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5 Appetizers in 15 Minutes
by Tanja McElvey

  • Content Type:
  • How-To,
  • Recipe,
  • Content Focus:
  • Kitchen/Cooking

Have you ever struggled with coming up with appetizers when you have company over? Maybe you ended up buying some frozen finger foods in a hurry, or just got a tub of hummus and a tray of veggies.

Here are 5 easy appetizer ideas you can whip up in 15 minutes.


Cream Cheese topped with Raspberry Habanero Sauce or Spicy Pineapple Rum Sauce

Place a block of cream cheese on a serving platter. Top with choice of sauce. Serve with crackers.

3-Minute Dip

This dip is out-of-this-world. All variations are tasty and personally, I lean toward the Three Onion option with the crumbled bacon.

Place 4 oz of shredded mozzarella, 1 package of cream cheese, 2 tbsp of milk, and 1-2 tbsp of rub (see options below) into the Garlic and Brie Baker and microwave on high for 3 minutes. Add toppings and serve with crackers or veggies.

Bell Pepper Herb Option:

½ red bell pepper, diced

Greek Option:

¼ cucumber, chopped

Sweet Basil Option:

½ cup grape tomatoes, chopped

Tex-Mex Option:

1 plum tomato, seeded & diced

Three Onion Option:

3 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

Sour Cream and Mayo Dip

Mix together 1 cup of mayo (not Miracle Whip), 1 cup sour cream, and 1 tbsp of either the All-Purpose Dill Seasoning, Three Onion Rub, Southwestern Seasoning, or Crushed Peppercorn & Garlic Rub.

Refrigerate. Serve with chips and/or veggies.

Baked Brie with Apples & Cranberries

A baked brie is a very common site as an appetizer option. Check out this variation that reminds us more of a dessert than an appetizer.

½ cup chopped apple (½ medium apple)

¼ cup sliced natural almonds

¼ cup dried cranberries

1 tablespoon packed brown sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted

1 round (8 ounces) Brie cheese (about 4 inches in diameter)

Baguette, crackers or cocktail bread slices

Preheat oven to 350° F. Coarsely chop apple with food chopper. Combine apple, almonds, cranberries, brown sugar and cinnamon in Classic Batter Bowl; mix gently. Melt butter in a 1-cup prep bowl in the microwave.  Stir in butter just until ingredients are moistened.

Cut Brie in half horizontally using utility knife. Place one half of Brie, rind side down, in the middle of the Large Round Stone with Handles. Spoon half of the apple mixture onto bottom half of Brie, spreading evenly. Top with remaining half of Brie, rind side up. Spoon remaining apple mixture over top.

Slice baguette and place in a circle around the brie. Brush with olive oil using the Silicone Basting Brush.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until cheese is soft and just begins to melt. Serve with bread. 


Who doesn’t love a fondue? Cheese fondue for the savory and chocolate fondue for the sweet. Easy to put together and guests will love it.

Cheesy Cheddar Fondue

8 oz mild cheddar cheese

2 Tbps all purpose flour

1 can condensed cheddar cheese soup

¾ cup lager beer

2 cloves garlic

1 ½ tsp Herbs de Provence

1 loaf bread

Using Microplane Grater, shred cheese into Round Covered Baker.  Add flour; toss.  Stir in soup and beer.  Peel garlic using Garlic Peeler and slice using Garlic Slicer.  Add in Herbs de Provence seasoning.  Stir to mix.

Microwave covered for 2 minutes.  Cube bread with Bread Knife while cheese is in the microwave.

Stir; continue to microwave 2-3 minutes stirring every minute till cheese is melted and smooth.

Chocolate Fondue

2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream

2 bags dark chocolate chips

1 tsp vanilla

Strawberries, apples, cookies, pretzels, pineapple and/or marshmallows

Place 2.5 qt Everyday Pan RockCrok onto stovetop.   Measure 2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream with Easy Read Measuring Cup and pour into RockCrok.  Cook on med heat and stir often with Mix N Scraper to warm the milk.  DO NOT BRING TO A BOIL!  Once the milk is steaming and maybe a couple bubbles come around the edge of the pan, add in the dark chocolate chips.

Turn off the heat and put it on the Slow Cooker Base at Low Heat.  Stir till chocolate is melted then add in vanilla.


About the Contributor

Tanja McElvey / Independent Consultant

Pampered Chef Leesburg, VA

I fell into this job by accident really. I love showing people how to get healthy meals on the table every night in an efficient and affordable way. I think the most rewarding part is the look on their faces when they realize how very versatile all our products are. My son enjoys cooking, so he is the tester of new products in our house.
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The views expressed in this article belong to the article contributor and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NDSR™ or