Easy Gluten-Free Winter Party Menu Ideas

Winter is a great time to throw a party. Everyone is so grateful for a cheerful break to the dreary weather, and on cold days it's a pleasure to cook and bake and welcome guests to a house full of delicious aromas.

Here, we provide ideas for easy gluten-free recipes for drinks, chips and dips, snacks and munchies, main courses and desserts — all for informal parties and game-day gatherings. Since not everyone likes to cook or has time to fuss, the menu ideas on each of the following pages are broken into two categories: Recipes for people who want to make the food themselves, and suggestions for those who want to go ready-made all the way.

An important note: If you're a host who's never prepared food for a gluten-free guest, you need to read How to Prepare for a Gluten-Free Guest, and don't be afraid to take our easier suggestions for ready-made gluten-free party food ideas.

Gluten-Free Chips and Dips

homemade nachos
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If you have a few minutes to prepare, you can make your own homemade nachos from gluten-free tortilla chips.

If you just want to open some packages and jars (especially if you aren't comfortable cooking for someone who's gluten-free):

  • Open a bag of gluten-free nacho corn chips and a jar of gluten-free salsa
  • Buy some ready made gluten-free hummus or guacamole and serve with cut-up vegetables and gluten-free crackers, nachos, or potato chips
  • Open a bag of gluten-free potato chips or multigrain chips
  • Serve some hard cheeses with fruit and/or fresh veggies

Gluten-Free Snacks and Munchies

bowl of gluten-free popcorn
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If you have a bit of time, your guests will love these special snacks:

Low-Carb Pizza Bites
These are like pizza-flavored mini-quiches using pepperoni as the crust in a mini-muffin pan. They also can be made without the pepperoni.

Sugar-Free Candied Peanuts
These peanuts aren't nearly as candy-like as peanut brittle, but they are in the same family.

If you’re not in the mood to fuss:

Gluten-Free Party Drinks

Getty Images/Dana Hoff

When you're planning a party or a game day celebration, you'll typically want to serve some sort of beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. Here, your choices will include sodas, beer, wine, bottled iced tea, and mixed drinks.

Many of these are gluten-free, but some are not, so you'll need to choose carefully. When it comes to beer (a typical party drink), be sure to pick only gluten-free beer (most beer is made with barley, a gluten grain).

If you want to serve more than just beer and sodas, and you want to be especially nice to your guests, consider offering drinks with rum, tequila, or other gluten-free alcoholic beverages.

If you’re not in the mood to make mixed drinks:

Informal Gluten-Free Party Food

gluten-free pizza
Lauri Patterson / Getty Images

With a good gluten-free pizza crust and some great toppings, you can make delicious homemade gluten-free pizzas. 

If you hate to cook or you're not familiar with the hazards of gluten-free food preparation:

Gluten-Free Desserts for a Crowd

gluten-free brownies
Brian T. Evans / Getty Images

If you want your house to smell great and you want your guests to know you love them, make some gluten-free brownies from a mix, or one or more of these desserts:

Low-Carb Cheesecake

This is a basic cheesecake recipe that can be "dressed up" in a number of ways. Strawberry cheesecake is a favorite.

Sugar-Free EASY Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge
This is an easy sugar-free recipe, and it is delicious.

If you don't have time to bake:

  • Serve gluten-free ice cream
  • Buy gluten-free cookies
  • Ask a gluten-free guest to bring dessert
  • Serve an assortment of fruit (a good idea even if you do bake desserts)

A Word from Verywell

Fixing and serving gluten-free food at a party doesn't have to be a chore. It shouldn't take you any more time than more typical party fare will take to prepare, and if you do it right, your guests may not even suspect that it's gluten-free!


Celiac Disease Foundation. What Should I Eat? Fact Sheet.