Make Ahead Summer Entertaining {Rose Sangria & Jalapeno Cheddar Crackers}

We have a busy weekend with a lot of fun little gatherings ahead. I wanted to share to easy and delicious ideas for summer entertaining!

Summer Rose Sangria

The first is Summer Rose Sangria. It is best made the night before or morning of so that all of the flavors can blend and the fruit can infuse. Serve it over ice and top it off with some bubbly to make it go further and cut some of the sweet. I don’t find it to be too sweet though, compared to other sangria.

  • 1 (750 ml) bottle rosé wine
  • 1/2 cup Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Grand Marnier
  • 1 tablespoon Cognac or brandy (I added another Grand Marnier instead)
  • Water and ice, plus extra ice for serving
  • 1/2 cup fresh raspberries
  • 8 large fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 2 red plums, pitted and sliced ¼ inch thick

Combine the rosé, pomegranate juice, lemon juice, sugar, Grand Marnier, Cognac, 1 cup of water, and 1 cup of ice in a large glass pitcher. Stir in the raspberries, strawberries, and plums, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight.

When ready to serve, fill wine goblets or highball glasses halfway with ice. Pour the sangria over the ice, spooning some of the fruit into each glass. Top with bubbly, if desired.

Jalapeno Cheddar Crackers

These are an old standby and everyone loves them, no matter when I serve them or where I take them! I usually double the recipe and make 2 rolls of dough at a time. They freeze beautifully. I simply thaw a day or two before in the fridge and then cook the morning I plan to serve.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) cold unsalted butter, 1/2-inch-diced
  • 5 ounces extra-sharp white Cheddar, grated
  • 1 tablespoon minced seeded jalapeno pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons ice water
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk, for egg wash
  • Fleur de sel or sea salt
  1. Place the flour, kosher salt and baking powder in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse to mix. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the Cheddar, jalapeno and chipotle chili powder and pulse again. With the food processor running, add the ice water all at once. Continue pulsing until the mixture begins to form a ball. Dump the dough onto a floured board and roll it into a 14-inch log. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  2. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  3. Cut the dough in 3/8-inch-thick slices. Place the crackers on the prepared sheet pan, brush with the egg wash and sprinkle with the fleur de sel. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until golden brown. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. 

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I’ve got two more Trader Joe’s appetizers to share from our weekend plans as well!

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4 thoughts on “Make Ahead Summer Entertaining {Rose Sangria & Jalapeno Cheddar Crackers}

  1. I can not wait to have another get together and make this sangria. I love, love, love the jalapeno cheddar crackers, as does everyone who has had them. Which is why it has become a staple in my entertaining menu. Thank you for sharing your recipes.

  2. I know you’re extra busy getting ready for your trip but do you mind giving me your source for your beverage napkins. Also I thought you had some other paper napkins that you said you have had since your wedding. Thanks so much.

    1. Ahhh, these were from our wedding reception! So crazy, I know. When we emptied out the kitchen I found them and started using them.

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