girls night in ideas

My girlfriends and I all lead busy lives between balancing work and marriage and kids and activities that we rarely have time to get together and catch up. To remedy this, every couple of months someone will host a girls' night in, we'll all bring an appetizer and a bottle of wine and spend a few hours eating, talking, and laughing. I have a few favorites that are always a hit and great to have in your arsenal:

1. Hot spinach and artichoke dip. This is always a hit. Always.

2. Baked Brie with chutney. This is a great recipe in the winter. In the summer, top the Brie with fresh berries for a fresh take on it.

3. Bacon-wrapped water chestnuts. Bacon is always a hit, and the sweet flavor of the sauce mixed with the crunch of the water chestnuts makes for a party favorite.

4. A cheese platter. A platter full of different cheeses (Goat, smoked cheddar, whatever cheese you love!) is a great option to bring if you need a cold appetizer to bring. If you bring along some gluten-free crackers you have a great option for those in your life who are GF.

5. A veggie tray. A tray of veggies is another cold tray that provides a healthy (and gluten-free) option for you and your girlfriends. Celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, and peppers are good options, and if you're pressed for time you can grab a veggie tray from your local grocery store.

6. Seven-layer dip. Chips + Dip = Everyone is happy.

7. Bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers. Spicy and sweet, these are snapped up in no time.

8. Bacon stuffed mushrooms. These are so easy to make, and so easy to eat.

9. Grilled corn and cilantro crustinis. These are pretty, and delicious. Pretty delicious.

10. Fresh mozzarella in tomato cups. Whenever I make these, they are gone in moments.