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Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Anjali Shah

Vegetarian Appetizers: 27 Healthy Recipes for Any Occasion

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When having a party, there’s nothing that says special like a spread of delicious appetizers! Whether you’re having a casual game day gathering, an elegant dinner party, or you’re just looking for munchies to enjoy at home, this collection of 27 healthy vegetarian appetizers will suit your needs!

assortment of vegetarian appetizers: sliced fresh veggies, dips, olives, cheese, and apples

Who doesn’t love a good appetizer? In fact, there are days when I could make a meal our of chips and dips, little bites, fruit and veggie trays, and cheese and crackers!

I think that’s why tapas are so popular. It’s so much fun to eat finger foods!

There are so many occasions when a beautiful spread of appetizers is welcoming. But to be honest, you really don’t need an excuse to whip up a healthy appetizer.

These pre-dinner savory bites can be enjoyed anytime.

But when it comes to appetizers, many recipes are heavy, high in calorie, high in fat, and low in nutritional value. In addition, it can often be a challenge to find vegetarian appetizers that go beyond a fruit or veggie tray!

I’m here to tell you that you can enjoy delicious and satisfying vegetarian appetizers without consuming your daily calorie intake before the real meal has begun!

This collection of healthy vegetarian appetizers are perfect for any occasion:

  • Tailgates
  • Game Day Parties
  • Elegant Dinner Parties
  • Holiday Parties
  • New Year’s Eve Celebrations
  • Birthdays
  • and so many more!

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s dig in and find some healthy appetizers to whet your appetite!

cheeses, crackers, nuts, fruit, and chocolate, on wood platter

What Are The 6 Types of Appetizers?

Appetizers get their name because they are served before a meal to whet your appetite.

When it comes to planning the appetizers for your party, there are several categories.

  • Canape: A canape is a bite sized finger food that consists of a base, a spread, and a topping.
  • Chips and Dips: Likely the most popular and easy appetizer, chips or crackers paired with a savory dip makes for an easy shareable recipe.
  • Hors d’oeuvres: These small sized bites, are served hot or cold. They usually consist of well seasoned food, that is formerly served before a meal.
  • Relishes and Crudite: Relishes are pickled vegetables while crudites are raw vegetables.
  • Cocktails: Bite sized fish, or fruit served alongside a tangy sauce.

In addition to these types of appetizers, there are also a few other categories that sometimes fall into this category or course.

  • Salads: There are several different categories of salads, including green salads, and compound salads. Compound salads are bound together with mayonnaise or a another type of dressing of some kind. Think potato salad, egg salad, etc.
  • Soups and Consummé: It has become more and more popular to serve small servings of soup and conummé before the main meal.

What Are Some Easy to Make Vegetarian Appetizers?

Fruit Platter: No recipe needed for this one. Select your favorite fresh fruits, wash, dry, and arrange on a platter. Serve with a vanilla yogurt dipping sauce to make it extra special!

You can also serve your fruit in salad form like this Mexican Fruit Salad below.

Mexican Fruit Salad with cubed melon, mango, jicama, dragon fruit, lime juice, and a hint of spicy chili - served in a blue bowl
Mexican Fruit Salad
A simple Mexican Fruit Salad with cubed melon, dragon fruit, jicama, kiwi, lime juice, and a hint of spicy chili. It's an unexpected and delicious take on the traditional fruit salad.
View this recipe

Or for a simple and versatile fruit salad recipe with traditional fruits, try this one below.

