July 28, 2015
Mini snack ideas

Sometimes you don’t want a whole pizza. Make mini ‘zas in a cupcake pan instead!

Mini foods are fun to make for parties, kids’ hangouts and even adult snack time. You don’t have to turn to pigs in a blanket, though. There are plenty of delicious mini foods that wouldn’t be found on a high school cafeteria tray. (OK, some of the following could make it to a lunchroom. But it’s because they’re so good!) Here are a few mini foods to try:

Tiny bite size pizzas can be found in the frozen aisle of your grocery store. But they’re not made with fresh ingredients. Make your own version in cupcake tins. Blogger Damn Delicious uses tortillas for her crust, but we like to opt for homemade croissant dough. Use a rolling pin to flatten it and then take a measuring cup or biscuit cutter to create round disks. Lay them in the bottom of each cupcake section of the pan and flatten them so the edges come up a bit and can hold the rest of the ingredients. Add tomato sauce of your choosing (break out a can you made out of last year’s garden tomatoes if possible!) and then some tasty cheese. Toss on a slice of pepperoni, a piece or two of sausage or some veggies and pop the tray into the oven. Bake for 10 or so minutes, checking that the dough has browned and the cheese is melted.

Pecan pie
For those who tend to overdo it on dessert, you may want to try making these mini pecan pies. They’re almost like cookies. Just toss a couple in your mouth and you’ll satisfy your sweet tooth without going overboard. These itty bitty bites are also perfect for parties and weddings – no annoying pie-cutting necessary. You’ll need a mini-muffin tin to get the perfect tiny servings and miniature pie crusts. House of Yumm uses the Pillsbury variety, but you can make your own with your Colorado culinary school skills. Use a cup or cookie cutter to cut the dough into small circles and then add them to the muffin pan as if they were real pie crusts, flattening them into the bottom and then up the sides with little pinches. Add the tasty pecan filling (pecans, eggs, butter and sugar) and stick them in the oven. You can always add a top crust as well, depending on just how much of the bready stuff you want on your desserts. Bake for 22 or so minutes and you’ll have a household that smells like a bakery and a sweet treat to enjoy.

Caramel apples
We’ve all seen a giant caramel apple and opted to give it a shot. They’re often so big it’s overwhelming, and they’re even difficult to get a good bite out of. For kids especially, these fall favorites can be really hard to eat. If you love the taste of them but want a smaller portion, try these mini caramel apples by My Litter. She uses a melon baller to make her own miniature apples out of a whole green one, and then pushes a sucker stick into the center. Use the stick to help you dip the apple bite into caramel before setting on a plate to harden. Want to make your desserts more festive? Dip them in fun colored or glittery sprinkles before placing them in the fridge to cool. You can get 6-10 caramel apple minis out of just one big apple. This is also a kid-friendly project. Just opt to let an older kid (or an adult) use the melon baller. Some apples are trickier to work with than others. You can use ones right off your tree or choose a few of your favorite varieties from the grocery store. Talk about a perfect-sized taste of a classic treat!