Spicy Sausage Tarts: A simple 4 ingredient appetizer filled that tastes like a creamy taco dip, but presented in a much more elegant fashion. Perfect to make-ahead as well. Growing up, my family always had Peppys for breakfast. What are Peppys, you ask? They are mini pumpernickel toasts spread with a mixture of sausage and velveeta cheese and then broiled to perfection. And oh, I love them. They are a childhood memory for me and something to this day, I would not be able to pass up.
However, those little toasts tend to make me sick. I think it has something to do with the amount of velveeta and that the fat rendered from the meat is NOT drained off. So, while I will still snag one (yes, I try to limit myself to just one), while home for the holidays, I will NOT make them at home.
I discovered a party dip a few years back that tasted a lot like my beloved Peppys. But it did not have velveeta and it used turkey sausage. Well, well, well–I was one happy camper. And I am sure I had more than my fair share of the dip at the party.
When I found out how easy this was to make–sausage browned up with rotel and cream cheese, I was blown away. And after playing with a few varieties of sausages, I discovered that a lean organic chicken sausage worked perfectly in the recipe. And instead of serving with chips or pumpernickel toasts, I opted for mini phyllo cups. These cups created the perfect bite size appetizer and even allowed this simple dip to appear somewhat elegant.
I mean seriously–don’t these little guys look cute? It is the perfect way to look classy while secretly stuffing your face full of taco dip 😉
Did I mention these are best to make ahead of time, assemble, and freeze to pull out as needed? A hostess’ (or host’s) dream come true!
Start by browning up your favorite sausage. I used a nitrate and MSG free chicken breakfast sausage, but you can use ANY ground sausage you’d like. Then you add in a can of tomatoes with diced chiles (AKA rotel) and half a block of cream cheese. Scoop into the mini phyllo cups.
I keep them right in the carton that the mini phyllo cups come in and pop in a freezer bag and stick in my freezer. When guests show up, I just pop them into the oven and warm through–making entertaining look effortless.
- 1 pound nitrate free, lean ground sausage (chicken, pork, turkey, etc)
- 1 10 ounce can of diced tomatoes with green chiles, drained of excess liquid
- 4 ounces cream cheese
- 2 packages mini phyllo shells (or 30 shells)
- Brown sausage and drain away any excess grease. Add in diced tomatoes and cream cheese and stir until heated through and cream cheese is evenly incorporated into mixture.
- Allow sausage mixture to cool slightly and then fill each phyllo cup with 1 tablespoon of the sausage mixture.
- At this point either bake at 400 degrees until browned, about 10 minutes, or freeze.
- From freezer, place on baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes at 400 degrees, until cooked through and browned.
More Last Minute Holiday Bites:
- 3 Ingredient Citrus Salad by Wholistic Woman
- Caprese Dip by The Freshman Cook
- Easy Persimmon Appetizer with Minted Mascarpone by Caroline’s Cooking
- Goat Cheese & Basil Stuffed Peppadews by My Life Cookbook
- Mom’s Cheese Ball by Grumpy’s Honeybunch
- Mushroom Pate by Simple and Savory
- Boozy Slow Cooker Hot Cocoa by Cricket’s Confections
- Cranberry Cocktails 3 Ways by Monica’s Table
- Sparkling Pamplemousse by Books n’ Cooks
- Candy Cane Fudge by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Easy Lemon Bundt Cake by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Pumpkin Nutella Cookie Bars by Take A Bite Out of Boca
- Sweet and Salty Toffee Bark by Pies and Plots
- Cheese Ball Pops by Palatable Pastime
- Cranberry Bacon Jam Crostini by Life Tastes Good
- Cranberry Bratwurst Bites in Cranberry Jezebel Sauce by Turnips 2 Tangerines
- Healthier Sausage Crescent Bites by Momma’s Meals
- Hoisin Beef Purses by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Jalapeno Potato Poppers by Mindy’s Cooking Obsession
- Spicy Sausage Tarts by A Mind “Full” Mom
- St. Louis Ravioli by Bottom Left of the Mitten
- Tuna Salad Deviled Eggs by Food Lust People Love
- Loaded Pizza Stew by Cosmopolitan Cornbread
- Roast Chicken with Scallions and Mushrooms by Asian In America
- Simple Christmas Pizza by Cooking Chat
- Stuffed Turkey Cutlets by Sunday Supper Movement
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