Holiday Entrees, Sides and Desserts

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I looove holiday recipes! Whether you are cooking an entree, some sides, or an ooey-gooey dessert, you can’t go wrong. They are all absolutely delicious!!

I’m a firm believer that good food brings people together. What is better than celebrating the holidays with the people and food that you love?! Here’s a big roundup of all of the holiday entrees, sides, and desserts! A few of my tried and true favorites are Classic Honey Glazed Ham, Orange Pomegranate Salad, and Peppermint Candy Cane Brownies.

Holiday recipes collage.

Holiday Recipes

The holidays bring out the best recipes! I love them so much but it really makes me wonder why we wait all year long to cook them. Maybe that’s what makes them more special?! It doesn’t matter though because it IS holiday time and I have rounded up my very favorite holiday recipes for you! There are enough here for you to put together an entire delicious feast! A feast that you can make a tradition for years to come!

The question is, how do you narrow down which ones you are going to choose? They are all so amazing and my mouth waters thinking of them! I like to make sure that along with my main dish, I have at least 2-3 sides to go along with it. I also like to bake a couple of dessert options… especially if I am baking pie! People need variety and there is nothing better than showing up to a holiday event where I can try tons of different food options! These recipes are all doable to even the most beginner of cooks. So browse away, pick your favorites and let’s get cooking!

Holiday Cooking Tips

Holiday cooking can get complicated because you are making so many holiday recipes in your kitchen at once! Here are a few tips on how to simplify the process. You want to set yourself up for success so that you look forward to these holiday meals every year!

  • Prep: Pick out all of your recipes and go over each of them together when making a grocery list. That way you can make sure that you are being the most efficient with your purchases and aren’t buying the same thing multiple times! Do your grocery shopping a few days beforehand so that you can be prepared to do some chopping and cutting ahead of time.
  • Clean out your fridge: You are going to need a lot of space for all of these dishes. Both before the meal and also after, for leftovers! Clear out your fridge so that when it comes time to cook you aren’t cooking AND cleaning. We’ve all been there before and it’s no picnic!
  • Thaw: Make sure that if you have any meat that takes a few days to thaw that you are doing that up to a week in advance. Nothing is worse than having a turkey that’s still frozen on party day!
  • Chop: Cut up any fruits and vegetables beforehand. It will save you so much time and you won’t have as big of a mess to clean up!
  • Make a schedule: Go through the recipes and find out cooking times and temps. Write evertyhing out and sort it accordingly. That way, all of your food will be steaming hot all at the same time!

Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole is a classic, savory side dish that is favored by all! Filled with fresh mushrooms, garlic, parmesan and baked in a creamy sauce, there won’t be a green bean left with this freshly made casserole. 
Ingredients: butter, garlic, onion, package button mushrooms, fresh green beans, low-sodium chicken broth, can low-sodium cream of mushroom soup, grated Parmesan cheese, salt, black pepper, homemade crispy onion strings

Copycat Texas Roadhouse Rolls with Cinnamon Honey Butter

Delicious and soft homemade rolls that taste just like Texas Roadhouse Rolls!
Ingredients: active dry yeast, sugar, warm water, milk, melted butter, sugar, flour, egg, salt, Cinnamon Honey Butter

Honey Glazed Ham

Classic Honey Glazed Ham is a deliciously prepared ham coated with a brown sugar and honey sweet glaze mixture and then baked to a tender, juicy perfection in every slice. Perfect for your holiday meal! 
Ingredients: ham, honey, butter, dark corn syrup, brown sugar, whole cloves

Caramel Apple Pie

Caramel apple pie is the traditional American dessert, but totally elevated. Sour tart apples are smothered in caramel, it's insanely delicious.
Ingredients: homemade pie crust, granny smith apples, fresh lemon juice, granulated sugar, cornstarch, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, salt, Egg yolk plus 2 tbsp water for egg wash, heavy cream, granulated sugar, light corn syrup, salt, salted butter, vanilla extract

