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38 High-Carb Dinner Ideas to Serve the Night Before a Game

Get ready for tomorrow's big game (or match or race) with these high-carb dinners that'll power you up without slowing you down. P.S. We threw in a few desserts to keep you motivated.

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Pizza Potato Toppers

Not only is this recipe quick and easy to make, but it's an economical treat as well. I don't know of a more satisfying way to stretch a half pound of meat! —Sheila Friedrich, Antelope, Montana
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Fresh Corn and Tomato Fettuccine

This recipe combines delicious whole wheat pasta with the best of fresh garden produce. It's tossed with heart-healthy olive oil, and a little feta cheese gives it bite. —Angela Spengler, Tampa, Florida
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Ribbon Pudding Pie

Cool, smooth and creamy, this pretty pie is a slice of heaven for people with diabetes and anyone who likes an easy yet impressive dessert. The lovely pudding layers feature a yummy combination of vanilla, chocolate and butterscotch. —Doris Morgan, Verona, Mississippi
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Italian Snack Bread

I've served this snack bread alongside spaghetti, as an appetizer and as a main dish. Because it stays so tender, I often bake it a day before. —Joan Nowacki, Pewaukee, Wisconsin
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Provolone Ziti Bake

As easy as it is filling and delicious, this Italian meal appeals to everyone—and they won’t even miss the meat. Serve with salad and hot French bread, and watch it disappear. —Vicky Palmer, Albuquerque, New Mexico
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Slow-Cooker Sweet-and-Sour Pork

Chinese food is a big temptation for us, so I lightened up a favorite takeout dish. As the pork cooks, the aroma is beyond mouthwatering. —Elyse Ellis, Layton, Utah
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Pillow-Soft Dinner Rolls

The dough for these rolls has a nice texture and is simple to shape. The recipe came from an old church cookbook. —Norma Harder, Weyakwin, Saskatchewan
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Old-Fashioned Rice Pudding

This comforting dessert is a wonderful way to end any meal. As a girl, I always waited eagerly for the first heavenly bite. Today, my husband likes to top his with a scoop of ice cream. —Sandra Melnychenko, Grandview, Manitoba
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Summer Carbonara

Basil and bacon make best summer buds in this smoky-sweet pasta. I pair it with a simple spring mix salad with balsamic dressing and a glass of good Chardonnay or cold iced tea. —Cathy Dudderar, Lexington, Kentucky
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Root Beer Float Cake

I add root beer to both the cake batter and fluffy frosting of this summery dessert to get that great root beer float taste. Serve this moist cake to a bunch of hungry kids and watch it disappear! —Kat Thompson, Prineville, Oregon
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Broccoli-Pasta Side Dish

I love to fix new recipes for my husband, Robert, and our children. With garlic and cheese, this broccoli pasta is a tasty way to get kids to eat their veggies. —Judi Lacourse, Mesa, Arizona
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Southwestern Rice

I created this colorful side dish after eating something similar at a restaurant. It complements any Tex-Mex meal wonderfully. Sometimes I add cubes of grilled chicken breast to the rice to make it a meal in itself. —Michelle Dennis, Clarks Hill, Indiana
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Garlic-Chive Baked Fries

Yes, you do want fries with that—especially these crispy, golden fries, full of garlic flavor and just a little bit of heat. —Steve Westphal, Wind Lake, Wisconsin
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Spicy Sweet Shrimp with Pineapple Salsa

I wanted to find a way to use pineapple salsa in a recipe. I came up with this super simple, delicious and quick dish! —Erin Schillo, Northfield, Ohio
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Bernie's Pork Chop Sandwiches

My aunt worked in Butte, Montana, and whenever we visited we had pork chop sandwiches. This recipe is a take on that old favorite. —Jeanette Kotecki, Billings, Montana
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Turkey Picadillo

I serve this over shortcut pasta or egg noodles and garnish it with sour cream and a sprinkling of chopped scallions. Any leftovers reheat wonderfully. —Anita Pinney, Santa Rosa, California
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Sesame Chicken Noodle Salad

This is my go-to recipe when I have no time. It’s quick, easy and you can use almost anything from the fridge. —Jess Apfe, Berkeley, California
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No-Knead Casserole Bread

You'll love this cheddar bread made in a casserole dish. It is one of the easiest yeast breads to make. And since it calls for rapid-rise yeast, you don't have to wait long to enjoy it! —Peggy Key, Grant, Alabama
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Mini Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies

Peanut butter lovers go nuts for these rich little sandwich cookies. On a hot day, sandwich ice cream between the cookies instead of frosting. It cools you right down. —Keri Wolfe, Nappanee, Indiana
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Maple-Walnut Sweet Potatoes

