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Broccoli Trees for a Pretty Party Appetizer

Broccoli Trees for a Pretty Party Appetizer

How to make a broccoli tree for your next party! #partyfood

Veggie trays are a party staple. If you want this appetizer to be memorable, you’ll need a new veggie tray idea!

At every party, I like to surprise my guests with a little something different and unique…and maybe even unexpected. At the How to Train Your Dragon party the surprise came in form of some ordinary party munchies–the broccoli from the veggie tray. Rather than pile them on a platter or fill a bowl, I made a topiary Broccoli Tree or two for our little guests.

While you’d think kids would totally scoff at broccoli at a birthday, that wasn’t true. When you present kids food in an interesting or novel way, most times they’re apt to at least try it. And when you put something like this at an adult party? Ooohs and aahs. Broccoli Trees are a win-win no matter who you serve them to! Around Christmastime these trees would be great studded with some grape-tomato ornaments and a yellow bell pepper star.

Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-1


  • 9-inch styrofoam cone
  • Wax paper
  • 1 box toothpicks
  • 2 1/2 heads of broccoli

Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-2

Step 1: Wrap your cone! To make this project food-safe, we need to wrap the cone in something so it’s ok to have the broccoli touch it. I used wax paper; it’s pliable enough to easily pierce with all those toothpicks we’re going to punch through it later. Just roll the paper around the cone until its completely covered.

Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-3Once you’re finished, hot-glue the end down to secure the waxed paper.  Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-4 On the bottom of the cone, fold the ends of the paper in as if you were wrapping a present to neatly tuck the extras under the cone. You can tape or glue to keep the ends down. Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-5If you have any extra wax paper left up top, fold it over so it covers the tip then cut off the excess. This part will stay down on its own once there’s a few toothpicks up there.

Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-6Step 2: Chopping broccoli. The easiest way to cut the broccoli to make the trees is to cut the stems relatively short. You use less broccoli this way, and it will fill up your cone more quickly. After you’ve trimmed your veggies down to manageable bites,  you’re ready for toothpicks.Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-7Take a regular old toothpick and stick one end in the bottom of each piece of broccoli. As you go up the cone and the cone gets smaller, you can break a single toothpick in half to use.

Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-8Step 3: Assembly! Starting at the bottom, push each broccoli into the cone. Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-9You’ll want to make sure the broccoli is bunched in rather tight so all the white spaces are filled.  Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-10 Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-11All the small pieces that might have been cut off the broccoli head are perfect for the top of the cone (and for filling in any holes you might have left!) Keep placing your toothpicked broccoli into the cone form until it is entirely filled. Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-13When you’re serving up your tree, consider a variety of veggie dips for your guests, or small individual servings of ranch dip.Broccoli Tree Appetizer Tutorial-14This is a pretty easy party food project; it shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes or so to put together, but will make a big impact on your party food table!

Paula Biggs

Owner at Frog Prince Paperie
Paula Biggs is a party planner, DIY crafter, and owner of Frog Prince Paperie, where you can find hundreds of party, craft and lifestyle ideas.


Tuesday 26th of May 2015

So creative! Thanks for sharing at Idea Box!


Monday 18th of May 2015

These are really cute - love the idea. Thank you for sharing at Share It One More Time. Cathy

Chloe Crabtree

Tuesday 17th of June 2014

These are cute, I think they would be great at Christmastime. I was thinking I could add cherry tomatoes for the ornaments! Cute and healthy!


Tuesday 17th of June 2014

Yes, Chloe! That would be perfect--and a yellow bell pepper star up top! The trees are still great any time of year for a little added something to your veggie tray offering. :)