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65 Five-Ingredient Comfort Foods

Hearty, homey food doesn't have to be complicated. Each of these comfort food classics calls for five ingredients or fewer.

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Easy Salsa Sloppy Joes Exps Gbbz19 23248 B11 28 5b 6

Easy Salsa Sloppy Joes

I created these sandwiches when I realized I did not have a can of sloppy joe sauce. The sweet brown sugar in this recipe complements the tangy salsa. —Mrs. Krista E Collins, Concord, North Carolina
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Skillet Mac Cheese Exps Toh5icfrtl21 27614 E07 15 3b

Skillet Mac & Cheese

This creamy mac and cheese is so simple it’s almost too easy! Kids always go for the rich cheese flavor, but I’ve never met an adult who didn’t love it just as much. —Ann Bowers, Rockport, Texas
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Weekday Beef Stew

Beef stew capped with flaky puff pastry adds comfort to the weeknight menu—my family is always glad to see this meal. Make a salad and call your crowd to the table. —Daniel Anderson, Kenosha, Wisconsin
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Ham Spinach Casserole Exps Bfcbbz19 45173 E01 11 2b 7

Ham & Spinach Casserole

This is down-home cooking at its best! Ham and veggies join forces with a creamy sauce and pretty topping to create a hearty meal-in-one. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Bacon-Potato Corn Chowder

I was raised on a farm, so a warm soup with homey ingredients, like this corn chowder with bacon, was always a treat after a chilly day outside. My hearty chowder nourishes the family. —Katie Lillo, Big Lake, Minnesota
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Baked Asparagus Dip Exps Sdfm19 3810 E10 11 3b 4

Baked Asparagus Dip

Since I'm from Wisconsin, I thought it was only logical to put together a vegetable and a cheese—two of the foods my state produces in abundance. This cheesy asparagus dip fits the bill. —Sandra Baratka, Phillips, Wisconsin
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Biscuits and Sausage Gravy

This biscuits and sausage gravy is an old southern recipe that I've adapted. Homemade sausage gravy is a classic, hearty breakfast that takes you on a trip to the South every time it's served. —Sue Baker, Jonesboro, Arkansas
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Ravioli Lasagna Exps Ahmrds18 18274 C05 01 2b 6

Ravioli Lasagna

When you taste this casserole, you'll think it came from a complicated, from-scratch recipe. Really, though, it starts with frozen ravioli and has only three other ingredients. —Patricia Smith, Asheboro, North Carolina
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Ham And Cheese Pockets Exps Sdfm19 1092 C10 17 6b 5

Ham and Cheese Pockets

These unique sandwich pockets are filled with ingredients both kids and adults enjoy. —Callie Myers, Rockport, Texas
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Peanut Butter Oatmeal

My son and I eat this peanut butter oatmeal recipe every day for breakfast. It's a hearty, healthy way to jump start our morning. — Elisabeth Reitenbach, Terryville, Connecticut
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Taco Pizza Squares Exps Bfbz19 17840 E01 18 2b 4

Taco Pizza Squares

Everyone will come running the minute you take this fun twist on pizza out of the oven. I top convenient refrigerated pizza dough with leftover taco meat, tomatoes and cheese, bringing a full-flavored fiesta to the table in under half an hour. —Sarah Vovos, Middleton, Wisconsin.
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Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes With Bacon Exps Cwfm18 41080 C10 12 9b 5

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes with Bacon

This side always takes my guests by surprise because of the smoky, creamy flavor. No doubt you'll get major kudos when you place these potatoes on your table. —Cynthia Boberskyj Rochester, NY
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Saucy Ranch Pork and Potatoes

Awhile back, my sister Elyse shared a tasty ranch pork roast recipe. I tweaked it so I could use what was already in my pantry, and this dish was born. —Kendra Adamson, Layton, Utah
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Tomato Hamburger Soup Exps13400 Gb143373d01 16 3bc Rms 2

Tomato Hamburger Soup

As a full-time teacher, I only have time to cook from scratch a few nights each week. This slow-cooker soup recipe makes a big enough batch to feed my family for two nights. —Julie Kruger, St. Cloud, Minnesota
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Sunday S Best Chicken Exps Ghtjm17 42200 D03 22 15b 4

Sunday's Best Chicken

I am the busy mom of four and a nursing student, so weeknight dinners are often rushed. Sunday dinners are very important to our family and everyone loves when I make this old-fashioned chicken recipe. It's the best chicken recipe there is!—Amy Jenkins, Mesa, Arizona
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Quick Biscuits

