10 Thanksgiving Appetizers (Because There's More to the Holiday Than Turkey)

Check out these party-ready appetizers fit for your turkey-day feast, including squash soup, stuffed mushrooms and easy deviled eggs.
Best Thanksgiving Appetizers

While some celebrations call for hours of slow grazing (those tailgate snacks are an all-afternoon affair, right?), Thanksgiving is often set up into distinct parts: appetizers, the main spread, dessert and leftovers. Since you're likely spending most of your time prepping the bird and its fixings, keep the starter game simple, for both you and your company. After all, you don't want to serve hors d'oeuvres that are so filling that your guests are not craving turkey. The key is to whet their appetites with a few seasonal bites that will only prime them for what's to come, and these go-to picks surely fit the bill.

Baked Brie


Baked Brie: Once you pop the wheel into the oven, your work is just about done for this appetizer. After 20 minutes, the insides will have turned ooey-gooey and oh-so-creamy, and all you'll have to do is serve fresh veggies or pretzels on the side for easy dipping.

Holiday Bacon Appetizers


Photo by: Brian Kennedy, Brian Kennedy , Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy, Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy ; "Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy" ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Brian Kennedy, Brian Kennedy , Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy, Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy ; "Brian Kennedy; Brian Kennedy", 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Holiday Bacon Appetizers: Think of this recipe from The Pioneer Woman as Cheese and Crackers 2.0. Ree Drummond starts with buttery club-style crackers, sprinkles nutty Parmesan cheese on top, and then wraps them with salty bacon before baking them.

Fried Ravioli

Photo by: Tara Donne

Tara Donne

Fried Ravioli: Follow Giada De Laurentiis' lead and start with store-bought ravioli to make this surprisingly speedy starter, coated in cheesy breadcrumbs. For an easy pairing, open up a jar of your favorite marinara sauce to serve on the side.

Acorn Squash Soup


Photo by: Brian Kennedy ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Brian Kennedy, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Acorn Squash Soup: Guy Fieri balances the richness of his big-batch creamy soup with bold flavors, like a few splashes of Worcestershire sauce and a pinch of cayenne pepper for subtle heat.

Stuffed Mushrooms

Stuffed Mushrooms: Garlicky and cheesy, Giada's breadcrumb stuffing is studded with fresh herbs and turns golden on top while two-bite white mushrooms are baked in.

Bruschetta with Peppers and Gorgonzola

Ina Garten's Bruschetta with Peppers and Gorgonzola for Flavors and Flowers as seen on Food Network's Barefoot Contessa

Photo by: Alice Gao ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Alice Gao, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Bruschetta with Peppers and Gorgonzola: Not just for tomatoes and basil, bruschetta gets a makeover with Ina Garten's pepper topping. She balances the sweetness of the sugar-marinated peppers with briny capers. Before serving, Ina dots the topped toasted bread slices with Gorgonzola.

Rosemary Roasted Cashews

Rosemary Roasted Cashews

Photo by: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Tara Donne, Tara Donne

Rosemary Roasted Cashews: Just a bit of butter helps the herbs, cayenne and sugar stick to the cashews, which Ina warms gently before tossing them with the other ingredients.

Swiss and Bacon Dip

Swiss and Bacon Dip

Photo by: Tara Donne

Tara Donne

Swiss and Bacon Dip: Sure, onion dip is good, but Rachael Ray's top-rated party favorite takes dip to a new level of indulgence. She mixes crispy chopped bacon with cream cheese, mayonnaise, Swiss and a dollop of Dijon for welcome tang, then bakes it until it's golden brown and bubbling. Craving the heat? Don't be afraid to add a bit of horseradish to the cheese-bacon mixture.

Picnic Deviled Eggs


Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Picnic Deviled Eggs: The beauty of these quick-fix deviled eggs is that you can prep them completely before your guests arrive, then simply refrigerate them until later.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Warm Cider Vinaigrette

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Cider Vinaigrette

Photo by: Tara Donne

Tara Donne

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Cider Vinaigrette: Let's call this fall on a plate. In-season, tender roasted butternut squash, crimson-colored cranberries and a tangy apple cider vinaigrette — it's all here in Ina's fuss-free salad.

Next Up

8 of the Speediest Thanksgiving Appetizer Recipes Ever

Get the recipes for eight of the fastest-ever Thanksgiving appetizers.

Cranberries Every Way: Sauces, Salads and More

Cranberries are beautiful, delicious and so much more versatile than you think. Why not give your regular recipe an upgrade this year?

The Ultimate Thanksgiving Breadbasket: Cornbread, Dinner Rolls and More

Don’t let the breadbasket become an afterthought. Yeast or no yeast, baking from scratch is easier than you think.

5 Green Bean Casseroles to Satisfy Everyone at Your Holiday Table

Here are five green bean casseroles we’re sure will disappear from your table this Thanksgiving.

On Thanksgiving Day, Watch a Turkey Cooking from Start to Finish on FoodNetwork.com

Watch a turkey cook from start-to-finish on Thanksgiving Day -- plan on five hours of turkey goodness.

8 Turkeys That Are Guaranteed to Deliver Flavor — and Oohs and Aahs from Your Guests

Check out some of Food Network's best-ever turkey recipes, each chock-full of good-to-know tips from your favorite chefs.

5 Healthy Pie Recipes for Your Thanksgiving Table

When it comes to Thanksgiving, there's one kind of dessert that's bound to star in your spread: pie. And we mean lots of it.

Our Top 5 Must-Make Thanksgiving Side Dishes — Fall Fest

It wouldn't be Thanksgiving without the sides (and lots of them).

Sunny Anderson's Canned Cranberry Thanksgiving Hack

Find out how Sunny dresses up store-bought canned cranberries.

6 Carrot Treats That Deserve a Spot in Your Thanksgiving Dessert Spread

Pumpkin, pecan and apple may get all the love on Thanksgiving, but they aren't the only flavors that deserve a spot in your holiday dessert spread.