45 Cheesy (and Easy) Super Bowl Appetizers
Americans will buy 88 million pounds of cheese in the week leading up to the Super Bowl, according to the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin. That's a lotta cheese. That's enough cheese, in fact, to cover the Mercedes-Benz Stadium football field—end zone to end zone—ten yards deep.
It makes sense: No matter who you root for, cheese is the glue that holds Super Bowl parties around America together. Get into the spirit with one of our favorite super easy, super cheesy game day appetizers.
Cheesy Sausage Roll-Ups
These southwestern-style roll-ups require just 5 ingredients.
Grilled Stuffed Jalapeños
Searching for that perfect, crowd-pleasing appetizer for you next get-together? Look no further than these stuffed jalapeño poppers. The rich and creamy combination of bacon, cream cheese, and cheddar nicely contrasts the muted spice of grilled jalapeño peppers. This grilled appetizer recipe is a healthy, fresh alternative to the popular breaded and fried version. If you’re looking to keep your stuffed jalapeño poppers vegetarian-friendly, you can eliminate the bacon or replace it with coarsely chopped nuts, like smoked almonds or toasted pecans.
These tender, buttery snack rolls are akin to cinnamon buns in structure… but they’re full-on pizza perfection in flavor. Using canned crescent roll dough and prepared marinara sauce keeps both the prep time and ingredient list short, making these cheesy, kid-friendly bites easy to whip up at a moment’s notice. Of course, you can also prep them ahead to enjoy as after-school snacks or on-the-go breakfasts throughout the week. Feel free to customize you homemade pizza rolls with your own favorite toppings.
Easy Party Pizza Sticks
If you’re searching for an easy and inexpensive appetizer for a crowd, the hunt stops here. These crispy, cheesy pizza sticks are the perfect snack to whip up for a Super Bowl spread, birthday party, or a casual family get-together. Besides being inherently kid-friendly, these tasty pizza sticks are endlessly customizable—just pile on your favorite toppings!
Lemon-Caper Parmesan Potato Salad Bites
Turn "jacket potatoes" into irresistible potato salad bites. Capers offer a twist on traditional relish; they're actually pickled flower buds and add bright, briny flavor to this appetizer.
Melted Manchego Tortas with Romesco and Chorizo
Spanish flatbreads, or tortas, are a tapas staple. Make these with thin sandwich round halves and a 1 1/4-inch circular cutter. You'll only use 1/4 cup of the romesco, but the remainder makes a great sauce for meats, vegetables, or fish.
Pimiento Cheese Squares
We take the flavors of the South's favorite spread and make into savory bites of Pimiento Cheese Squares--perfect for parties or gifts.
Mini Cheese Balls
Almond milk cream cheese is delicately nutty, with a buttery-rich texture and zero grams of sat fat. Find it at Whole Foods stores nationwide. You can substitute 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, which adds 1.6g sat fat to each serving.
Goat Cheese Poppers with Honey
In addition to being a delicious appetizer that feels special, these Goat Cheese Poppers with Honey make for extra awesome croutons on salads and as "meat" balls for vegetarian pasta dishes. Be sure to bring your oil to the right heat before adding the poppers--if the oil is not hot enough, you will end up with a soggy, greasy mess instead of crisp poppers. Available at most stores that carry kitchen equipment for around $10, a kitchen thermometer is an incredibly worthy investment.
These savory little gems will be the first party appetizer to disappear. Make ahead the day before and refrigerate, or you can freeze them up to 3 weeks in advance. If frozen, pop in the oven straight from the freezer and increase the bake time by 10 minutes. We find that sharp cheddar works best for creating a super cheesy flavor, but feel free to experiment with your favorite flavor of cheddar--an aged white cheddar would be amazing here. These are guaranteed to be one of the best easy appetizer recipes you've ever made.
Herbed Onion Parmesan Toasts
An all-Chardonnay blanc de blancs has an herbal quality that loves the green onions and dill in this appetizer, a brioche layer that echoes the toast itself, and a bright acidity that cuts through the rich mayo and cheese.
Brie with Jeweled Fruit Compote
This lovely appetizer is about as quick and easy as it gets--as tasty, too. You don't even need to let the cheese come to room temperature first; the warm fruit that goes on top will soften it up. Serve with crostini or crackers.
Modern Cheese Balls
These are not your mother's cheese balls. First, they're made with goat cheese and shaped into bite-size balls, making them super easy to serve and eat. Also, they're rolled in a variety of tasty toppings: wasabi-coated peas, crushed gingersnaps, granola, and a Parmesan-fennel seed mixture.
Fig and Goat Cheese Bruschetta
Prepare the fig jam for this savory-meets-sweet appetizer up to three days in advance, and store in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature, and assemble bruschetta just before serving. For smaller groups, use half the amount of bread. Leftover jam is great on toast at breakfast.
Endive Stuffed with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
This elegant first course showcases a marvelous partnership between slightly bitter endive, creamy goat cheese, and sweet orange juice. From pretty presentation to fantastic flavor, you can't go wrong with this simple appetizer.
