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70 Christmas Eve Dinner Ideas

Looking for the best Christmas Eve dinner ideas to complement the best Christmas cookies to complete the perfect holiday menu? Here are our top picks.

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Makeover Traditional LasagnaTaste of Home

Makeover Traditional Lasagna

I’ve never been quick to pass along my special recipes, but this one is so good that it’s become our family’s Christmas Eve tradition! —Michelle Behan, Littleton, Colorado

After dinner, enjoy these recipes for a Christmas Eve movie night.

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Salmon with Spinach & White BeansTaste of Home

Salmon with Spinach & White Beans

My husband, Oscar, is a Southerner at heart. This salmon with garlicky beans and spinach won him over at first bite. —Mary Ellen Hofstetter, Brentwood, Tennessee

Hosting a Feast of the Seven Fishes? Make these recipes.

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A Christmas Story Meat LoafTaste of Home

A Christmas Story Meat Loaf

I've watched the film “A Christmas Story” so many times since I was a kid. Now I have a family of my own, so I re-created the mom’s meatloaf and mashed potatoes. —Christina Addison, Blanchester, Ohio

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Stollen Butter RollsTaste of Home

Stollen Butter Rolls

Our family enjoys my stollen so much they say it's just too good to be served only as a holiday sweet bread. I created this buttery, less sweet dinner roll so we can satisfy our stollen cravings anytime. —Mindy White, Nashville, Tennessee

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Butternut Squash and Sausage Stuffed ShellsTaste of Home

Butternut Squash and Sausage Stuffed Shells

I rarely invite friends for dinner without someone requesting this easy pasta casserole. The sweet squash complements the spicy sausage, and the creamy goat cheese makes it all just melt in your mouth! You can substitute manicotti or even rolled lasagna noodles for the shells. The stuffed shells and sauce can be prepared a day ahead and assembled just before baking. —Taylor Hale, Sonoma, California

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Finnish Mulled WineTaste of Home

Finnish Mulled Wine

I found this recipe stuck in the pages of my Finnish grandmother's Bible. It takes 24 hours to make. Store tightly bottled in the fridge for up to two weeks. —Judy Batson, Tampa, Florida

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Orange AppealTaste of Home

Orange Appeal

Oranges add color and great taste to winter meals! This dish looks very bright and appealing served in a glass bowl, and it's a light and easy dessert to finish off a hearty holiday meal. As far as I'm concerned, the citrusy aroma of oranges is a must at Christmas time! —Billie Moss, Walnut Creek, California

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Frozen Christmas SaladTaste of Home

Frozen Christmas Salad

My mom’s use of red and green cherries to decorate dishes at Christmastime inspired me to create my holiday-themed molded salad. It’s cool, creamy and fun to serve guests.

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Pasta Fagioli al FornoTaste of Home

Pasta Fagioli al Forno

The name of this Italian-inspired dish means "baked pasta with beans." But my busy family translates it as "super satisfying dinner." —Cindy Preller, Grayslake, Illinois

Get more great ideas for easy pasta bakes.

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Chicken TamalesTaste of Home

Chicken Tamales

I love making these homemade tamales. They take a little time to make but are so worth the effort. I usually make them for Christmas, but my family wants them more often, so I freeze a big batch. —Cindy Pruitt, Grove, Oklahoma

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Christmas Eve Confetti PastaTaste of Home

Christmas Eve Confetti Pasta

This easy Christmas dinner has become a holiday tradition in our home. All the prep is done before we attend Christmas Eve service. On returning, I just boil water and saute. It's so colorful with a tossed salad and garlic bread — and always gets raves! — Ellen Fiore, Ridgewood, New Jersey

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Chicken Alfredo LasagnaTaste of Home

Chicken Alfredo Lasagna

My family was growing tired of traditional red sauce lasagna, so I created this fun twist using a creamy homemade Alfredo sauce. Store-bought rotisserie chicken keeps prep simple and fast. —Caitlin MacNeilly, Uncasville, Connecticut

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New England Bean & Bog CassouletTaste of Home

