28 Classic All-American Appetizers

Though it is sometimes hard to define exactly what All-American fare looks and tastes like, there is no mistaking these appetizers for anything other than American.

28 Classic All-American Appetizers

Sure, our favorite bits here in the U.S have taken inspiration from places like Italy and Mexico, but we have made sure to put our stamp on the foods that matter. 

This article is here to celebrate our most treasured appetizers in all their game-day glory.

Whether you are intending to feed the masses or impress that special someone, with a couple of these appetizers by your side, you have already won. 

1. Sticky Baked Chicken Wings

Leave your go-to buffalo wing recipe behind and step into the sticky baked chicken wing light, tonight.

Chicken wings hold a special place in the hearts of Americans everywhere, and this recipe has given them a funky facelift.

Instead of deep-drying your Game Day wings this year, why not give them a run in the oven? This simple switch is a clear intention for a healthier future where wings don’t have to sit on our hips. 

2. Caramelized Onion Dip

It doesn’t matter what feast or occasion you have in mind, caramelized onion dip will do just fine.

Caramelized onion is perfect at the best of times, but when it gets turned into a creamy dip that is ready to get cozy next to the potato chips, it becomes a whole new finger-lickin’ thing.

All you got to do is caramelize off your onions and mix them through a questionable amount of sour cream and cream cheese.

Flat-leaf parsley, Worchestershire sauce, and salt and pepper are called up to season this big bad dip that takes no prisoners. 

3. Deviled Eggs With Country Ham

Deviled eggs are an all-time classic American appetizer, through and through. This recipe takes the deviled egg and gives it a salty twist by topping it with thin-cut country ham.

The resulting appetizer is an attractive vision of how appetizers can be classy. The snipped chives really help to seal the deal on this gourmet take of the classic.

Sure, this may not be the quickest appetizer to prepare on this list. It is, however, an easy one to prepare ahead of time.

This will do wonders for when crunch time comes and you’re running around the kitchen like a headless chicken. 

4. Homemade Soft Pretzels

Taking just 20 minutes to prepare, these soft pretzels are a fun and easy appetizer to try at home.

The ability to make 16 pretzels in such a short space of time may seem like an impossible task, but with this recipe by your side, it can be done.

Designed to be soft on the inside with a golden crunch on the outer, you will want to make a couple extra for your own pre-meal tax for this one. 

5. Salami And Cheese Pinwheels

Salami and cheese have always been a match made in the Italian heavens, and this appetizer recipe takes you straight there.

Turning this seductively savory combination into a pinwheel is nothing new, and that is the point, people will be drawn to this appetizer for its familiarity first, and its taste for seconds.

Hard salami, store-bought puff pastry, shredded cheese, coarse ground mustard, and egg are the only ingredients you need to make this appetizer that has no chance of hanging about long.

6. Crispy Loaded Potato Skins

Take one glance at this appetizer’s name and you just know that it’s destined for the Game Day table. Crispy potato skins get loaded with everything that is good in the world.

We’re talking cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon bits, and green onions to name a few. Served alongside a sour cream dipping sauce and watch your guests come flocking in.

If you are wondering what to do with all the leftover dug-out potatoes? We’re thinking a big ol’ bowl of mash would do the trick. 

7. Honey Garlic Meatballs

Meatballs are another food that migrated over to our shores with the Italian contingent way back when and quickly cemented itself as an All-American food to get messy with.

That’s right, you will likely need a stack of napkins close by to these honey and garlic meatballs.

The meatballs are juicy and tender, the sauce is sticky and sweet, and the world just seems to shine a little brighter when a plate of these puppies is in it. 

8. Slow Cooker Buffalo Wings

We know we were a little harsh to your favorite buffalo wing recipe earlier, but that’s only because these slow cooker ones are better. 

Every home cook who likes to eat well but does not spend hours in the kitchen should own a slow cooker. Leaving your slow cooker to it while you get on with whatever it is you like to do is one of the great pleasures in life.

The only thing better is coming back to a slow cooker full of the most tender and juicy chicken wings you ever did see.

