smoked salmon & prawns with salad leaves

Dinner party starter recipes

Kick off your meal in style with our chic selection of starters. From soups and salads to scallops and smoked salmon, these elegant dishes are sure to impress.

135 ratings 4.9 out of 5 star rating

This stunning starter can be assembled ahead, then topped with dressed leaves just before serving.

20 mins
Easy
Gluten-free
4 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Rustle up Tom Kerridge's crab starter with a hint of smoked paprika for your next dinner party. You can make it ahead, leaving you time to sit down and enjoy

12 mins
Easy
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0 ratings 0.0 out of 5 star rating

Make this moreish vegetarian dish as an easy starter for a dinner party. You can make it in 20 minutes and the sauce can be prepped ahead of time

20 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
2 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Bring a Spanish touch to scallops using smoky chorizo and a picada made with hazelnuts, sherry and rustic bread. A vibrant starter or indulgent summer lunch

40 mins
More effort
5 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Make this speedy, cheesy veggie treat for a light supper, or starter. It only needs five ingredients and you can have it on the table in 15 minutes

15 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
Gluten-free
2 ratings 4.5 out of 5 star rating

Treat guests to grilled lobster tails served with a lemon, garlic and parsley butter. They take a little effort, but make an impressive dinner party dish

30 mins
More effort
Gluten-free
13 ratings 4.5 out of 5 star rating

Feed your friends this simple freeze-ahead starter, topped with goat's cheese croutons for added crunch

55 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
2 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Impress guests with this deceptively simple starter that's packed with the lovely flavours of salmon, shrimp, asparagus and apple. Make it in just 20 minutes

20 mins
Easy
9 ratings 4.4 out of 5 star rating

Chop up tomatoes, toss with salt, top with creamy burrata and slather with a broad bean-flecked salsa verde to make this simple yet super-tasty salad

27 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
Gluten-free
4 ratings 4.8 out of 5 star rating

If you're looking for a Christmas classic with a twist, this French ham hock and pistachio terrine, transformed into a modern make-ahead starter is for you

5 hrs
More effort
3 ratings 4.0 out of 5 star rating

A light salmon starter with a crisp salad and honey and mustard dressing. No cooking required, just gravadlax or smoked salmon plus fresh seasonal produce

40 mins
Easy
Gluten-free
13 ratings 2.7 out of 5 star rating

Fry up some fishcakes for an easy supper on busy weeknights. They're full of nutrients from the omega-3 in the salmon and vitamin C in the sweet potato

35 mins
Easy
1 rating 4.0 out of 5 star rating

Individual tarte Tatin-style bakes with puff pastry, caramelised onions, thyme and ash goat's cheese make a sumptuous vegetarian lunch or dinner party starter

1 hr and 45 mins
More effort
Vegetarian
9 ratings 4.3 out of 5 star rating

A modern dinner party starter that’s great for a budget - salty feta, sweet grapes, tangy sumac and aniseed dill create contrasting yet complementary flavours

45 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
Gluten-free
7 ratings 4.9 out of 5 star rating

Fresh mackerel is always a winner and grilling gives a deliciously charred quality. Pickled beetroot wedges add an extra tang in this party-perfect, budget-savvy starter

25 mins
More effort
2 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Curing your own salmon is well worth it for taste and wow-factor. Serve this beetroot and berries version as a starter or on crackers as a canapé

10 mins
Easy
Gluten-free
5 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Make this classic French fish soup at a dinner party for friends and family. It's a challenge, but will make an impressive starter or main course

2 hrs
A challenge
Healthy
5 ratings 4.8 out of 5 star rating

Runner beans work really well with spices and these curried filo triangles are the perfect showcase - a great starter or nibble for 6 people

1 hr and 5 mins
More effort
Vegetarian
0 ratings 0.0 out of 5 star rating

Impress guests with this starter, or fish course, that's perfect for a dinner party. Scallops and radishes are served in a delicate Vietnamese sauce

More effort
Gluten-free
2 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

This broccoli and feta dish makes a great vegetarian starter with a pinch of warming chilli. The preserved lemon yogurt is seriously addictive

25 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
Gluten-free
5 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

Elegant yet full-flavoured, guests will love putting together these bites - make the beef and crème fraîche topping in advance to get ahead

45 mins
Easy
2 ratings 5.0 out of 5 star rating

This versatile recipe can be altered to transform your leftover cheese into a help-yourself starter - perfect served with crusty bread

50 mins
Easy
1 rating 5.0 out of 5 star rating

We've made leeks the star of our elegant, simple starter. Hazelnuts add crucial crunch and the anchovy dressing gives the dish an umami depth of flavour

30 mins
More effort
Gluten-free
2 ratings 3.0 out of 5 star rating

Pair up an epic combination of tomato soup and a cheese toastie to make this flavour-packed meal in just 25 minutes. It makes a comforting supper or starter

25 mins
Easy
Vegetarian
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