Grandma’s Sausage Herb Stuffing

Grandma's Sausage Herb Stuffing is always a classic side dish with soft baked bread, tender sausage, crunchy vegetables all mixed with flavorful herbs and baked until golden brown. Stuffing is the perfect addition to your thanksgiving feast! 
Ingredients: loaf French bread, sausage, butter, celery, carrot, medium onion, fresh thyme, parsley, fresh rosemary, dried cranberries, chicken broth

Slow Cooker Turkey Breast

Amazing juicy and perfectly tender turkey breast that slow cooks all day in the crockpot!
Ingredients: turkey breast, salt and pepper , orange juice, whole cranberry sauce, Onion Soup Mix, salt and pepper to taste
Stack of 2 lion house rolls

Lion House Rolls

Lion House Rolls are the best dinner rolls to pair with all of your holiday meals or any occasion for that matter. These rolls are buttery and super soft, the perfect vehicle to soak up delicious soups, sauces and gravies.
Ingredients: whole milk, unsalted butter, warm water, active dry yeast, granulated sugar, kosher salt, all-purpose flour, Extra flour for rolling, egg, milk, Melted salted butter for brushing

Cranberry Sauce

The Easiest Cranberry Sauce is made from fresh cranberries mixed with orange juice to sweeten the cranberries and topped with an added orange zest for one sweet and tart cranberry sauce. Only takes 10 minutes to make! 
Ingredients: bag of fresh cranberries, sugar, orange juice, water, zest from one orange

Winter Pomegranate Orange Quinoa Salad with Creamy Lemon Greek Yogurt Dressing

A mouthwatering winter salad with quinoa, spinach, mandarine oranges, and crunchy pistachios. Topped with a creamy lemon greek yogurt dressing and feta cheese this makes one unforgettable salad!
Ingredients: quinoa, spinach, mandarine oranges, pomegranate seeds, pistachios, crumbled feta cheese, juice from one fresh lemon, apple cider vinegar, sugar, minced garlic, plain Greek yogurt, extra virgin olive oil, salt, freshly ground black pepper

Garlic Butter String Beans

Garlic Butter String Beans (green beans) are the perfect easy side dish! Everyone will love these delectable tender-crisp string beans. A delicious healthier addition to your table. 
Ingredients: bags fresh string beans (green beans), butter, garlic, Salt & pepper

Red Velvet Peppermint Brownies with Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Peppermint Brownies with Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting are the perfect holiday brownie! A rich and chewy vibrant red peppermint brownie piled high with peppermint cream cheese frosting.
Ingredients: 4-oz. bittersweet chocolate baking bar, chopped, butter, sugar, large eggs, all-purpose flour, 1-oz. bottle McCormick Red Food Color, baking powder, McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract, McCormick Pure Peppermint Extract, 8-oz. package cream cheese, softened, butter, powdered sugar, McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract, McCormick Pure Peppermint Extract, Crushed peppermint candy canes for garnish

The Best Winter Fruit Salad

The Best Winter Fruit Salad is filled with clementines, kiwi, pears, apples, and pomegranate. It gets tossed in a delicious honey lime poppyseed dressing and you won’t be able to get enough!
Ingredients: apple peeled and sliced, pear, bananas, kiwi fruit, clementines, pomegranate seeds, Honey, Lime Juice, poppy seeds, fresh mint
Parmesan Roasted Vegetables |

Parmesan Roasted Vegetables

You’re going to love this simple, easy, and super flavorful side dish!
Ingredients: vegetables, panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, paprika, garlic powder, Italian dressing

French Silk Pie

A flakey crust is filled with a decadent, dreamy, creamy, chocolate filling and topped with pillows of cream for this irresistible French Silk Pie. The filling is so smooth and rich, and then encased in a buttery crust. It's a crowd pleaser where ever you serve it!
Ingredients: all-purpose flour, rounded tablespoon granulated sugar, rounded teaspoon kosher salt, unsalted butter, cold water, heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, unsweetened baking chocolate, bittersweet baking chocolate, large eggs, granulated sugar, unsalted butter, pure vanilla extract, heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, Chocolate curls

Juicy Butter Herb Turkey (Step by Step Instructions)

