We’ve all been there. You’re at a nice restaurant, enjoying an elegant meal with your date or friends. The food is delicious, but you can’t help but feel a little out of place. After all, the other people at the table are eating things like caviar and foie gras while you’re stuck with your chicken breast. Don’t worry – you’re not alone. Most people find themselves in this same situation from time to time. And it’s no wonder why. After all, fancy foods can be pretty intimidating! They sound complicated, look expensive, and often have strange foreign names that nobody can pronounce correctly.

But here’s the thing: fancy foods don’t have to be intimidating. They can be pretty easy to make at home – and they don’t have to cost a fortune, either. All you need is to visit a fancy food website for ideas and inspiration. So if you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at making some of these gourmet dishes, now is a perfect time. Here are some foods that will make you look fancy without breaking the bank:

  1.  Grilled Shrimp Kabobs, Mediterranean-Style

This dish is perfect for a summertime BBQ. Thread some shrimp onto skewers with some veggies like cherry tomatoes, zucchini, and red onion. Then, brush them with a little olive oil and your favorite Mediterranean herbs and spices. Grill for 5-7 minutes, or until the shrimp are cooked through.

  1.  Creamy Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons

Tomato soup is a portion of classic comfort food, but this gourmet twist will make it seem like you fussed over it for hours. Start by roasting some tomatoes in the oven with garlic, olive oil, and salt. Once they’re soft and roasted, blend them into a soup. Serve with grilled cheese croutons (just cut up a grilled cheese sandwich into small pieces) and a sprinkle of fresh basil.

  1.  Hasselback Tomato Caprese Salad

This dish looks complicated, but it’s pretty simple to make. Start by slicing a thin layer off the top of each tomato. Then, use a sharp knife to make thin slices down the tomato, being careful not to cut through. Fill the slits with fresh mozzarella and basil leaves, then drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Roast in a 425-degree oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

  1.  Mini Sandwich Cakes (Smorgastarta)

A Smorgastarta is a Swedish sandwich cake that’s perfect for a party. It’s a giant open-faced sandwich made by layering different meats, cheeses, vegetables, and sauces on a slice of bread. Then, the whole thing is covered with another slice of bread and cut into small pieces. You can use whatever ingredients you like, but some popular choices include hard-boiled eggs, smoked salmon, dill pickles, and cream cheese.

  1.  Endives with Shrimp Salad

Endives are a type of Belgian endive, a type of chicory. They’re long and slender, with a slightly bitter taste. They’re often used in salads or as a vehicle for other dips and spreads. Fill each endive with shrimp salad (shrimp, mayo, celery, salt, and pepper) for this dish and garnish with fresh parsley.

  1.  Porcini Mushroom Risotto

Risotto is a classic Italian dish made with rice cooked in broth until it’s creamy and soft. It can be made with different ingredients, but this porcini mushroom version is particularly delicious. Start by soaking the dried mushrooms in water for 20 minutes. Then, sauté them in a pan with butter, onion, and garlic. Add the rice and cook until it’s tender. Finally, stir in some Parmesan cheese and serve.

  1.  Seared Ahi Tuna

Ahi tuna is a type of fish that’s popular in Japanese cuisine. It has a bright pink color and a firm texture. It’s often served raw (as sashimi or sushi), but it can also be seared. Coat the tuna in some sesame seeds and pan-sear it in a hot skillet for just a few minutes per side. Serve with soy sauce and wasabi paste (if desired).

  1.  Balsamic-Glazed Steak Rolls

These steak rolls make a great appetizer or main course. Start by slicing a flank steak into thin strips. Then, season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Grill or pan-sear the steak strips until they’re cooked to your liking. Finally, brush with balsamic vinegar and serve on mini rolls with some arugula leaves.

  1.   Buffalo Chicken Salad Puffs

These bite-sized puffs are the perfect party snack. Start by cooking some chicken in a Buffalo sauce (hot sauce, butter, and vinegar). Once it’s cooked, chop it into small pieces and mix with mayo, celery, blue cheese, and salt. Then, spoon the mixture into phyllo dough cups and bake until the dough is crispy. Serve with ranch dressing or blue cheese dressing.

  1.  Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Portobello mushrooms are large mushrooms with a meaty texture. They’re often used as a vegetarian alternative to meat since they have a similar taste and texture. For this dish, stuff the mushrooms with bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning. Then, bake in a 425-degree oven for 15-20 minutes. Serve with marinara sauce or Alfredo sauce.

  1.  Quick Boozy Raspberry Sauce and Cream Puffs

Ever seen those cream puffs that come in a can? This is a much better (and fancier) version. Start by making a quick raspberry sauce by heating raspberries, sugar, and water in a pan. Once it comes to a boil, please remove it from heat and stir in some vodka or rum. Then, use a piping bag to fill cream puffs with whipped cream. Dip the tops of the puffs in the raspberry sauce and serve.

  1.  Tuscan-Style Garlic Bread

This garlic bread is flavored with sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and Parmesan cheese. Start by mixing softened butter, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and basil. Spread the mixture on a piece of bread and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Then, bake in a 425-degree oven for 10-15 minutes. Serve warm.

  1.  Mini Peach Cobbler

These bite-sized cobblers are the perfect summer dessert. Start by mixing some peaches, sugar, and flour. Then, spoon the mixture into muffin tins lined with dough circles. Bake in a 375-degree oven for 20-25 minutes. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream.

In summary, fancy foods can make any occasion more special. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or want to impress your date, these dishes will do the trick.