Antipasto Skewers

Fun and festive Antipasto Skewers --- who needs salad?

These colorful and fun antipasto skewers are a house specialty ~ everybody gets their own personal appetizer selection right on a stick ~ we make them for game days and the holidays, through spring and summer parties, and right back round again.

Fun and festive Antipasto Skewers --- who needs salad?

I’m famous for my antipasto skewers!

They might be the perfect party appetizer ~ they work for all kinds of gatherings, big and small, they’re fun to make and they have so much personality. They can fill in for either the appetizers or a salad course, and they’re portable! I’m at the point now where if I don’t bring them, friends are disappointed.

If you do the job right the colors really pop and the flavors can be quite adventurous. I like to thread on little hot chili peppers here and there so you never know when you’re going to get a zippy bite — I’m a little mischievous when it comes to my skewers 😉

A rainbow of antipasto ingredients threaded on skewers for a quick and healthy appetizer

The hardest part about assembling these easy skewers is opening up all the little jars and containers!

I make them an hour or two before I need to serve them, cover the tray with a damp towel and put it in the fridge to keep everything fresh. The sky is literally the limit for what you can skewer up. I like to stick with classic antipasto type stuff, like cured meats, olives, cheeses, artichoke hearts, mushrooms, pickled things, and peppers. That way you know everything tastes good together. You can make all the skewers the same, but I think that’s kind of boring, so I layered mine willy nilly, and no two turn out alike. It’s fun to grab a skewer and see what you get!

Antipasto skewer ingredients

  • cherry tomatoes
  • marinated mushrooms
  • pickles
  • olives
  • marinated peppers
  • Italian meats
  • artichokes
  • cheese
  • basil

Colorful and healthy Antipasto Skewers

You’ll find all the ingredients at the regular grocery store

Check out the olive bar if your store has one, they often have interesting bite sized antipasto type things. That way you can buy just what you need. Specialty stores like international markets, gourmet stores, delicatessens, and wine and cheese shops, often have more unusual items. Trader Joe’s is a good source, too.

Healthy a vibrant Antipasto Skewers can be an appetizer or a light meal, depending on how large you make them

Tips for making appetizer skewers

Be sure to get pitted olives, of course.

Choose one cheese that you can cut in chunks, and then grab some mozzarella balls for variety.

Anything marinated is a good bet because it brings instant flavor to the mix.

Look for color and texture variation.

Stuffed olives and peppers are good choices.

Pepperoncini add a nice kick of heat, and you could also used pickled jalapeños.

Fresh basil and cherry tomatoes lend an important element of freshness.

An assortment of Italian meats like salami and prosciutto give the skewers a delicious gravitas.

Unexpected extras like balsamic pickled onions, tiny marinated mushrooms, or roasted garlic cloves make it special.

The mild sweetness of the cheeses and meats offsets the tanginess of the pickled stuff — and there’s an occasional spicy bite in there too — so the whole thing is an adventure to eat.

A tray of Antipasto Skewers --- an easy appetizer for a party

Skewers are entirely customizable

This is one of those posts that is more of an inspiration than a formal recipe. Keep everything bite sized, and use what you like. If you keep to a theme like Italian, Greek, Mediterranean, vegan, etc, it will be easier.

Healthy a vibrant Antipasto Skewers can be an appetizer or a light meal, depending on how large you make them

Reader Rave ~

“I have been making these skewers since you first posted them! I’m making a bunch today for New Years Eve, I just leave off the basil and they stay perfect in the fridge. I do cover them with a damp towel . I’ve made it a point to track down every ingredient you used in yours, and everybody loves them, thank you!” ~Jen

More fun appetizers ~

A tray of Antipasto Skewers --- an easy appetizer for a party
4.58 from 7 votes

Antipasto Skewers

I make these colorful and fun Antipasto Skewers all the time ~ everybody gets their own personal antipasto selection right on a stick ~ from Game Days to the Holidays, these are everybody's favorites!
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Mediterranean
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Author Sue Moran


  • fresh mozzarella balls, marinated or plain
  • cheddar or smoked Gouda cheese, cut in cubes
  • fresh basil leaves
  • pitted olives
  • pepperoncini
  • pickled onions
  • sliced dill pickles or gherkins
  • cherry tomatoes
  • canned or marinated artichoke hearts
  • assorted Italian cured meats like salami, pepperoni, and prosciutto
  • anything else you can find!
  • wooden or metal skewers I used 8 inch wooden skewers