Goat Cheese Tarts with Lemon-Fig Compote
These dainty little bites are surprisingly simple to prepare. The phyllo pastry shells are sold in the frozen food section in the supermarket; thaw before filling. The lemon-fig topping lends a subtly sweet note to the savory goat cheese filling. Prepare the compote up to two days in advance, and store it in the refrigerator.
Barbecue Pizza Bites
Yummy Sausage Cups
These yummy sausage cups are the perfect morning treat. Easy to grab and go, these little cups will be a hit at your next brunch.
Start with frozen puff pastry to make these 6-ingredient Mediterranean-style appetizers featuring the savory goodness of tomatoes, kalamata olives, and feta cheese.
Cheesy Sausage Balls
To make ahead, cover and refrigerate unbaked balls up to 24 hours; or place in a heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag and freeze unbaked balls up to 1 month. Bake frozen balls at 375° for 22 to 25 minutes or until done.
Brie-and-Fig Puffed Pastry Bites
You don’t need a culinary degree and ample free time to create impressive appetizers for your next party. In fact, all you need is three simple ingredients and about ten minutes of hands-on work to whip up these easy and delectably cheesy bites. They’re yet another reason that puff pastry is the true MVP when it comes to entertaining.
Baked Brie Bites
This five-ingredient appetizer packs a lot of flavor and texture into one bite. For some holiday green, top red pepper jelly with fresh parsley.
Cheesy Taco Jalapeño Poppers with Cilantro-Lime Crema
Beefy, cheesy, taco-tasting poppers that are deep-fried and delicious... what more could you ask for in an appetizer? Cilantro-Lime Crema adds the perfect amount of balancing brightness, making these poppers something to remember. We recommend baking the jalapenos before frying them to cook them all the way through and give them that irresistible tender texture.
Bacon-Goat Cheese Jalapeno Poppers
Salty bacon, rich goat cheese, savory-sweet jelly, and roasted jalapeño--it takes teamwork to make the dream work. If you already have the grill going, these dreamy little bites are equally easy to cook outdoors.
Spicy Pimiento Cheese Sausage Balls
If you thought you had your perfect, go-to sausage ball recipe—wait until you’ve tried these. Using prepared pimiento cheese in this party food favorite eliminates the need to shred cheese when it comes time to prep your sausage balls, and keeps them from drying out in the oven—as sausage balls are prone to do. In other words, this ultimate appetizer recipe is as genius as it is delicious.
Loaded Greek Feta Fries
This dish gets tons of flavor from the spices. If your fresh oregano is strong, start with less than what’s called for and add more to taste. To speed things up, prep all the ingredients in advance so you can assemble quickly while the fries are still hot. The fries are easy to make in an air fryer, but if you don't have one (yet) no problem: Spread potatoes on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; bake 10 minutes at 450F. Flip fries, and bake until crisp and brown, another 10-15 minutes. Gina Homolka is the founder of skinnytaste.com and @skinnytaste.
Cheesy Stuffed Pizza Crust Ring
You know how as soon as you grow into a fully formed adult human, you realize that the best part of a delivery pizza is the part you’ve been foolishly tossing aside (for your parents to eventually graze on)? Well we decided to make up for lost years by making this cheesy stuffed crust ring, no pizza necessary. Of course, we all know the only thing better than a standard hand-tossed pizza crust is a stuffed crust. We flavored this cheesy ring of bready glory with a seasoning blend inspired by the masters—Domino’s—and served it up with a delicious blend of the two most perfect crust dipping sauces: ranch and marinara. Warm from the oven, this cheesy appetizer perfect for a Super Bowl party, or any other game day gathering.
Lasagna Dip With Pasta Chips
Olive Garden got this one right, folks—lasagna in dip form is all kinds of wonderful, especially served with freshly fried, crisp pasta chips. Trust us, this meaty, cheesy appetizer will be a welcome addition to any party.
Super Crispy Chicken-Skin Nachos
For a show-stopping appetizer, these unlikely nachos are just what you need. If you have a local market that butchers their own meat, they will likely be able to sell you chicken skins for cheap. You can use either the thigh skins or the breast skins here, both will work great. Drying the chicken skins with paper towels and sandwiching them between two pans is the key to getting them flat and crispy (without the second pan weighing them down, youe skins would shrivel up). Do note, after step 1 in the recipe below (i.e. cooking the skins for 35-40 minutes, they may very well be crisped and ready to go) which allows you to skip step 2 entirely. Continue to cook the skins uncovered only if they aren't quite browned and crisp, but keep a close eye on them so they do not burn. You can cook these in mulitple batches if you don’t have enough pans to make them in a single batch, but watch the second round of chicken skins closely because it will probably cook faster.
Keto Burrito Peppers
Hearty and delicious, these peppers offer a flavorful kick to your weeknight dinner routine. For more heat, add some jalapeño to the filling. Non-keto eaters would enjoy this recipe just as well, and can pile the filling into a tortilla if desired.