The recipe also shows you how to make an authentic buffalo sauce to smother over every last one of them. 

9. Mini Mac And Cheese Bites

Taking the classic mac and cheese and shrinking it down into a bite-sized appetizer is one of the most on-point ideas we have ever seen, and we can’t wait to try it.

The outer crust of these bites is a shade of deep golden brown which can only mean one thing – crunchtime! While the outside may give you a chewy kind of time, describing the gooey inner, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

What you are left with is the most mouthwatering mouthful of cheesy pasta in existence. But best be quick, an appetizer like this won’t hang about long. 

10. Pepperoni Pizza Monkey Bread

Turning boring old dinner rolls into pepperoni pizza is a sure-fire way to get the gets jumping for joy.

The dinner rolls are topped with pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, and a bunch of herbs for seasoning.

The crusty creation is then baked and displayed around a little bowl of pizza sauce that steps in as the ultimate dipping sauce. The kids and big kids at heart will find this appetizer engaging to both make and eat.

11. Chili Cheese Dip

There are easy appetizers to make and then there is this chili cheese dip – appetizers really don’t come any easier.

Shredded cheddar cheese, cream cheese, and Hormel chili no beans are generously layered in a tray and baked into a gooey mess of deliciousness.

Serve beside a heaping bowl of corn tortilla chips for a quick and filling appetizer idea that suits hot weather and cold beer. 

12. Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp

Bacon is perfect on its own. Shrimp is just as perfect on its own. If, however, you have the foresight to put the two powerhouse All-American foods together, you get served a different level of perfection.

Taking 20 minutes to prepare and the same time to cook, these bacon-wrapped shrimp appetizers are ideal for kicking off a gourmet evening of feasting.

Ginger, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, sriracha, garlic, and soy are the ingredients that give these salty shrimp something to sing about. 

13. Mozzarella Sticks

Mozzarella sticks don’t have to just be the roadside snack that you munch down after a big night out, they can be a great appetizer too.

Once you make them once, you realize just how easy mozzarella sticks are to make at home. Another thing you realize is that the homemade version is a million times better than the late-night version.

Fresh mozzarella sticks are coated in a bread crumb and baked until they are golden on the outside and gooey on the inside – it really is that simple. 

14. Tater Tot Nachos

Swapping out corn tortilla chips for tater tots may seem like a prosperous proposition at first, but sit with it for a little bit and you will start to come around to the idea.

The cool thing about tater tot nachos or “totchos” as they are also referred to as is that they’re highly riff-able.

This recipe calls for black beans, bacon, cheddar cheese, sour cream, cherry tomatoes, lime, avocado, cilantro, jalapeno pepper, and green onion to really load up the tater tots. But, you can choose whatever you want, the power is yours.

15. Extra Crispy Onion Rings

We don’t care what you say, every American loves onion rings. That’s not to say that everyone eats onion rings, on account of their high-calorie content, but calories aside, we all secretly love them.

This recipe puts its crispiness where its batter is by serving you your onion rings extra crispy. 15 minutes to prepare, 15 minutes to cook, this is one of those special recipes that doesn’t ask for much and offers it all. 

16. Cheeseburger Sliders 

This is another 30-minute recipe that is very capable of feeding the family, and then some. Making 24 individual cheeseburger sliders, there really isn’t anything to say about this recipe except it can do no wrong.

The only prerequisite is that you don’t skimp on the quality of the beef. Seek out the leanest ground beef that you can find and your family will be thanking you after each and every bite. 

17. Quick And Easy Nachos

Serving eight people the perfect pre-dinner treat is this Quick and Easy Nachos recipe. For all the nachos-lovers who couldn’t look past the questionable decision to leave out the corn chips for a tater tot creation, this recipe is for you.

Also, they haven’t named this nachos recipe “quick and easy” for nothing. Five minutes of your time is all that is needed before whacking it in the oven, ready to munch down in 10. 

18. Homemade Bloomin’ Onion

Sometimes, no matter how much you want to, you just can’t mess with a classic. Where bloomin’ onion is concerned that is most certainly the case.

