68 Crowd-Pleasing Thanksgiving Appetizers

68 Crowd-Pleasing Thanksgiving Appetizers

With this stunning collection of appetizer recipes, no one will mind if Thanksgiving dinner is a little late this year.

The aroma of Thanksgiving turkey and savory side dishes bubbling in the oven fills your home and sharpens the appetite — but it’s not quite time for dinner. To keep your hungry guests happy, you’ll want to put out a few appetizers to delight their palates before the main event.

This selection of 68 carefully chosen appetizer recipes — some quick and easy, others a bit more challenging — provides a wide range of interesting options to complement your Thanksgiving dinner.

Whether you make just one appetizer or a whole array of finger foods, it’s a great start for a very joyous Thanksgiving!

Showstopper Turkey Bread Bowl

Turkey Bread Bowl

Showstopper Turkey Bread Bowl Appetizer with Creamy Spinach Ranch Dip by KudosKitchen by Renee
Raw veggies and dip are always a hit with the health conscious — but whether the platter is ho-hum or awesome is all about presentation. This turkey-shaped Thanksgiving appetizer is made with a French boule that cradles a cream-cheese-based spinach dip, and features a dramatic fan of “feathers” created by raw carrots, peppers, celery, and pretzel rods. This showpiece will definitely wow your guests! Feel free to swap out the dip for your favorite — artichoke dip, cheese dip, or caramelized onion dip would all work well with this presentation. Or try the pumpkin hummus below for a healthier alternative.

mayonnaise, banana peppers, baby spinach, sour cream, salt, shredded Parmesan cheese and 4 more
sour cream, mozzarella, mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese, artichoke hearts and 4 more
sour cream, cream cheese, mayonnaise, sharp cheddar cheese, scallions and 3 more

Brie En Croute With Caramel And Walnuts

Brie en Croute

Emeril Lagasse’s Brie en Croute with Caramel and Walnuts by The Rachel Ray Show
Emeril Lagasse created this sumptuous version of baked brie with an ideal blend of textures — creamy baked brie with a heavenly center of caramelized sugar and walnuts blanketed by a flaky puff pastry crust. This party snack looks impressive but is a snap to whip up. Serve it with crackers and pears, and your taste buds will go "Bam!"

fresh rosemary, dried figs, wheel of brie, egg, frozen puff pastry and 2 more
egg, puff pastry, brie
fresh thyme, blackberries, brie cheese, egg, fresh ground black pepper and 2 more

Vegan Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Vegan Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms by Eat Healthy Eat Happy
It’s not easy to find a dish that will please both vegans and omnivores — but these stuffed mushrooms will do the trick. Portobellos and pecans are satisfyingly meaty, and with a rich array of flavors and an attractive presentation, they make an enticing hors d'oeuvre that will please everyone at your Thanksgiving feast.

cremini mushrooms, salt, dried parsley, dried thyme, mayonnaise and 5 more
breadcrumbs, cracked black pepper, sweet italian sausage, scallions and 4 more
baking potatoes, butter, salt, chives, heavy cream, sour cream and 1 more

Shrimp Cocktail

Shrimp Cocktail

Shrimp Cocktail by Smitten Kitchen
This retro appetizer recipe echoes the mid-century glamour of Mad Men and brings a touch of elegant nostalgia to the party. After all, plump, boiled shrimp and a tangy horseradish tomato sauce never go out of style. Serve it with another fifties ritual: the pre-dinner martini or a prosecco cocktail with pomegranate seeds.

mustard, crackers, avocadoes, kosher salt, oranges, freshly ground black pepper and 11 more
prepared horseradish, ketchup, shrimp, medium shrimp, lemon zest and 5 more
ketchup, lemon, worcestershire sauce, olive oil, horseradish and 5 more

Pumpkin Hummus With Sage And Cranberries

Pumpkin Hummus

Pumpkin Hummus with Sage and Cranberries by Small Green Kitchen
Hummus is quick and easy to prepare in a blender or food processor and is also a great make-ahead option. This recipe brings together three trademark tastes of Thanksgiving — pumpkin, cranberries, and sage. A hit of cayenne pepper gives it a kick that garners rave reviews among our users. Take the whole experience to another level by whipping up a batch of Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Pita Chips by My Sequined Life.

lemon juice, olive oil, beets, garlic, tahini, salt, ground cumin
extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, kosher salt, garbanzo beans, marinated artichoke hearts and 4 more

