We Did the Math for You: Here's How Many Party Appetizers Per Person You'll Need
How Many Appetizers Per Person?
Running out of food and drink is a guaranteed buzzkill when you’re hosting a party. So we created this guide to answer all your most common feeds-a-crowd questions, including, “How many chicken wings per person?” and“How many meatballs per person?” And we're not talking about nutrition facts panel servings; this is the real deal of what a normal person eats as a heavy appetizer portion. Get amounts and recipe ideas for all of the above, plus for other common party appetizers. (Note: While our how-many-appetizers-per-person math is made for parties of 12, you can adjust up or down based on your guest count.)
Jalapeño Poppers, Cheese Sticks, and Crostini
We’re lumping these diverse appetizer options together because the serving size is similar for items like Mozzarella Cheese Sticks, Air-Fryer Jalapeño Poppers, and Sweet Pea Ricotta Bruschetta. One is never enough of these savory snack recipes in our party hosting experience, so here’s how many appetizers per person to plan on:
- One serving = 2 sticks
- Party of 12 = 24 portions
Forget the forks and dole out the napkins for a finger-food favorite: chicken wings! Tender and saucy, chicken wings are a must-have appetizer, especially when you spice them nicely (as in our Red Curry Chicken Wings and Thai Chicken Wings with Peanut Sauce recipes). But how many chicken wings per person will suffice for your soiree?
- One serving = 3 wings
- Party of 12 = 3 pounds
Dips and Spreads
No party buffet is complete without non-cheesy dips and spreads to please the dairy-free diners and those who prefer something with a few veggies in it. Hot (like our Spinach-Artichoke Dip with Blue Cheese and Bacon) or cold (such as this Pineapple-Black Bean Guacamole), sweet or savory, the options are nearly endless. Your spread solution:
- One serving = ¼ cup
- Party of 12 = 3 cups
Cheese and Charcuterie
Curious about how many ounces of cheese per person will suffice? If you’re pairing your cheese board fromage with meats, you’ll need less Brie, cheddar, and Gruyère than you would if you’re serving the cheese solo. Either way, a couple ounces per person is a satisfying portion.
- One serving = 2 ounces (1 ounce each of meat and cheese)
- Party of 12 = 24 ounces of a mix of cheeses and meats
Meatballs are so easy to prepare and can often be made ahead or held in a slow cooker until party time, as these Molasses-Lime Meatballs and Plum Good Sausage and Meatballs prove. (So helpful if you’re serving a huge crowd and doing the math about how many frozen meatballs for 50 or more people!) Here’s how many meatballs per person you’ll need:
- One serving = 4 meatballs
- Party of 12 = 2 pounds
Fondue and Queso
Guests can't resist a handful of flavor-packed, crunchy munch mixes. These Paleo Rosemary Roasted Nuts and Sweet and Spicy Pecans always fly off the snack spread when we serve them! Noshing on nuts is a party idea that never goes stale, and it’s a terrific option that will please vegans, and gluten-free (depending on the recipe), Paleo and keto dieters all at once. Here’s how much you’ll need:
- One serving = 2 ounces
- Party of 12 = 1½ pounds
Stuffed mushrooms are a perfect one-bite appetizer. Bonus: Party snack options like Greek-Style Stuffed Mushrooms and Chipotle-and-Ranch-Stuffed Mushrooms are so quick and easy, they can be made up minutes before a party. Take note of how many appetizers per person so you don’t run out early:
- One serving = 3 mushrooms
- Party of 12 = 1½ pounds
Cheesecake Bites, Mini Cupcakes, and Bite-Size Brownies
No party menu is complete without something sweet! We like to share small desserts to fit the bite-size theme, to allow for sampling, and to offer an easy handheld package. Try Mini Blue Corn Carrot Cake Cupcakes, Strawberry Margarita Cheesecake Minis, and/or Sweet and Spicy Brownie Bites.
- One serving = 3 mini treats
- Party of 12 = 36 mini treats