Appetizers for Thanksgiving are a tricky game. You want people to not be too hungry, but everyone wants to keep room for the big meal. I have a few tricks to keep this delicate balance and keep you sane while you cook the big meal.
1- Stay away from heavy appetizers like meatballs. Keep things light with fruit, crackers, dips, and spreads. This will keep the edge off while leaving room for the main event.
2- Use things you can prep ahead. If you’re making the big meal, you don’t need another thing to do on Thanksgiving day. If you’re bringing the appetizers, you want things ready, not something that requires you to use your host’s kitchen.
#1 – Savory Salmon Spread
This goes well with a variety of crackers, pita chips or veggie dippers. Bonus – it fits the low carb people. This is a mix-it-all-in-one-bowl-and-serve type of thing and can be made a day ahead.
#2 – Marinated Olives
I make this marinade right in the bowl I’m going to be serving it in and then mix in the olives. Truly one dish. This is great made 2-3 days ahead and then set out to come to room temp before your guests arrive. Which is perfect because you’ll need room in the fridge anyway. Place some toothpicks next to it let people graze.
#3 on our Thanksgiving appetizer list is a mustard pretzel dip.
This one can be made a day or two ahead and is best with butter snap pretzels. Not sponsored. Just trust me. With only 4 ingredients and the ease of a dip you just mix and serve, this one is a family favorite for both the eaters and the one who has to make it.
#4 – My favorite – Caramel Apple Cheesecake Dip
Can you believe this only has TWO INGREDIENTS?! If you didn’t know I’m in love with Feast Mode Flavors, this is why. They are blends, which cuts out some measuring work and some ingredient collecting work. You can get 10% off here if you use my code ALLTHINGSALICIA (affiliate link). They have clean ingredients, they’re gluten free, and they’re low carb!
Serve with with apples and graham crackers for the win. I like to use the Simple Mills chocolate grahams because they’re gluten free. But in the interest of full disclosure, when you dip into this with a graham cracker, is tastes just like caramel apple cheesecake.
#5 – Last but not least for our Thanksgiving Appetizers – Baked Brie with Basil and Orange Marmalade.
This one takes slightly more prep. To prep ahead, cut the brie, thaw your phyllo dough, and make sure you have your other ingredients. There aren’t that many and I promise you this is worth the tiny bit of extra.
This stuff is not a baked brie with the phyllo wrapped around a wheel of cheese thing. This is more like an upgraded baklava. It’s delicious. I’m not an orange marmalade fan, I’m not a brie lover (not a hater, just not totally impressed by it), but I love this stuff!
This can bake earlier in your day and needs to cool a bit so no need to stress about having it warm right out of the oven. It’s pretty easy and quick to assemble, doesn’t have that many ingredients, and tastes like heaven. The flavor is different, in all the right ways.
Want to know the best part?
I made these the other day for the pics (For the pics of course. Not because I want fancy appetizers before the holiday). From start to finish, including cleaning up in between dishes, it took me less than an hour to make all 5 appetizers!