New England Bean & Bog Cassoulet

When I moved to New England, I embraced the local cuisine. My cassoulet with baked beans pays tribute to a French classic and to New England in one hearty, heartwarming dish. —Devon Delaney, Westport, Connecticut

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Turkey Dumpling StewTaste of Home

Turkey Dumpling Stew

My mom made this stew when I was young, and it was always a hit. Since it's not time-consuming to make I can fix it on a weekend for our children, who love the tender dumplings. —Becky Mohr, Appleton, Wisconsin

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Pork Medallions in Mustard SauceTaste of Home

Pork Medallions in Mustard Sauce

I like pork medallions with apricot preserves and wondered how else I could dress them up. I played around with different flavors until I found this combo. Wows every time. —Tahnia Fox, Trenton, Michigan

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Festive Slow-Cooked Beef TipsTaste of Home

Festive Slow-Cooked Beef Tips

We once owned an organic greenhouse and produce business. Weekends were hectic, so I made no-fuss meals like yummy beef tips to fortify us at day’s end. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin

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Chicken AmandineTaste of Home

Chicken Amandine

With colorful green beans and pimientos, this attractive casserole is terrific for the holidays. This is true comfort food at its finest. —Kat Woolbright, Wichita Falls, Texas

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Tenderloin with Horseradish Cream CheeseTaste of Home

Tenderloin with Horseradish Cream Cheese

My husband and I both love the classic combination of beef and horseradish. He asks me to make this for dinner often, and I'm always happy to. Try serving with baked potatoes as a side.—Mary Lou Cook, Welches, Oregon

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Artichoke Florentine PastaTaste of Home

Artichoke Florentine Pasta

Pasta loaded with artichokes and creamy cheese is everything a Sunday dinner should be: rich, tasty and memorable. Add cooked chicken, shrimp or crab if you like. —Nancy Beckman, Helena, Montana

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Warm Christmas PunchTaste of Home

Warm Christmas Punch

Red Hot candies add rich color and spiciness to this festive punch, and the cranberry juice gives it a little tang. Our children always request it for December brunches. —Julie Sterchi, Campbellsville, Kentucky

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Sage Pork Chops with Cider Pan GravyTaste of Home

Sage Pork Chops with Cider Pan Gravy

A creamy sauce flavored with apple cider and sage makes for a quick and tasty weeknight dinner. If you like, serve these lightly seasoned chops with couscous, rice or noodles.—Erica Wilson, Beverly, Massachusetts

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New England Lamb BakeTaste of Home

New England Lamb Bake

This dish is hearty and perfect for warming up on a chilly winter evening. The aroma is almost as delightful as the dish itself. —Frank Grady, Fort Kent, Maine

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Roast Chicken with VegetablesTaste of Home

Roast Chicken with Vegetables

Love a moist and tender chicken but not the mess of actual roasting? Use an oven cooking bag to keep chicken and veggies easily under control. It's a great way to make roast chicken with potatoes and carrots easy any night of the week. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Spinach Beef PieTaste of Home

Spinach Beef Pie

I found this recipe about 15 years ago, and it's still one I turn to often. It's flavorful and pretty.—Meg Stankiewicz, Garfield Heights, Ohio

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Creamy Spinach & Rigatoni BakeTaste of Home

Creamy Spinach & Rigatoni Bake

Macaroni and cheese is one of the ultimate comfort foods. My recipe gives it an Italian twist. —Tammy Rex, New Tripoli, Pennsylvania

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Contest-Winning Braised Short RibsTaste of Home

Contest-Winning Braised Short Ribs

I've been relying on this braised short ribs recipe ever since I bought my first slow cooker some 19 years ago. The fall-off-the-bone-tender entree is much appreciated on busy days. —Peggy Edwards, Heber City, Utah

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Harvesttime Chicken with CouscousTaste of Home

Harvesttime Chicken with Couscous

Even on busy days, I can start this chicken in a slow cooker and still get to work on time. When I come home, spinach salad and crescent rolls round out the menu. —Heidi Rudolph, Oregon, Illinois

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Rosemary-Lemon Chicken ThighsTaste of Home

Rosemary-Lemon Chicken Thighs

A cooking show inspired me to create this lemony chicken. Ask your butcher to remove the bones from chicken thighs but leave the skin intact. —Jennifer Tidwell, Fair Oaks, California

