A panel of experts said the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test was safe and effective and its potential to prevent infections outweighed the risk of false results.
The Food and Drug Administration will decide this year whether to approve it.
The 20-minute test is 93% accurate for positive results and 99.8% for negative, the manufacturer said.
HIV affects nearly 1.2m people in the US, with 50,000 new cases each year.
Experts on the Blood Products Advisory Committee voted 17-0 to back the test, saying it would help people who are HIV-positive get access to healthcare and social services.
They urged Pennsylvania-based OraSure, the company that manufactures the product, to include highly visible warnings about false negative results.