Quick Biscuits

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

Sheepherder's Breakfast

My sister-in-law always made this delicious breakfast dish when we were camping and had to come up with good, easy breakfast ideas. Served with toast, juice and milk or coffee, it's a sure hit with the breakfast crowd! One-dish casseroles like this were a big help while I was raising my nine children. Now I've passed this recipe on to them. —Pauletta Bushnell, Albany, Oregon
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Spaghetti With Bacon Exps4145 Th143193b04 22 7b Rms 14

Spaghetti with Bacon

As children, we always requested this dish for our birthday dinners. Our mother got the recipe from her grandmother. Now I pass on our tasty tradition. —Ruth Keogh, North St. Paul, Minnesota
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Homemade Potato Chips Exps Wrsm17 39614 C03 22 1b 8

Homemade Potato Chips

Forget buying a bag of potato chips at the grocery store when you can make these at home. This quick and easy recipe will delight everyone in the family. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Pizza Chicken Roll-Ups

I love the chicken roll-ups my mom made for special occasions, filled with spinach and cream cheese. My own kids wouldn't eat those, so I came up with a pizza-flavored variety the whole family enjoys. —Tanja Penquite, Oregon, Ohio
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Contest Winning Broccoli Chicken Casserole Exps37392 Th143193b04 22 3bc Rms 12

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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Creamy Corn

Out of all my corn recipes, this is my favorite. You need just a few ingredients and a slow cooker to make this delicious side dish. Because it cooks on its own, you'll have extra time to prepare the main course. —Judy McCarthy, Derby, Kansas
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Dreamy Fruit Dip Exps Cplbz19 19630 E11 01 12b 3

Dreamy Fruit Dip

Everyone will love this thick cream cheese fruit dip. Serve it alongside apple wedges, pineapple chunks, strawberries and grapes. —Anna Beiler, Strasburg, Pennsylvania
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Tortellini Carbonara Exps Sdam17 20418 C12 09 2b 8

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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Lemon Red Potatoes

Butter, lemon juice, parsley and chives enhance this simple side dish. I usually prepare these potatoes when I'm having company. Since they cook in the slow cooker, there's plenty of room on the stove for other dishes. —Tara Branham, Austin, Texas
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Secret S In The Sauce Bbq Ribs Exps Wrsm17 44338 D03 15 3b 8

"Secret's in the Sauce" BBQ Ribs

A sweet, rich sauce makes this BBQ ribs recipe so tender that the meat literally falls off the bones. And the aroma is wonderful. Yum! —Tanya Reid, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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Chocolate Peanut Drops Exps78127 Esc3139121b04 05 1bc Rms 3

Chocolate Peanut Drops

This is a recipe that I got from a friend, who got it from her sister, and between the three of us we've handed it out everywhere! The chocolaty candies couldn't be easier to make in the slow cooker and, depending on the size of your spoon, you can get dozens of candies from one batch. So easy and great for gifts.—Anita Bell, Hermitage, Tennessee
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Cheese Chicken Soup Exps Bfbz19 42311 E01 17 7b 6

Cheese Chicken Soup

Kids won’t think twice about eating their vegetables after tasting this cheesy soup. —LaVonne Lundgren, Sioux City, Iowa
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Country Ham and Potatoes

Browned potatoes give simple ham a tasty touch. Not only do the potatoes pick up the flavor of the ham, but they look beautiful! Just add veggies or a salad and dinner is done. —Helen Bridges, Washington, Virginia
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Banana Oatmeal Pancakes

These pancakes have less sodium per serving than other pancakes made from mixes. Decrease sodium even further by stretching the mix with banana, oats and walnuts. In our house we just sprinkle these with a little confectioners' sugar, because the fruit is so sweet you don't need syrup. — Patricia Swart, Galloway , New Jersey
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Lasagna Rolls

My Italian lasagna roll-ups are not complicated; they require only basic ingredients to assemble. Prepared spaghetti sauce helps me save time and get dinner on the table sooner. —Mary Lee Thomas, Logansport, Indiana
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Easy Homemade Chunky Applesauce

Here's a comforting, home-style treat that never loses its appeal. Dish up big bowlfuls and wait for the smiles! —Marilee Cardinal, Burlington, New Jersey
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Maple-Peach Glazed Ham

This is one of my husband's favorite recipes. He makes it regularly for his group of friends on the weekends because it's so good and easy. —Bonnie Hawkins, Elkhorn, Wisconsin
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Lemon Cream Delight Exps Cf219 38851 B12 18 5b 5

