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25 Easy Thanksgiving Appetizers

While planning Thanksgiving dinner, it’s easy to overlook the small bites that come before the big meal. Not to worry, we have gathered our best and easiest Thanksgiving appetizers so you can focus on the main event.

collage of thanksgiving appetizers
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Kick Off Your Holiday Meal

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to celebrate those we love while sharing a meal. While dinner is the main attraction, it never hurts to have a few appetizers beforehand to make everyone feel welcome and hold off any hunger pangs.

When planning your Thanksgiving menu, I recommend including a few easy appetizer ideas to jump start the meal. Nothing too heavy, so that guests will save room for the oven roasted turkey, all of the yummy Thanksgiving side dishes and a big slice of pumpkin pie!

What Thanksgiving Appetizers to Serve

Deciding what appetizers to serve before a big meal like Thanksgiving takes a little extra planning. Here are a few key questions that will make it a breeze to pick what hors d’oeuvres will complement your meal best.

  • How filling are the appetizers? You want appetizers that are light and not overly rich, so your guests stay hungry for turkey.
  • Where will everyone gather? Will people be moving around or sitting down? This can help determine if you are serving finger foods or some type of dip.
  • How will you serve the appetizers? Are you going to set up a buffet-style app station or have dips on a coffee table? I like to place dishes in a few different places so guests can nibble as they move around.
  • What sides will you be serving at dinner? You want to make sure you avoid having repeats of similar dishes.
  • Do the appetizers need to be made in the oven or on the stovetop? Just remember you might not have any room to spare.
  • Who is coming to dinner? Are there any allergies or intolerances you need to be aware of? Always plan on having a few options for those who might not be able to eat everything.

Make the Thanksgiving Day Menu

Now that you have an idea of what type of appetizers you want to serve, you need to know how many to make. A good rule of thumb is to serve about 3 to 4 bites per person, which means 2 to 3 appetizers should be plenty for a party of 8.

Just remember to think of the entire dinner, from the first bite to the last, as a whole when making your menu. For example, if you are serving a lot of cheesy sides like cheesy potatoes or baked macaroni and cheese, you might want to skip serving something heavy and opt for something lighter like a skinny dill dip or a fruit and veggie platter.

Here are 25 easy Thanksgiving appetizers, organized by the best ways to serve and cook (crockpot for the win!) them. Enjoy!

Easy Thanksgiving Finger Foods

It’s hard to beat an appetizer that is so easy to eat. I love putting out several finger foods in gathering spaces around the house, so people can snack on the go.

bacon ranch deviled eggs on a white plate
  • Easy Bacon Ranch Deviled Eggs. You can never go wrong with deviled eggs, and this fun twist on the traditional is a hit at any party.
  • Bacon Wrapped Dates. These sweet and salty bites are made with just 3 ingredients and are ever so addictive.
  • Easy Homemade Pretzel Bites. These may seem like a little extra effort on an already busy day, but they are worth it. Try them with my pretzel cheese dip and thank me later.
  • Homemade Chex Mix. This fast and easy snack can be made ahead of time and makes a great dish to have out when guests arrive.
  • Thanksgiving Blessing Mix. I love this snack mix (made with Bugles, cranberries, M&Ms, candy corn, and nuts) as a reminder of what the holiday means, and because it is really tasty and a hit with kids.

Easy Thanksgiving Dips

What’s not to love about a dip at a party? They are so easy to whip up and can be served with so many different dipping options, such as crackers, veggies, fruits, or chips.

cranberry salsa in glass dish with crackers
  • Cranberry Salsa. This sweet and tangy dip has a slight hint of heat and is served over cream cheese for the ultimate holiday dip.
  • White Bean Hummus Recipe. A light and refreshing take on a traditional hummus that tastes great with pita chips, pita bread or an array of veggies.
  • Skinny Dill Dip. I love to serve this dip with vegetables when I want to keep things healthy and light.
  • French Onion Dip. Make this dip ahead of time by simply mixing a few ingredients together. No one will ever know it was that easy.
  • Cowboy Caviar. This bright and colorful dip is packed with beans, corn, tomatoes, avocado and bell peppers. It goes great with tortilla chips.
  • 5-Layer Greek Dip. A showstopper of refreshing and zesty flavors, ideal to serve before a big meal.

