Save on Pinterest

Vintage Recipes Inspired by Department Store Lunch Menus

Travel back in time to department store lunch counters and restaurants with our most delicious vintage recipes.

1 / 46
NEW YORK CITY - DEC 2: Sign at entrance of Macy's department store in Herald Square, NYC on Dec 2, 2011. This building was added to the National Register of Historic Places as a landmark in 1978Shutterstock / littleny

Feel like you’re lunching with the ladies with recipes inspired by restaurants in Marshall Fields, Saks, Bergdorf Goodman and more. Dine on wedge salads, chicken salad and chocolate cake from retro department store menus. No reservations necessary!

2 / 46

Wedge Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing

A wedge salad gets the creamy treatment when topped with blue cheese dressing. Keep the dressing as a topper, or make it a dip for Buffalo wings. —Jenn Smith, East Providence, Rhode Island
3 / 46
Contest Winning Roasted Tomato Soup Exps132607 Th2236620a06 01 2bc Rms 10

Contest-Winning Roasted Tomato Soup

Just before the first frost of the season, we gather up all of the tomatoes from my mom’s garden to create this flavor-packed soup. Although it sounds like a lot of garlic, when it’s roasted, the garlic becomes mellow and almost sweet. We serve this soup with toasted bread spread with pesto.—Kaitlyn Lerdahl, Madison, Wisconsin
4 / 46
Mushroom Asparagus Quiche Exps Mrmz16 35540 B09 16 2b 6

Mushroom Asparagus Quiche

Loads of asparagus pieces add color and flavor to this hearty, creamy quiche. And its easy crescent roll crust means you'll have dinner ready in a snap! —Sharon A. Fujita, Fontana, California
5 / 46
Classic Cobb Salad Exps Thfm17 4728 D09 27 4b 2

Classic Cobb Salad

Making this salad is a lot like putting in a garden. I “plant” everything in nice, neat sections, just as I do with seedlings. —Patricia Kile, Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania
6 / 46
Classic Chicken Potpie Exps Sdfm17 18168 D10 04 3b 5

Classic Chicken Potpie

Our neighbors and a friend from back home are always after me to make "those yummy potpies". That's all the encouragement I need, since we really like 'em, too! —Ada May Smith, Citrus Springs, Florida.
7 / 46
Curried Egg Salad Exps Sdam17 245 B12 08 2b 1

Curried Egg Salad

A curry kick gives this egg salad big appeal. We love it when the weather gets warm. —Joyce McDowell, West Union, Ohio
8 / 46
Best Ever Meat Loaf Exps4546 Gb2919407b01 10 1b Rms 2

Best-Ever Meat Loaf

The combination of onion, carrots, parsley and cheese—plus the tomato-mustard topping—makes this meat loaf really colorful. The recipe lends itself easily to being doubled or halved to suit the number you're cooking for, and it freezes well, too. It's the best meatloaf ever! —Anna Baker, Blaine, Washington
9 / 46

Hash Brown Pancakes with Smoked Salmon & Dill Cream

On weekends when I was growing up, pancakees, salmon and bagels were our brunch staples. Now, I combine the concepts and use whipped cream instead of cream cheese. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois
10 / 46

Chicken Croissant Sandwiches

These sandwiches are easy to pull together when you need something fun and taste-worthy in a flash. I make them often for occasions like brunches, church youth meetings and impromptu family gatherings. —Cheryl Sigler, Louisville, Ohio
11 / 46
Exps192803 Sd163615c04 05 8b 1

Grilled Chicken Chopped Salad

Layered desserts always grab my family’s attention, but salads? Not so much. I wondered if I could get everyone on board by presenting a healthy salad in an eye-catching way. I’m happy to say that it worked. —Christine Hadden, Whitman, Massachusetts
12 / 46
Aunt Betty's Blueberry Muffins

Aunt Betty's Blueberry Muffins

My Aunt Betty is quite a baker, but I look forward to these mouthwatering blueberry muffin recipe the most. She gives me enough so that I can freeze and enjoy them for weeks. —Sheila Raleigh, Kechi, Kansas
13 / 46

Grilled Ham Burgers

My family loves my ham loaf, so I decided to make the ham loaf mixture into patties and grill them—it was an instant hit. Adding the arugula gives these burgers a peppery bite and honey mustard dressing adds just the right sweet and sour flavor. —Susan Bickta, Kutztown, Pennsylvania
14 / 46

