If you're having people over for the holidays or any other food-focused holiday, you probably already know you'll be spending the days leading up to Turkey Day in the kitchen. While some elements of the meal (the turkey and desserts) are bound to take some time to prepare, others don't have to. Enter: easy appetizers.
Opt for an assortment of quick and simple dishes that you can leave out at room temperature, so you don't have to think about them until you serve them. Think 15-minute sun-dried tomato and basil pinwheels, parmesan garlic straws, or if you only have a moment to spare, a fail-safe pumpkin hummus dip. Here are 10 easy, uncomplicated make-ahead appetizers that take the stress out of entertaining.
Crispy Prosciutto Baked Brie Bites With Honey Pears and Walnuts
The classic French cheese goes bite-size in this effortless recipe. Simply line muffin tins with phyllo dough, and stuff them with brie, walnuts, prosciutto, and pears to make these crispy baked brie bites. Don't forget to drizzle with honey once they're out of the oven.
Herbed Goat Cheese–Stuffed Mushrooms
Put a palate-pleasing twist on a classic appetizer with herbed goat cheese stuffed mushrooms. Your guests won't be able to resist these morsels, so make plenty for a hungry crowd. The best part? They're bite-sized, so guests don't have to hold a half-eaten app in their hands while trying to make conversation.
Pastry-Wrapped Baked Brie With Maple Butter Roasted Apples
Puff pastry is a host's best friend during the holiday season. Use it as the base for this delectable pastry wrapped baked brie, complete with maple butter roasted apples. If you're serving a crowd, make two because this appetizer is bound to go fast.
While this appetizer is beautiful, it can get a bit messy for guests if you serve it as is. We suggest slicing it into equally-sized pieces and arranging it on a tray to pass around.
Roasted Pumpkin Hummus
Hummus may not be the most American app to serve at dinner, but you can certainly embrace pumpkin season with this flavor-packed roasted pumpkin dip by Spoon Fork Bacon. If you're in a rush, it's surprisingly easy to whip up. After baking pumpkin halves for 45 minutes, scoop the flesh into a blender with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic, and purée until smooth. Top with pomegranate seeds for a burst of festive color.
Parmesan Garlic Straws
Don't have time to make dough from scratch? Use store-bought pizza dough to create these parmesan garlic straws, which can be served solo or with a homemade dip. They just so happen to be a crowd-pleaser for kids, too.
Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Pinwheels
Perfect for guests of all ages, these sun-dried tomato and basil pinwheels come together in just 15 minutes. Experiment with different fillings like flavored cream cheese, peppers, or spinach to change the colors in each wheel. They may be small, but they're packed with flavor.
Chickpea Shwarma Dip
Another dip from the Mediterranean, this chickpea shawarma dip may make guests forget they're in the U.S. Unlike preservative-packed, grocery-store-shelf varieties, this wholesome dip is rich in fiber and plant-based protein, thanks to the natural ingredients like garlic, dill, tomatoes, and, of course, chickpeas. Give it a gourmet touch by layering parsley salad and garlic herb sauce on top.
Bacon Butternut Arancini With Pumpkin Seed Pesto Dip
How Sweet Eats has elevated arancini balls to an entirely new level with this super-easy recipe. Rich bacon and butternut flavors make for an unexpectedly perfect duo, made even better with a pumpkin seed pesto dip.
Baked Brie and Prosciutto Rolls
Who doesn't love the combination of crispy puff pastry, gooey brie, and salty prosciutto? Half Baked Harvest understands this winning combo with these baked brie and prosciutto rolls that you can whip up in just 30 minutes. Once they're baked, drizzle them with honey and sprinkle some black pepper, sea salt, and pomegranate seeds on top for a spicy-sweet finish.
Hot Spinach Artichoke Dip
For a seasonal dip that every guest will enjoy, look no further than a hearty hot spinach artichoke dip that's baked and served in a cast-iron skillet. This recipe from The Modern Proper is filled with fresh spinach, artichoke hearts, mozzarella, cream cheese, and parmesan cheese. It only takes 30 minutes in the oven and can be served with anything from carrots or tortilla chips to pita bread.