Juicy Butter Herb Turkey Recipe is a tender, buttery turkey stuffed with slices of citrus, a crisp apple and fresh herbs coated with a buttery herb mixture all baked until golden brown. Thanksgiving turkey just got easier with these step by step instructions!
Ingredients: turkey, onion, garlic, sprigs rosemary, apple, lemon, sprigs thyme, butter softened, garlic minced, thyme finely chopped, oregano finely chopped, rosemary finely chopped, salt, pepper

Cranberry Cheesecake Fluff

A creamy and delicious cheesecake fluff salad with cranberries and walnuts. It is so easy to make and a must make for the holidays!
Ingredients: package fresh cranberries, sugar, can crushed pineapple, walnuts, mini marshmallows, cream cheese, heavy whipping cream
This Pumpkin Pudding Cake is hot, gooey dessert perfection! It would make a great finish to any fall or Thanksgiving dinner topped with a scoop of ice cream!

Pumpkin Pudding Cake

This Pumpkin Pudding Cake is hot, gooey dessert perfection! It would make a great finish to any fall or Thanksgiving dinner topped with a scoop of ice cream!
Ingredients: flour, + 1 cup brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, of nutmeg, of cloves, pure pumpkin puree, milk, oil, vanilla extract, corn starch, hot or boiling water, butter

Dad’s Famous Mashed Potatoes

Dad’s Famous Mashed Potatoes are always the star of a dinner table! Perfectly creamy, buttery, and they have such amazing flavor. People are always begging him to make the recipe!
Ingredients: potatoes, milk, butter, salt, pepper to taste, Optional garnish: freshly chopped chives

Roasted Cranberry Orange Pork Loin with Green Beans

Roasted Cranberry Orange Pork Tenderloin with Green Beans is such a flavorful and easy meal. The cranberry orange glaze is perfect on top of the pork and green beans. This will be the star of your holiday dinner table!
Ingredients: Smithfield Slow Roasted Golden Rotisserie Marinated Fresh Pork Tenderloin, olive oil, fresh green beans, Salt and pepper, + 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice, apple cider vinegar, sweet orange marmalade, whole cranberry sauce, Optional: fresh cranberries and/or rosemary

Homemade Cherry Pie

Homemade cherry pie is about as classic as they come and this recipe is no exception! Absolutely delicious, this mouthwatering pie has a tart filling and flaky crust that is so tasty that you won't be able to stop at just one slice!
Ingredients: Homemade, fresh or frozen sour cherries and their juice, granulated sugar, cornstarch, almond extract, lemon juice, unsalted butter, egg yolk, water

Broccoli Apple Salad

Broccoli, pecans, cranberries, carrots and apples come together to make an amazing salad with delicious flavors and textures.  The creamy dressing on top makes this salad absolutely incredible!
Ingredients: fresh broccoli florets, shredded carrots, diced red onion, large apples, pecans, dried cranberries, lite mayonnaise, low fat greek yogurt, lemon juice, sugar, salt, pepper

Banana Cream Pie Bars

A simplified version of Banana Cream Pie made into bars with a no-bake crust and topped with layers of luscious ingredients.
Ingredients: Nilla Wafers, unsalted butter, 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened, powdered sugar, 8 oz. tub frozen whipped topping, thawed, large bananas, 3.4 oz. pkgs. vanilla instant pudding mix, cold milk, caramel ice cream topping
scalloped potatoes and ham recipe

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

These Scalloped Potatoes and Ham are the perfect make ahead holiday dinner but they’re just as good for leftovers, too! Super creamy, cheesy and comforting.
Ingredients: medium red potatoes, cooked, unsalted butter, minced garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, black pepper, all purpose flour, 2% milk, heavy cream, shredded mozzarella cheese

Easy Turkey Gravy

Easy Turkey Gravy is a rich, thick and creamy gravy that will be a family favorite this holiday season! You can't go wrong with a homemade gravy on your dinner table.
Ingredients: Pan Drippings from 12-14 pound turkey, chicken broth, flour, salt and pepper to taste

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup is rich, creamy, savory, and just like a warm hug in a bowl.  Classic fall flavor welcomes in the cooler weather with a perfect blend of spices and ingredients.
Ingredients: butternut squash, celery stalks, small onion, shredded carrots, Granny Smith apple, vegetable stock, fresh thyme, of cinnamon, salt and pepper, heavy cream