Easy Thanksgiving Cheese Appetizers

Let’s just agree that cheese is the ultimate appetizer. You can serve it all by itself or transform it into something even better. I like to either serve a plate devoted to cheese or include one of the options below on a platter filled with other apps.

scoop taken from cranberry cheese ball

Easy Thanksgiving Day Platters

There is something so fun and inviting about a big platter overflowing with lots of flavorful items to eat. The best part for you? There is little or no cooking required, so you can put everything together the day before without using any precious oven space.

turkey veggie tray on counter
  • Turkey Veggie Tray. This creative platter is tailor-made for Thanksgiving and will make your guests smile before they even take a bite.
  • Turkey Fruit Platter. So fun, colorful and healthy. Both kids and adults always love this easy appetizer!
  • Mezze Platter. I love this appetizer because it is filled with a refreshing array of Mediterranean dips and snacks.
  • Fruit and Cheese Platter. Two of my all-time favorite things come together in one beautiful dish.
  • Charcuterie Board. Use whatever meat, cheese, pickled items, jams, nuts, or whatever your heart desires to create the ultimate snacking platter.
  • Fruit and Veggie Platter. You can make a showstopping platter made with everyday ingredients that people will love.

Easy Thanksgiving Crockpot Appetizers

If you are short oven space but still want to serve something cooked, get out the crockpot. Trust me, these slow cooker appetizers are always a hit and come together so easily.

cranberry meatballs in crockpot
  • Cranberry Meatballs. I kid you not, you can make this appetizer with just 3 ingredients. Plus, they are always a crowd favorite.
  • Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip. This couldn’t be easier and yet still so flavorful. Simply dump everything in the crockpot 1 hour before guests arrive and enjoy.
  • Slow Cooker Queso Blanco Dip. You just need 5 minutes and 5 ingredients to make a gooey, cheesy dip that is sure to disappear.
  • Slow Cooker Hawaiian Meatballs. Premade meatballs are simmered with BBQ sauce and pineapple to make an appetizer that is guaranteed to be a hit.

The Full List

Click on the links below to find the recipes for all of the delicious Thanksgiving appetizer recipes mentioned above.

