3-Ingredient Recipes That Don’t Require a Trip to the Store

Updated: Jun. 28, 2022

These simple 3-ingredient recipes come together in a snap! (Note: We did not include basics into the ingredient count like salt, pepper, water and oil).

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Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

When my mother (who’s now a great-grandmother) gave me this no-flour, gluten-free peanut butter cookie recipe about 15 years ago, I was skeptical, because it calls for only three ingredients (and no flour?!). But since then I’ve never had a failure. For these gluten-free peanut butter cookies—3 ingredients are all you need! —Maggie Schimmel, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin

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Basic Boiled Potatoes

Cook a big pot of red potatoes, and you'll not only have a fuss-free side dish, but a head start on other meals. Add butter and parsley to the portion of boiled potatoes you're serving immediately, then refrigerate the rest.
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Banana Bread
ERIC KLEINBERG AND KRISTINA VÄNNI FOR TASTE OF HOME

3-Ingredient Banana Bread

It won’t be long before you’re able to make this easy banana bread without looking at the recipe! You need only three simple ingredients: a box of cake mix, mashed ripe bananas and eggs. —Kristina Vanni, Chicago, Illinois

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Wild Plum Jelly

I've had this wild plum jelly recipe for ages. Each year when the plums are ripe, I'll fill my pail and make this jelly. It's so good served with toast, pancakes or waffles! —Ludell Heuser, Mount Horeb, Wisconsin
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Air-Fryer Sausage Bacon Bites

Try surprising your family on Sunday morning by pulling these bites out of the air fryer as they head to breakfast, and get ready for the oohs and aahs of delight. They're equally delicious as a party appetizer. —Pat Waymire, Yellow Springs, Ohio
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Sawmill Gravy

I thought everyone knew how to make sawmill gravy until my husband, George, and I served it for a breakfast we hosted. It disappeared quickly, and everyone who tried it asked for the recipe. —Joan Daumeyer, Blanchester, Ohio
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Screwdriver

If you're looking for a mixed drink that is easy on your budget, look no further than this screwdriver recipe. With just two simple ingredients, vodka and orange juice, you'll have a classic drink that's a real crowd-pleaser. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Kettle Corn

If one of the reasons you go to fairs is to satisfy your craving for kettle corn, you'll get the same wonderful salty-sweet taste at home with this recipe. Now you can indulge whenever the mood strikes you. —Jenn Martin, Sebago, Maine
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Fried Eggs

If you're watching calories, make this fried egg recipe in a nonstick pan coated with nonstick cooking spray.
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Pretzel Strawberry Bark

This is my candy version of the classic strawberry pretzel dessert. It uses ruby chocolate, which is fairly new on the market. If you can't find it, you can substitute white chocolate in its place. —James Schend, Dairy Freed
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Orange and Olives Salad

My grandmother made sure this orange and olives salad was on our holiday table every year. It's so light and simple to make. And it looks pretty on the table! —Angela David, Lakeland, Florida
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Manhattan

This Manhattan on the Rocks recipe makes a substantial drink. It can be served straight up in a chilled cocktail glass or over ice in a rocks glass. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Homemade Tortilla Chips

I make these tortilla chips to serve with roasted tomatillo salsa. They have a little heat from the chipotle. If you prefer, omit the chipotle and just sprinkle with salt after frying. Try adding a squeeze of lime to your chips right before serving for a tajin flavor. —David Ross, Spokane Valley, Washington
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Ranch Mushrooms

I got this ranch mushrooms recipe from my sister-in-law, and it has become a family favorite. The mushrooms don't last long once people know I've made them. —Jackie McGee, Byron, Minnesota
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Mini Brownie Treats

I like to take these quick and easy treats to potlucks and family gatherings. They're always well received! —Pam Kokes, North Loup, Nebraska
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Classic Margarita

A classic margarita recipe doesn't need anything other than tequila, Triple Sec and fresh lime juice. When you're making the cocktail, make sure you squeeze the limes correctly for the ultimate freshness. —James Schend, Dairy Freed
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Sausage Cheese Puffs

People are always surprised when I tell them there are only four ingredients in this easy sausage ball recipe. Cheesy and spicy, the golden morsels are a fun novelty at a breakfast or brunch, and they also make yummy party appetizers. —Della Moore, Troy, New York
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Quick Green Beans with Bacon