Low calorie breakfast fruit salad served in a white bowl, topped with yogurt and mint.
Breakfast Fruit Salad
This easy breakfast fruit salad is sweet, healthy, and is perfect for busy mornings! It's super versatile – you can use any fruits you like, and it works great as a quick breakfast, a brunch side dish, an afternoon snack, or even a healthy dessert! It's vegan, gluten free and kid friendly. The best part? It's ready in less than 15 minutes!
View this recipe

Fruit Skewers: Place your favorite fruits on a skewer, and arrange in a colorful pattern. Strawberries, melon, pineapple, and grapes, are easily served on a skewer. Below is one of my favorite holiday fruit skewer recipes!

strawberry santa hats with banana "bottom" and whipped cream top on wooden skewers
Strawberry Santa Hats
Strawberry Santa Hats are an easy and fun snack to make with the kids! With only three ingredients, and a few minutes, you'll have a healthy snack for the holidays!
View this recipe

Veggie Tray: I’m always happy to see a great big tray of fresh veggies served with hummus or ranch. I prefer the hummus for it’s nutritional value. Excellent options for your veggie include carrots, cucumber slices, radishes, broccoli and cauliflower florets, celery, cherry tomatoes, and sliced bell peppers.

You can also serve grilled or roasted veggies as an appetizer for a twist on the traditional veggie tray.

This steamed asparagus topped with pecorino cheese makes for an easy finger food!

easy cheesy baked asparagus recipe with mozzarella, parmesan and tomatoes in a white baking dish
Cheesy Baked Asparagus
Cheesy Baked Asparagus with mozzarella and parmesan is an amazing dish that can be enjoyed as an appetizer or a side dish. Quick, easy and full of freshness and flavor.
View this recipe

Brussel sprouts can be served with a toothpick for a bite sized veggie on the go.

air fryer brussel sprouts served on a white plate, top view
Air Fryer Brussel Sprouts in 10 MInutes
Crispy Air Fryer Brussel Sprouts are lightly seasoned and use a minimal amount of oil to create a healthy and delicious side dish, or snack!
View this recipe

Cheese and Crackers: A simple cheese and cracker tray is always a highlight at any party. Choose a variety of cheeses such as brie, gouda, and goat cheese. It’s also nice to have a selection of different crackers, and pair with a sweet jelly or relish.

Mini Quiches: A super easy and simple vegetarian appetizer are store bought mini quiches. All you need to do is heat them in the oven, and you’ve got a savory bite sized appetizer.

Pita Chips and Hummus: Store bought pita chips and hummus are a simple appetizer for casual gatherings or at home pre-dinner snacking!

Guacamole and Tortilla Chips: One of my favorites, chips and guacamole is easy and quick to make, and always a crowd pleaser! If you’re having a large gathering, be sure to double the recipe! It will disappear!

Low calorie healthy guacamole recipe served in a bowl with a tortilla chip garnish.
Healthy Guacamole Recipe
This easy, homemade healthy guacamole recipe is packed with flavor and is so simple to make! Serve it as a topping on tacos, nachos, and enchiladas, spread it on sandwiches or toast, or enjoy it as a dip. Ready in just 15 minutes, this low calorie guac also just happens to be vegan and gluten free friendly too!
View this recipe

Looking for something a little different from the traditional guacamole recipe, give this edamame guacamole a try! It’s lower in fat and calories that the traditional recipe!

vegan guacamole with tortilla chips in a white bowl
Vegan Guacamole with Edamame
This vegan guacamole recipe with edamame is the perfect healthy dip! Low in calories and fat, and easy and quick to make, this tasty edamame guacamole will be the star of your next party!
View this recipe

7 Layer Dip: Everyone’s favorite, a 7 Layer dip can be healthy too! This one has layers for refried beans, smashed avocado, tangy yogurt sauce, layers of fresh veggies, and cheese! Bake your own tortilla chips, or use store bought!

Guilt-Free, Healthy 7 Layer Taco Dip
This healthy, seven layer taco dip is a party table's best friend! Lightened up from the traditional bean dip recipes but with all of the same great flavor, you'll love how this bean dip tastes with chips, veggies or even on its own. Ready in just 20 minutes and kid-friendly too!
View this recipe

Make Ahead Vegetarian Appetizers

A hot dip is an excellent make ahead appetizer. You can prepare all the ingredients, cover and place it the fridge until the party begins. Then pop it in the oven and serve hot and bubbly.