Lemon Cream Delight

Indulging in this creamy dessert is like eating cheesecake out of a bowl. Light and luscious, it's a pleasing finish to any meal. —Inge Schermerhorn, Kingston, New Hampshire
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Slow-Cooker Dressing

Here’s an easy dressing that’s perfect for Thanksgiving get-togethers. Once it’s in the slow cooker, you’re free to turn your attention to the other dishes. —Rita Nodland, Bismarck, North Dakota
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Sausage Manicotti

This classic Italian entree comes together in a snap but tastes as if it took hours. It's so tasty and easy to fix. My family always enjoys it. —Carolyn Henderson, Maple Plain, Minnesota
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Cinnamon Cherry Cobbler

It's not a misprint—there really are just two ingredients in this spiced cherry dessert. It's a good brunch for sweet-lovers, too. —Terri Robinson, Muncie, Indiana
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Easy Slow Cooked Swiss Steak Exps Cf2bz19 31586 E12 14 3b 4

Easy Slow-Cooked Swiss Steak

I let my slow cooker simmer up this fuss-free and flavorful Swiss steak. Perfect for busy spring days…the longer it cooks, the better it tastes! —Sarah Burks, Wathena, Kansas
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Black Bean And Beef Tostadas Exps Sdam18 55709 C12 01 3b 1

Black Bean and Beef Tostadas

You only need a handful of ingredients to make one of our family’s favorites. It's also easy to double for company! —Susan Brown, Kansas City, Kansas
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Carolina Style Vinegar BBQ Chicken

Carolina-Style Vinegar BBQ Chicken

I live in Georgia, but I appreciate the tangy, sweet and slightly spicy taste of Carolina vinegar chicken. I make my version in the slow cooker. After the tempting aroma fills the house, your family is sure to be at the dinner table on time! —Ramona Parris, Canton, Georgia
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Smashed Potatoes Exps Cwfm18 35002 D10 12 3b 2

Smashed Potatoes

I wouldn't dream of making my favorite chicken recipe without making these potatoes, too. —Jennifer Shaw of Dorchester, Massachusetts.
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Moist & Tender Turkey Breast

This easy turkey recipe is sure to be popular in your home. Everyone will love the taste, and you'll love how quickly it comes together. —Heidi Vawdrey, Riverton, Utah
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Butterscotch Fruit Dip

If you like the sweetness of butterscotch chips, you'll enjoy this warm rum-flavored fruit dip. I serve it with apple and pear wedges. It holds up for up to two hours in the slow cooker. —Jeaune Hadl Van Meter, Lexington, Kentucky
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Gooey Chocolate-Peanut Bars

These are so easy to make and take no time at all. They’re great to package up for those college kids looking for something from home. Everyone will want this recipe. —Elaine Grimme, Sioux Falls, South Dakota
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Reuben Calzones

I love a Reuben sandwich, so I tried the fillings in a pizza pocket instead of on rye bread. This hand-held dinner is a big winner at our house. —Nickie Frye, Evansville, Indiana
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Savory Potato Skins

For a simple hot snack that really hits the spot on a cool fall evening, put together a plate of these crisp potato skins. —Andrea Holcomb, Torrington, Connecticut
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Shrimp Pasta Alfredo

My son loves any recipe with Alfredo sauce. As a bachelor, shrimp pasta was one of the first recipes he learned to prepare. Now his children ask for it regularly. Gail Lucas, Olive Branch, Mississippi
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Marmalade Meatballs Exps Scmbz18 45349 B01 17 3b 5

Marmalade Meatballs

We had a potluck at work, so I started cooking these meatballs in the morning. By lunchtime they were ready. They were a big hit! —Jeanne Kiss, Greensburg, Pennsylvania
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Italian Beef Hoagies

You'll need just five ingredients to feed a crowd these tender and tangy Italian beef sandwiches. On weekends, I start the roast the night before, so I can shred it in the morning. —Lori Piatt, Danville, Illinois
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Slow-Cooked Beef Vegetable Soup

Convenient frozen veggies and hash browns make this meaty soup a snap to mix up. Simply brown the ground beef, then stir everything together to simmer all day. It's wonderful served with bread and a salad. —Carol Calhoun, Sioux Falls, South Dakota
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Cheeseburger N Fries Casserole Exps 13x9bz19 7899 E10 05 6b 2

Cheeseburger and Fries Casserole

Kids love this casserole because it combines two of their favorite fast foods. And I like the fact that I can whip it up with just four ingredients. —Karen Owen, Rising Sun, Indiana
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Muffin-Tin Lasagnas