Zucchini Parmesan Crisps

Zucchini Parmesan Crisps

Zucchini Parmesan Crisps by Damn Delicious
With a panko and parmesan crust outside and tender zucchini inside, these delectable, fried rounds are best served piping hot. Guests will snap them up whether they're served plain or with a sauce like this Homemade Ranch Dressing recipe by Let’s Dish or a Homemade Marinara Sauce by Recipe Girl.

large egg, grated Parmesan cheese, marinara sauce, shallot, kosher salt and 6 more
green onion, egg, shredded zucchini, shredded cheddar cheese and 5 more
oregano, zucchini, coarse sea salt, pork rinds, pepper, Parmesan cheese

Pear Prosciutto Appetizer

Pear Prosciutto Appetizer

Pear Prosciutto Appetizer by Appetizer Addiction
Take advantage of late fall’s pear harvest for this delightful — but not too filling — prelude to a big Thanksgiving dinner. Just top the pear sections with bleu cheese and thin-sliced, dry-cured prosciutto, then finish with a drizzle of honey and fresh basil. Prep time from start to finish is only about ten minutes. Be sure the pears you use are crisp when ripe, like the Bosc and Asian varieties.

extra-virgin olive oil, prosciutto, pears, kosher salt, sherry vinegar
prosciutto, diced red onion, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, chopped fresh thyme and 3 more
Cashel Blue cheese, cream cheese, balsamic glaze, prosciutto and 2 more

Easy Arancini

Easy Arancini

Easy Arancini by Epicurious
Chef Gordon Ramsey’s version of arancini is pure perfection, with a crisp-fried shell surrounding a center of wild mushrooms, risotto rice, and melted mozzarella cheese. This classic Italian specialty originated in Sicily more than a thousand years ago. Today, it’s a happy hour favorite at many chic Italian restaurants. Bonus perk: You can make the risotto the night before and eat a bit for dinner!

egg, pepper, spinach, salt, fresh mozzarella, risotto, panko and 1 more
large eggs, all purpose flour, risotto, panko bread crumbs, fresh mozzarella and 2 more
sea salt, ground pepper, panko breadcrumbs, non dairy milk, water and 12 more

Filipino Lumpia

Filipino Lumpia

Filipino Lumpia by Yummly If you’ve ever been to a Philippine-American Thanksgiving, you know this opening act can steal the show. Preparation is easy with ready-made wrappers that you’ll fill with ground pork, shrimp, onions, green onions, water chestnuts and seasonings. All you have to do is roll the mixture up in the wrapper — the instructions explain exactly how to do it — and deep fry. Just a warning: You might want to grab one before you set them out, because they’ll be gone in a flash.

garlic powder, lime juice, sugar, paprika, kosher salt, black pepper and 17 more
sugar, canola oil, green onions, canola oil, mayonnaise, shredded cabbage and 8 more
egg roll wrappers, hoisin sauce, green onions, fresh cilantro and 3 more

Rapturous Morel Marmalade

Morel Marmelade

Rapturous Morel Marmalade by Food52
A true original, this appetizer lives up to its name — a rapturous experience for your guests. Earthy morel mushrooms, bacon, caramelized onions, and carrots combine to create a memorable topping, served on slices of goat cheese polenta. With 19 ingredients in all and an hour of preparation time, it is a bit more labor-intensive — but the compliments you get will make it well worth your while. To save prep time, forego the polenta and serve the marmalade on top of warm cheese crostini.

brewed coffee, yellow onion, garlic cloves, bacon slices, maple syrup and 2 more
salt, bay leaf, red onions, oil, sugar, cinnamon stick
black pepper, sourdough bread, garlic clove, red wine vinegar and 9 more

Cranberry Brie Poppers

Cranberry Brie Poppers

Cranberry Brie Poppers by Cookin’ It Real
These tasty brie poppers are a popular crowd-pleaser — and are deceptively easy to prepare. You can find ready-made puff pastry dough in the frozen food section of most supermarkets. The filling of canned pears and brie also features dried cranberries for a tantalizing hint of the main course to come.

honey, mint, pistachios, goat cheese, dried cranberries
water, brown sugar, oranges, vanilla extract, cranberries, orange peel and 2 more
cranberry sauce, brie, crackers, pistachio nuts, orange zest

Pumpkin Pie Cheese Ball (or dip)

Pumpkin Pie Cheese Ball (or dip)