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Stuffed Flank SteakTaste of Home

Stuffed Flank Steak

I like to make this on special occasions. The tender steak cuts easily into appetizing spirals for serving, and extra stuffing cooks conveniently in a foil packet on top of the steak. —Diane Hixon, Niceville, Florida

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Tomato-Poached HalibutTaste of Home

Tomato-Poached Halibut

My halibut with a burst of lemon comes together in one pan and stays super moist. Try it with polenta, angel hair pasta or crusty bread. —Danna Rogers, Westport, Connecticut

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Chicken & Cheddar Biscuit CasseroleTaste of Home

Chicken & Cheddar Biscuit Casserole

I always get rave reviews when I bring this casserole to my son's Cub Scouts meetings. It's also the perfect comfort meal after a long day. —Sarah Phillips, East Lansing, Michigan

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Apricot Kielbasa SlicesTaste of Home

Apricot Kielbasa Slices

These easy-to-fix sausage bites are coated in a thick, zesty sauce with just the right amount of sweetness. — Barbara McCalley, Allison Park, Pennsylvania

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Chorizo Pumpkin PastaTaste of Home

Chorizo Pumpkin Pasta

I’m a busy student, and this spicy-sweet pasta makes a perfect quick dinner. Even better, it works on a bigger scale to feed a bunch of friends. —Christine Yang, Syracuse, New York

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Mushroom Hunter's SauceTaste of Home

Mushroom Hunter's Sauce

Hunter sauce is a rich brown sauce with an accent of tomato. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Cod with Hearty Tomato SauceTaste of Home

Cod with Hearty Tomato Sauce

My father made up this sweet, flavorful recipe for my mother when he took over the cooking. We serve it with whole wheat pasta or brown rice. —Ann Marie Eberhart, Gig Harbor, Washington

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Spicy Bean and Beef PieTaste of Home

Spicy Bean and Beef Pie

My daughter helped me come up with this recipe when we wanted a one-dish meal that was different than a casserole. This pie slices nicely and is a fun and filing dish. —Debra Dohy, Massillon, Ohio

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Italian-Style PizzasTaste of Home

Italian-Style Pizzas

With prepared pesto and pizza crusts, this recipe comes together in a flash. It makes two, and we love that we each get our own Italian style pizza! I like to complete the meal with a salad and fresh fruit. —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho

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Hearty Baked Beef StewTaste of Home

Hearty Baked Beef Stew

This is such an easy way to make a wonderful beef stew. You don't need to brown the meat first—just combine it with hearty chunks of carrots, potatoes and celery, and let it all cook together in a flavorful gravy. My daughter Karen came up with the recipe for her busy family. —Doris Sleeth, Naples, Florida

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Tortellini CarbonaraTaste of Home

Tortellini Carbonara

I've made this bacon, cream and Parmesan cheese pasta sauce for so many years and have always called it a carbonara. Low-and-behold, I recently found out it's actually more like an Alfredo sauce. In either case, it's absolutely heavenly and a great option for company! —Cathy Croyle, Davidsville, Pennsylvania

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Bacon & Cheese Meat LoafTaste of Home

Bacon & Cheese Meat Loaf

We created this recipe to convince my son to try meat loaf, adding blue cheese and bacon for flavor. It worked! —Lila Allen, Fallon, Nevada

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Creamy Braised ChickenTaste of Home

Creamy Braised Chicken

A smooth, delicate cream sauce gives a special taste to these tender chicken breasts accompanied by pearl onions and sauteed mushrooms. This dish is so rich-tasting, you'll want to serve it to company. —Margaret Haugh Heilman, Houston, Texas

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Best LasagnaTaste of Home

Best Lasagna

Want to know how to make lasagna for a casual holiday meal? You can't go wrong with this deliciously rich meat lasagna recipe. My grown sons and daughter-in-law request it for their birthdays, too. —Pam Thompson, Girard, Illinois

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Contest-Winning Chicken Wild Rice CasseroleTaste of Home

