Savory Dishes: How to serve Tapas – Discover the original Appetizer


Mohit Kamboj

What are tapas?

Originating in Spain, tapas refers to a table full of tasty appetizers that everyone can gather round and share, alongside some fantastic traditional wines. As tapas is such a staple in Spanish living, they have grown in popularity across the world. The great thing about this is that while they are traditionally eaten in the evening, tapas can actually be enjoyed at any time of day or night, and can act as a filling meal when done right.

Top tips for an amazing tapas party

The first thing to think about is setting the table. It’s always best to have your tapas on small plates and in dishes and bowls that encourage sharing. Table staples are napkins and toothpicks (to easily pick up foods with), and no selection will be complete without small bowls of stuffed olives in a few varieties at regular intervals or crusty bread baskets with olive oil on the side for dipping.

It can be a great idea to select just three to five main dishes, to keep prep time low and not overwhelm your guests. Most people opt for 1-2 proteins, 1 vegetarian dish, and different textures (think one fried option like crispy potatoes, crunchy choices like nuts, and soft, smooth dips). You should also offer a charcuterie board, with both soft and hard kinds of cheese and an array of cured meats.

Guests should be encouraged to take a couple of bites of everything, as opposed to a full plate of just one item. Remember, the idea is to taste, share, and try new things in good company.

21 tapas favorites:

Here is a collection of tapas staples for you to choose between. Think about what your guests do and don’t like, but be sure to offer things they haven’t tried before to really bring the heart of tapas to your party.

  • Patatas bravas
  • Garlic Bread
  • Hummus
  • Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Marcona Almonds
  • Stuffed Mushrooms
  • Crispy prawns
  • Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken Skewers
  • Spicy Pork Meatballs
  • Pan Fried Spanish Cauliflower
  • Puff Pastry Tartlets
  • Orange and avocado salad
  • Mini salmon cakes
  • Crostini
  • Ham croquettes
  • Tomato gazpacho
  • Clams in green sauce
  • Pickled vegetable skewers
  • Spanish tortilla
  • Garlic and chili prawns
  • Bread with tomato and ham
  • Crispy squid
  • Polenta Bites with Eggplant and Red Pepper (vegan)

Once you have your menu down, pick just one cocktail. Sangria is a firm Spanish favorite as it’s fruity, fun, and pairs well with many tapas recipes. Keep sparkling wine on the table alongside a few bottles of decent Spanish red and white wine and you should be good to go.

Where to buy all your tapas ingredients

With deals and discounts throughout the store every week (and affordable prices as standard) you can trust the Hy-Vee weekly ad to have everything you need in store. You’ll be able to stick to a budget with little fuss, all while impressing your guests with a fantastic, varied tapas menu.