Party Finger Food Ideas-Budget Friendly Starters & Apps

Need to feed a party crowd on a budget? These are my favorite inexpensive snack platters, quick make ahead appetizers and easy finger foods I make. If you need cheap party food ideas for YOUR group, you’re in the right place!

It’s that time of year again, time to start planning the food for all the parties we’ll be having. This year, I’m trying to do everything LOW cost – below are the best party finger food, cold appetizers ideas and cheap party food platters for our small group AND large group party food crowd.

party finger food ideas on a budget

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Making food for a large group OR small group can be a challenge. Food is so expensive these days, plus WHO has time to spend hours in the kitchen?

Not me!

I’ll be making some of my famous quick and easy appetizers and finger foods again soon because…

It’s almost football season again – YAY!

That means we’ll be hosting at least one party every week (most likely I’ll be making food for our football parties TWICE a week – on Saturdays for College Football and on Sundays for Pro football).

When you have a bunch of people over to watch football, you know what ELSE they want to do?


College Football Game Day Snack Platters

See All Football Party Food Platter Ideas

Our friends don’t mind bringing snacks with them, but I really like setting out a party buffet type of spread for everyone to snack on throughout the day (and night!)

I’m really glad I found these inexpensive cold appetizers for a crowd and cheap party food platters I can make – they’re all affordable homemade finger food recipes that are not only CHEAP to MAKE, but EASY to make too.

Last year, I bought cheap party platters at our Dollar Tree, so I always put out cold veggie snack trays and cheese trays like this:

round plate with snacks and appetizers

cheap party food platters

I make them for our large group events and I also throw one together for my church small group events – super simple!

BUT, for football on Thanksgiving weekend, I get fancy with it – just look how creative haha!

simple thanksgiving turkey fruit platter

I love creative party food platters!

I’m not-so-good with the whole charcuterie board thing – maybe I lack creativity or vision haha!

But, snack platters like this bunny-shaped food platter are right up my alley!

bunny shaped food platters

I found it on this cheap snacks for large crowds page – isn’t it ADORABLE!?!

There are lots of ways to make a bunny-shaped snack platter full of veggies and dip and cheese and crackers – just let your creativity go wild.

Here are some more bunny-shaped snack arrangements for inspiration:

4 bunny shaped snack platters

Now, if you want to get REALLY fancy with it, arrange your snack platters in Charcuterie style and make a super fancy and beautiful grazing board like one of these:

4 Charcuterie Snack Boards

They’re almost too pretty to eat, right?

But your guests will LOVE them!

For our Super Bowl party, I made these super simple 3-ingredient COLD appetizers:

cold party finger food ideas-budget-friendly inexpensive cold appetizers for a crowd

Just slice up some cucumbers and top with whipped cream cheese with half a cherry tomato on top – easy peasy!

If you want a REALLY good cold appetizer idea, try these BLT bites below – so, so SO YUMMY!

cold appetizers for a crowd - inexpensive party finger food on a budget

Just a heads up though – while these little toothpick appetizers ARE delicious, make sure you have the time AND the patience to stand there and stuff all those little cherry tomatoes BEFORE hand. These are not an appetizer you want to make last minute.

I also like to make a fruit cheese and meat snack tray like this:

small simple charcuterie snack board

party platter ideas - finger food party platters and meat platter ideas - easy homemade party platters for grazing at a baby shower, potluck, church supper, birthday party, football super bowl party or any large group gathering like a family reunion

If you want to see more party food platters and ideas of snacks for large groups, this page below has a ton of great ideas:

party food! cheap party food platters and inexpensive snacks for large groups - perfect for a potluck at work or church, funeral food ideas for a buffet, football party or any party crowd on a budget
see more cheap party food platters

I also make some super simple cold party dips like this Cowboy Caviar – not only is it YUMMY game day food, but it is also an easy family reunion food too!

Cold appetizers for a crowd - Game Day Food and Party Dip Ideas for a Crowd - From: Party Finger Food Ideas-Budget Friendly Starters & Apps

Heck I even make it for my potluck at work, cookouts, our block party, graduation parties, birthdays, showers… etc… everyone wants me to make it!

Now, Fritos work perfect to use as the ‘dip chips’ for that party dip recipe above, BUT if you want to really up your game, make this Ritz snack crackers.

