance. With a few tools you probably already have, you can turn your favorite recipes into tiny treats that your guests will find charming and satisfying. Use mini muffin tins to bake bite-size brownies, cakes and sweet muffins, and a small ice cream scoop gets a lot of cookies from a single batch of dough. Add a dollop of frosting with a pastry or plastic bag and decorative tip for a simple but festive flourish. If you want to serve fruit for dessert, making your own chocolate-dipped fruit is easy, fun, cheaper and fresher than buying it already prepared.

Keep those cookie cutters and knives handy for the next idea.

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