This smoky onion and kale dip is lightened up with low-fat cream cheese, and topped with asiago cheese.

healthy cheese dip - easy kale dip recipe with pita chips in a white bowl
Healthy Kale Dip with Cream Cheese and Smoky Onion
This healthy kale dip made with smoky onion and cheese is packed full of flavor. It's a lightened up sharing dip, perfect for pot lucks, BBQ's and parties!
View this recipe

Air Fryer Vegetarian Appetizers

The air fryer is an awesome tool to use to make healthy and crispy appetizers in minutes! It’s an especially good option if your oven is being utilized for the main course!

These air fryer mozzarella sticks are healthier than traditional, since they’re air fried instead of deep fried in oil. They come out nice and crispy on the outside, and ooey-gooey cheesy on the inside. Pair with marinara sauce.

air fryer mozzarella sticks served on a wooden cutting board with tomato dipping sauce, top view
Air Fryer Mozzarella Sticks
One of America’s favorite snacks just became healthier with these air fryer mozzarella sticks. This recipe is so easy and full of delicious flavor. Makes a great snack, or appetizer for your next party.
View this recipe

Store bought ravioli is coated in crispy breadcrumbs, then air fried and paired with a homemade bell pepper and spinach marinara.

air fryer ravioli on a white plate
Crispy Air Fryer Ravioli
Air Fryer Ravioli filled with spinach and ricotta are dipped in breadcrumbs then air-fried until crispy. Enjoy with a spinach marinara sauce for a healthy, satisfying, and easy weeknight meal or party appetizer!
View this recipe

Bite Sized Vegetarian Appetizers

When I think of appetizers I immediately think of handheld bites. These are perfect to pass at a party, or display on a platter to share.

Bruschetta is a popular Italian appetizer. This version is healthy than the traditional recipe paired with white beans for added protein and topped with tomatoes and fresh herbs.

easy vegan bruschetta with tomatoes and white beans on a plate topped with basil
Vegan Bruschetta with White Beans
This Vegan Bruschetta is a twist on a classic Italian dish. It has a mixture of sweet tomato, crunchy zucchini, and creamy white beans that sit on top of a whole wheat baguette, topped with fresh herbs for a finishing touch. This simple recipe is great as an appetizer, light lunch, or side dish!
View this recipe

Have leftover mashed potatoes? These mashed potato fritters paired with kale and onions are a creative way to use up those leftovers, and create a bite sized, handheld potato pancake!

mashed potato fritters with onions and kale, served on a white plate, top view
Mashed Potato Fritters with Kale and Onions
These mashed potato fritters are perfect to use up things in the fridge. I also love that they fit as a snack, appetizer, or meal.
View this recipe

Need a super easy appetizer on the fly? How about these goat cheese crostini. Crispy crostini is topped with spreadable goat cheese and a drizzle of honey!

Super Fast Goat Cheese Crostini
It’s a hit with kids and adults, a total crowd pleaser. And you can enjoy 4 of these crostinis for just 150 calories!

Shareable Flatbreads and Pizzas

When it comes to pre dinner sharing, a simple flatbread is a popular option. They’re easy to make, and can be customized based on your taste preference. You can also make them vegan by leaving off the cheese, or using a vegan cheese substitute!

For the mushroom lover, this mushroom flatbread is paired with roasted vegetables. Slice into bite sized pieces for a shareable app!

closeup of Mushroom Flatbread with Roasted Vegetables
Mushroom Flatbread Pizza Recipe
A crispy whole wheat crust is topped with melty mozzarella and fresh pesto to create this mushroom flatbread pizza that makes for a family friendly meal any day of the week! It's a truly authentic artisan flatbread pizza, that rivals anything you'd order in a restaurant!
View this recipe

Keep it simple with a classic Margherita flatbread. Layers of tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil sits atop a whole wheat crust.

top view of margherita flatbread with basil and tomatoes
Healthy Margherita Flatbread
This easy and healthy Margherita Flatbread is a delicious take on the classic pizza! Topped with fresh tomatoes and basil and drizzled with balsamic vinegar, it's a family friendly meal!
View this recipe

Looking for something a little more out of the ordinary? How about this goat cheese flatbread? Creamy goat cheese is spread on top of a whole wheat flatbread, then topped with fresh zucchini ribbons and plump raisins.

goat cheese pizza recipe with caramelized onions and arugula cut into slices
Goat Cheese Pizza With Caramelized Onions
This Goat Cheese Pizza with caramelized onions is a restaurant-quality meal you can make at home with ease! The crisp crust paired with creamy and tangy goat cheese and sweet caramelized onions is a match made in heaven made for sharing with friends and family.
View this recipe

An easy all around flatbread, chunky tomato sauce is paired with fresh spinach and peppers, and just the right amount of cheese to make is melty and gooey!