Not only are those crackers a cheap savory snack for any large crowd, they are also delicious when dipped in that cold dip above.

inexpensive snacks for large groups - put these savory snacks on your cheap party food platters for cheap game day food on a budget

Here’s a tip to save money on that cracker recipe.

You can get the super cheap Dollar Tree Round Cracks instead of Ritz – tastes just as good (if not better) AND costs a lot less.

Want more cold appetizer ideas?

This page below has a TON (and they’re all only THREE ingredients too!)

cheap easy appetizers - finger food cold appetizers on a stick from Party Finger Food Ideas-Budget Friendly Starters & Apps
Cold Party Appetizer Ideas

If you’re having a cookout party, this page below has lots of food ideas for an outdoor party:

cookout party food ideas for a outdoor BBQ party, block party, football party
see all cookout party food ideas

More Cold Party Food Ideas

There is NOTHING easier than cold NO COOK party food to make ahead and serve your guests at any event.

If cold appetizers and party finger foods are what you’re looking for, here are 4 highly-recommended resources to check out…

crowd pleasing cold party appetizers and finger foods

Where to find the recipes in the image above:

(1) Cold Party Dips Ideas – Need Cold Party Dip Appetizer Ideas? Try This Cheddar Bacon Ranch Dip Recipe – It’s like Crack Dip with Cheese But SO Much Better! See this cold party dip recipe.

(2) Easy Party Pinwheel Recipes – These pinwheel appetizer recipes are simple and CHEAP party finger foods for any large group or small crowd at your special event. These are the best pinwheels appetizers I’ve tried… highly recommended and YUMMY! See the pinwheel appetizer recipes.

(3) Party Platters You Can Make For Large Groups – Cold finger food party platters – LOTS of great ideas to make for a party crowd. See all party platter ideas.

(4) 13 Cold No Cook Potluck Appetizers With Only 3 Ingredients – Need easy appetizers for a crowd? Try these 13 cold NO COOK potluck appetizers and finger food recipes – only 3 ingredients in each recipe! See these cold appetizer recipes.

More Party Food Ideas

Resources for easy and cheap party food

More Great Places To Find Easy and Cheap Party Food Ideas:

From the image above:

(1) 57 Make Ahead Party Platters To Feed A Crowd – Need cheap and easy party food ideas? Check out these 57 make ahead party food platters for a crowd. See these party platter ideas.

(2) Budget Party Food – Hosting a party and need to keep your budget in check? Check out this Party Finger Foods Ideas on a Budget! Tons of yummy budget recipes – see these ideas.

(3) 25 Party Food Finger Foods For a Sprinkle Baby Shower – Excellent list of crowd pleasing finger food ideas with recipes – delicious and easy-to-make party appetizer ideas that are sure to impress your guests and leave them wanting more. See these finger food recipes.

(4) Last Minute Potluck Ideas You Can Make or BUY For a Bring-A-Dish Party – Quick, Cheap and Easy Potluck Food Ideas: Appetizers, Side Dishes, Finger Foods, Cold Salads, Store Bought Food Ideas To Take, Last Minute Recipes and MUCH more – great resource! See these potluck ideas.

(5) 25 Frugal Easy To Make Bite Size Appetizers – Simple yummy easy to make small bite appetizers and frugal meal ideas. Perfect for game day, appetizer parties, cocktail nights and etc… See these ideas.

(6) How to Throw a Party on a Budget – Sam’s Club Food Ideas. See these ideas.

(7) Graduation Open House Food Ideas For ANY Size Grad Party Crowd – BIG list of simple, easy and cheap grad party food ideas for an indoor or outdoor open house graduation party… See these party food ideas.

(8) Inexpensive Snacks For Large Groups – Trying to feed a party crowd for cheap? This page has a HUGE list of 47 easy and cheap party appetizers and finger food snacks. See these easy party food ideas.

(9) Cheap and Easy Cold Meals For A Crowd – Very helpful list of large group meals for feeding a crowd on a budget – cheap easy cold meals for parties, luncheons, church suppers, Sunday family dinner buffet food, lunch potluck at work and LOTS more ideas to feed a party crowd. See these cold meals and party food ideas.

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finger foods for party

Party Finger Food Ideas-Budget Friendly Starters & Appetizers for a crowd

cheap party food platters for thanksgiving and football parties - party finger food ideas budget friendly inexpensive snacks for large groups or thanksgiving potluck at work or church