If you have never tried the classic American snack that is bloomin’ onion then you are in for a seriously good time. Imagine an onion strategically cut to present an in-bloom flower and you are almost there.

This artistic creation is then breaded to the heavens and deep-fried to golden perfection. 

19. Bacon Bow Tie Crackers

If you are into your quirky appetizers, look no further than these bacon bow tie crackers. Dressing up an army of rectangle-shape buttery crackers with bacon bow ties is guaranteed to turn a few heads on their way to the table.

Sure, it may be a little fiddly to get the bow tie looking sharp on the first couple of crackers. However, once you get a system in place, you will be able to wrap 24 in no time at all. 

20. Slow-Cooker Buffalo Chicken Dip

Buffalo chicken dip is one of our national treasures where Game Day dipping is concerned and this slow-cooker recipe is something of a phenomenon.

Seriously, forget everything you have ever known about buffalo chicken dip because it will never match up to this rendition of it. 

21. Picnic Egg Salad

This egg salad recipe is a great appetizer to prepare ahead of time, ready for your boozy Saturday afternoon picnic in the park.

Intended to be served atop crusty sourdough slices, your friends will be saying their ooh’s and ahh’s after you pass the plate around. 

22. Jalapeno Popper Dip

Take one quick glance at the ingredient list of this jalapeno popper dip and you will suddenly feel hungry.

Bacon, cream cheese, sour cream, fresh jalapenos, pickled jalapenos, fresh cilantro, cheddar cheese, and ample spices to season, this dip is a thick affair that demands the sturdiest tortilla corn chips in the land. 

23. Asparagus Ribbon Crostini 

If you are in need of a fancy appetizer to impress some extra special guests, look no further than these asparagus ribbon crostinis.

Fresh and minty asparagus is shaved into ribbons and served atop slices of ricotta-topped baguette for a summery appetizer that is gourmet by sight and gourmet by taste. 

24. Spicy Cheese Twists

It goes without saying that nobody turns down a cheese twist, it just doesn’t happen. When they find that out these cheese twists are in fact spicy, they will greedily take two.

Luckily, you can preempt this uncontrollable greed by making twice the amount as this recipe says. 24 individual spicy cheese twists? Ah-yum!

25. Bacon-Pimiento Gaucamole

Bacon-pimiento guacamole is the ultimate Super Bowl Sunday appetizer to feed and please the team. Whip up a great big bowl of this powerful dip to ensure the team leaves your home happily fed. 

26. Slow-Roasted Cherry Tomato Bruschetta

Taking a trick out of the Italian appetizer playbook, this slow-roasted cherry tomato bruschetta recipe is designed for the summertime. Something magical happens when you slow-roast cherry tomatoes – to discover it, click on through. 

27. Creamy Spinach-Ricotta Crostini

Baby spinach, ricotta cheese, and a bunch of herbs are blended and spread thick across crostini in this delightful appetizer recipe.

If you want to keep it strictly vegetarian, just leave the prosciutto ham off the top and replace it with something of the earth. We heard basil does pretty well under these circumstances. 

28. Ham And Cheese Sliders

Baked ham and cheese sliders are the perfect appetizers to feed the family. If you thought that this recipe was a basic one, think again. It has a few twists and turns in the ingredient list that will have everyone scouring around for just one more slider. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Who Invented The Appetizer?

It is said that the idea of eating a small plate of food before the main meal goes way back to ancient Greek and Roman times.

What Is The Most Popular Appetizer In The US?

Though there is some very stiff competition, a recent poll suggested that mozzarella sticks are in fact America’s favorite appetizer. 


So there you have it. 28 appetizers that each holds a special place in the hearts of Americans everywhere.

Whether you are someone who likes to stick to the classics or try something new, we hope you found an appetizer or two to get excited (and hungry) about.

28 Classic All-American Appetizers

28 Classic All-American Appetizers

Recipe by Jenna

Discover these classic All-American appetizer recipes that will serve you and your guests a big ol’ bowl of home.

Course: Appetizers
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