  • pomegranate molasses or balsamic glaze, optional


  • Open all your containers and set up a work assembly line. Have a hand towel nearby as your hands will get a little bit oily.
  • Drain cans that need to be drained, and spoon out some of the ingredients so you have easy access.
  • Be sure to leave enough room at the bottom of each skewer so that people can pick them up easily. I like to start with something dry like a cherry tomato for ease of handling.
  • You can make all the skewers alike, or thread them randomly. Fold the basil leaves in half, and then in half again if they are large. If they are small they can go on as is.
  • Fold sliced round meats like salami the same way as the basil. For prosciutto cut it and then roll or fold until it becomes a neat little package.
  • If anything is too large, cut it so that it is roughly the same size as everything else. I cut artichokes in half or even in quarters. I sliced larger marinated peppers in half. Just use your judgement, and don't worry if some things hang out a little, that's part of the charm of these skewers!
  • Lay the finished skewers out on a tray or a baking sheet, and cover with a damp cloth. Refrigerate.
  • It's best to use within an hour or two. If possible, transfer the skewers to a clean serving tray right before serving. If you like, you can drizzle the skewers with the pomegranate molasses or balsamic glaze at the last minute.

Cook's notes

  • If you're feeding a crowd, make these up to a couple of hours ahead, but no more.  You want everything to be fresh.  Cover with a damp towel and put in the refrigerator.  The basil will definitely wilt if you make these too far in advance, so leave it off if in doubt.
  • Use thin, cocktail type skewers, mine were 8" bamboo, like these.  Grilling skewers will be too thick.
  • Keep an eye toward color variation, so your skewers aren't drab.  Yellow or orange cherry tomatoes, bright red stuffed peppers, the white mozzarella, and the basil really help bring the skewers alive visually.
  • These aren't meant to be finger food, your guests will need a plate, and a fork.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

free ebook

You Might Also Like


    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    December 30, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    5 stars
    I have been making these skewers since you first posted them! I’m making a bunch today for New Years Eve, I just leave off the basil and they stay perfect in the fridge. I do cover them with a damp towel . I’ve made it a point to track down every ingredient you used in yours, and everybody loves them, thank you!

  • Reply
    Juanita Michael
    April 28, 2017 at 8:11 pm

    5 stars
    I love the recipes you share! Thank you very much!

    • Reply
      October 17, 2017 at 7:58 pm

      thanks so much Juanita <3

  • Reply
    August 27, 2016 at 9:48 pm

    Wow very nice. Just saw these when looking for some ideas on what to put on the antipasto skewers I’m taking to work next week. I like all the different combinations and that each one is different. I really like the hot chili peppers. I thought about making a balsamic drizzle and perhaps bringing in some italian dressing as a drizzle for those that might want it. Thanks for the idea. They look great.

    • Reply
      August 28, 2016 at 7:48 am

      I truly love these, Will, I make them often for company. One word of caution is don’t make them too big if they are to be used as a light appetizer, the one complaint I’ve gotten from friends is that they don’t want to eat dinner after gorging on these!

  • Reply
    Robyn @ Simply Fresh Dinners
    December 5, 2015 at 7:39 am

    5 stars
    Oh, thanks for adding this to my round-up, Sue – love it! I’ve got a party to go to tomorrow night and these are going with me!!

    • Reply
      December 5, 2015 at 8:07 am

      Thanks Robyn, seriously, these are my go-to party appetizer now, I’ve made them so many times, with whatever I find that day, and they always turn out so pretty and delicious, enjoy 🙂

  • Reply
    October 23, 2015 at 10:23 am

    I do make antipasto skewers all the time – but never thought to use those little onions or little spicy peppers. I am going to do so! Love the added savory, spicy taste! Olive bars just make me happy.

  • Reply
    October 22, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Oh! So pretty and clever! Love the variety and you’re right, the sky’s the limit as to different additions to the skewers! Also I liked the idea of squirting them with balsamic glaze!

  • Reply
    Shari Kelley
    October 21, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    These are just beautiful, Sue! I love all of the different colors and flavors you have included on the skewers. Pinned them for the next time I need an appetizer. Thank you!

1 2

Sharing is Caring

Help spread the word. You're awesome for doing it!


Get my tips, tricks & recipes for easy

foolproof baking


logo png