Looking for easy starter recipes? Try one of our dinner party starters for simple but impressive entertaining. We have vegetarian starter recipes from creamy burrata to stunning courgette flowers and smart soups with pickled mushrooms. Or try one of our seafood starters – scallops, ceviche, smoked salmon and more.
- We use mussels, burrata, shrimp and more in our starter ideas
Take your Christmas dinner starter to the next level by adding champagne to your king prawn vol-au-vents.
Start Christmas dinner with a bang and serve these flavour-packed, spicy scallops in their shells.
Liven up crisp, golden squid rings with coriander, peanuts and chilli for an easy seafood starter.
We serve these pretty pies in their original scallop shell and top with flaky puff pastry, a perfect way to start your dinner with friends.
Put shrimps at the heart of this easy starter recipe. Ranhofer is a creamy, luxurious sauce spiked with brandy and cayenne pepper. The original dish uses lobster but we've switched for brown shrimp to make it an easy dinner party starter.
Mussels make a great sharing starter. Check out our easy recipe for moules marinière (mussels in white wine sauce). This classic French recipe is a great way to impress dinner party guests. Pop on the table with some dipping bowls and crunchy bread and let everyone dig in. We've got plenty more mussels recipes here.
Make this classic starter recipe in just 15 minutes, using fresh prawns and an indulgent, creamy sauce. This tried and tested recipe is a firm favourite and great for entertaining.
If you love serving smoked salmon for a Christmas starter, this is a great modern twist. The salmon is finely chopped and tossed in a fragrant dressing of lemon, shallots and capers. Serve with thin slices of melba toast.
Make our easy, low calorie garlic chilli clams with crunchy sourdough toast for a show-stopping starter. This easy recipe is ready in just fifteen minutes making it perfect for a last minute dinner party.
This easy starter is a traditional Latin American dish. Our recipe is gluten-free and uses sea bream, a great fish that works well with the zesty limes and a kick of chilli. It is super quick and easy, a perfect show off starter.
Thai fishcakes make brilliant party food or a dinner party starter as you can fry them in advance and keep warm in the oven. The easy cucumber pickle adds an authentic Southeast Asian touch. More fishcake recipes here...
This simple Asian dish is super-healthy and will have your tastebuds singing. It's only 211 calories, too. Ask your fishmonger for sashimi-grade tuna.
Kick off a classic Italian meal with these gorgeous grilled veggies. Serve with fresh focaccia, olives and cured meats for an impressive spread.
Check out these crispy croquettes with peas and crumbly Yorkshire fettle. This impressive veggie recipe comes from chef Chris Boustead of new Islington restaurant, Linden Stores.
Everyone loves burrata for an impressive starter. Try our creamy burrata recipe with savoury granola, it will provide a talking point for your guests. Try our top vegetarian entertaining recipes here.
Make this vibrant asparagus starter recipe with creamy goat's cheese and fresh lovage, perfect to impress friends at your next dinner party. This dish comes from chef Johnnie Crowe at his new East London restaurant, Nest. Make the full dinner party menu from Nest with our recipes adapted to home cooking, here...
Beautiful finger food to start your dinner party. Packed with sweet and tangy flavour, these courgette flowers with honey and vinegar are a great starter for any summer dinner party. What's more, they look impressive and are quick and easy to make.
Looking for a vegan starter recipe? Try this crunchy purple sprouting broccoli in crispy tempura batter. Ready in under 30 minutes, this dish will make an impressive vegan dinner party starter.
An easy starter or an impressive canapé for your next dinner party. Check out our vegetarian recipe for crunchy filo-baked fresh figs stuffed with peppered goat’s cheese.
This recipe for asparagus with butter, balsamic and capers makes a great starter or lunch. Plus, it's ready in just 15 minutes and is under 300 calories.
Get your festive feast off to a vibrant start with our creamy beetroot soup topped with crunchy, cheesy mini sourdough toasts.
Looking for an impressive soup starter? Try our creamy mushroom soup with simple pickled mushrooms. This super easy recipe is smartened up with a pickled mushroom topping. Here are our other soup recipes to try...
For a refreshing starter idea, try this vibrant gazpacho recipe with punchy jalapeños, crispy prosciutto and creamy burrata. Chilling this gazpacho will allow its flavours to develop fully. You could use red tomatoes, but you won’t get as vivid a colour.
This sweet melon gazpacho is a refreshing light summer meal or starter. Packed with plenty of flavour and topped with crispy parma ham, this dish has under 250 calories per serving.
Starters from around the world
Check out this chicory salad with lentils, borlotti beans and crunchy panko breadcrumbs. This easy recipe comes from Italian restaurant Bancone in Covent Garden.
If you’re seeking proper comfort food to start your dinner you can’t go far wrong with dumplings. The Polish have pierogi, Italians have ravioli, the Chinese have dim sum – and in Turkey they have manti. Check out our recipe for classic manti, these dumplings are the perfect dinner party starter.
A really impressive starter from Taiwan. Check out these delicious chicken wings with punchy sanbei sauce. This recipe is easy to make and comes from new Taiwanese restaurant XU in London's Chinatown. Try XU's mapo tofu recipe here for a vegetarian main course.
This recipe for ham hock rillettes with pistachio salt comes from Salt and Honey in London and makes a great dinner party starter.
This recipe for Thai red curry mussels is a great new way to serve mussels. It's a really easy dish to make, is ready in just 30 minutes and is under 300 calories but is still packed with flavour and a great chilli kick.
Serve this baba ganoush with cumin crispbreads as a meze starter with hummus, olives, lamb kofte or falafel. You can keep with crispbreads in an airtight container for up to three days.
Juicy peaches give a sweet contrast to creamy burrata and salty serrano ham in this showstopping summer salad to share as a starter.
Put together our pick of the charcuterie and veggies and serve with melted brie for an easy sharing starter.
Check out our easy fig recipe with creamy mozzarella, salty serrano ham and peppery rocket. These easy pickled figs make a simple recipe for your next dinner party with friends.
One of our most impressive starters yet. With the spice of the 'nduja, the crunch and freshness of the vibrant tomatoes, and the creamy indulgent burrata, this fresh tomato salad is a great summer starter.
Check out this quick and easy avocado recipe with crab salsa and spicy chorizo. This simple avocado dish is ready in just 20 minutes – a great starter recipe for a summer dinner party. Love avocados? We've got plenty more recipes here...
This indulgent terrine is an impressive starter recipe to make for your guests. Packed with rich meats and pistachio jewels, this is a starter your guests will remember.
This classic dish doesn't have to be intimidating. This simple recipe makes for a great dinner-party starter, just multiply the ingredients by how many guests you have.
Try our quick and easy recipe for tomatoes and lardo on toast with a super light basil oil. Crunchy toasted soughdough topped with soft and velvety lardo, and good-quality juicy ripe tomatoes, this recipe works really well as part of an antipasti. We love toast toppings, so try our recipes here.
Your next dinner party will go down a treat if you start with our sweet and sticky BBQ chicken wings. This gluten-free recipe is super easy to make and a real crowd pleaser at any summer BBQ or dinner. Try one of our Vietnamese recipes for a fresh and punchy dinner party spread.