This is a super fun way to serve lasagna for make-ahead lunches, potlucks or other fun get-togethers. My daughter took some of these to work and by noon was emailing me for the recipe. —Sally Kilkenny, Granger, Iowa
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Chicken Vegetable Curry Couscous Exps Opbz18 143569 E06 27 3b 9

Chicken & Vegetable Curry Couscous

For my busy family, a partly homemade one-pot meal is the best way to get dinner done in a hurry. Use your favorite blend of frozen veggies and serve with toasted pita bread for smiles all around. —Elizabeth Hokanson, Arborg, Manitoba
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Ham & Cheese Potato Casserole

This recipe makes two cheesy, delicious casseroles. Have one tonight and put the other on ice for a future busy weeknight. It's like having money in the bank when things get hectic! —Kari Adams, Fort Collins, Colorado
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Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta Exps Gbbz19 12349 C11 08 6b 2

Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta

I try to make foods that are not only kid friendly, but are also easy to reheat since my husband works long hours and often eats later than our children. If you like, use reduced-fat cheese and ground turkey for a lighter version. —Melissa Stevens, Elk River, Minnesota
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Cake Berry Campfire Cobbler Exps Bdsmz17 45582 C03 02 5b 6

Cake & Berry Campfire Cobbler

This warm Dutch oven cobbler is one of our favorite ways to end a busy day of fishing, hiking, swimming or rafting. It's yummy with ice cream—and so easy to make! —June Dress, Boise, Idaho
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Bbq Meat Loaf Minis Exps Cwas18 53418 B04 05  2b 6

BBQ Meat Loaf Minis

Kids can have fun helping to prepare these mini meat loaves in muffin cups. For extra spice, we sometimes add 2 teaspoons chili powder and 1 cup of salsa. —Linda Call, Falun, Kansas
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Beer Dip Exps Thso18 33049 D01 25 8b 4

Beer Dip

Ranch dressing mix flavors this easy dip packed with shredded cheese. It's perfect paired with pretzels. Be forewarned, though—it's hard to stop eating once you've started! The beer cheese dip can be made with any type of beer, including nonalcoholic. I've taken it to many parties and I am always asked for the recipe. —Michelle Long, New Castle, Colorado
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Potato Chowder Exps Hscbz 15397 D08 02 1b 13

Potato Chowder

One of the ladies in our church quilting group brought this savory potato soup to a meeting, and everyone loved how the cream cheese and bacon made it so rich. It's easy to assemble in the morning so it can simmer on its own all day. —Anna Mayer, Fort Branch, Indiana
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Cheesy Sausage Potatoes

For a satisfying brunch, try some sausage and potatoes! I never have to worry about leftovers with these tasty potatoes—everyone loves them and the pan always empties. You can also serve these as a side dish at Sunday supper or for potlucks. —Linda Hill, Marseilles, Illinois
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Ham and Bean Stew

You only need five ingredients to fix this thick and flavorful stew. It's so easy to make and always a favorite with my family. I top bowls of it with a sprinkling of shredded cheese. —Teresa D'Amato, East Granby, Connecticut
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Sausage & Crescent Roll Casserole

I made this tasty breakfast casserole with crescent rolls for a baby shower. It saved me; preparing it ahead gave me more time to finish decorating for the party. —Melody Craft, Conroe, Texas
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Creamy Hash Brown Potatoes Exps33233 Scm14342b03 12 6b Rms 3

Creamy Hash Brown Potatoes

Convenient frozen hash browns are the secret behind the cheesy slow-cooker potatoes I cook up for potlucks and big group gatherings. —Julianne Henson, Streamwood, Illinois
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Bacon Breakfast Pizza

I used to make this bacon breakfast pizza for my morning drivers when I worked at a delivery place. And they just loved it. Breakfast pizza is a quick and easy eye-opener that appeals to all ages. —Cathy Shortall, Easton, Maryland
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Eggs & Chorizo Wraps

My husband grew up in Southern California and loves chorizo. We use the spicy sausage in these chorizo and egg wraps that our children call Daddy's Eggs.—April Nissen, Yankton, South Dakota

Amy Glander
Amy is a book editor at Taste of Home where she gets to pour her passions for food and storytelling into trade and series cookbooks. When she’s not writing or editing, you’ll find her antiquing, cooking and baking from her favorite vintage cookbooks and exploring Milwaukee’s urban beauty with her digital SLR in hand.

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