10 Snacks We Love for Last-Minute Guests

published Nov 19, 2014
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(Image credit: Sabra Krock)

Do you keep a supply of treats on hand for impromptu visits? I asked my fellow Kitchn editors this question, and we compiled a list of our go-to favorites for last-minute entertaining. Keep any one of these 10 snacks stocked in your pantry, and you’ll always have something to serve an unexpected guest!

(Image credit: Coco Morante)

Kelli: I always have an assortment of veggies and some kind of dip (usually hummus), so I can easily throw together a simple crudité. I also almost always have some cheese, like aged Gouda, and a soft cheese, like Mt. Tam triple cream.

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Ariel: For me it’s bars of chocolate and popcorn kernels. A lot of my close friends are chocolate fiends, so having a variety of dark chocolate around the house is usually necessary. Making your own popcorn is so easy and customizable based on spices or cheese you have around the house. Can’t go wrong with having it on hand.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

Christine: I like to keep some homemade frozen cookie dough balls in the freezer. They’re ready to pop into the oven anytime I need to serve some fresh-baked cookies.

(Image credit: Dana Velden)

Emma: I’m pretty laid-back, so I usually have good artisan bread and will make us toast with an assortment of jams and nut butters, along with tea.

(Image credit: Faith Durand)

Faith: I like to keep a nice
tea and a
log of frozen cookie dough on hand for last-minute entertaining. My
chai tea cookies are perfect for this!

(Image credit: Emily Han)

Geraldine: I almost always have roasted, organic almonds, which I eat whenever I need a snack. But, for entertaining, I really like the Planter’s Mixed Nuts. They feel fancy, especially when you put them in a nice bowl.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Lisa: Cured meat! And lots of it! Salami, chorizo, prosciutto — any type will do. My husband likes it as a special treat even when we don’t have company, so we always have it around and our friends can gobble it up by the boatload.

What snacks or treats do you like to keep on hand for casual, last-minute entertaining?