50 Easy Thanksgiving Appetizers to Warm Up Your Appetite
Thanksgiving is a marathon of eating and cooking, and it’s of the utmost importance to be prepared. That means planning out all of the components of the meal, from the morning snacks to the pre-dinner apps. While we often dedicate most of our attention to preparing the bountiful Thanksgiving dinner, the earlier hours of the day should certainly not go unnoticed.
Kick off Thanksgiving dinner in style with these simple, light appetizers. We’ve collected our favorite party appetizers that are easy to prepare and won’t fill your guests up before you make it to the turkey. You can make lots of these dips and finger foods in advance, like our Classic Pimiento Cheese and Smoky Black-Eyed Pea Hummus, so all you have to do the day of is scoop it into a bowl and set it out on the table. From sophisticated Potato Puffs to indulgent Rotel Sausage Dip, we have appetizers for every Thanksgiving mood or theme. Looking for a healthier option? Try our Baked Zucchini Fries. These Thanksgiving appetizers will help you tide the crowd over before the much-anticipated evening meal. Ward off those pre-meal munchies and gear up for the main event with these Thanksgiving appetizers.
Prelude Your Thanksgiving Feast With These Delicious Appetizers
Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches
Recipe: Baked Brie with Jezebel Peaches
Give the tired cheeseboard a serious upgrade with this warm, melty brie and cool peach topping.
Smoky Black-Eyed Pea Hummus
Recipe: Smoky Black-Eyed Pea Hummus
Bring a bit of extra excitement to your hummus with the addition of smoky black-eyed peas. Serve with carrots and celery for a supremely light appetizer.
Oven-Fried Zucchini Sticks
Recipe: Oven-Fried Zucchini Sticks
Trick your guests into eating their vegetables with these crispy Zucchini Fries. This fresh appetizer will leave everyone feeling great and satisfied.
Recipe: Rotel Dip
This dip comes together in just 20 minutes, making it the ideal last-minute appetizer.
Baked Brie Bites
Recipe: Baked Brie Bites
Frozen phyllo pastry shells form the base for this much-loved, bite-sized appetizer. It really doesn’t get much easier than this.
Crusty Broiled Tomatoes
Recipe: Crusty Broiled Tomatoes
Bring a pop of freshness to the appetizer spread with these lightly-seasoned broiled tomatoes. Topped with herbed parmesan breadcrumbs, these simple tomatoes will be gone in a flash.
Stuffed Endive with Herbed Goat Cheese
Ditch the crackers—light, snappy endives are the ideal vehicle for herbed goat cheese in this two-ingredient appetizer.
Olive Oil Popcorn with Garlic and Rosemary
In need of a snack to munch on while watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? Look no further than this Olive Oil Popcorn with Garlic and Rosemary.
Classic Pimiento Cheese
Recipe: Classic Pimiento Cheese
No Southern event is complete without a big bowl of pimiento cheese. This easy appetizer can be made in advance to ease your day-of prep docket.
Ranch Snacker Crackers
Recipe: Ranch Snacker Crackers
These addictive bites pack all the flavors of your favorite dressing. Leave a bowl of these on the counter and they’re sure to be gone by the end of the night.
Black Bean Corn Salsa
Recipe: Black Bean and Corn Salsa
Add a bit of bright color to the Thanksgiving appetizer spread with this simple homemade salsa. For optimal ease, this dish comes together in just 20 minutes.
Homemade Onion Dip
Recipe: Homemade Onion Dip
Ditch the onion flavor packets—this Homemade Onion Dip couldn’t be any easier to make.
Potato Puffs with Toppings
Recipe: Potato Puffs with Toppings
Bring sophistication to your Thanksgiving table with these charming, elegant Potato Puffs.
Warm Cheese-and-Spicy Pecan Dip
Recipe: Warm Cheese-and-Spicy Pecan Dip
Spicy pecans bring a bit of Southern flair to our take on a queso dip. This dip was just made for the fall.
Recipe: Bacon Bites
Breadsticks wrapped in crispy, crunchy strands of bacon? Sounds like a sure-fire crowd-pleaser.
Mini Mushroom-and-Goat Cheese Pot Pies
These miniature pot pies are perfectly bite-sized for easy portion control. The flavors of mushroom, goat cheese, and sherry act as a lovely prelude to your Thanksgiving turkey.
Recipe: Cocktail Meatballs
Put out a bowl of these mini meatballs with a carton of toothpicks and let the crowd dig in.
Tomato and Feta Dip
Recipe: Tomato and Feta Dip
Channel Mediterranean flavors with this Tomato and Feta Dip. Serve with toasty crostini or pita chips for a substantial, yet still light appetizer.
Goat Cheese and Gouda Pimiento Cheese
Looking for an easy way to elevate your staple pimiento cheese recipe? Try switching out the cheddar for goat cheese and gouda.
Warm Spinach-Sweet Onion Dip with Country Ham
No appetizer spread is complete without some version of a spinach dip, and this warm, creamy spread may be your new favorite rendition of the well-loved recipe.
