How to Make an Appetizer Tree

Good morning, and Merry Christmas from!

Last year, I tried something new for our annual Christmas appetizer party and I’m so excited to share it with you here today hoping maybe you will try it. Keep in mind, this is an appetizer you can use for any celebration.

We don’t usually have a large party, but we do invite our closest friends over, and everyone brings something to share. Then we all lounge around the fire in our kitchen chatting up a storm and sometimes even playing games. It’s one of my most favorite nights of the year. Here’s a couple of photos of our kitchen all decked out for Christmas…

Merry Christmas

That’s the table we all gather around for the party and I usually put out a shrimp cocktail platter, cheese and crackers, and my homemade spinach dip. Our friend Scott brings his crock pot full of his amazing hot cheese dip, and our friends the Miller’s bring the best homemade chocolate chip cookies I ever had. Scott is the funny guy who will get us all laughing with his fantastic stories, and the Millers are even funnier. Sometimes they even share their latest karate move. Now, that is fun! The kids all get along great and honestly act more grown up than we do. I love to watch them sneak into the kitchen for food, and then slowly slip away without the grown ups noticing. Oh, and then there is Sylvia, who always make a special appearance…

Redhead Can Decorate Christmas Kitchen

Oh yeah, back to that new appetizer idea I mentioned. about I just show you what it looks like?

Party Appetizer Tree

We call it our “Appetizer Tree”…

Now, when our friends walked in and saw this antipasto, veggie, pickle, olive, cheese masterpiece they flocked right to it. At first, I think they may have thought it was just for decoration, or maybe one of my projects I needed to photograph. It was then I surprised them all and grabbed one of the tooth picks and said, “Go ahead, pick one!”

Appetizer Tree

So, yes…it was quite a hit, and can also be fun to make. I had my teen daughters help out and it was put together in about 30 minutes. Here’s how we did it:

Instructions for Appetizer Tree

I used a FloraCraft white foam cone from Michaels which are available in multiple sizes. Choose the size that you are most comfortable using and consider how many guests will be enjoying it. You’ll then need to decide what food you want displayed on the Appetizer Tree. You can use olives, pickles, cheese, ham, and tomatoes like I did, or try something completely different. Unfortunately, I did not keep track of how many items were needed for this large cone, I just winged it. To assemble, I kept the plastic wrap on the cone, and stuck the food in with old-fashioned wooden toothpicks. I started at the top and worked my way down. You could also cover the cone with tin foil before you stick the food in, but it is not necessary. Don’t forget a little bowl will be needed for used tooth picks, and you can store your tree up to 1 day in the refrigerator, or cold garage covered with plastic wrap. Another tip I learned later on, is to glue the cone onto a base like a plate so it doesn’t tip over. For the record, mine did not tip over. Pin Appetizer Tree for later HERE.

Let me know of you decide to make an Appetizer Tree, and send me a photo so I can share it on my Facebook page.

Happy New Year from our home to yours!

Love, Julie

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  1. says

    My Mom used to make an appitizer tree for Christmas. She also used a cone and wrapped it with curly endive to make the cone look like a tree before she added all the ingredients. She made a star tree topper too, made out of cheese by using a mini cookie cutter. To hold the tree in place she used floral gum. It worked real well. Everyone loved it!

  2. Gloria says

    I make my tree covered in curly endive with a cheese star and stick cooked shrimp on toothpicks in a spiral pattern. Everyone loves it. I put the tree in a large shallow bowl filled with ice and put more shrimp on the ice.

  3. Barbara says

    Yes! I’ve been making these for over 40 yrs! I found one of these in an old cookbook back in the 70s and loved it. I covered the styrofoam tree with green foil and then stuck all my goodies on the tree – fresh veggies and cheese cubes, olives, etc. Yours is just as beautiful!

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