Mint-Cucumber Tomato Sandwiches

I jazzed up the quintessential teatime cucumber sandwich to suit my family's tastes. This was my absolute go-to sandwich last summer when I was pregnant. It hit all the right spots! —Namrata Telugu, Terre Haute, Indiana
15 / 46
Spring Green Risotto Exps174214 Sd143204c12 05 3bc Rms 4

Spring Green Risotto

Once a week I create a new recipe for my blog, An Officer and a Vegan. I first made this risotto when I needed something cheerful and comforting. It would be fantastic with asparagus, zucchini or summer squash, but use whatever veggies are in season. —Deanna McDonald, Grand Rapids, Michigan
16 / 46

BLT with Peppered Balsamic Mayo

Here’s my twist on the classic BLT. Creamy avocado, balsamic mayo and crisp salad greens make this version legendary in my book. For a lighter take, I often use turkey bacon. —Ami Boyer, San Francisco, California
17 / 46
Exps100610 Sd153323d06 05 5b 3

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
18 / 46

Cucumber Sandwiches

I was introduced to a similar cucumber sandwich by a friend many years ago. I sometimes add thinly sliced onions for a change of pace. Along with fruit salad, it makes a light summer lunch. —Karen Schriefer, Stevensville, Maryland
19 / 46

Quick Crab Melts

Two types of cheese on top of a savory crab mixture make these open-faced sandwiches ooey-gooey good! I usually serve them for dinner, but they also make a great app when cut in half. —Donna Bennett, Bramalea, Ontario
20 / 46

Dee's Grilled Tuna with Greens

Slices of moist, tender tuna top this colorful combination of fresh spinach, grape tomatoes, corn and edamame (green soy beans). The tangy vinaigrette sparks the salad’s flavors. —Delawrence Reed, Durham, North Carolina
21 / 46

Seafood Bisque

We live on the Gulf Coast, where fresh seafood is plentiful. I adapted several recipes to come up with this rich bisque. It's great as a first course or an entree, and it can be made with just shrimp or crabmeat. —Pat Edwards, Dauphin Island, Alabama
22 / 46
Exps147151 Mc163887d03 23 2b 1

Juicy Watermelon Salad

This fruit salad has such a surprising yet fabulous mix of flavors that friends often ask for the recipe. Combine seedless watermelon varieties in yellow, red and pink for a colorful twist. —Heidi Haight, Macomb, Michigan
23 / 46
Classic French Onion Soup Exps Thfm18 160479 D10 17 2b 14

Classic French Onion Soup

Enjoy my signature French onion soup the way my granddaughter Becky does: I make onion soup for her in a crock bowl, complete with garlic croutons and gobs of melted Swiss cheese on top. —Lou Sansevero, Ferron, Utah
24 / 46
Pretzel Crusted Chicken With Mixed Greens Exps159906 Th2379800b04 27 2b Rms 3

Pretzel-Crusted Chicken with Mixed Greens

The secret to crunchy success for this pretzel-crusted chicken recipe is grinding up the sourdough pretzel nuggets until they're finely crushed. You can change up the pretzel flavor by using hot buffalo wing or buttermilk ranch nuggets. —Kerri Balliet, Mequon, Wisconsin
25 / 46

Turkey Focaccia Club

My family thinks this sandwich is pure heaven thanks to the cranberry-pecan mayo. It's so good that they ask me to make it all year long. —Judy Wilson, Sun City West, Arizona
26 / 46

Easy Crab Cakes

Ready-to-go crabmeat makes these delicate patties easier than other crab cake recipes. You can also form the crab mixture into four thick patties instead of eight crab cakes. —Charlene Spelock, Apollo, Pennsylvania
27 / 46

Chicken Paillards with Cherry Sauce & Parsley Rice

A "paillard" is a slice of meat pounded very thin, then sauteed or grilled at high heat. This version works for a weeknight dinner or a standout for guests. —Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, Florida
28 / 46
Exps45020 Sd163614d12 03 3b 4

Frittata Florentine

My family is all about brunchy meals like this gorgeous Italian omelet. Lucky for us, it’s loaded with ingredients we tend to have at the ready. —Jenny Flake, Newport Beach, California
29 / 46
Veggie Nicoise Salad Exps Lsbz18 133577 C01 19 5b 8

Veggie Nicoise Salad

More and more people in my workplace are becoming vegetarians. When we cook or eat together, the focus is on fresh produce. This salad combines some of our favorite ingredients in one dish...and with the hard-boiled eggs and kidney beans, it delivers enough protein to satisfy those who are skeptical of vegetarian fare. —Elizabeth Kelley, Chicago, Illinois
30 / 46
Sage Browned Butter Ravioli Exps131126 Th132767c04 24 3bc Rms 4