Crispy Pork Meatballs
Recipe: Crispy Pork Meatballs
When it comes to Thanksgiving appetizers, it’s crucial to keep it light and fresh. These bite-sized Crispy Pork Meatballs accomplish just that.
Blue Cheese-and-Pecan Stuffed Cherry Peppers
Keep it raw and refreshing with these stuffed baby peppers.
Creamy Feta-and-Herb Dip
Recipe: Creamy Feta-and-Herb Dip
This dip is oh-so-light, but still satisfying enough to tide your crowd over until Thanksgiving dinner.
Rosemary Focaccia Bread
Recipe: Rosemary Focaccia Bread
Pair flavorful Rosemary Focaccia Bread with Turnip Green Pesto for a mouth-watering appetizer.
Recipe: Collard Dip
Forgo the mucky stewed collards in the Thanksgiving feast and make this creamy Collard Dip instead.
Recipe: Eggplant-Yogurt Dip
Lighten up your appetizer spread with this creamy vegetable-based dip. Serve with raw vegetables for a healthy option that won’t weigh you down.
Recipe: Sausage Balls
This vintage Southern appetizer still graces all our party spreads, and our Thanksgiving feast just wouldn’t be complete without them.
Cheese Straw Tomato Tartlets
Recipe: Cheese Straw Tomato Tartlets
This short-crust (non-rising) cheese dough forms a delicate shell for these juicy little wonders.
Butternut-Goat Cheese-Stuffed Mushrooms
Recipe: Bacon-Fig Tassies
Pinched for time? Swap the dough for frozen mini-phyllo pastry shells.
Inside-Out Hot Brown Bites
Recipe: Inside-Out Hot Brown Bites
We've reimagined this signature Kentucky sandwich of bacon, turkey, and cheese sauce into beautiful bite-size cups.
Recipe: Cherry-Pecan Brie
Cherry-Pecan Brie is a five-ingredient appetizer you can have ready in about 10 minutes.
Benne-Maple Roasted Pecans
Recipe: Benne-Maple Roasted Pecans
Make these a few days ahead, and chill in an airtight container.
Warm Kale-and-Asiago Dip
Recipe: Warm Kale-and-Asiago Dip
Bacon and kale update the hot spinach dip.
Jalapeño Cheese Straws
Recipe: Jalapeño Cheese Straws
We know: You’ve got a cheese straw recipe you can make with your eyes closed. But give this subtly spicy recipe (that impressed our Test Kitchen staff!) a try.
Smoked Trout Crostini with Radishes and Dill Cream
For a fresh appetizer, try the smoked trout crostini with radishes and dill cream. An appetizer consisting of sour cream spread on a triangle of toasted crostini and topped with smoked trout and radishes will give guests a break from warm appetizers typically served at a dinner party. These perfect little triangles also offer a beautiful presentation, fooling guests into believing you worked much harder than you did on this appetizer. A fresh squeeze of lemon juice will also give guests the burst of freshness that will perfectly balance out your appetizer platter. For an even more colorful spread, replace the trout with smoked salmon.
Roasted Fennel-and-Prosciutto Flatbread
Topped with traditional Italian flavors such as fresh thyme and oregano and gooey fontina cheese, this flatbread will surely be a crowd pleaser. Crushed red pepper adds an extra kick while a balsamic glaze takes the flavor palette to the next level. The natural paring of fennel and prosciutto marry this appetizer in a harmonious way that will leave guests searching for seconds. Cook the flatbread until the crust is golden brown, and broil the pizza for one minute for perfectly melted cheese. Substituting sweet onion for fennel and bacon for prosciutto is also a great alternative that still serves up delicious flavor in this flatbread appetizer.
Honey-Rosemary Cherries and Blue Cheese Crostini
Begin your family gathering casually by offering this appetizer "help yourself" style. Or, make up single-serving plates and present as a first course at the table.
Cheddar-Horseradish-Walnut Cheese Ball
You can also shape the cheese mixture into a Yule log.
Creamy Shrimp Dip with Crispy Wonton Chips
If you don't have time to make fried wontons, use fancy potato chips or crispy tortilla chips.
Beer-Battered Pumpkin with Dipping Sauce
Fresh pumpkins are great for savory dishes. Pick those labeled "sugar" or "pie."
Feta-Olive-Fresh Herb Cheese Ball
Closely related to the blue cheese-red currant cheese ball, this appetizer will wow guests with big flavors packed in such a simple dish. Feta and cream make this creamy appetizer while flat-leaf parsley and finely chopped green onion give a burst of freshness and crunch to the outside. The bright green appearance will also draw guests to aesthetically appeasing appetizer that is best served with cucumber slices. Other ingredients including green olives, hot sauce, lemon zest, and Worcestershire sauce add another layer of flavor to balance out the others. Add a little holiday flair by shaping this cheese mixture into a Yule log or keep it traditional in a classic cheese ball shape.