The best easy Thanksgiving appetizer to make is a batch of Cranberry Prosciutto Crostini with Goat Cheese. This simple recipe takes less than 15 minutes to make, and all your guests will adore this hearty pre-dinner snack.
Thanksgiving is next week. Ahh! Do you have your menu squared away yet?
But whenever I do host, I try to make it as easy as possible on myself.
That's where this Cranberry Prosciutto Crostini with Goat Cheese comes in.
It's an easy-as-pie kind of appetizer, which I know is what we all need when it comes to easy entertaining recipes.
Cranberry Prosciutto Crostini with Goat Cheese recipe
You will love this easy recipe, which only calls for a few ingredients.
It's not too different from my Butternut Squash Cranberry Crostini, which features roasted butternut squash, dried cranberries, herbs and goat cheese.
This one stars slices of baguettes with goat cheese, folded prosciutto and dried cranberries. Then it's topped with a drizzle of honey and a sprinkle of sea salt.
I love recipes that my kids can help with, and this is an easy one. They will love working with "grown-up" ingredients like prosciutto and helping you sprinkle cranberries and sea salt on top.
Ingredients for Cranberry Prosciutto Crostini appetizers
Besides salt and pepper, you will only need to pick up a few things for this recipe, which means quality really matters.
The best bread for crostini is a baguette.
Head to your favorite bakery (or the bakery section of the grocery store) the day you plan to make this recipe for the freshest taste.
The day before will work as well, but baguettes tend to dry out quickly so you want to save this for the last possible minute.
Sometimes I like to freeze baguettes in advance so I can guarantee I have them on hand before Turkey Day!
If you are buying at a bakery or store, you can ask them to slice it for you. They will likely have a slicing machine to do it for you so you don’t have to struggle at home. (If you do have to slice it yourself, make sure you use a serrated bread knife!)
If they don’t have any baguettes, you can use a couple of small loaves of bread or sandwich rolls.
When it comes to goat cheese crostini, you want to buy the kind of goat cheese that is spreadable, such as logs or an already-made spread. Bring it to room temperature so it's easier to spread.
You can use plain or flavored goat cheese, I have seen cranberry goat cheese and herbed goat cheese that would work amazingly in this crostini recipe.
The reason you want spreadable goat cheese for crostini is that it works as a sort of “glue” to latch onto the prosciutto so that it doesn’t fall off the toasted bread when you pick it up or take a bite.
Feel free to substitute your favorite spreadable cheese. A few ideas:
- cream cheese
- ricotta cheese
- feta cheese
- vegan cheese
Use the best prosciutto you can afford. It's worth it, I promise!
Prosciutto always takes me back to my study abroad days in Italy — we used to snack on it and eat it on sandwiches.
For this recipe, you'll want to fold it before adding it to the bread.
If you can't find prosciutto, you can use salami, bacon or pancetta. Or, leave it off for a vegetarian crostini.
I like to use dried cranberries. They are slightly sweetened, and they provide that sweet-tart flavor to this crostini recipe.
You can also use raisins or other dried fruit like apricots if you're making this in another season that's not fall!
Feel free to use a dollop of cranberry jam or homemade cranberry sauce if you like. This is great for those day-after-Thanksgiving gatherings and you can repurpose leftovers! A leftover cranberry sauce cocktail will pair perfectly too!
Use your favorite honey. I like to get mine from the local farmer's market, but use whatever you have on hand.
Alternatively, if you're looking for a vegan crostini (without the prosciutto of course), you can use maple syrup or agave.
How to make Cranberry Prosciutto Crostini
The process for making this fall appetizer (or Thanksgiving appetizer!) is really, really easy.
- First, toast your bread slices. Brush them with olive oil and toast on a baking sheet in the oven. They only need a few minutes.
- Then spread the goat cheese over top.
- Place a folded piece of prosciutto on the crostini bread.
- Then sprinkle with a few dried cranberries. (Or a spoonful of jam or cranberry sauce if you're using that!)
- Drizzle honey over top, then sprinkle with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper.
You can serve it on a cake stand or on a pretty serving plate.
More Thanksgiving appetizers
Appetizers might be some of the best parts of Thanksgiving. I love to have a few options to go with a pitcher of Spiced Cranberry Sangria.
I love to make this Skillet Sausage Dip for parties, especially if there's a football game on the TV. (There almost always is on Thanksgiving, isn't there?)
Another favorite is this Pepper Jelly Cream Cheese Appetizer. I love pepper jelly because you can enjoy it year-round.
There's nothing wrong with a fruit plate or veggie plate with ranch dip — there's never enough veggies at Thanksgiving IMO!
And as a Thanksgiving staple, there's always that one person who must have cranberry sauce. Impress them with this homemade version!
- 1 baguette, cut in ¼" slices
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 6 oz goat cheese at room temperature
- 4 ounces prosciutto
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup honey
- Slice baguette into ¼-inch pieces and place on a baking sheet. Use a basting brush to spread 1 tablespoon olive oil on slices. Toast at 350°F for 5 minutes or until golden on top. Set aside.
- After bread is toasted, spread room temperature/softened goat cheese on each slice.
- Cut prosciutto slices in half or thirds so you have 20 pieces. Fold them so they are the same size as the bread, and place on top of the goat cheese.
- Top with dried cranberries. Drizzle on honey, then sprinkle on salt and pepper.
- Serve immediately or keep in the fridge until ready to serve.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 2 crostini
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 218Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 637mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 1gSugar: 14gProtein: 10g