Pumpkin Pie Cheese Ball (or dip) by The Ramblings Of An Aspiring Small Town Girl
Pumpkin pie before dinner? Yes! This classic dessert becomes a memorable appetizer when you blend its spiced sweetness with tart cream cheese. Depending on how much time you have, you can either form the main ingredients into a ball, freeze it for five hours and thaw before serving, or chill the mix for 30 minutes to make a dip. For the final touch — and a wonderful contrast of textures — coat either version with chopped candied pecans, then present it with vanilla wafers or sliced apple.

mozzarella, cream cheese, green olives, parsley, green olives and 8 more
dried cranberries, pecans, fresh parsley, goat cheese
garlic powder, cream cheese, almonds, bacon, pretzel sticks, shredded cheddar cheese and 1 more

Spiced Pecans

Spiced Pecans

Spiced Pecans by Leite's Culinaria If you’re used to eating pre-packaged spiced nuts, you’re in for an exceptional treat. Made from scratch with brown sugar, hot spices, and butter, these addictive pecans are so good, your guests will keep reaching for more. They’re simple to make — and irresistible — so you might want to place two or three bowls around the living room.

cayenne pepper, egg whites, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, white sugar and 3 more
butter, cayenne, fresh rosemary, kosher salt, pretzel, nuts, dark brown sugar
sea salt, cracked black pepper, ground ginger, chili powder, turmeric powder and 8 more

Great Cocktail Meatballs

Great Cocktail Meatballs

Great Cocktail Meatballs by Nine Recipes
There’s something so satisfying about cocktail meatballs — toothpick-skewered hors d’oeuvres that are savory and substantial, yet not too filling. These meatballs are slow-simmered in a mix of cranberry and chili sauces with brown sugar and lemon juice — a unique blend that really perks up this traditional party appetizer. Use your slow cooker to make more space in your oven for all your other Thanksgiving recipes.

chili sauce, frozen meatballs, brown sugar, whole berry cranberry sauce and 2 more
barbecue sauce, Sriracha sauce, bread crumbs, fresh cracked black pepper and 12 more
korean chile paste, green onion, garlic cloves, egg white, sesame oil and 15 more

Creamy Blue Cheese and Red Onion Crostini

Creamy Blue Cheese and Red Onion Crostini

Creamy Blue Cheese and Red Onion Crostini by Yummly
There’s only one word for this sophisticated crostini, created by food writer David Bonom — wow. The magic is in the onion jam — an amazing combination of savory and sweet that’s positively addictive — punctuated with a tangy blend of cream and bleu cheeses. The onion and cheese elements can be made several days in advance, so on Thanksgiving Day all you have to do is oven-toast the baguette slices, assemble the dish and serve. Your guests will reach for more until barely a crumb remains.

goat cheese, olive oil, cranberry sauce, baguette, prosciutto
freshly ground black pepper, parsley, salt, garlic cloves, olive oil and 4 more
ground pepper, crostini, coarse salt, prepared pesto, bocconcini

Caprese Appetizer

Caprese Appetizer

Caprese Appetizer by AllRecipes
The Caprese salad was created shortly after World War I on the Isle of Capri as a tribute to the red, white, and green of the Italian flag. Refreshing, light, and colorful, these individual skewers of buffalo mozzarella, ripe grape tomatoes, and basil (with a sprinkling of extra virgin olive oil) are a wonderful prelude to your Thanksgiving dinner.

fresh basil, guacamole, Roma tomatoes, fresh basil leaves, fresh mozzarella and 2 more
organic sugar, balsamic vinegar, fresh basil leaves, grape tomatoes and 2 more
egg, garlic sauce, basil, mozzarella cheese, empanada, tomatoes

BLT Deviled Eggs

BLT Deviled Eggs

BLT Deviled Eggs by The Stay At Home Chef
Deviled eggs, once de rigeur at parties in grandma’s day, are making a huge comeback. You can even find them at some very chic bistros, jazzed up with a dash of twenty-first century pizzazz — like the spicy maple candied bacon in this recipe. And they’re simple enough to prepare. Just combine hardboiled egg yolks with mayonnaise and honey mustard, fill the egg white hollow, and garnish with tomato, fresh basil and, of course, that out-of-this-world candied bacon.

salt, scallions, large eggs, kimchi, crumbled bacon, smoked paprika and 7 more
crab meat, mayonaise, sour cream, hard boiled eggs, lemon, salt and 3 more
oil, panko breadcrumbs, Dijon mustard, sweet pickle relish, hardboiled eggs and 7 more

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