New Orleans Appetizer Recipes for Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras, also known as Carnival or Fat Tuesday, is a day of celebration and indulgence. Falling just before Lent, the holiday was traditionally used to indulge in any remaining meat or dairy left in the home to prepare for the fasting season ahead. Today, thousands of guests travel to celebrate Mardi Gras in New Orleans, whether they participate in Lent or not. However, you don’t have to make vacation plans to indulge in a creole-style feast; It’s Smart! to celebrate from the comfort of your home! We’ve compiled some of our favorite Mardi Gras-inspired appetizers to get the party started and all ingredients can be purchased right at your local Foodtown grocery store.
Easy Mardi Gras Appetizers and Finger Foods
Hot Muffuletta Dip
A fun twist on the classic Muffuletta sandwich, this New Orleans-inspired dip is the perfect cheesy addition to your Mardi Gras festivities.
- 1 (8-oz.) Package of Cream Cheese, softened
- 1 cup Cubed Salami
- 1 (6-oz.) Jar Pitted Green Olives, drained
- ½ cup Roasted Red Peppers, drained and chopped
- ½ cup Giardiniera, drained
- 4 ounces Provolone Cheese, cubed
- 1 Garlic clove, minced
- 1 tsp. fresh Parsley, chopped
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Put all ingredients except parsley into a large bowl and mix until everything is coated in the cream cheese and well-blended. Then, transfer the mix to a 9-inch pie plate.
- Bake for about 30 minutes or until the dip is bubbling and hot. Remove and sprinkle with parsley.
- Serve with a selection of crackers, crusty French bread, or tortilla chips.
Classic Hush Puppies
This southern staple is the perfect addition to your Fat Tuesday table setting. They’re crispy, sweet and savory, and are surprisingly easy to make
- 2 cups Cornmeal
- 1 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
- ½ tsp Baking Soda
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 3 Tbsp Green Onion, finely chopped
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons Buttermilk
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- Vegetable Oil, for frying
- Sift together cornmeal, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
- Stir in onions, buttermilk, and egg until thoroughly mixed. The result will be a batter-like consistency.
- Heat oil to about 375 degrees F and drop the batter by the spoonful (about 2 tablespoons each). Fry until golden brown.
- Remove each fritter and place on a paper towel to remove excess oil. Serve hot.
Spicy Peel and Eat Shrimp
It wouldn’t be a Mardi Gras party without the kick of something spicy. This spicy shrimp recipe is easy to make and fun to eat, making it the perfect addition to your Fat Tuesday appetizer menu.
- 6 Bacon strips, diced
- 1 cup Butter, cubed
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 2 Tbsp Seafood Seasoning
- 2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
- 1-1/2 tsp Chili Powder
- 1 tsp Pepper
- 1/2 to 1 tsp Hot Sauce
- 1/4 tsp each Dried Basil, Oregano, and Thyme
- 1-1/2 pounds Uncooked Shell-on Shrimp
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until partially cooked but not crispy. Drain excess fat and stir in all other ingredients except shrimp. Cook over low heat for about 5 minutes.
- Place shrimp in an ungreased 13 by 9-in baking dish. Add the bacon mixture to the dish and bake, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes. Throughout the cooking time, stir the shrimp around twice.
- Remove from the oven and serve warm.
Chicken Creole Deviled Eggs
The creaminess of classic deviled eggs meets the kick of creole spice in these chicken creole deviled eggs. We think your guests will have trouble stopping after just one!
- 6 Eggs, hard boiled
- 1/2 cup Chicken, cooked and diced
- 5 Tbsp Mayonnaise
- 1 Tbsp Onion, finely chopped
- 1 tsp Honey Mustard
- 1/2 tsp Ground Mustard
- 1/2 tsp Creole Seasoning (or ¼ tsp each of salt, garlic powder, and paprika, plus a pinch of dried thyme, ground cumin, and cayenne pepper)
- 1/8 tsp Hot Pepper Sauce
- 1 Tbsp Fresh Parsley, minced
- Cut the hard-boiled eggs in half lengthwise and remove the yolks. Set the whites aside and place the yolks in a small bowl.
- Mash the yolks with a fork, stirring in all ingredients except parsley.
- Once the yolk mixture is blended, pipe or spoon into each egg white half.
- Place in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Just before serving, sprinkle with minced parsley.
Kicked Up Creole Sausage Balls
Sausage balls are a traditional southern appetizer for holidays and family gatherings. In this recipe, they get a Creole-twist, making them perfect for Mardi Grad celebrations.
- 2 1/4 cups Biscuit Mix
- 2 tsp Creole Seasoning
- 2 Tbsp Chives, chopped
- 1 lb hot or mild Ground Pork Breakfast Sausage, uncooked
- 1/2 cup Buttermilk
- 3 Tbsp Mustard, whole grain or Dijon
- 2 Tbsp Onion, finely minced
- 1 1/2 cups Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and line 2 baking sheets in parchment paper. In a medium bowl, mix together the biscuit mix, creole seasoning, and chives.
- Add the sausage, buttermilk, mustard, and onion. Use your hands to thoroughly combine everything. Once well-blended, mix in the shredded cheese.
- Use your hands to roll the mixture into about 1 ½-inch sized balls. Place onto the baking sheets about 1-inch apart and bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden brown.
- Serve warm with a side of mustard for dipping.
Celebrate Mardi Gras with Help from Foodtown
Why travel all the way to New Orleans when you can have your own Mardi Grad celebrations right here at home? With these easy appetizer recipes, any gathering can feel like an indulgent Fat Tuesday celebration. Plan a visit to your local Foodtown grocery store to stock up on everything you’ll need.