The following post was written by Tara Berger, Stylist and Founder of One Stylish Party, an entertaining blog and online party boutique featuring designs and inspiration for entertaining in style.
The countdown to 2022 is officially on, and what better way to ring in the new year than by hosting a cozy New Year’s Eve party at home? Through all of my hosting experience, I have learned that food is truly at the heart of entertaining, so I relied on Heinen’s, my tried-and-true grocery store, for everything needed for my NYE menu this year.
I find that the kitchen tends to be the gathering point for most informal parties, so I decided to utilize my kitchen island to create an enormous appetizer bar featuring small bites that guests could nibble on throughout the evening. I also made sure to style a “Bubbly Bar” so guests could help themselves to sparkling wine throughout the night, too. Here’s a round-up of everything I served at my NYE party!
I’m not sure it would be a NYE party without a little bubbly. My sparkling wine bar featured Heinen’s new, limited-time Vin Hunter Sparkling Rosé, which is the perfect choice for someone who likes a twist on traditional sparkling wine, yet still prefers something that isn’t too sweet. I displayed the rosé on an acrylic champagne wall with DIY tinsel stir sticks in each glass to add a pop of sparkle.
Macaroni & Cheese Bar
If there ever was a night to serve comfort food, the last night of the year would be it! This Macaroni and Cheese Bar was incredibly easy to pull together thanks to the ready-made macaroni and cheese from Heinen’s Prepared Foods Department. All I had to do was prep and display toppings on the side for guests to add to their liking.
The toppings included crumbled bacon, chopped green onions, Heinen’s shredded cheddar cheese and bruschetta tomatoes.
I’ve always said that it is not necessarily what you serve, but how you serve it that makes a dish feel extra special. For this appetizer, I purchased cocktail shrimp from Heinen’s Seafood Department and served them in mini shooter cups with cocktail sauce at the bottom. For an extra pop of seasonal green, I garnished with arugula microgreens. It was a simple, yet elevated dish, and the individual cups made it easy for guests to grab at their leisure while mingling.
Crudité Shooter Cups
For these crudité cups, I layered Heinen’s hummus in the bottom of the glass and added a pre-sliced carrot stick and a pre-sliced celery stick (both found in the refrigerated section of Heinen’s Produce Department), along with a slice of red pepper.
Assorted Pastry Bites
To ensure there were also a few warm appetizers on the menu, I included some frozen pastry bites from the Heinen’s Frozen Foods Department. Not only are these appetizers delicious, but they are perfectly bite-size, and all you have to do is heat and serve! I chose to serve caramelized onion and feta pastry kisses and Savorly mezze bites; however, Heinen’s has many other frozen appetizers to choose from that I can’t wait to try at future parties.
Sparkling Mini Trifles
Everything mini is just cuter! I decided to create layered trifles in tiny martini glasses that I picked up from my local party store. These desserts looked so festive, and were the perfect way to add some flair to our party menu. See below for the ingredients and directions on how to make your own sparkling mini trifles this NYE.
- Pudding of your choice, premade or prepared according the package
- Heinen’s pound cake, cubed
- Ghirardelli chocolate fudge sauce
- Premade buttercream frosting
- Festive sprinkles
- Layer the pudding in the bottom of the glass.
- Add a few cubes of pound cake.
- Top with chocolate fudge and sprinkles
- Repeat the layers of pudding and pound cake and finish with a dollop of buttercream frosting and sprinkles.
Sparkling NYE Popcorn
This snack is a little bit salty, and a little bit sweet, which makes it the perfect for your NYE menu. With just three ingredients, it is also super easy to whip together. Here’s how to make the Sparkling NYE Popcorn.
- 1 bag Heinen’s pre-popped salted popcorn
- 1 cup of Heinen’s semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Festive sprinkles of choice
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the popcorn on top.
- Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and heat in the microwave in 30 second increments, stirring until melted.
- Drizzle the melted chocolate on top of the popcorn and immediately add the sprinkles. Once the chocolate has fully hardened, break the popcorn apart and place in a serving bowl.
Now that I’ve shared the rundown on my NYE menu, here’s a few simple tips on how to host a NYE party that will really impress your guests!
- Stick to a cohesive color palette. For my NYE party, I wanted a classic, glam look, so I incorporated black, white, silver, gold and plenty of sparkle! One of the keys to a well-styled party is to keep a tight color palette so everything looks cohesive.
- Create visual interest in your appetizer display with cake stands and platters of varying heights. If you don’t own dessert risers, get creative with other props such as wrapped empty boxes or upside-down bowls to display the food.
- Create a “wow” moment with a few key decorations. It’s amazing how a few décor pieces can transform a room. I utilized a balloon garland backdrop, a few disco balls, some NYE letters and a sequin tablecloth to help set the tone for my party.
- Get festive. Be sure to have party hats, beads, noisemakers and confetti readily available to encourage guests to get in the spirit at the stroke of midnight!
- Simplify your party menu prep. Shop your local Heinen’s Grocery Store for ready-made food items, sparkling wine and everything else you need to host an easy breezy NYE Party at home! Not only will you impress your guests with the delicious food on your menu, but you can also focus on being in the moment by cutting down your time in the kitchen.