Sage & Browned Butter Ravioli

After enjoying a similar dish in Italy, we came home and planted sage in our garden to be sure we could recreate the brown butter sage sauce. This quick and easy dinner always brings back fond memories of our trip. —Rhonda Hamilton, Portsmouth, Ohio
31 / 46

The Ultimate Grilled Cheese

These gooey grilled cheese sandwiches taste great for lunch with sliced apples. And they're really fast to whip up, too. Here's how to make grilled cheese the right way. —Kathy Norris, Streator, Illinois
32 / 46

Shrimp Salad with Cilantro Dressing

This pretty salad has such authentic flavor, you'll think you're sitting at a beachside cantina in Acapulco. —Heidi Hall, North St. Paul, Minnesota
33 / 46

Chicken Liver Mousse

A rich, custardlike mousse is included on the paté plate with high success at La Boucherie. Liver loves bacon, so fry a few pieces and enjoy this highly palatable first course. —Matthew Lawrence, Vashon, Washington
34 / 46

Smoked Salmon Bagel Sandwiches

A memorable pesto salmon I tried in Hawaii inspired these super convenient sandwiches. Pack them in a lunch or serve them on a brunch buffet.—Sherryl Vera, Hurlburt Field, Florida
35 / 46
Exps186728 Th153341d11 12 4b 4

Passover Popovers

Popovers have an important role at the Passover table, substituting for bread. When puffed and golden brown, they’re ready to share. —Gloria Mezikofsky, Wakefield, Massachusetts
36 / 46

Chicken & Chutney Salad

I often make this recipe and eat it at school for lunch. It makes me feel like I've ordered out from a fancy restaurant. It is wonderful as a salad or as a gourmet lunch wrap.—Michelle Sichak, Meridian, Idaho
37 / 46

Elegant Seafood Bisque

Creamy bisque is elegant enough for sit-down dinners yet hearty enough for casual gatherings.—Mike Payne, Hixson, Tennessee
38 / 46
German Chocolate Cake Exps3229 Cs133233d06 21 4bc Rms 3

German Chocolate Cake

According to my husband, this is the best German chocolate cake recipe in the whole world. Every bite has a light crunch from the pecans, a sweet taste of coconut and a drizzle of chocolate. —Joyce Platfoot, Wapakoneta, Ohio
39 / 46
Exps149139 Th153345b07 21 11b 1

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
40 / 46

Blackened Pork Caesar Salad

When I cook, the goal is to have enough leftovers for lunch the next day. This Caesar with pork has fantastic flavor even when the meat is chilled. —Penny Hedges, Dewdney, British Columbia
41 / 46

Spicy Crab Salad

My creamy crab salad gets a boost of heat from Sriracha and a tangy touch from lime. It’s ready fast, leaving me more time with guests. —Patti Lavell, Islamorada, Florida
42 / 46

Ham & Mandarin Salad

I created this salad at the request of all the men in our house. They asked for something tangy, sweet, spicy and manly. This fit the bill. —Patricia Swart, Galloway, New Jersey
43 / 46

Turkey Dijon Melts

I make this when I crave comfort food but don’t have the time or energy for a big meal. It works well with deli or leftover turkey. —Sarah Marshall, Creedmoor, North Carolina
44 / 46
Tuna Ciabatta Melts Exps67404 Th2379800b04 26 5b Rms 3

Tuna Ciabatta Melts

Use any good crusty bread when compiling this tuna spread sandwich. Top with slices of crunchy cucumber or luscious tomato for extra freshness. —Barb Templin, Norwood, Minnesota
45 / 46

Grilled Beef & Blue Cheese Sandwiches

Roast beef, red onion and blue cheese really amp up this deluxe grilled sandwich. If you like a little heat, mix some horseradish into the spread. —Bonnie Hawkins, Elkhorn, Wisconsin
46 / 46
Exps100790  Sd153320c12 05 2b 4

Cilantro-Avocado Tuna Salad Sandwiches

Lime juice and cilantro in tuna salad – who knew? This recipe for avocado tuna salad came to me as a way to have a protein-packed meal with lots of pizzazz. —Heather Waldorf, Black Mountain, North Carolina

Caroline Stanko
As an Associate Digital Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. When she’s not at her desk, you can probably find Caroline cooking up a feast, planning her next trip abroad or daydreaming about her golden retriever, Mac.
cover
Subscribe & SAVE Save Up To 80%!