14 Vintage Recipes for the Perfect Throwback Party

Smoky Cheese Ball
Photo: Andy Lyons

It's time to party like it's 1965! These retro party appetizers, cocktails, and desserts are delicious, easy, and totally worth celebrating. It's time for the ultimate #TBT party spread.

01 of 14

Pimiento Cheese Dip

Pimiento Cheese Dip
Brie Passano

Throw a soiree in true southern style with tangy pimento cheese dip. This delicious vintage recipe calls for just four ingredients, plus a few pantry staple spices. Even better news: It's best to make the dip at least an hour ahead to allow for chill time (aka this is a terrific option for totally stress-free entertaining).

02 of 14

Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp

Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp
Andy Lyons

Because everything is better with bacon, including party snacks, serve these showy shellfish at your throwback bash. The little shellfish might look like those that mom made for sports-viewing parties, but they back a surprising explosion of flavor. The spicy secret lies in the marinade, featuring lemon and chili-garlic sauce.

03 of 14

Bourbon-Brown Sugar Nuts

Bourbon-Brown Sugar Nuts
Brie Passano

When you're feeling frisky, just add whiskey! A splash of the brown liquor takes these toasted nuts to party-worthy heights. A sweet and spicy mix of seasonings (cinnamon and brown sugar; cayenne and black pepper) will have everyone asking, "hmm...what is that?"—and reaching for another handful of the easy party appetizer.

04 of 14

Pressure Cooker Bacon Deviled Eggs

Pressure Cooker Bacon Deviled Eggs
Blaine Moats

Hard-cooked eggs can be a hassle. Not when you cook 'em by the half-dozen in an Instant Pot! They reach tender, stuffing-ready perfection after just eight minutes of cook time, and only get better when you dress up this retro recipe with mayo, mustard, bacon, and chives.

05 of 14

Herbed Cheese Mini Peppers

Herbed Cheese Mini Peppers
Andy Lyons

Herb-spiked cream cheese dips are always among the first to disappear at our bashes. Enter: This classic party appetizer that transforms the dip into a finger food option. Just spoon or pipe it into mini peppers for grub you can eat on the go. (In our case, that means on the way to grab another retro appetizer idea or swing by the bar to mix up a mocktail!)

06 of 14

Smoky Cheese Ball

Smoky Cheese Ball
Andy Lyons

Little feels more retro yet timeless than a fully-loaded cheese ball. Make 'em mini or make one mondo—either way, this nutty cheese ball will draw crowds of fans at your vintage-theme party. A couple of spoonfuls of steak sauce make the "smoky" description spot-on.

Test Kitchen Tip: Mix together the cheese ball ingredients, cover tightly in plastic wrap, and freeze for up to a month to cut down on party prep time. Just thaw overnight and roll in nuts before serving.

07 of 14

Pickle Poppers

Pickle Poppers
Hannah Bigot

One of the most popular recipes on BHG.com in recent years, this easy party appetizer proves that pickles will never go out of style. We've mashed-up the concepts of stuffed peppers and the Midwestern classic ham-and-pickle wraps into one fantastic finger food recipe. Try them with ham or turkey—or offer a mix of both for a crowd-pleasing deli spread.

08 of 14

Shrimp and Herby Cocktail Sauce

Shrimp dipped in sauce
Blaine Moats

Just add cooked shrimp (try baking in the oven, sauteing on the stove, or grilling on a stovetop grate!). This zesty cocktail sauce is reminiscent of grandma's favorite V8 juice, just with a kick. Crushed red pepper and horseradish do the trick, while fresh parsley, basil, and lemon brighten things up.

09 of 14

Mom's Ribbon Gelatin

Mom's Ribbon Gelatin
Andy Lyons

We've never seen a more adorable gelatin treat. Especially for a kid's rainbow birthday party or for a festive St. Patrick's Day dessert! Just add a pot of gold alongside the platter of vibrant, fruit-flavored bites to complete the scene.

10 of 14

Mini Bacon-Mushroom Quiches

overhead view of Mini Bacon-Mushroom Quiches
Dera Burreson

Put away that box of frozen mini quiches. These cheesy bacon and mushroom bites come together in just 30 minutes (thanks to purchased puff pastry) and are so much better than premade options. For the most flavor, choose shiitake or cremini mushrooms rather than the white button variety.

11 of 14

Steve's Martini

Steve's Martini
Andy Lyons

Just like James Bond, our Test Kitchen prefers to serve martinis shaken, not stirred. So grab a bottle of gin and some St. Germain (that art deco-looking bottle of elderflower liqueur) and get the party started with this simple recipe for the most iconic cocktail ever. All that's left to add is lime and ice.

12 of 14

Swedish Meatballs

Swedish Meatballs
Matthew Clark

Slow cooker appetizers are always among our entertaining go-tos, and this one tops all the rest for its vintage flair. (Psst...they simmer first on the stove, then can be kept warm all party long in the slow cooker.) Brought back into vogue by IKEA—we simply can't make a trip to the home goods store without stopping by the cafe for an order of meatballs!—these classic party appetizers are coated in a savory, herb-infused cream sauce.

13 of 14

Blueberry Bundt Cake

blueberry bundt cake
Carson Downing

A tube pan ($45, Williams Sonoma) such as a bundt cake, screams "1960s!" in the very best way; that's when it burst onto the scene at the Pillsbury Bake-Off. Take the format and bring this vintage cake recipe into the 21st century with unique flavors such as cardamom, rye, and a fresh berry-citrus glaze. Boxed cake mix can't even come close to the deliciousness.

14 of 14

Spinach-Artichoke Cheese Ball

Spinach-Artichoke Cheese Ball
Blaine Moats

No need to dunk this dip! This retro cheese ball recipe is filled with the classic flavors of artichoke dip like spinach, roasted red peppers, and Parmesan cheese. Whip up this easy party appetizer in just two simple steps.

Updated by
Sarah Martens
Sarah Martens headshot

Sarah Martens is the Senior Editor overseeing food at Better Homes & Gardens digital. She has been with the BHG brand for over 8 years.

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