Thanksgiving Make-Ahead Hors d'Oeuvres

Bagel Chips with Ricotta, Chive Puree and Prosciutto
Photo: © Kana Okada

Alleviate some holiday stress by prepping your Thanksgiving hors d'oeuvres ahead of time. By the time your guests arrive for dinner, all you'll have to do is arrange the crudite platter. From savory tarts to fantastic cheese-stuffed mushrooms, here are great make-ahead hors d'oeuvres for Thanksgiving.

01 of 21

Roasted Beet Toasts with Horseradish Cream

Roasted Beet Toasts with Horseradish Cream

Top Chef Masters finalist Traci des Jardins creates a gorgeous cold-weather hors d'oeuvre with roasted beets, horseradish cream and rye toast.

02 of 21

Pepper-Glazed Goat Cheese Gratin

Pepper-Glazed Goat Cheese Gratin

This warm, sweet-spicy goat cheese dip is an easy alternative to a cheese plate.

03 of 21

Miso-Infused Cream Cheese Spread

Miso-Infused Cream Cheese Spread

Cooks in Japan cure all kinds of food in miso, from fish to tofu. Inspired, chef David Myers uses the fermented soybean paste to flavor cream cheese.

04 of 21

Provençal Vegetable Tart

HD-2013-r-provencal-vegetable-tart.jpg
© Christina Holmes

Julianne Jones makes this savory rectangular tart with the ingredients typically found in ratatouille: eggplant, zucchini and tomatoes. “You arrange the vegetables nicely in the flaky crust, then tuck in thinly shaved cheese,” she says. “I love serving the tart at dinner parties because it’s aesthetically impressive.”

05 of 21

Prosciutto-Wrapped Persimmons

Prosciutto-Wrapped Persimmons
© Dave Lauridsen

Jason Travi wraps prosciutto around persimmon wedges and roasts them until the meat crisps and the fruit turns tender and sweet.

06 of 21

Focaccia with Caramelized Onions, Pear and Blue Cheese

Focaccia with Caramelized Onions, Pear and Blue Cheese
07 of 21

Whipped Feta with Cucumbers

Whipped Feta with Cucumbers
© Seth Smoot

The taste of the Mediterranean shines through in this airy feta spread that's served with olive oil-marinated cucumbers.

08 of 21

Turkey Liver Mousse Toasts with Pickled Shallots

Turkey Liver Mousse Toasts
© Petrina Tinslay

This hors d'oeuvre is a Louisiana riff on traditional French chicken liver pâté. The Rushings create a silken mousse with livers from the quintessential American bird, turkey, but you can also use chicken livers. Instead of cornichons, the little French pickles, the Rushings add a sweet-and-tangy Southern accent—pickled shallots.

09 of 21

Goat Cheese-Stuffed Mushrooms with Bread Crumbs

Goat Cheese-Stuffed Mushrooms with Bread Crumbs

Here, creamy chévre is stuffed into antioxidant-rich mushrooms and topped with crispy herbed bread crumbs.

10 of 21

Blue-Cheese-and-Walnut Dip with Waldorf Crudités

Blue-Cheese-and-Walnut Dip with Waldorf Crudités
David Malosh

With walnuts, mayonnaise, apples and grapes, this recipe is a riff on classic Waldorf salad.

11 of 21

Cheddar Gougères

Cheddar Gougeres. Photo © Quentin Bacon
© Quentin Bacon

Cabot Clothbound Cheddar gougères are perfect with cava.

12 of 21

Crispy Kale with Lemon-Yogurt Dip

crispy kale with lemon-yogurt dip
© Frances Janisch

"I like the idea of making a healthy kind of potato chip that's not one of those packaged, dehydrated vegetable chips," Seamus Mullen says. He roasts kale with extra-virgin olive oil and garlic until it's crunchy.

13 of 21

Fried Parsnip Ribbons

Fried Parsnip Ribbons

Julie Taras and Tasha Garcia usually top stewy braised dishes with these earthy vegetable chips for a bit of crunch. They also serve them as a salty snack.

14 of 21

Goat Cheese-Edamame Dip with Spiced Pepitas

Goat Cheese-Edamame Dip with Spiced Pepitas
© Lucy Schaeffer

Canned chipotles in adobo sauce give this clever, creamy dip an enticing heat and smokiness. The spiced pepitas (roasted and salted pumpkin seeds) scattered over the dip are addictive and great as a snack on their own.

15 of 21

Fig-and-Stilton Squares

Fig-and-Stilton Squares

After baking flaky squares of puff pastry, Melissa Rubel Jacobson tops them with sweet fig preserves and pungent blue cheese.

16 of 21

Savory Ricotta-Squash Tart

Savory Ricotta-Squash Tart
© Quentin Bacon

Instead of appearing in a soup, squash gets cut into rings, caramelized and baked in a tart that can be served with a salad as a starter, or as an unusual side dish.

17 of 21

Chicken-Liver Mousse with Pickled Red Onion

Chicken Liver Mousse
© John Kernick

Shawn McClain's mousse is supremely silky and light, with a lovely hint of apple from Calvados. He serves the mousse with pickled red onion and toasted baguette slices alongside, so guests can assemble their own crostini.

18 of 21

Hazelnut Profiteroles with Blue Cheese and Grapes

Hazelnut Profiteroles with Blue Cheese and Grapes

Shawn McClain serves some form of these savory cream puffs with drinks at both of his Chicago restaurants. He pokes a hole in the sides of the puffs when they come out of the oven to release the steam, then fills them with a creamy mixture of blue cheese and mascarpone.

19 of 21

Cauliflower Fritters

Cauliflower Fritters

To create these wonderful tapas, José Andrés makes a batter with crunchy nubs of chopped cauliflower florets, fries spoonfuls in a skillet and then tops the fritters with yogurt sauce and a dollop of caviar. You can make these crispy bites early in the day and then reheat before serving.

20 of 21

Cristina's Famous Nuts

Cristina's Famous Nuts

Cristina Salas-Porras tosses assorted nuts with sage and rosemary and bakes them for a long time at a low temperature; they come out perfectly crisp. No wonder she’s famous for them.

21 of 21

Bagel Chips with Ricotta, Chive Puree and Prosciutto

Bagel Chips with Ricotta, Chive Puree and Prosciutto
© Kana Okada

Using bagel chips as the base for an hors d'oeuvre is a quick way to add flavor and crunch. Grace Parisi tops the chips with fresh ricotta, chive puree and prosciutto. As an alternative, she sometimes uses dried apricot halves in place of the chips.

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