Teri’s Greatest Holiday Recipes For A Delicious Feast!
Christmas is an annual opportunity for me to cook my favorite holiday recipes. I look back on my lifetime of holiday seasons and traditions with so much gratitude.
The Bittersweet Symphony of Holiday Tradition Shifts
There is always a feeling that a beautiful holiday tradition will never change. But when a special tradition eventually ends, it’s important to embrace whatever new direction your life takes. Over the years, I’ve come to realize it’s not joyful to cling to old traditions after they’ve evolved into something different; kiss them goodbye and welcome what’s next!
The Heart of My Christmas Traditions
Food has always been at the center of my Christmas traditions. When I was growing up, the highlight was our Christmas stocking, filled with all kinds of treats. Then that tradition changed, and my family spent our holiday time together at our home in Hawaii. As my sisters and I each got married and had kids, the holiday expanded to include them as well.
Once I lost my parents, I began spending the holidays in beautiful Northern California with my kids and their dad, but then that changed too when I lost our house there in a fire. As painful as change can be, we have to learn to change our traditions.
A Vegan Christmas Journey: Adapting for Patrick
This year will be different still. It won’t be possible for us all to be together, so September and I will be in California, and Patrick and his dad will be together in Hawaii. A few years ago, when Patrick became vegan, I did a minor shift and created some festive dishes just for him. One year, we did an entire vegan Christmas, which everyone enjoyed. I certainly never would have predicted that change for my previously steak-loving son, and it was fun to take on the challenge of cooking in a new way.
If there is one thing in life that’s consistent, it’s change. Remember the old song: “Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other’s gold.” Cherish the memories of your past traditions, but enjoy the new ones to the fullest and truly make them yours.
Fabulous Holiday Recipes for Every Part of Your Christmas Meal!
This is a simply fabulous holiday salad. Red Rock Salad is both easy and delicious. Alongside the heavier holiday foods, it’s essential to serve a dish that feels fresh and delicious and this wonderful holiday salad will be perfect.
Here’s a truly spectacular vegan entrée salad! It’s a standout dish, whether you’re vegan or just want to create something truly delicious to eat. And everyone should have an outstanding vegan dish in their repertoire!
This Buffet Salad recipe is something you just have to trust me on! I know when you look at the ingredients you might wonder, how could that possibly work? But trust me, it absolutely does. My mother’s friend and fellow band member, Mary, has been making this dish for our annual Mother-Daughter luncheon for decades. It is always a huge hit.
I love to take an old-school dish and create an updated version that evokes my childhood. A classic cheeseball recipe brings back memories of holiday gatherings, school events, and those potlucks where everyone eagerly waits for its appearance. A cheeseball is one of those simple delights that make me feel like I’m home for the holidays.
If you are looking for a fabulous plant-based recipe for the holidays, I also included a vegan version of this delicious cheeseball in the blog post.
I absolutely love making a holiday strata for Christmas morning. If you’re looking for a fun, festive brunch or breakfast dish for the holidays, strata is a simple egg-based dish that you can prepare the day before and pop into the oven the next morning.
My mom’s Corn Soufflé is a delicious, easy, old-school holiday recipe, comfort food at its absolute finest. Depending on where you live, this side dish may be called Corn Pudding, but whatever you call it, this traditional recipe is truly a holiday crowd-pleaser. Plus, we also do a great gluten-free version, taking it up a notch with jalapeño and pepper jack cheese.
It’s the holiday season, and if you ask me, that means it’s time for some good, old-school, indulgent recipes. Scalloped Potatoes are a specialty of Roy’s, and I convinced him to spill his secrets to us! This recipe is simple, but it does take some work. It’s perfect for a holiday meal when you want to fuss a bit. The results are absolutely worth it.
The onions caramelize to perfection in this spoon bread, and it’s truly one of the most delicious dishes you’ll ever eat. This luscious, pillowy delight has guests returning for seconds…and thirds. It’s the kind of recipe that could become your signature dish!
This delicious raspberry jello came from my sister Patty Sue’s kitchen. It’s a little nod to our cranberry sauce and I know it’s jello, but it’s absolutely wonderful. It’s well-loved and reminds me of home.
I love these mashed potatoes with a burning passion, and I absolutely don’t wait for Thanksgiving to come around in order to make them; in fact, they are a bi-monthly staple for me, at least. Every time I make them, a crowd gathers in hopes of leftovers (I’m not kidding), so I often double or triple the recipe to make sure I can share without missing out on getting plenty for myself.
This vegan mushroom risotto is absolutely mind-blowingly delicious. It’s packed full of flavor, and you won’t believe how simple it is. It is a true labor of love, so it is a way to show your friends and family you love them.
This amazingly delicious stuffed Pork Roast is flavored with warming spices and fresh herbs and is absolutely elegant. Because we stuffed the pork with my amazing herb mixture, there is a combination of different flavors. You make pan juices of red wine, balsamic vinegar, and shallots, enhancing the level of flavor.
Delicious Sips For This Holiday Season.
This Teri-tini is great for celebrating. It’s called the Teri-tini in celebration of my birthday, but it’s amazing for any celebration this upcoming holiday season. It’s fruity, but not too sweet, and you can dress it up or down for your occasion.
Some of you may know that I am not the biggest coffee drinker, but I’m all in when it comes to an Espresso Martini. I didn’t realize quite how easy it was to make until we began making them! They are perfect for the holidays, and they are a fabulous after-dinner cocktail.
Sweet Treats To End Your Christmas Dinner!
It’s the perfect time of year for some fabulous sweet treats! These chocolate orange cupcakes are an absolute dream. They taste like the holidays and are so fudgy, gooey, and delicious. Best of all, they are gluten-free! Every time we make them, I have to give them away quickly so I don’t eat them all. Seriously, they are too good!
This is the most amazingly delicious cake. Perfect for the holiday, it’s both sumptuous and simple. It’s special enough to make for a celebration–Fernanda made it for my birthday–but the recipe is easy enough to make as an everyday cake.
Here’s a recipe distinct from everything else on my blog. For me, this old school recipe is synonymous with Christmas, family, mother’s love, and reminds me of my childhood.
I’ve always loved a Sundae…I mean, who doesn’t? What’s not to love about scoops of decadent ice cream piled high with the most fabulous ice cream toppings, like hot fudge, candy bars, nuts, and sprinkles? Sundaes are fun for kids, but you definitely don’t have to be a kid to enjoy one.
Teri’s Top Tips for Celebrating the Holidays
If you make one of my holiday recipes, leave a comment and let me know what you think. If you’re looking for more inspiration, sign up for our Friday Favorites newsletter, and follow along on Pinterest, Instagram, and TikTok to join in all the fun!
Food is my love language, and this book is a guide to getting you in the kitchen with me, rolling up your sleeves, and reigniting passion for everyday cooking. Woven throughout the book are my Teri’s Tips as well.
This cookbook is a love letter to my mother because it offers the recipe for a well-lived life.