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Sophisticated Appetizers in 5 Simple Steps: Birchbox Test Kitchen

You miiiight have noticed by now that Birchbox staffers have an ever-so-slight obsession with food, from colorful (and totally yummy) vegetables to delicious smoothies. Which is why we’ve enlisted our in-house recipe guru Nicole to divulge her kitchen secrets each week, sharing seasonal ingredients, must-have tools, and new cooking methods. 


Whatever the occasion—say, an upcoming Oscars party this weekend—appetizers are a delicious and fun way to introduce your guests to the wonderland that will be your dinner party. Plus, since apps are a communal finger food, they handily help encourage guests to become familiar with one another while you put the finishing touches on the next course, refill drinks or adjust your iTunes party playlist.

Whether you’re the kind of person who throws dinner parties every weekend, or if you’re only in the kitchen for a special event, we can all agree that no one wants to be caught without a go-to recipe for a sudden small gathering.

Not to fear! Below are two amazing appetizers that you can pull together in 5 easy steps—all you need are basic ingredients that are easy to procure from any grocer. One’s creamy and one’s salty, so these dishes perfectly complement each other and look pretty when plated together when served in something like this elegant Core Bamboo Entertaining Set. Click through for Nicole’s recipes!


1. Mash 1 ripe avocado with a fork.

2. Add 1 diced medium plum tomato with some of the seeds and juice, but not all.

3. Add ¼ of a red onion, diced.

4. Add several drops hot sauce—this will add a complexity of flavor rather than spice.

5. Salt lightly and mix everything with a fork.



1. Marinate 5 cloves chopped garlic in extra virgin olive oil for 2 hours, unrefrigerated. This takes the bite out of the raw garlic.

2. Add 2 diced medium plum tomatoes, emptied of all seeds and juice.

3. Add 5-6 large leaves of fresh basil, chopped.

4. Add ¼ cup chopped sundried tomatoes.

5. Salt to taste and toss the mixture with a spoon.

*Serve both with a bowl of crostini or a sliced baguette.


Looking for something to satisfy your sweet tooth? Don’t miss Tara Stiles’ homemade (totally healthy) Wendy’s frosty recipe.

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  1. basbleuzombies reblogged this from birchbox and added:
    Good recipes!
  2. carlaannette reblogged this from birchbox and added:
    Sounds. So. Delicious
  3. birchbox posted this