Trader Joe's Kale and Spinach Bites1 of 11
Yes, these are made primarily of spinach and kale, but they're also made with eggs, breadcrumbs, butter and parmesan cheese—in short, these taste good and, at 140 calories for a four-piece serving, they're a better caloric bargain than most holiday hors d'oeuvres. Packed with vitamins A and C, stash several boxes in your freezer this holiday season so you can heat up a quick, relatively healthy snack or appetizer whenever unexpected guests stop by.
Sahale Snacks Flavored Nuts and Mixes2 of 11
If you can't be bothered to make your own spiced nuts, Sahale Snack's flavored nuts and fruit-and-nut mixes are the perfect elegant nosh for holiday cocktail parties. Made with some organic ingredients and tantalizing flavors such as ground vanilla beans, dried orange peel, cinnamon and maple, these snacks can stand alone in a shimmery holiday bowl or be used to adorn salads, roasted veggies, cookies or bark. Ideal flavors to accompany your holiday cocktails: pomegranate pistachio, maple pecans and cashews with pomegranate and vanilla.
Pacific Foods Soup3 of 11
While some foodies turn their noses up at canned soup, Pacific Food's soup in a box tastes fresher and closer to homemade than most brands encased in aluminum, likely because the company uses only recognizable ingredients and no chemicals or preservatives. You can feel good about taking a shortcut when you serve this as part of your holiday spread. Season-appropriate flavors include butternut squash, roasted red pepper and tomato and cashew, carrot and ginger bisque.
Boar's Head All-Natural Uncured Ham4 of 11
This humanely raised ham, free of nitrates, nitrites, preservatives, hormones and MSG, is a great blank canvas for any sort of marinade, glaze or sauce. This vegetarian, grain-fed ham is moist and slightly smoky.
Tate's White Chocolate Macadamia Cookies5 of 11
You might recognize the buttery, crisp whole-wheat chocolate chip cookies that come in the teal paper bag, but did you know that Tate's makes a perfect-for-the-holidays white chocolate macadamia flavor as well? If you enjoy crisp cookies that can be dunked in coffee or hot chocolate without crumbling apart, zap these treats in the microwave for a few seconds before serving (your guests might think you just made them).
Imagine Foods Organic Free Range Chicken Broth6 of 11
So many holiday recipes and seasonal staples, such as stuffing, soups, casseroles, roasted meats, gravy and sauces, require chicken broth. Unless you have several hours and a chicken carcass (or two) in your freezer, store-bought chicken broth is the way to go. It's hard to find ready-made chicken broth that tastes good and is free of chemicals, preservatives and GMO ingredients. Available in a reduced-sodium version, Imagine Food's chicken broth comes in a box with a plastic tab so you can store any unused broth in the refrigerator for your next recipe.
Linda's Gourmet Latkes7 of 11
Buy these frozen ready-to-top latkes at Williams Sonoma or online, and you'll have a close-to-homemade potato pancake ready in under 10 minutes. Available in original, sweet potato and green onion, these golden cakes also come in a gluten-free variety.
Marie Callender's Pastry Shells8 of 11
Tastes like homemade—sometimes better than homemade. Making your own pastry for pies that is flaky and light can be a frustrating endeavor that takes several tries. Instead, buy trustworthy pie crusts to stash in your freezer and focus your domestic goddess prowess on filling the ready-made dough with cinnamon-kissed fruit, silky mousse or tart lemon or lime curd and pillowy meringue.
Pepperidge Farm Stone Baked Artisan Rolls9 of 11
Almost everyone has forgotten the rolls at one holiday meal, and speeding to the store at the last minute to pick up whatever sad, tasteless bread is left on the shelf is far from ideal. Toss a bag or two of Pepperidge Farm frozen artisan rolls into your cart and stash them in the freezer so that when it's time for your dinner party, you won't have to frantically text your sister to bring some bread. Flavors include multigrain, ciabatta sourdough, French and roasted garlic ciabatta. Just don't forget to warm up the rolls.
Freshies Cocktail Mixes10 of 11
Free of corn syrup, artificial flavors and preservatives, Freshies uses fresh juices, agave nectar, whole cane sugar, herbs and spices in their bottled cocktail mixes. If you don't want to spend your entire holiday party stuck behind the bar or don't have the refrigerator space to store large batches of a homemade mix, Freshies makes a mix for most party classics, such as martini, mojito, margarita and bloody mary in a variety of unique flavors.