Holiday party appetizers don’t have to be complicated. These oven-baked sweet potato wedges with a Buffalo-style blue cheese dip are sure to be a crowd-pleaser – and they’re pretty healthy, too.
Through extensive empirical research in my adult life (aka: talking with friends), I’ve arrived at the conclusion that while most people would love to host holiday parties at home, many are intimidated by the idea of cooking for others. But what people don’t realize is that a get-together doesn’t have to be a vision of Pier 1 perfection, and it definitely doesn’t have to be a sit-down dinner; all you really need are good vibes, fun people, and a few easy appetizers that people can nom on while hanging out in your living room.
For this holiday season, Boohoo, the UK-based online retailer of cool-girl style, asked me to contribute to their forthcoming “Cookbook Lookbook”, a collection of holiday recipes paired with their adorable Christmas sweaters. This easy party snack gets its inspiration from Buffalo wings, everyone’s favorite American bar food. Fried chicken tossed in a butter-hot sauce mixture and dipped in blue cheese dressing is indeed hard to resist. But in this recipe, the concept takes a turn for the healthy, utilizing superfood sweet potatoes instead of chicken wings, and baking them instead of deep frying.
Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of minerals and beta-carotene, an antioxidant that gets converted into Vitamin A and is essential for healthy skin, good vision and a strong immune system. They are also super affordable, and loved by all for their earthy sweet taste. The “Buffalo” flavors come together here in a creamy blue cheese dip that compliments the potatoes perfectly.
- 3 medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed, patted dry and cut into ⅓”-thick wedges
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon each fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce, to taste
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place a baking sheet in the oven to warm it up.
- In a large bowl, toss together sweet potatoes, oil, paprika, garlic, salt and pepper, making sure all potatoes are coated evenly.
- Remove the hot baking sheet from the oven and transfer potatoes onto baking sheet, carefully arranging potatoes in a single layer. Bake potatoes for 10 minutes, flip them to brown the other side, and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until potatoes are cooked through and evenly browned.
- Meanwhile, make the dip: in a small bowl, combine the yogurt, cheese, water, hot sauce, vinegar, mustard and a pinch of sea salt. Taste and adjust seasonings, if needed.
- Serve hot potato wedges with blue cheese dip.
Photography by Michelle Fidman