Recipes & Cooking
24 Party Foods from the Supermarket That Famous Cooks Swear By
Famous cooks share the foods you should always pick up from the supermarket before hosting a party.
“They’re wonderful to just throw into a food processor and puree with a little bit of garlic and whatever else you have available—sun-dried tomato, any kind of fresh herb, dry herb. Season with just a little bit of salt and pepper, and you make a really fun, quick hummus.” —Chef Michael Psilakis. These easy finger foods are perfect for any party.
“You’d be surprised how a simple thing like champagne, as opposed to wine, really gets everything going in the direction you want it to.” —Chef Michael Psilakis. If you like to buy in bulk, these are the healthiest party foods you can pick up at Costco.
Roasted red peppers, artichokes, and mushrooms in a jar
“No fuss. Very, very simple. And if you get a really, really good quality brand in a jar, they eliminate so much time that you’d spend getting them ready yourself.” —Chef Michael Psilakis
“Whenever (my mom) ran into a wall as far as time was concerned, she would just cut up some French fries and deep-fry them and make a big French fry and egg omelet with tomato—very, very traditional Greek food.” —Chef Michael Psilakis
Canned Italian tuna fish
“I think that’s such an extraordinary product. And it’s something that can be made into a canapé or a salad.” —Chef Thomas Keller
“When you think about what’s your favorite thing in a bottle, I don’t necessarily go to food. I think about a great glass of champagne or a beautiful glass of white wine.” —Chef Thomas Keller. These are the items you should always buy at the grocery store—besides food.
“I am a big believer in eggnog. Embellish it with Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur.” —Author, Sandra Lee
“Deviled eggs: That’s something my mother made for us when we were kids for Thanksgiving that still resonates with me and that we still do here at The French Laundry for our Christmas party.” —Chef Thomas Keller
Olive oil, sherry vinegar, and soy sauce
“With those, you can make almost anything taste good.” —Author, Mark Bittman
“You take your jarred salsa. You take one avocado. You cut it very finely into little chunks. Take your parsley or your cilantro, or your green onions or chives-chop those up. Put that in your salsa and you’ve got an amazing avocado salsa.” —Author, Sandra Lee
“I make a lot of frittatas, which seem fancy but aren’t, and hold great at room temperature.” —Author, Mark Bittman
Piquillo peppers in a jar
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“They’re a little bit spicy but sweet at the same time. They’re not overpowering but they add a really nice smokiness, whether you’re using them chopped in a salad or in a sauce.” —Chef Thomas Keller
“If I have piquillo peppers and anchovies, I can make a fantastic appetizer in two minutes.” —Author, Mark Bittman
“Tomatoes are my favorite staple, because I make a lot of pasta.” —Author, Mark Bittman. These are the unhealthiest foods you can buy at the supermarket.
“Whether it’s peach marmalade or apricot or blackberry or blueberry—take that and use that on a plate with various cheeses.” —Chef John Besh. Also, stock up on these healthy snacks no adult has to feel guilty about eating.
“Four shots cost about $2.12. So for four cocktails, that’s pretty inexpensive entertaining.” —Author, Sandra Lee
Walnut and hazelnut oils
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“I think these nut oils are great to use in various vinaigrettes and marinades.” —Chef John Besh. If you’re stuck on what dish to make, try one of these easy Mexican appetizers.
“Take premade crepes from the grocery store and a can of cherry or apple pie filling (or mix the two), and you have a great treat for your guests.” —Author, Sandra Lee. Even nutritionists like these canned foods.
French green peppercorns
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“For cold shrimp cocktail, there’s nothing better than a few crushed green peppercorns in the sauce.” —Chef John Besh
“To keep a panettone on hand is just a no-brainer. You can slice it, and you serve and eat it as you would any other cake. It’s wonderful by itself. It’s wonderful with a bit of whipped cream and some preserves.” —Chef John Besh
“Fruit is always kind of nice, and pineapple is not so disgusting in a can. You can even whip up a drink with it, so that’s a good thing.” —Author, B. Smith
“I always have rum or vodka if people want to add a little alcohol, but it’s really nice and refreshing to serve plain.” —Author, B. Smith
“I like to go to Costco or Walmart or Target and get just a big snack box or carton.” —Author, B. Smith
Roasted red peppers
“Whether I’ve chopped them up and put them in a salad or whether I’m making a dish and I blend them as part of a sauce, that’s an item I happen to really like.” —Author, B. Smith. Next, read about the healthiest foods you can buy at the supermarket.