Contest-Winning Chicken Wild Rice Casserole

While this special chicken and wild rice casserole is perfect for a company dinner, it's also just too good not to make often for everyday family meals. We think it is very nice served with some crusty rolls or French bread. —Elizabeth Tokariuk, Lethbridge, Alberta

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Creamy Salmon LinguineTaste of Home

Creamy Salmon Linguine

Extra Pesto Grilled Salmon gives this creamy pasta toss a luxurious taste and texture. We love it as is, but you could easily sub in any veggies you have on hand for the broccoli. —Jacob Kitzman, Seattle, Washington

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Puff Pastry Chicken PotpieTaste of Home

Puff Pastry Chicken Potpie

When my wife is craving comfort food, I whip up this chicken pot pie with puff pastry. It's easy to make, sticks to your ribs and delivers soul-satisfying flavor. —Nick Iverson, Denver, Colorado

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Make-Ahead Lasagna

Make-Ahead Lasagna

This is an old standby when time's limited and guests are expected for dinner. It's a combination of several easy lasagna recipes I have tried over the years. —Mary Grimm, Williamsburg, Iowa

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Meatball Chili with DumplingsTaste of Home

Meatball Chili with Dumplings

My family enjoys this delicious recipe—it's like a spicy meatball stew with dumplings!—Sarah Yoder, Middlebury, Indiana

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Slow-Cooker Beef StewTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker Beef Stew

When there's a chill in the air, nothing beats this stew. Seasoned with thyme and dry mustard, the hearty slow-cooked stew is chock-full of tender carrots, potatoes and beef.—Earnestine Wilson, Waco, Texas

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Rich Baked SpaghettiTaste of Home

Rich Baked Spaghetti

It takes a little longer to make baked spaghetti, but the difference in taste, texture and richness is well worth the time. I serve this lasagna-style dish with a tossed green salad and breadsticks for a hearty, healthy meal. —Betty Rabe, Mahtomedi, Minnesota

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Artichoke Ratatouille ChickenTaste of Home

Artichoke Ratatouille Chicken

I loaded all the fresh produce I could find into this speedy chicken dinner. Serve it on its own or over pasta. —Judy Armstrong, Prairieville, Louisiana

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Italian Stuffed ShellsTaste of Home

Italian Stuffed Shells

A dear friend first brought over this stuffed shells recipe. Now I take it to other friends' homes and to potlucks, because it's always a big hit! —Beverly Austin, Fulton, Missouri

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Contest-Winning Broccoli Chicken CasseroleTaste of Home

Contest-Winning Broccoli Chicken Casserole

This delicious chicken and broccoli casserole recipe is a twist on chicken divan that came from an old boss. It’s quick, satisfying comfort food. —Jennifer Schlachter, Big Rock, Illinois

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Lemony Chicken & RiceTaste of Home

Lemony Chicken & Rice

I couldn’t say who loves this recipe best, because it gets raves every time I serve it! Occasionally I even get a phone call or email from a friend requesting the recipe, and it's certainly a favorite for my grown children and 15 grandchildren. —Maryalice Wood, Langley, British Columbia

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Christmas Eve Meat PieTaste of Home

Christmas Eve Meat Pie

When this pie is baking, my daughter says that the house smells like Christmas. This recipe evolved over the years and is served as part of our family's Christmas Eve celebration. It's a soul-satisfying dinner on a cold winter day.—Michele Bouchard, Kansas City, Missouri

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Fontina Chicken & Pasta BakeTaste of Home

Fontina Chicken & Pasta Bake

Eat it tonight, or freeze it for later. This cheesy casserole is still awesome months after you make it. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Slow-Cooked BeefTaste of Home

Slow-Cooked Beef

Crushed gingersnaps, lemon and vinegar give the marinated slow-cooked beef and gravy their appetizing sweet-sour flavor. —Susan Garoutte, Georgetown, Texas

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Chicken-Pepper AlfredoTaste of Home

Chicken-Pepper Alfredo

When I want a lighter dinner, I use lean turkey bacon in this recipe. It gives the pasta that richness you want without all the extra fat. —Courtney Harris, Denton, Texas

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Sugarplum Spice BreadTaste of Home