Green beans with bacon and onions makes such an easy side dish. Fresh beans lend a crisp, bright flavor to any meal. They're best when served hot. —Mari Anne Warren, Milton, Wisconsin
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Dutch Oven Bread

Crackling homemade Dutch oven bread makes an average day extraordinary. Enjoy this beautiful crusty bread recipe as is, or stir in a few favorites like cheese, garlic, herbs and dried fruits. —Catherine Ward, Taste of Home Prep Kitchen Manager
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Perfect Sushi Rice

There's a lot more you can do with sushi rice besides making homemade sushi. Use it to create a healthy rice bowl, tuck it into a lettuce wrap topped with grilled meat or use it as a base for your favorite stir-fry. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Kool-Aid Pickles

Everyone will love getting into these Kool-Aid pickles. They owe their color and sweet-sour taste to a long marinade in a fruity drink mix.—Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Corn Pone

My husband's grandmother gave me this corn pone recipe years ago. She always made it with bacon drippings—which is heavenly—but if you're trying to be a little more health-conscious, you can use canola oil or a combination of the two. I cook it until it's crisp almost all the way through. It's delicious hot, warm or cold. —Tina Quiggle, LaGrange, Georgia
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French Fries

One of the culinary highlights of going to the fair is also one of the simplest—fresh-cut, fresh-cooked french fries. This recipe you can make at home is so much better than any fast-food or frozen variety. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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White Russian

This creamy coffee-flavored drink is a star at any occasion and perfect for any season. A White Russian is equally appropriate before or after dinner. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Oven Fries

I jazz up these baked french fries with paprika and garlic powder. Something about the combination of spices packs a punch. The leftovers are even good cold! —Heather Byers, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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Tiger Peanut Butter Candy

A good friend gave me this recipe, and I cut it in half to make just enough for me. The effortless three-ingredient candy will please any chocolate-and-peanut-butter lover. —Roberta Taylor, Sharpsville, Indiana
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Air-Fryer Potato Chips

For Christmas one year, I received an air fryer. Potato chips are simple to make in it and are an essential, crispy side for lunch. —Melissa Obernesser, Oriskany, New York
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Roasted Asparagus

Since asparagus is so abundant here in spring, I like to put it to use with this tasty roasted asparagus recipe. Not only does it come together quickly, but it calls for just a handful of items. We all look forward to this side dish each year. —Vikki Rebholz, West Chester, OH
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Fast Baked Fish

We always have a good supply of fresh fish, so I make fish recipes often. This recipe is my favorite because it is moist, tender and flavorful. —Judie Anglen, Riverton, Wyoming
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Be-Mine Sandwich Cookies

These simple cookies are the first thing to disappear from dessert tables. They're cute, colorful and extremely fast to make. —Darcie Cross, Novi, Michigan
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Homemade Limoncello

This limoncello recipe makes a drink better than any store-bought version. It's perfect as an after-dinner treat on its own, or whipped up in a cocktail. —Jenni Sharp, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Brussels Sprouts with Leeks

THIS is a dish I’ve tried a few times for my husband and me. Since we both love Brussel sprouts, I often experiment with different combinations to enhance the taste. We found leeks give the sprouts a special flavor.
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Special Pork Chops

I work nine hours a day, so I need delicious and simple recipes like this one. My husband thinks I work hard fixing meals, but this dish is good and easy. In summer, I can my own salsa and use some to top these chops. —LaDane Wilson, Alexander City, Alabama
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Bacon, Cabbage and Noodles

I received this fried cabbage and noodles recipe from a friend of Hungarian descent. Some folks turn up their noses when it is presented, but after one taste, they always come back for seconds...and thirds! —Jeanie Castor, Decatur, Illinois
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2-Ingredient Biscuits

These 2-ingredient biscuits make a satisfying accompaniment to any meal. I never made biscuits until I tried this recipe, now my husband wants them all the time! —Diane Hixon, Niceville, Florida
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Guinness Float

That very first sip of a Guinness is what inspired this quick and easy dessert. The rich, creamy foam that gathers on the top of a freshly poured draft made me think of vanilla ice cream. At that point, I knew I had to combine the two in a Guinness float. —James Schend, Dairy Freed
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Buttery 3-Ingredient Shortbread Cookies

With only a few ingredients, these butter shortbread cookies are so simple to prepare. —Pattie Prescott, Manchester, New Hampshire
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Hard-Boiled Eggs

