Just about every family I know has certain foods they serve during the holidays – it’s part of what makes the holidays special. But sometimes we’re looking for a new dish to add to our holiday repertoire. Whether you’re a new cook looking for a dish to take to the family gathering, or an experienced cook who just wants something different, here are some ideas from a couple of the best cooks I know…and a few of my own thrown in as well.
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience and I make a small commission if you make a purchase. However, there is never an increase in the price you pay. All commissions help keep this site up and running and allow me to continue providing content for you.
61 Delicious Pumpkin Recipes is a collection I pulled together last year from a variety of sites. They’re already split into different categories and you’re sure to find something your family will love on this list.
- Fireball Mexican Hot Chocolate – well, just some yum from Cathy.
- 11 Simple Christmas Cocktails from Angela at Pesto and Margaritas should have you covered in the adult beverage department. If these don’t lift your spirits, she’s got lots of other cocktail recipes to choose from so be sure to look around.
- Angela also tells you How to Pick Wine That Will Work With Christmas Lunch. Did I mention that her hubby is a professional chef? I didn’t….shame on me.
Appetizers and Snacks
- Delicious Marinated Shrimp Appetizers from Cathy at My Side of 50 would be a great way to start off your Christmas dinner.
- If you’ve got someone with dietary concerns, this Gluten Free Ranch Dip is a healthy alternative to the heavier snacks that sometimes are the staple at holiday gatherings. Serve this with a place of veggies and you can snack without guilt…or stomach upset.
- Grammy’s Banana Bread is the best banana bread recipe I’ve ever made. It’s my mother’s recipe and not only is is moist, it makes three loaves – which is great when you’re expecting guests.
- I serve a breakfast casserole every year on Christmas morning. Breakfast Casserole with Sausage and Cilantro is one I played around with and modified from an existing recipe.
- These Apple Cinnamon Muffins from Marilyn would be great to make ahead, and pull out of the freezer when you have guests and don’t want to spend extra time in the kitchen.
- If you’re looking for something different for the Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey, be sure to check out this Bourbon and Cola Marinade from Marilyn.
- This Salmon and Parma Ham with Basil Pesto Dressing would be a great alternative to the traditional turkey or ham. And Oh-My-Goodness…I seriously want Angela’s hubby to cook for me!
- Stuffing doesn’t have to require a ton of ingredients or take all day to prepare. Marilyn at Marilyns Treats has a stuffing recipe that is quick, easy, and delicious. In fact, everything at her site makes my mouth water.
- Easy and Healthy Italian Dressed Broccoli from Brenda at Brenda Loves Sharing will be a great addition to the table that doesn’t add a lot of calories and carbs (save those for dessert!).
- The recipes for Cranberry Salad and Cranberry Relish are from my friend Tina. She’s a great cook and an active member in the private Facebook group. You really ought to join us there to see the other recipes she frequently contributes to the group. She really ought to start her own food blog!
1# fresh cranberries, ground – mix with 2 1/2 cups sugar – let stand until sugar is dissolved…..then
2 small boxes lemon jello – 1 cup hot water, 1/2 cup cold water, 1/2 cup pineapple juice. Mix together.
1 cup crushed pineapple (drained) 1 cup ground pecans.
Mix the jello mixture, pineapple and pecans into the jello. Pour 1/2 of the mixture into a 9 x 13 pan and cool until firm.
Cream together 2 – 8oz packages of cream cheese and a good pinch of sugar. If needed, add a little milk to cream cheese to spread on the congealed jello. Pour remaining jello – cranberry mixture over the cream cheese and refrigerate until set.
“While it is a little bit time consuming, this is a family favorite for the holidays at our house….especially when our daughter is at home.”
No need to buy the canned stuff anymore…(and we like the canned stuff)
1 bag fresh cranberries, washed
2 1/2 cups sugar
2tbsp orange zest
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup slivered almonds (optional)
Combine first 5 ingredients and boil until cranberries pop, skimming off the foam. If using, add the almonds and chill
If I do say so myself, I’ve got some delicious cake recipes. They’re all from family members but they’re sure to become favorites at your house as well:
In order to keep your holiday foods tasting their best, here are a few of the appliances I use at holiday time:
My carry case is dark blue, but I use this Pyrex carrying case any time I need to take a dish somewhere. It comes with a hot/cold pack so you can feel confident that your dish will be just the right temperature.
I make no secret of the fact that I am in love with my crock pot! I use mine every. single. week. This one has a locking lid which will keep you from having a catastrophe if you’re taking it somewhere. Definitely an addition that gives peace of mind. Any time you’re hosting a large crowd, it seems like you never have enough room in the oven to keep everything warm till it’s time to serve. This extra large warming tray solves that problem. At 15×32, it’s got room to hold several large dishes so that everyone’s contribution to the dinner stays delicious until it’s time to dig in.