Sugarplum Spice Bread

I make Christmas Eve magical with hot cocoa and toasted slices of this fragrant, fruit-studded bread. My son and I combined several recipes to come up with this winner. —Jackie Brown, Tully, New York

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Herbed Seafood CasseroleTaste of Home

Herbed Seafood Casserole

A friend shared this recipe when I needed a seafood dish for my annual Christmas Eve buffet. The casserole is wonderfully rich and creamy. When it comes to Christmas seafood casserole recipes, this is one of the best. —Donna Schmuland, Wetaskiwin, Alberta

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Rosemary Pork with Cherry-Pistachio ToppingTaste of Home

Rosemary Pork with Cherry-Pistachio Topping

Thirty years ago, my new mother-in-law asked me to do something with a large frozen pork loin being served for a crowd at a Christmas Eve buffet. I assembled some fragrant ingredients and this is the result. —Shelia Brown, Canton Michigan

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Deluxe Cornbread StuffingTaste of Home

Deluxe Cornbread Stuffing

When my husband and I were newlyweds and far from family, we invited friends over for a traditional Thanksgiving feast. I searched for stuffing recipes and combined the best aspects of several to create this one. Everyone liked it, and I still make it for holidays.

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Chipotle-Orange Cranberry SauceTaste of Home

Chipotle-Orange Cranberry Sauce

My family prefers traditional dishes on Christmas, but I like to add in a few of my own unique creations. With brown sugar, cinnamon and chipotle powder for a little kick, this cranberry sauce will earn a permanent spot in the holiday lineup. —Chris Michalowski, Dallas, Texas

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Creole Skillet DinnerTaste of Home

Creole Skillet Dinner

While living in Canada, I sampled this colorful dish at a neighbor's. The following Christmas, I served it instead of my traditional turkey, and I received numerous compliments on it. I frequently substitute shrimp or sausage for the chicken ... or add all three. —Bonnie Brann, Pasco, Washington

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Five-Cheese Spinach & Artichoke DipTaste of Home

Five-Cheese Spinach & Artichoke Dip

Whenever I go to an event, I'm always asked to bring this hot dip. Five types of cheese make it a standout and oh-so delicious. I love its party-ready convenience— I serve it straight from the slow cooker, so set-up and clean-up are a breeze! —Noelle Myers, Grand Forks, North Dakota

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French Canadian TourtieresTaste of Home

French Canadian Tourtieres

This recipe comes from my big sister. Each fall, we get together and make about 20 of these pies to use at Christmas, give as gifts or freeze for unexpected company. —Pat Menee, Carberry, Manitoba

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Slow-Cooker Turkey Breast with Cranberry GravyTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker Turkey Breast with Cranberry Gravy

I created this dish when I was craving Thanksgiving dinner, and it was still over a month away. You get all the bells and whistles of Thanksgiving dinner in no time, Add a vegetable, some mashed potatoes and you’re ready to eat. —Cynthia Gerken, Naples, Florida

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Weeknight Turkey Tortilla SoupTaste of Home

Weeknight Turkey Tortilla Soup

This is now my family's most requested soup—so much so that they will make sure I have leftover turkey. You can spice up this soup and make it more hearty by adding smoked sausage or andouille and some Cajun seasoning to taste. —Gail Lucas, Olive Branch, Mississippi

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Cranberry and Roasted Beet SaladTaste of Home

Cranberry and Roasted Beet Salad

I created this as a healthy, tasty side dish to complement Christmas dinner. This enticing substitute for cranberry relish is excellent with turkey. Even the children loved it! Serve the beet blend alone or on a bed of salad greens. —Brianna St. Clair, Worland, Wyoming

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Rich Seafood ChowderTaste of Home

Rich Seafood Chowder

This creamy, delectable soup is even better the next day. It also works well with scallops or a flaky whitefish. Substitute half-and-half or heavy cream for all or part of the milk to make this soup even richer. —Anita Culver, Royersford, Pennsylvania

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Christmas CutoutsTaste of Home

Christmas Cutouts

Don’t forget about Santa! Make and decorate these delicious sugar cookies with the kids before tucking them away to bed.

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