Janet's Notebook
No-Bake Appetizers for Summer Entertaining


Tomato Mozzarella Salad With Balsamic Dressing


One of the things I love about summer is how the days are longer. The extra light allows me to enjoy the day a bit longer. On a warm evening, I love to have friends over, catch up on life, enjoy the weather, and, of course, enjoy some munchies. These no-bake appetizers mean I don't have to turn on my oven and they can be prepared in a snap.

"My husband and I had this Margarita Shrimp Cocktail in a restaurant a few years back and we loved it so much we began experimenting with a recipe of our own," explains Helene Mulvihill (Magnolia, TX). "This is what we've come up with after many, many tests. You really can't go wrong with shrimp so experimenting was wonderfully fun!"

This easy recipe is amazing and packed with flavor. It's a cross between shrimp cocktail and Mexican salsa. I was a little unsure of the mango and avocado pairing but, boy, it was fabulous. The shrimp soak up the flavors from the horseradish, onions, and jalapeno. Super refreshing!

Melissa Snow (Hillsboro, OR) shared her Ranchero Layer Dip with Just A Pinch and it is mighty tasty. It's a twist on layered taco dip.

"One neighbor refers to this as the 'everything but the kitchen sink dip'," shares Melissa. Jalapeno beans on the bottom are a good base for all the delicious elements of this recipe. What makes this really different, though, is the sour cream layer. Sour cream is blended with Miracle Whip and taco seasoning is stirred in. It adds great balance. There is a lot of flavor in each layer.

Another easy Mexican flare appetizer is Juanita Morrow's (Ripon, CA) Spicy Mexican Wraps. Don't let the ease of this recipe fool you - these wraps are delicious!

"These are so, so yummy," thinks Juanita. "I have yet to see anyone refuse, you can't eat just one!"

Softened cream cheese and mayonnaise are mixed together. Then tons of flavor is added - ranch dressing mix, chilies, green onions, and a few other goodies. The mixture is spread onto tortillas. Once chilled, the tortillas are cut into slices for one of the easiest appetizers you will ever make.

Dill pickles - either you love them or hate them. Personally, I love them which is why I like to make Kim Biegacki's (Boardman, OH) Nutty Pickles. I'll admit to being a little hesitant when I first looked at the ingredient list, but the flavors work very well together.

"About 12 years ago, a lady brought this yummy treat to an office party and I never forgot it," reveals Kim. "Since then I have tried flavored cream cheeses, different nuts and sprinkling a light touch of garlic salt on top, but all in all it stands as a simple recipe that I love."

This is definitely an unexpected appetizer. They're the perfect combination of salty and sour. Yum!

"Super easy, super flavorful," is how Monica Keleher (Methuen, MA) describes her Tomato Mozzarella Salad With Balsamic Dressing. This is a fresh, yummy, classic salad made with summer tomatoes and fresh basil.

Using prosciutto makes this a little different and I loved the savory addition. The tangy balsamic dressing is easy to prepare and adds a final punch of flavor. If you find good looking tomatoes at the market this weekend, definitely try this recipe.

Not only are Jeanne Benavidez's (Odessa, TX) Avocado-Stuffed Tomatoes cute as a button, they are tasty too. "A friend brought this to a backyard party once and I really liked it," says Jeanne. "She was kind enough to give me the easy recipe. I have made it several times and everyone seems to really enjoy the little morsels of coolness."

These are a simple, bite-size appetizer. Mashed avocado is blended with cream cheese and spices until smooth. Then it's stuffed into cherry tomatoes. Yum! I suggest doubling the amount of filling to make sure there's plenty for each little tomato.

Whether you're hosting friends or asked to bring something to a cookout, try one of these easy no-bake recipes. They are the perfect summertime apps.

Do you know what other "app" is perfect? Our new Pinch It!™ Recipe Box app!

No need to make a grocery list when you want to make these appetizer recipes. Just save them to your Recipe Box. Then, when you download the app you can pull them up right from your phone at the supermarket.

Learn about what else the Pinch It!™ Recipe Box app can do here. It's available for both iOS and Android phones. Happy Pinching!



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4 Comments
Winkler1
Winkler Ginnynw - 5 Hours Ago
But for some, like Kris Thorkelson, a strong vision helped him become a successful entrepreneur. Working for much of his career as an entrepreneur in the pharmaceutical industry, although still active in the industry, most recently,

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DSNjustpinchme
Debbie Sue - 14 Hours Ago
How about a Cherry Tomato Surprise? The surprise is the shrimp!
DSNjustpinchme
Debbie Sue - 14 Hours Ago
My friends request Cold Crab and Cheese for happy hour at the pool. So good served in cucumber cups!
DSNjustpinchme
Debbie Sue - 15 Hours Ago
Awesome Avocado Dip is a huge hit with our group!
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