Spiced Rub Brown Sugar Pineapple Glazed Ham

Spiced Rub Brown Sugar Pineapple Glazed Ham is coated with a sweet and tangy spiced glaze that caramelizes on the edge of the ham. This will be the star at your holiday dinner table!
Ingredients: boneless, brown sugar, ground coriander, cinnamon, ground cumin, pepper, ground allspice, pineapple juice, Dijon mustard, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce

Best Ever Pecan Pie Bars

Best Ever Pecan Pie Bars takes the amazing pecan pie and transforms it into irresistible bars. A buttery shortbread crust that gets topped with a caramel pecan glaze, these are perfect for feeding a crowd!
Ingredients: unsalted butter, packed brown sugar, all-purpose flour, salt, unsalted butter, packed light brown sugar, honey, heavy cream, vanilla, chopped pecans

Leftover Turkey Casserole

Leftover Turkey Casserole with an easy creamy cheddar gravy, cornbread and vegetables will make you wish you could eat this casserole for thanksgiving dinner!
Ingredients: butter, flour, kosher salt, crushed black pepper, turkey stock/cooking juices, heavy cream, sharp cheddar, chopped turkey breast meat, cornbread cubes, frozen peas, chopped carrots, chopped frozen green beans, frozen corn

Almond Poppy Seed Bundt Cake

This flavorful bundt cake made with poppy seeds is bursting with almond flavor. It’s moist, delicious and comes together quick with very little effort.
Ingredients: flour, baking powder, poppy seeds, salt, sugar, butter, eggs, almond paste, almond extract, buttermilk, powdered sugar, milk, almond extract, slivered almonds

Christmas Punch (Cranberry Orange Punch)

Festive looking and yummy tasting, this Easy Christmas Punch will be your go to this holiday season. This is such a fun punch to serve at your next gathering, and it's for everyone young or old. So need to worry about keeping it away from the littles. Everyone can raise a glass with holiday cheer this season.
Ingredients: orange juice, cranberry juice, lemon lime soda, orange slices for garnish, real cranberries for garnish

Christmas Gooey Butter Cookies

Soft and chewy cookies that are coated in powdered sugar to make them extra special.

Ingredients: unsalted butter, 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, room temperature, egg, almond extract, orange extract, pkg. white cake mix, sprinkles, powdered sugar

Cranberry Salsa (The Best Holiday Appetizer!)

Cranberry Salsa is a mixture of fresh cranberries, sweet apples, green onion, cilantro and a bit of spice from a jalapeño all blended together in a sweet apple cider vinegar then laid overtop of cream cheese. This makes for the best holiday appetizer!
Ingredients: fresh cranberries, small Granny Smith apple, green onions, cilantro, jalapeño, sugar, apple cider vinegar, juice of one lime, cream cheese

Strawberry, Apple, and Pear Spinach Salad with an Apple Cider Poppyseed Dressing

Strawberry, Apple, and Pear Spinach Salad is an easy to make spinach salad with crisp apples, pears and strawberries hidden throughout. Topped with feta cheese, crunchy pecans and tossed in a delicious apple cider dressing!
Ingredients: spinach, strawberries, apple, pear, apple cider, Apple Cider Vinegar, Olive Oil, Honey, poppyseeds, feta cheese, chopped pecans

Apple Tart

Loaded with fresh apples and baked to a perfect golden brown, this beautiful apple tart is the pastry of the summer! A combination of buttery, nutty, and tart, it tastes as good as it looks!
Ingredients: flour, granulated sugar, salt, unsalted butter, egg yolk, cold water, apples, granulated sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla extract, lemon juice, Dash of salt, Apricot preserves
christmas red and green fruit salad

Christmas Fruit Salad

This easy Christmas Fruit Salad recipe is loaded with red and green fruit, making it the perfect light and healthy addition to your holiday table! With a super simple dressing, it comes together quickly and is sure to be a hit!
Ingredients: Granny Smith Apple, red apples, green grapes, red grapes, kiwi, raspberries, pomegranate arils, honey, lime juice, water

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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