Whether for a backyard get-together or a summer movie night with friends, here are ten food hacks and ideas for your next party, big or small! Readers who snagged our Summer 2021 Foodie Box will find ways to make the most of all their new goodies.
1. Chocolate Peanut Butter Bananas
Brainiac makes this amazing chocolate peanut butter packed with a whole lot of stuff that’s good for you, which inspired us to make a snack that sits right on the edge of being responsible and decadent. Whether you’re using the chocolate peanut butter we did or making your own mix of sweet and savory, this food move is as simple as taking frozen banana halves on popsicle sticks and dipping them in the melted coating of your choice before dipping once more in your favorite crushed nuts or other toppings. A great blend of textures and sensations.
2. Bloody Mary Pops
Ever needed to simultaneously satisfy your thirst, a hankering for something salty, and the need for a bit of extra courage to stare down the raccoons in your backyard? We took some of Van Holten’s ever-inspired Pickle Pops and used them thawed as a base for these Bloody Mary ice pops frosty pickle juice, Bloody Mary mix, and a bit of vodka blended up and poured into an ice pop tray with celery sticks as handles to boot.
3. Chili Cheese Hot Dog Ring
Research shows this is a suitable substitute for a diamond ring. Take some mini hot dogs or hot dog halves and wrap them in pre-made pastry dough. Line the edge of a cast-iron pan with two concentric rings of these mini-wrapped dogs. Fill the space left in the middle with chili and cheese; we used Marukome’s plant-bant-based miso chili to balance out all this dang meat. Bake in the oven until the pastry is golden brown, then let cool, pull apart, dip, and enjoy!
4. Easy Ice Cream Sandwich
You might’ve already heard about how slicing ice-cream containers into rounds makes for perfect ice-cream sandwich filling. If you want to preserve the ice cream in its original container, consider upcycling another round container for this task. We found our leftover container of Hearthy Foods’ sweet potato flour to be the perfect size for filling with ice cream and then slicing for quick and easy disks of ice cream for an awesome summer treat.
5. Boba Margarita
J-Basket’s instant boba kit makes it easy to add a touch of tapioca to any drink of your choice for that tiny Taiwanese twist. But here’s another twist for you: soak the boba balls in tequila for a few hours before plopping in a glass and pouring over with a simple, refreshing margarita. Please chew responsibly.
6. Pineapple Upside-Down Gelatin Shots
Here’s a lovely, fruity upgrade to a college party classic. We took some D’Gari mandarin-flavored gelatin mix and prepared it with water per the instructions before adding a quarter cup of pineapple juice and a half cup of vodka. We then took maraschino cherries and sliced off a bit of the bottom to stand in each pocket of a muffin tin lined with nonstick spray; pour in some grenadine then top with the gelatin mix, pop the tin in the fridge, then let settle before enjoying!
7. Popcorn Bundt Cake
Bundt cake tins are a great tool for creating desserts and snacks of all sorts. We took some melted marshmallows (marshmallows, a bit of butter, and some heat) and mixed in some sweet caramel and chocolate Popcornopolis popcorn before stuffing the whole mixture in a nonstick-sprayed bundt cake tin. Once your “cake” has cooled, it’s ready to pop out and enjoy. You could really add anything you want to this to calibrate your desired level of sinfulness.
8. Watermelon Ice Cube Paloma
You know when you’re enjoying a nice fruity beverage and the ice cubes melt and dilute it down? Why not fix the problem by flipping everything upside down? Take some two cups of watermelon puree, a quarter cup of simple syrup, and the juice of half a lime and blend before pouring into an ice cube tray with a dash of Twang’s Paloma Love salt. Place in the freezer, then chill for a bit. Plop these cubes in some sparkling water. And laugh in the face of the sun as your drink only gets more flavorful over time.
9. Cheesy Cheese Air Fryer Sticks
Just when you thought your air fryer couldn’t get any more useful. You got this idea staring you in the face. We took some mozzarella sticks, four to be exact, and coated them in flour, a beaten egg, blended Pipcorn cheese balls, and Sonoma Creamery pepper jack crisps, then back into the egg and then into one more layer of the crackers mix before freezing for 45 minutes. Once nice and cold, the sticks were given a light spray of nonstick oil before air frying at 390 degrees Fahrenheit for 6 to 8 minutes.
10. Waffle Cake
Turns out waffles are even better when stacked with layers of icing. We used Farin’UP’s pre-prepped Belgian waffle mix to make our lives a little bit easier. Then stacked three fresh waffles with icing between each layer topped with a heap of whipped cream on top. Decorated with sprinkles and other toppings as we saw fit. If you were planning to spend a Saturday knocked out in bed. Then here’s the perfect way to start such a day.