Yeast free vegan flatbread stacked on a cutting board.
Vegan Flatbread
This vegan flatbread recipe is soft and fluffy, simple to make, and versatile too! With just five ingredients and no yeast, it's made with pantry staples and dairy-free milk. Enjoy it as the base for pizza, to mop up stews and curries, or as a satisfying snack.
View this recipe

Appetizer Soups

Soups are becoming more and more popular as an appetizer. If serving at a party, you can place your soup in shot glasses, or other small bowls or cups.

These soups are light enough that they make an excellent pre-dinner dish!

This carrot ginger soup is smooth and creamy full of warm spices. A perfect soup for the autumn holidays.

easy, creamy, ginger carrot coconut soup recipe (vegan, gluten free and dairy free) in a white bowl
Ginger Carrot Coconut Soup Recipe
This incredible Carrot Ginger Soup is bursting with fall flavors that are the perfect combination of sweet and spicy. This creamy, rich soup doesn't even require any heavy cream! It's cozy and comforting, vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, and kid-friendly too!
View this recipe

This asparagus and leek soup is light and creamy. The fresh flavors pair nicely with other summer flavors.

asparagus and leek soup with herbed goat cheese served in a white bowl
Leek Asparagus Soup with Goat Cheese
This asparagus and leek soup is made from scratch without cream or milk for a lightened up and healthy meal. It takes just 30 minutes to make and is perfect for the whole family to enjoy!
View this recipe

The combination of pumpkin and sweet potato paired with warm spices, and white beans for creaminess makes this soup vegan and gluten-free!

pumpkin and sweet potato soup, served in a blue bowl, topped with fresh herbs and coconut cream
Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup
This comforting Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup will warm you up, fill your belly, and tantalize your taste buds! The white beans give the soup a creamy taste and the pumpkin delivers a rich warmth that'll have you coming back for more. Healthy, vegan, gluten-free, delicious and ready in 30 minutes!
View this recipe

Butternut squash soup is a classic! This one is paired with thyme and parmesan for a hint of herbal flavors, and a nice finish.

vegan butternut squash bisque topped with parmesan and fresh herbs, served in a white bowl, top view
Butternut Squash Bisque with Thyme and Parmesan
A naturally creamy butternut squash bisque made with autumn spices. It can easily be made vegan, is gluten-free, and healthy for you too. It’s the perfect soup to share at your Thanksgiving meal, or enjoy all winter long!
View this recipe

Tomato soup is light and pairs well with so many other flavors. It is a true classic, and this version is vegan, but still tastes rich and creamy!

best easy healthy homemade vegan tomato soup recipe in a bowl with basil and crusty bread
Roasted Vegan Tomato Soup With Garlic
This delicious vegan tomato soup with garlic is full of healthy ingredients. It's creamy and full of flavor without the cream.
View this recipe

Kid Friendly Appetizers

These kid themed appetizers will bring the kids running to the table. They’ll also enjoy making them with you too. Whether you’re celebrating a holiday, or just looking to make something creative and eye-catching, these apps will do the trick!

