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Make-Ahead Recipes

Looking for more make ahead recipes? Find many more make ahead recipes to make a great dinner, appetizer, or dessert.

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French toast is a crowd-pleaser, but it's hard to make for a big group. This overnight casserole with strawberries and a sweet pecan topping fixes everything. —David Stelzl Jr., Waxhaw, NC
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Bagel Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce

Bagel Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce

Bagel Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce

I worked in a health club where bagels arrived daily, so I experimented with leftovers. I wasn’t a bread pudding fan until I tried it with bagels. —Kathy Hawkins, Ingleside, IL

Citrus & Herb Roasted Turkey Breast

Citrus & Herb Roasted Turkey Breast

Citrus & Herb Roasted Turkey Breast

This recipe will make you love turkey again. Brining with lemon, rosemary and orange juice makes it so moist and flavorful. It's the star attraction at our table. —Fay Moreland, Wichita Falls, TX

Roasted Banana & Pecan Cheesecake

Roasted Banana & Pecan Cheesecake

Roasted Banana & Pecan Cheesecake

We keep bananas on hand, but with just two of us in the house they ripen faster than we can eat them. That makes them perfect for roasting and baking into this cheesecake with a nutty crust. —Patricia Harmon, Baden, PA

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Grilled Flank Steak

Grilled Flank Steak

Grilled Flank Steak

My sister, Kathy, and I often exchange recipes - I give her my desserts, and she gives me her entrees. This recipe is from her, and it's become a favorite of mine for serving to company. The meat and vegetables can be prepared ahead of time...when the company arrives, I just fire up the grill!

Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

I used to think cheesecake sounded intimidating, but since I started making them I can’t stop! This simple but special cookie-topped version will make your family feel fussed over. Seconds, anyone? —Rose Yoder, Middlebury, Indiana

Makeover Creamy Cranberry Salad

Makeover Creamy Cranberry Salad

Makeover Creamy Cranberry Salad

Few foods capture the flavor of the season like cranberries, and this makeover took a holiday favorite and made it even better! You'll love the flavor of cranberry, apple and pineapple covered in a sweet and creamy dressing. Better still, it's only 2 grams of fat per serving! —Alexandra Lypecky, Dearborn, Michigan
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German Chocolate Ice Cream

German Chocolate Ice Cream

German Chocolate Ice Cream

I found this recipe years ago and have been taking it to ice cream socials ever since. But you won't want to wait for a get-together to enjoy it. The cool combination of chocolate, coconut and pecans is delicious anytime. -Peggy Key, Grant, Alabama

Herbed Beef Tenderloin

Herbed Beef Tenderloin

Herbed Beef Tenderloin

Cooking on the grill has always been one of my favorite hobbies. This recipe is a popular choice for my family's Sunday dinners or our special birthday dinners. I like to serve tenderloin with baked potatoes and homegrown vegetables.

Mustard-Glazed Pork Roast

Mustard-Glazed Pork Roast

Mustard-Glazed Pork Roast

Cooking is one of my favorite hobbies, along with sewing, oil painting, exercising and home decorating.

Orange Charlotte

Orange Charlotte

Orange Charlotte

"Mom prepared this light and fluffy citrus dessert whenever Dad grilled outdoors," recalls field editor Sue Gronholz of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. "It gave our meals a fresh-tasting finish!"

Dijon Four-Bean Salad

Dijon Four-Bean Salad

Dijon Four-Bean Salad

Karen Riordan of Fern Creek, Kentucky dresses up traditional bean salad with a tangy Dijon mustard vinaigrette. "I'm a busy home-schooling mom, so I love how easy this colorful side dish is to prepare," Karen says. It's also perfect for picnics or potlucks.

Toffee Caramel Ice Cream Pie

Toffee Caramel Ice Cream Pie

Toffee Caramel Ice Cream Pie

This delicious pie is easy to make and so pretty. It comes together in under 30 minutes and since you can make it in advance, it’s ideal for entertaining. --Diane Lombardo, New Castle, Pennsylvania

Norwegian Coleslaw

Norwegian Coleslaw

Norwegian Coleslaw

This tasty recipe was give to me by a friend whose ancestors were from Norway. I especially enjoy bringing this salad dish to family get-togethers since I can make it days ahead. A pint of it also makes a nice gift.



Watermelon Bombe

Watermelon Bombe

Watermelon Bombe

Says Mary Ann Dell of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania: “I can’t count the times I’ve made this wonderful dessert. It’s a favorite at our summer barbecues. People think you really fussed, but it couldn’t be easier—and there are never any leftovers!”

Creamy Cranberry Apple Salad

Creamy Cranberry Apple Salad

Creamy Cranberry Apple Salad

For over 30 years, this recipe has been a holiday tradition in my family. With marshmallows, cranberries, apples and grapes, it has a sweet-tart flavor and comforting creaminess that appeals to all ages.

Fresh Strawberry Mousse

Fresh Strawberry Mousse

Fresh Strawberry Mousse

With a whipped topping, this strawberry treat from Mary Jo Vanderwest of Grant, Michigan makes a sweet, elegant dessert.

Portobello Pockets

Portobello Pockets

Portobello Pockets

“This savory recipe is one of my fall favorites,“ raves Elissa Armbruster in Medford, New Jersey. “It’s quick, easy and so loaded with fresh veggies…no one misses the meat. I vary the produce and spices so I can enjoy it all year!“ MAKE IT EASY. For fuss-free late-autumn hikes or picnics, Elissa bundles up her yummy Portobello Pockets in foil, then takes them along to toss on a hot grill.
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