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Most of us worry about what to serve at the yearly holiday party, but have you ever wondered what you should stay away from? Here are some foods you might want to avoid at this year’s holiday soiree:

Broccoli: It’s delightfully festive to have green mistletoe hanging overhead and a green fir tree glistening with lights, but quite another thing to have a wad of green broccoli stuck between your teeth. We’re big fans of fresh vegetable platters, but when going green, stick with snap peas, celery, and green beans.

Fruitcake: The old school variety gets a bad rap, and for good reason. It just doesn’t taste that good – and with so many other tempting sweets surrounding you during the holidays, why waste your calories? We prefer to indulge in the gourmet “cousin” of fruitcake – Italian panettone. It’s a light brioche bread with just the right amount of dried fruit.

Salmon: A nice fish to serve, but beware of when and how you cook it. It can easily stink up your whole home, and not all your guests will appreciate it. Try grilling the fish outside or pick up a cold poached salmon from your local market, and serve it with a drizzling of olive oil and fresh dill.

Tortilla Chips: These cheap-and-easy chips have become a favorite staple at parties year-round. But if you’re a stickler for cleanliness, these will drive you crazy every time you hear one of your guests chomping into them. Scattered shards fly across the floor no matter how carefully you’re munching. A better option is mini crackers or bite-size crostini.

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