When the holidays come, we like to make it a little extra special for our kids and any party guests we have. One of the ways we love to celebrate the holidays is by making cute edible crafts like these Edible Ornaments and Edible Trees — Easy Christmas Appetizers for a Party. If you aren’t hosting or bringing snacks to a Christmas party, these are also fun to make at home with the kids as an easy Christmas snack.
We are excited to partner again with Frigo® Cheese Heads® to brighten up your Christmas parties. This post contains affiliate links. By purchasing through these links, you help support the family behind Arts & Crackers at no added cost to you! Thank you!
We love purchasing Frigo® Cheese Heads® products for making cute snacks for kids. To make our Edible Ornaments and Edible Trees Christmas Appetizers, we used Frigo® Cheese Heads® Snacking Combos® and Frigo® Cheese Heads® String Cheese.
You can make these gluten-free Christmas snacks many different ways. I’ll share what I did, as well as some alternatives you can try. Serve the trees and ornaments together or choose one to serve. I served them together, because, for Christmas, trees and ornaments are the perfect combo!
Ornaments and Trees — Easy Christmas Appetizers for a Party
What You Need:
As I mentioned, you can make these several ways (and I will share some of my tips and recipes), but here is what we did:
- Frigo® Cheese Heads ® Snacking Combos (we used the Sharp Cheddar and Beef Sticks combo pack)
- Cucumbers (make sure they’re wide; English cucumbers, which don’t have all the seeds, would be best if they are good quality, but we used regular cucumbers)
- Appetizer toothpicks
- Edible glitter/edible stars (optional)
- Balsamic vinegar and honey reduction sauce (optional — more explained below)
- Star beads (optional — more explained below)
- Frigo® Cheese Heads® String Cheese
- Cherry tomatoes
- Tiny potatoes and/or brussels sprouts (optional)
- Olive oil, salt, pepper (if using potatoes/brussels sprouts)
- Edible gold/silver spray or edible gold paint (optional)
- Edible glitter (optional)
- Balsamic vinegar and honey reduction sauce (optional)
- Bamboo knot skewers
- Christmas ornament hooks
If you love these, you’ll love our easy Caprese Salad Snowman Appetizers (also made with String Cheese)!
How to Make These Christmas Appetizers:
1. Wash and slice a cucumber into 1/2-inch thick coins. It is unnecessary to peel these, as you will be trimming off the edges anyway.
P.S. I love, love, love my new giant cutting board for cooking projects like this!
2. Trim off the edges of the cucumber to make triangle shapes. The triangles should be “isosceles” triangles, meaning the two sides will be longer and the bottom will be a little shorter … like a Christmas tree! This is also a great opportunity for a fun geometry lesson with the kids.
3. Using a sharp knife, cut the beef stick into several pieces (about 1/2 inch each) for the tree trunks.
4. With a sharp knife, cut the cheddar cheese stick into about 1/2-inch pieces, as well. Then, trim around the sides to make them into a star shape. If you struggle to make a star shape, try using a mini cookie cutter as a guide. They do not need to be perfect.
Note: Sometimes the cheese will break apart, since cheddar cheese is a relatively hard cheese and can become crumbly, so make sure you have enough. If you prefer something less “fiddly,” try one of these options: (A) Use Frigo® Cheese Heads® and color it golden with edible spray, edible glitter or turmeric or (B) Super glue a star bead to the appetizer picks, making sure there is enough room for your cucumber and beef stick piece beneath it or (C) Use appetizer toothpicks that already have stars on them (here are a few options), then cut off any excess toothpicks beneath your trees so they will still stand.
*Offer the cheddar cheese sticks on the side if you don’t use them! Slice them into small square pieces and serve them with mini crackers — call it “Elf Crackers and Cheese”!
5. Very carefully, slide the cheddar cheese star (unless you already have an inedible star on there) a little over halfway up the appetizer toothpick. Thread the cucumber onto the toothpick until it reaches the star, with the tallest point at the top. Finish off with the beef stick piece; you can insert the toothpick into the beef stick piece while the piece is standing to ensure that your Edible Trees Christmas Appetizer will stand.
6. If desired, use a condiment bottle to drizzle the trees with a balsamic reduction sauce (there are plenty of great recipes online) and add some edible glitter or edible stars to make them look prettier. The stars will gradually melt, so be aware of this if you plan to have them sitting out for a while.
I was actually planning to add balsamic reduction sauce to mine to make them more “upscale,” but I may have gotten distracted and cooked it a bit too long…and it turned into more of a taffy. Whoops! The kids enjoyed them just as they were without it, but if you are hosting a party for adults, you may want to try some with.
1. If you are planning to use potatoes or brussels sprouts, prepare those now. Preheat the oven to 400℉, line a baking pan with non-stick foil, place the potatoes and brussels sprouts into the pan in a single layer, drizzle extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper over the top, then bake them for about 45 minutes until they are golden and tender. Let them cool a bit before moving on, so you don’t melt the cheese or burn your fingers.
2. Slice the String Cheese into roughly 1/2-inch coins.
3. Thread a String Cheese piece then the tomato, potato, or brussels sprout onto one of the bamboo knot skewers, all the way up to the knot.
4. Using a pair of kitchen shears, trim off the excess skewer below the tomato/potato/brussels sprout.
5. Hang an ornament hook through the knot of the bamboo skewer. If your hooks are too long, like mine were, then twist up the shorter end one extra time to make sure it stays in place and the hook is the right size.
6. If desired, spray the String Cheese with some edible silver or gold spray. I sprayed a little on the “bulb,” too. To make them look extra pretty, drizzle some balsamic reduction sauce on the “bulb” part or sprinkle on some edible glitter or add both!
If your Edible Ornaments Christmas Appetizers are sturdy enough, you can even hang them! These are extra cute when hung off the end of your serving stand, on a clean mini tree, or off of an ornament tree! The only ones I had that would slip off a little were the mini potatoes, due to their consistency, but the brussels sprouts and tomatoes hung perfectly for serving.
Let the kids help make these! Talk about shapes, let them assemble the appetizers as a fine motor activity, and make special Christmas memories as a family!
Check out all of our String Cheese snacks and activities for all year long!