In the kitchen, it's important to start with something simple, like how to cook hard-boiled eggs. Use this egg recipe in plenty of dishes, or eat them plain for a quick protein fix. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Glazed Baby Carrots

For a zippy side dish, try this recipe. These brown sugar-glazed carrots come together in no time at all. —Anita Foster, Fairmount, Georgia
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Homemade Tortillas

I usually have to double this flour tortilla recipe because we go through them so quickly. The homemade tortillas are so tender and chewy, you’ll never use store-bought again after learning how to make tortillas. —Kristin Van Dyken, Kennewick, Washington
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Baked Vidalia Onions

Vidalia onion recipes are some of my favorites to whip up. Served alongside any of a variety of fish and meats, these tender onions are a nice change of pace. Folks find it a fun and flavorful side dish. —Norma Durham, Rogersville, Tennessee
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No-Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

I have to be super careful when cooking for my daughter because of food sensitivities, so I make these no-bake peanut butter oatmeal bars with certified gluten-free oats. Everyone loves these bars when we go to picnics or potlucks, and I know there will be a dessert for my daughter! —Angela Lively, Conroe, Texas
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Chili and Jelly Meatballs

The secret ingredient in this sassy sauce is the grape jelly. It's a sweet contrast with the chili sauce. —Irma Schnuelle, Manitowoc, Wisconsin
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Peanut Butter Cookie Cups

I’m a busy schoolteacher and pastor’s wife and I wouldn’t dare show my face at a church dinner or bake sale without some of these tempting peanut butter treats. They’re quick and easy to make and always a hit. —Kristi Tackett, Banner, Kentucky
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Cold-Brew Coffee

Cold brewing reduces the acidity of coffee, which enhances its natural sweetness and complex flavors. Even those who take hot coffee with sugar and cream might find themselves sipping cold brew plain. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Mom's Italian Bread

I think Mom used to bake at least four of these tender loaves at once, and they never lasted long. She served the bread with every Italian meal. I love it toasted too. —Linda Harrington, Windham, New Hampshire
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Cast-Iron Skillet Steak

If you’ve never cooked steak at home before, it can be a little intimidating. That’s why I came up with this simple steak recipe that’s so easy, you could make it any day of the week. —James Schend, Dairy Freed
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Roasted Rosemary Cauliflower

Roasting the cauliflower really brings out its flavor in this side dish. Even folks who aren't cauliflower lovers like it this way. —Joann Fritzler, Belen, New Mexico
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Chocolate Peanut Butter Grahams

Because so many people seem to love the combination of chocolate and peanut butter, I came up with this no-bake cookie recipe.—Geraldine Sliwa, Elgin, Illinois
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Salsa Corn

All you'll need for this corn salsa recipe is corn and pico de gallo—a simple and effective solution for last-minute guests. —Danielle Lee, Sewickley, Pennsylvania
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Home Fries

When I was little, my dad and I would get up early on Sundays and make these for the family. The rest of the gang would be awakened by the tempting aroma. —Teresa Koide, Manchester, Connecticut
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Ice Cream Bread

Ice cream gets a whole new use in this tender bread recipe that I pared down to serve two. Be sure to use full-fat ice cream for best results. —Katherine Kuehlman, Denver, Colorado
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Grilled Garlic Naan

Indian food is my all-time favorite, and no meal is complete without some naan. I like to brush grilled or baked naan with lots of butter and garlic. I sometimes add a little chopped cilantro.—Jerry Gulley, Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
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Clarified Butter

We make clarified butter to remove the milk solids, which are what burn when cooking with high heat. Keep a jar in the fridge to use for pan frying, or to drizzle over veggies, rice and, of course, seafood! —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Dijon Pork Chops

A bread crumb coating is all you need to turn pork chops into a wow-worthy family dinner. Try the breading on chicken breasts too. —Chris Rentmeister, Ripon, Wisconsin
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Fry Bread

While taking a trip to the Grand Canyon, my family drove through the Navajo reservation and stopped at a little cafe for dinner. I complimented the young waiter on the delicious Indian fry bread and he gave me the recipe. It is very easy to make. —Mildred Stephenson, Hartselle, Alabama
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Parmesan Baked Potatoes

It always amazed me that this simple recipe could make potatoes taste so good. Mom liked to make them for Easter because they were more special than ordinary baked potatoes. —Ruth Seitz, Columbus Junction, Iowa
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Salsa Rice

