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15 Last-Minute Appetizers for Thanksgiving

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Don’t be caught empty-handed this Thanksgiving; give these last-minute apps a try.

You’ve avoided bird duty, dodged bringing the stuffing, and eye-rolled your way out of delivering the wine coolers for the aunts-in-law. But face it: It's not cool to show up to Thanksgiving empty handed. Why not ring the doorbell with your elbow, arms loaded with dozens of one-bite wonders? However you spell hors-d'ouvre hors-d'oeuvors hors-deveres appetizers, you’ll be jump-starting the fun of a fantastic feast.


1. Paleo Bacon-Wrapped Cauliflower

thanksgiving apps cauliflower

You don’t have to explain “paleo”, or why avocados and almond milk make sense together. Just say “bacon” and watch these disappear.


2. Tomato Soup with Mini Grilled Cheese Sticks

thanksgiving apps tomato soup

Comfort food in a cup! Everyone gets to enjoy cheese sandwichlets and teeny tiny servings of classic tomato soup—truly whetting appetites vs. killing them.


3. Oven-Fried Zucchini Tots

thanksgiving apps zucchini

Zucchini has an important place at the table: It’s good for you and delicious, especially in tiny, easy-to-pop-in-an-impatient-mouth tots. Eat your veggies and love them too!


4. Easy Taco Queso Dip

thanksgiving apps queso

Creamy from queso, hefty from tender ground beef. Each bite is truly a small work of Southwestern art, packing a little protein to tide you over ’till you can tuck into the big bird.


5. Spicy Cranberry Cream Cheese Wontons

thanksgiving apps wontons

Hanging with people that know and love their cranberry sauce? This creamy/tart treat crunches up a storm and will earn you permanent props as The One Who Brings Those Wontons. Be warned: You won’t get to stop being The One ever again.


6. Sausage Cheese Balls

thanksgiving apps sausage balls

Little meatballs are always a big hit at football gatherings—these just might distract the crowd at your Thanksgiving feast from everything else. Cheese + meat + surprising spices = total touchdown.


7. Creamy Herb Crescent Bites

thanksgiving apps crescent bites

Insanely simple, but what makes them absolutely heavenly is whipping them up on Thanksgiving morning to take advantage of that fresh-baked crusty goodness. Who’s the hors-d'oeuvre hero? That would be you.


8. Easy Three-Ingredient Jalapeño Poppers

thanksgiving apps poppers

Just the right amount of spice, wrapped up into perfectly-sized crescent rolls. We love how cute the peppers look tucked in their little bread blankets—but look sharp! There won’t be much time to stand around admiring them once the mmmmmmms kick in.


9. Bacon Wrapped Artichoke Bites with Chipotle Aioli

thanksgiving apps artichoke

If you can read the recipe without your mouth watering, our hats are off to you. If you can deliver a batch to the Thanksgiving appetizer table without nibbling down about half of them, we’ll eat our hats.


10. Sausage-Stuffed Mushrooms

thanksgiving apps mushrooms

The classic party appetizer, given a little extra bready heft in the filling department thanks to Bisquick™ mix. All the savory herbs blend to give rich mushroomy flavor an extra lift; making them by the dozen is a really really good idea.


11. Loaded Smashed Sweet Potatoes

thanksgiving apps sweet potatoes

A simple smash and a second trip to the oven completely changes a baked sweet potato quarter from a delicious, rich treat to a delicious, rich treat with an insanely addictive sweet/crunch edge. Plus, there are extra ridges for holding all the toppings you can imagine.


12. Spicy Chipotle Pumpkin Hummus

thanksgiving apps chipotle

Everyone loves a little extra pumpkin flavor this time of year. Mixed into a homemade hummus, it’s a surprisingly lush way to add earthy flavor to a fabulous dip for veggies, crackers, and that bit of turkey skin you swiped when nobody was looking.


13. Easy Cheesy Artichoke Dip in a Pretzel Bread Bowl

thanksgiving apps bread bowl

Yeeeeeaaaahhh! That’s the approximate spelling of the sound everyone makes when they spot dip-in-a-bowl, especially this creamy artichoke dunking glory in a fresh-baked round loaf you made yourself. Yes. You. Can.


14. Cranberry Blue Cheese Appetizers

thanksgiving apps cranberry

Blue cheese and cranberries are the perfect pair, combining sharp, briny flavor with tart sweetness. You can even make these ahead of time, then pop them in the oven for a quick heat-up.


15. Sriracha Cheesy BBQ Chicken Balls

thanksgiving apps sriracha

Yeah, it’s kinda show-offy to bring the appetizer that gets as many (if not more) compliments than the turkey. But a sriracha master’s gotta do what a sriracha master’s gotta do.

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