bacon ranch deviled eggs on a white plate
Bacon Ranch Deviled Eggs
Flavorful deviled eggs with bacon and ranch seasoning. These bacon ranch deviled eggs are the perfect party appetizer that is always a crowd pleaser!
Total Time: 15 minutes
Read more
bacon wrapped dates on plate
Bacon Wrapped Dates Recipe
Delicious bacon wrapped dates made with just 3 simple ingredients. This easy appetizer is the perfect balance of sweet and savory! 
Total Time: 40 minutes
Read more
A close up of mini pretzel bites with a jar of pretzel cheese sauce
Pretzel Bites Recipe
Easy homemade pretzel bites brushed with melted butter and sea salt. This easy pretzel recipe makes the perfect appetizer or snack! Always a big crowd pleaser and gone in minutes!
Total Time: 40 minutes
Read more
chex mix on a baking sheet
Homemade Chex Mix
Whip up a batch of homemade Chex mix just in time to settle in for movie night! Make a big bowl of this salty, savory, crunchy snack for everyone to share, and grab yourself a handful!
Total Time: 50 minutes
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thanksgiving blessing mix in a glass bowl
Thanksgiving blessing mix
Thanksgiving blessing mix- a sweet and salty snack mix that is perfect for gift giving or holiday snacking. printable available.
Total Time: 5 minutes
Read more
cranberry salsa with cilantro and crackers
Cranberry Salsa
Sweet and spicy cranberry salsa with cream cheese is the ultimate holiday dip! This delicious combination of flavors is sure to satisfy your taste buds. 
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Read more
white bean hummus in a wooden bowl
White Bean Hummus Recipe
This white bean hummus with roasted garlic is so creamy and delicious! It pairs perfectly with fresh vegetables or pita chips and makes a great spread for sandwiches and wraps. 
Total Time: 30 minutes
Read more
bowl of dill dip on a white plate with fresh veggies
Dill Dip Recipe
The best vegetable dip that's light, healthy and packed with flavor. Perfect with fresh veggies or pita chips. You'll love this skinny dill dip recipe! 
Total Time: 5 minutes
Read more
french onion dip in glass bowl
French Onion Dip
Homemade French onion dip is a rich, cool, and creamy dip brimming with fresh flavors from the aromatics and herbs! It comes together in minutes and is great for serving guests or preparing snacks for a night in!
Total Time: 5 minutes
Read more
cowboy caviar in glass bowl
Cowboy Caviar Recipe
Flavorful and delicious cowboy caviar dip that will become the star of the show at your next get together. Full of fresh veggies and topped with an easy homemade dressing. 
Total Time: 15 minutes
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Dipping a pita chip into feta dip.
Greek Dip Recipe
This 5-Layer Greek Dip is the ultimate appetizer and so easy to make. It’s light and tastes great with fresh vegetables, naan bread or pita chips!
Total Time: 10 minutes
Read more
scoop taken from cranberry cheese ball
Cranberry Orange Cheese Ball
This cranberry orange cheese ball is so simple and so delicious! With colorful cranberries in every bite and a hint of fresh orange, it's the perfect holiday appetizer!
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Read more
a close up of a cheese ball with crackers
Cream Cheese Ball
Hands down one of the easiest and yummiest recipes to serve at your next holiday party! This easy cheese ball recipe is always a huge hit!
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Read more
drizzling honey onto baked brie with a honey dipper
Baked Brie with Honey
Baked brie with honey – A simple and delicious appetizer recipe that's always a crowd pleaser! This baked brie is so creamy, rich and tastes amazing paired with the sweetness of the honey. 
Total Time: 8 minutes
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cheese ball recipe with bacon
Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball Recipe
A creamy cheese ball coated in bacon pieces, Chex cereal and pecans. Full of flavor and has the perfect crunch.
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Read more
cheese ball bites on white plates
Cheese Ball Bites
Cheese ball bites are flavorful appetizers that are perfect for snacking or serving at parties. These mini cheese balls are loaded with everyone's favorite ingredients, and they are incredibly simple to make.
Total Time: 35 minutes
Read more
Cranberry brie bites on a wooden board.
Cranberry Brie Bites
Looking for a classy and elegant appetizer for your upcoming holiday party or celebration? These 3-ingredient cranberry brie bites have everything you love about baked brie and preserves in individual bite-size portions. Perfect for easy entertaining!
Total Time: 30 minutes
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turkey vegetable tray
Turkey Veggie Tray
This clever turkey veggie tray is a festive and colorful appetizer display that brings a healthy balance to your holiday dessert indulgence. Best of all, kids love it!
Total Time: 20 minutes
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Turkey fruit platter on a white plate.
Turkey Fruit Platter
Have some colorful fun this Thanksgiving with a delicious turkey fruit platter made with all your favorite fruit. Get ahead and make it the day before or put it together on the day you serve it, either way, this easy fruit turkey will be the hit of the party!
Total Time: 20 minutes
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mezze platter on marble counter
Mezze Platter
Learn how to build the ultimate Mezze platter filled with dips, flat bread, cheese, fresh veggies and more. This is the perfect appetizer for entertaining and includes all of your Mediterranean favorites! 
Total Time: 10 minutes
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fruit and cheese platter on circle board
Fruit and Cheese Platter Recipe
Learn how to assemble an amazing fruit and cheese platter for your next party. Pick your favorite fruits, cheeses and fillers to make your platter the star of the show!
Total Time: 20 minutes
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round charcuterie board with crackers, meats, cheeses and dips
Charcuterie Board Recipe
A charcuterie board is a simple way to make the BEST spread for a large crowd! Just throw together your favorite meats, cheeses, crackers and more. This cheese board has tons of snacking options for everyone and will definitely be a hit!
Total Time: 10 minutes
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Cranberry Meatballs
These mouthwatering cranberry meatballs made with cranberry and chili sauce are sweet and tangy with an intensely bold flavor. Made with only 3 ingredients, they are always a super simple crowd pleaser!
Total Time: 3 hours
Read more
baguette slice dipped in spinach artichoke dip
Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Dip
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Read more
bowl of queso blanco
Queso Blanco Recipe
Slow cooker queso blanco dip takes just 5 minutes to prep and only 5 ingredients to make. This creamy white cheese dip is seriously the best ever!
Total Time: 50 minutes
Read more
sweet and sour meatballs
Slow Cooker Hawaiian Meatballs
These slow cooker Hawaiian meatballs take only 3 ingredients and 5 minutes to make! So easy and always a crowd pleaser. Makes the perfect appetizer or main dish.
Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Read more

Delicious Thanksgiving Desserts

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Now you know what to serve before the meal, here are a few ideas on what to serve after.

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