These fun and easy Halloween quesadillas are just the thing to fill up on before heading out to trick-or-treat!.

halloween jack-o-lantern pumpkin quesadillas served on a white plate
Halloween Quesadillas: “Jack-O-Lantern” Pumpkin
These Halloween Quesadillas are the cutest and most delicious dinner idea for fall. These pumpkin quesadillas are sure to bring a smile to your face and are perfect for kids or festive get-togethers. Filled with cheesy goodness and pumpkin between whole wheat tortillas, they are irresistible. 
View this recipe

Are your kids not a huge fan of the traditional Thanksgiving fare, make these fun and healthy turkey shaped quesadillas!

cheese quesadilla shaped like turkeys, with bell peppers, beans and cheese
Turkey Shaped Cheese Quesadillas
These absolutely adorable, Thanksgiving inspired cheese quesadillas are shaped like little turkeys but are completely vegetarian! Not to mention, they are mind-blowing delicious and super kid friendly. Each tasty quesadilla is filled with black beans, Monterey Jack cheese, and bell peppers sandwiched between two whole wheat tortillas. Fun, festive, and perfect for the holidays!
View this recipe

How much fun is snacking on this appetizer! Instant pot popcorn is a classic recipe that’s always a crowd pleaser with kids. You can also make an adult version with this spicy jalapeno popcorn, or a dessert version that’s super kid-friendly with this unicorn popcorn!

Instant pot popcorn served in a white bowl on a white countertop.
Instant Pot Popcorn
Make your favorite movie-time snack in your pressure cooker! This instant pot popcorn is easy, mess-free, and perfectly crisp. You only need four ingredients and less than 20 minutes to make it.
View this recipe

A tray of these reindeer sandwiches at you holiday party will entice the kids and adults to give them a try!

reindeer holiday sandwiches
Reindeer Holiday Sandwiches
These super cute and healthy Reindeer Holiday Sandwiches are filled with peanut butter and fresh fruit. Whole wheat bread is cut into a heart shape to make a reindeer face, with pretzels for antlers, and chocolate chips for the eyes, and M&M-style candies for the nose. 
View this recipe

Many of the most popular finger foods are not vegetarian or healthy. Foods such as meatballs, turkey meatballs, chicken wings, and sliders are not vegetarian friendly.

However, these popular finger foods have their own vegetarian versions.

I like the vegetarian meatballs from Trader Joe’s as a substitute for the traditional beef or turkey meatballs.

Instead of chicken wings, give buffalo cauliflower a try! It’s got great flavor and texture.

Sliders are an excellent finger food. Make them vegetarian and healthier by using whole wheat slider buns, and pairing them with mini mushroom burgers.

What Do Vegetarians Eat at Parties?

Whether you’re a vegetarian, or have vegetarian guests coming to your party, you want to be sure they feel welcome and have plenty of options to enjoy.

All of the above recipes are excellent choices for any vegetarian.

Be sure to include plenty of vegetable options, whether that’s a vegetable tray with dip, or roasted veggies paired with a dipping sauce.

Don’t be afraid of tofu, and other plant-based proteins. Tofu bites, tempeh, and bean dips and spreads are simple vegetarian options.

I hope you were able to find some inspiration from these healthy vegetarian appetizers!

Check Out These Other Healthy Vegetarian Recipe Round-ups!

If you have tried these Healthy Vegetarian Appetizers or any other recipe on my blog, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM, and PINTEREST to see more delicious, healthy, family friendly food!

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Vegetarian Appetizers ·

Healthy, plant based appetizers are the perfect complement to my favorite entrees and dinner party menus! You can also make a small batch for a snack or turn them into a complete meal.

These vegetarian appetizers are great for entertaining or making a casual day feel like a special occasion. Be sure to try reader favorites like these vegan empanadas, vegan bruschetta, our mushroom flatbread, or veggie quesadillas!

10 responses to “Vegetarian Appetizers: 27 Healthy Recipes for Any Occasion”

  1. Thanks for this lovely collection. Vegetarian sounds healthy and interesting too. Perfect treat when my Vegan friends are around.

  2. A fabulous round up. Everyone is always looking for healthy appetizers recipes and these look awesome. I am going to try the strawberry santa hats soon. Thanks.

  3. What an awesome list of appetizers! Sometimes it’s nice to just eat appetizers for dinner, so I can’ wait to make some of these!

  4. These are perfect for any party! Love how my Mum can eat just about any of these and still have a great time 😀

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