Topped with dried cherries and walnuts, this side is downright delicious. Even people who aren't into sweet potatoes will grab a second scoop. —Sarah Herse, Brooklyn, New York
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Garlic Mashed Red Potatoes

These creamy garlic mashed potatoes are so good, you can serve them plain—no butter or gravy is needed. This is one of our favorite red potato recipes. —Valerie Mitchell, Olathe, Kansas
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Quinoa & Black Bean Stuffed Peppers

If you're thinking about a meatless meal, give these no-fuss peppers a try. They come together with just a few ingredients and put a tasty spin on a low-fat dinner! —Cindy Reams, Philipsburg, PA
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Sweet Potato Stuffing

Mom likes to make sure there will be enough stuffing to satisfy our large family. For our holiday gatherings, she slow-cooks this tasty sweet potato dressing in addition to the traditional stuffing cooked inside the turkey. —Kelly Pollock, London, Ontario
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Roasted Tater Rounds with Green Onions & Tarragon

I am crazy for potatoes, especially when they're roasted and toasted. Toss them with fresh herbs and green onions for a bold finish. —Ally Phillips, Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
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Southern Barbecue Spaghetti Sauce

I revamped our favorite sloppy joe recipe into this thick spaghetti sauce that simmers in the slow cooker. The flavor is jazzy enough to be interesting to adults, yet mild enough for the kids to enjoy. —Rhonda Melanson, Sarnia, Ontario
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Pesto Pasta & Potatoes

Although this healthy pasta dish is pretty simple to begin with, it's made even easier because you can throw the green beans and pasta into one big pot to cook. —Laura Flowers, Moscow, Idaho
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Vermicelli Rice Pilaf

At the holidays, I use butter and white rice in this recipe, just like my mom and generations of Armenian women did. But most days I saute the vermicelli in olive oil and substitute brown rice for white. —Jean Ecos, Hartland, Wisconsin
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Pumpkin-Chorizo Bow Ties

Chicken sausage is such a convenient way to add flavor to healthy dishes. If your family doesn't like spicy food, skip the red pepper flakes and use a mild-flavored sausage. The pumpkin really stands out that way. —Sharon Ricci, Mendon, New York
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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
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Caribbean Chicken Stir-Fry

Fruit cocktail in stir-fry? You might be surprised by how good this dish is. It's a promising go-to option when time's tight. —Jeanne Holt, Mendota Heights, Minnesota
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Reese's Chocolate Snack Cake

My family constantly requests this cake is constantly. I don't mind making it because it's surprisingly low-cal. And its yellow and orange toppings make it the perfect dessert for a Halloween party. —Eileen Travis, Ukiah, California
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Lemon Date Couscous

Couscous is a great way to deliver bold flavors, and it cooks so quickly. This makes a wonderful accompaniment to all sorts of main dishes. —Roxanne Chan, Albany, California
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Sweet Potato Fries with Blue Cheese

I used to avoid sweet potatoes as a child, mostly because they came out of a can. When I heard of the many health benefits, I began trying fresh sweet potatoes with my husband. Now we enjoy fries topped with cinnamon sugar or cayenne pepper. We've also discovered how awesome they are with blue cheese. —Katrina Krumm, Apple Valley, Minnesota
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Grilled Southwestern Steak Salad

Pasta salad loaded with steak, peppers and onions makes both my boyfriend and me happy. Plus, it’s versatile! We serve it hot, room temperature or cold. —Yvonne Starlin, Westmoreland, Tennessee
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Smoky White Beans & Ham

I had never made or eaten this dish before meeting my husband here in Kentucky. Now I make it at least once a week. I serve it with some homemade sweet cornbread. Delicious! —Christine Duffy, Sturgis, Kentucky
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New Orleans-Style Scalloped Corn

This colorful casserole is popular for family gatherings in many New Orleans homes. I started making it years ago, and now our grown sons include it on their own menus. —Priscilla Gilbert, Indian Harbour Beach, Florida
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Lemon Mushroom Orzo

Lemon Mushroom Orzo

Sometimes I serve this side dish chilled and other times we enjoy it hot. It has a pleasant tinge of lemon and a nice crunch from pecans. —Shelly Nelson, Akeley, Minnesota
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Apple-Walnut Cake with Orange Glaze

I tinkered with a plain apple cake recipe to create this moist, delicious winner. The result: old-fashioned goodness with a heavenly aroma! This cake is the perfect fall treat or holiday dessert, but it’s also great as a special breakfast or brunch item. —Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, Florida

Ellie Martin Cliffe
Now an executive editor at Taste of Home, Ellie has been writing about food and parenting for more than a decade. When she isn't at TOH HQ, she's likely trying gluten- and dairy-free recipes, canning whatever's in season, listening to anything with a fiddle, or playing Uno with her family.
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