Mini Potato Skins
This party-perfect appetizer will be gone before the last guest even arrives. At a dinner party or holiday gathering, the main dish and a few incredible sides are really the stars of the show. But we can’t imagine a supper club or Christmas dinner without something to snack on as guests arrive, pour cocktails, and catch up before the meal is served. This five-ingredient recipe makes a bite-sized appetizer that every guest will rave about, and it has a high yield for your biggest crowds. But appetizers aren’t just for dinner occasions—For an at-home or away tailgate, you can’t beat an easy and portable snack like Mini Potato Skins. Our Test Kitchen professionals said these Mini Potato Skins pair well with beer, so cheers! A tip from the Test Kitchen: Place the sour cream in a piping bag for a nice neat dollop. If you don’t have a piping bag, simply cut off one corner of a ziplock plastic bag. These appetizers were made to travel. To take them to a party, prepare the recipe through Step 3 and place potato skins in a container. Complete Step 4 before serving.
Ham and Cheddar Potato Skins
Roasted Poblano Queso
Chile con Queso
Back in 1939, Sunset published a dip recipe from reader M.K.C. of Elk Grove, California, for La Salsa con Queso--"a lively dish from Mexico," as we described it, made with canned tomatoes, diced American cheese, and a whisper of fresh chile. While its origins are up for debate--Texas and Arkansas have also claimed the recipe--the dip (now called chile con queso, or simply queso) is still a crowd-pleaser. Our update on the classic, perfect for Super Bowl Sunday or another sports fest, is made with fresh hot salsa plus hot sauce--but keeps the Velveeta for that chip-coating cling.
Cheesy Bacon Party Bread Is Your New Secret Weapon
You don’t need an occasion to make this cheesy bacon party bread, but breaking out one of these loaves definitely calls for celebration. For those who are bored of making the same respectable quiches and baked oatmeals at brunch, this super-cheesy party bread is the solution. A chewy loaf of sourdough bread is covered with warm garlic butter, bacon, and plenty of cheese. The best part? Party bread is pre-sliced into pieces just the right size for your fingers to grab onto.
Crosshatch slices into a big loaf of sourdough, then brush salty, herby, garlicky melted butter into each crevice. Stuff crumbled bacon into the slices in the bread, then cram them full with shredded cheddar, Gruyère cheese, and fontina. Make the bread until bubbly and warm. Next time you have friends over for brunch, make a bowl of scrambled eggs and greens to serve on the side, then leave the party bread in the middle of the table, and let your friends rip off chunks as they choose.
Cheesy Bacon Party Bread
Super Simple Pimiento Cheese
This foolproof recipe for classic pimiento cheese comes from Damaris Phillip's cookbook Southern Girl Meets Vegetarian Boy: Down Home Classics for Vegetarians (and the Meat Eaters Who Love Them). The mainstay Southern cheese spread makes for an excellent appetizer served with crackers, and is equally delicious in recipes like this Pimiento Cheese Roasted Chicken.
Yes, Borscht Nachos. As in, sweet, earthy beet chips piled high with shredded beef—robustly flavored from a braise with ketchup and paprika—quark (which is a lot like a soft cream cheese, exhilarated with the lively funk of buttermilk), salty and rich queso fresco, bright and tangy sauerkraut, zingy pickled wax peppers, plus fresh radishes and dill for good measure. It's the food mash-up we've all been waiting for (even if we didn't know it).
Grilled Cheeseburger Nachos
It was determined in our test kitchen that it is legitimately impossible to be anything other than happy while eating these cheeseburger nachos—do with that information what you will. The cookout-inspired food mashup is as perfect served as a fun, grilled snack for guests (especially during tailgating season) as it is an easy, throw-together meal to use up leftovers from a weekend get-together. So while the cheeseburger recipe provided here does produce an extremely moist and flavorful patty, you can certainly use leftover cooked burgers if you already have them on hand. Same idea applies to the nacho toppings; we went with a blend of typical Tex-mex toppers and backyard cookout accouterments, but you can vary things up however suits you. Your baking sheet will only be on the grill for a few minutes (just long enough for the cheese to melt) so you shouldn’t experience any issues with the pan warping or taking on grill marks. However, for easy clean-up, you can certainly go ahead and wrap your pan in aluminum foil.
Loaded Fried Ravioli Nachos
Just when you thought loaded nachos couldn’t go any further…
Sheet Pan Nachos
Kick off the weekend with a fast and fun dinner that's completely customizable.
Things we love: Impressive appetizers that require minimal time and minimal ingredients. Things we really love: Impressive appetizers that require minimal time and minimal ingredients, and make use of the leftovers in your fridge—i.e. these easy, cheesy potato purses. Supposing you’re not looking to use up leftover spuds, you can also substitute prepared, store-bought mashed potatoes, such as Bob Evans brand, in this recipe.
Beer-Cheese Fondue with Baby Cauliflower
Pimiento Cheese Deviled Eggs
We combine two Southern favorites into one extraordinary dish—Pimiento Cheese Deviled Eggs.