It's a snap to change the spice level in this popular rice side dish by choosing a milder or hotter salsa. It's a delicious way to round out burritos or tacos when the clock is ticking. —Molly Ingle, Canton, North Carolina
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Crunchy Granola Pretzel Sticks

I love this healthier portable snack that's sweet, crunchy and fun to make. If you don't have granola, use other cereals or nuts. You can even do bacon bits.—Kelly Silvers, Edmond, Oklahoma
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Corn on the Cob with Lemon-Pepper Butter

Roasting fresh-picked corn is as old as the Ozark hills where I was raised. My Grandpa Mitchell always salted and peppered his butter on the edge of his plate before spreading it on his corn, and I did the same as a kid. Today, I continue the tradition by serving lemon-pepper butter with roasted corn—it's a favorite! —Allene Bary-Cooper, Wichita Falls, Texas
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Pecan Caramel Candies

Salty and sweet, these candies are the perfect little snack. Form a kitchen assembly line with your kids, and the making becomes just as fun as the eating. —Julie Wemhoff, Angola, Indiana
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Southwest Pork Tenderloin

When living in Europe, I missed classic Southwestern flavors. Using what I had, I made spicy pork tenderloin and it's been a staple ever since. —John Cox, Seguin, Texas
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Old-Fashioned Applesauce

We had all kinds of apple trees in the yard when I was growing up, so I don't know for sure which ones Mother liked best for applesauce. (Today I use Cortlands.) I do know that her applesauce was very white. The secret, she said, was to keep the apples in salt water while she peeled them so that they wouldn't darken. —Doris Natvig, Jesup, Iowa
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Scottish Shortbread

My mother, who is of Scottish heritage, passed this shortbread recipe, along with other favorite recipes, on to me. When I entered this treat at our local fair, it won a red ribbon. —Rose Mabee, Selkirk, Manitoba
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Roasted Carrots with Thyme

These roasted carrots are so simple but always a hit. Cutting the carrots lengthwise makes this dish look extra pretty.—Deirdre Cox, Kansas City, Missouri
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Slow-Cooked Potatoes with Spring Onions

I love the simplicity of this recipe, as well as its ease of preparation with my slow cooker. Everyone always enjoys roasted potatoes, even my pickiest child! If desired, top with shredded or crumbled cheese. —Theresa Gomez, Stuart, Florida
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Shredded Pork with Beans

A friend gave me this recipe, which my sons say is a keeper. For a change of pace, spoon the tasty filling into soft tortillas. —Sarah Johnston, Lincoln, Nebraska
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Bacon-Wrapped Corn

After one bite of this grilled corn on the cob, you'll never go back to your old way of preparing it. The incredible flavor of roasted corn combined with bacon and chili powder is sure to please your palate and bring rave reviews at your next backyard barbecue. —Lori Bramble, Omaha, Nebraska
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Cheesy Quesadillas

We serve these quesadillas as chili dippers or load them up with salsa and sour cream for a super starter. —Terri Keeney, Greeley, Colorado
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Grilled Teriyaki Salmon

The super fast marinade for this grilled teriyaki salmon recipe combines maple syrup and teriyaki sauce, which also creates a delicious sweet-and-sour glaze. The salmon stays extremely moist and is really yummy. —Lenita Schafer, Ormond Beach, Florida
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Slow-Cooked Cajun Corn

My husband loves corn on the cob, and I love this slow-cooker recipe because I don't have to stand at a hot stove. We like a little spice, so the Cajun seasoning works well for us, but any spice blend works. —Audra Rorick, Lyons, Kansas
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Balsamic-Glazed Pork Tenderloin

Pull out your ovenproof skillet for this juicy balsamic pork tenderloin that goes from stovetop to oven. Balsamic vinegar gives it a tangy glaze. —Lisa Moriarty, Wilton, New Hampshire
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Snickers Cookies

Though you wouldn't know by looking, you'll find a sweet surprise inside these cookies. My mother got this Snickers cookie recipe from a fellow teacher at her school. It's a terrific way to dress up refrigerated cookie dough. —Kari Pease, Conconully, Washington
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Maple Cranberry Chicken

With just four ingredients, these moist and flavorful chicken breasts are a cinch to prepare. The tart cranberry sauce contrasts nicely with the sweet maple syrup. —Margaret Wilson, San Bernardino, California