Finger foods are a must at any New Years Eve celebration—or any fun party, for that matter—guests love to be able to easily pick up a savory snack and enjoy it while still holding on to their glass of bubbly (or other beverage of choice). And a fan favorite is almost anything Asian, especially when it comes to the appetizers. From egg rolls to dumplings to lettuce wraps, Chinese-inspired starters are the perfect party food.
Some of these recipes are considered Asian-fusion fare, such as crab rangoon, while others are traditionally Chinese, like spring rolls, dumplings, and spareribs. If you're looking for more authentic Chinese recipes, you may want to consider some Chinese New Years appetizers.
01 of 08
Egg rolls are always popular when ordering Chinese takeout, so why not bring some to the party? But instead of picking up from a restaurant, you can easily make your own. A good tip is to make each roll small enough to hold and eat in about 2 bites, so you may need to adjust the recipe. For something traditional, try a pork and vegetable egg roll, stuffed with marinated pork, mushrooms, water chestnuts, cabbage, and bean sprouts. If you prefer chicken, an egg roll filled with flavorful boneless chicken is sure to please. A simple deep-fried egg roll recipe is ideal if you want to make a variety, some including shrimp and some featuring beef. Although not traditional, you can serve baked egg rolls if you are looking for something a little healthier.
02 of 08
Appetizer spareribs seem to have been born out of Chinese-American cuisine and are often part of a pu pu platter (a selection of Chinese appetizers). There are a number of Chinese sparerib recipes to choose from, including classic Cantonese honey garlic spareribs—combining honey and garlic with hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, and soy sauce—as well as spicy salt and pepper spareribs, where five-spice powder contributes the heat. Spareribs with black bean sauce offer a nice alternative to the sweet and sour versions, and spicy Chinese spareribs bring the sweet and spice together with five-spice powder and honey.
03 of 08
These popular dumplings, steamed on one side and pan-fried on the other, are very easy to make. Choose a basic potsticker recipe with ground pork and Napa cabbage or a vegetarian potsticker with tofu and plenty of vegetables. They are delicious served with soy sauce with ginger, hot chili oil or dumpling dipping sauce.
04 of 08
Crab rangoon, also called crab puffs, are an American-Chinese invention (although it is now showing up on Thai menus). The crispy wonton wrapper houses a mixture of crab and cream cheese, along with other flavorings such as Worcestershire sauce, to make a delicious appetizer with a crunchy outside and creamy inside. Instead of rolling into a log or pinching into a half moon, crab rangoon are formed into triangles or flower shapes before frying. Recipes may not vary too much from one another; for a very basic version, try crab rangoon puffs with steak sauce, green onion, and garlic, or crab rangoon with red and green onions, Worcestershire, garlic, and soy sauce.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
Chicken wings, no matter the flavoring, are always a party favorite. And Chinese-inspired chicken wings have become popular to serve in place of the spicy Buffalo version—with the same crispy exterior but coated in familiar Asian flavors. Hoisin chicken wings are marinated in a sweet and spicy mixture of hoisin sauce, honey, ginger, and green onion and baked for a healthy touch. Or try a grilled version with a little spice, combining soy sauce, white wine, garlic, ginger, and five-spice powder.
06 of 08
Spring rolls are an excellent choice for a New Years celebration, as they symbolize wealth for the coming year. Try Cantonese spring rolls with pork and shrimp, mini spring rolls with barbecued pork and black mushrooms, or vegetable spring rolls for a meatless option. Serve spring rolls with soy sauce or Chinese hot mustard for dipping.
07 of 08
This is the ideal appetizer for those guests who are watching what they eat as the flavorful chicken and vegetable mixture is spooned inside a lettuce leaf and eaten "taco-style." The chicken and vegetables are stir-fried in an oyster-flavored sauce before being wrapped inside a piece of iceberg lettuce. If you have some leftover cooked chicken in the fridge, this recipe will come together even quicker; just add the chicken toward the end of stir-frying to meld the flavors.
08 of 08
A popular dim sum appetizer, shrimp toast has been on Chinese restaurant menus for years. Although it requires a few steps, making your own shrimp toast is definitely worth it. Shrimp is processed along with lard, water chestnut, tomato, green onion, and ginger to create a paste, which is then spread on toast and deep-fried until golden and crispy.