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Ideas for apps with BBQ

I'm having a surprise party for my husband and am having BBQ (ribs, pulled pork, bbq chicken, baked beans, cornbread, etc.). I'm trying to keep costs down and have some food to start with that is fairly simple to make that people (about 50) can nibble on while we wait for the guest of honor. Any ideas? Thanks!

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  1. A southern classic is deviled eggs.
    Or maybe veggies (including blanched asparagus and green beans perhaps) with spinach dip? Or crab dip?
    Stuffed tomatoes or stuffed mushrooms

    1. Nachos and Guacamole are always a hit. Cold shrimp with homemade cocktail sauce. Check out Rick Bayless's cookbooks for these recipes.

      1. A dip is easiest, cheapest, and can be made ahead.

        One of those flavorful blackbean and corn (southwestern type) dips would be tasty.

        1. I like to buy a variety of fresh sausages like you can find at Whole Foods and smoke them along with the rest of the 'que. They only take 1.5 - 2 hours and then I slice them up and serve them with a variety of mustards and pepper jellies. In addition to Brats and Italian sausages, throw in some cherry pork, chicken with feta and olives, cajun, apple and sage, sun-dried tomato or chicken portobello sausages.

          Always a hit and since you are running the smoker anyway it couldn't be easier.

          1. I've BBQed the hickory farm mini-sausages and put them out with toothpicks for everyone to munch on. They are very good, and you would probably only need 2 or 3 bags of them for appetizers.