25 Foods Ina Garten Loves to Cook (and Eat!)

The Queen of the Hamptons knows all there is to know about making her guests happy, but what foods delight her? Find a mix of Ina Garten recipes and inspired dishes.

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Ina Garten "The Barefoot Contessa" Book Signing At William Sonoma in Santa Monica - November 14, 2008MICHAEL BEZJIAN/GETTY IMAGES

Ina Garten is a leading lady in the cooking world. Her best-selling cookbooks, kitchen essentials and beloved Barefoot Contessa show have opened up a whole new culinary world! Here’s what Ina loves to cook and eat.

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Meat Loaf

Ina Garten is the queen of go-to dinners and this is no exception. Her attention to detail and focus on simple, comforting meals are what make dishes like this one easy to put in your dinner rotations. This meat loaf is nostalgic and will have you thinking of your childhood.
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Perfect Roast Chicken

The one meal Ina simply couldn’t live without is roast chicken. She even cites it as one of the reasons her husband, Jeffrey, proposed marriage in 1968.
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Beatty’s Chocolate Cake

The secret ingredient to this rich, chocolate cake? Freshly brewed hot coffee. But don’t worry! Adding coffee to your chocolate cake won’t make it taste like mocha. Instead, coffee and instant espresso help accentuate chocolate’s natural flavors.

Ina’s recipe for Boston Cream Pie has a secret ingredient, too.

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Chicken Soup

Ina Garten proves once again the value of homemade cooking. The scratch-made chicken stock elevates this dish and even has health benefits! While you might not always have the time to prepare fully homemade meals, it’s worth trying when you can for some spectacular results.
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Shrimp Scampi

Ina Garten’s 5-star shrimp scampi is ready in just 30 minutes. If you’re looking for a beginner’s meal, this is the dinner for you. The simple flavors come together for a dish worth repeating.
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Steel-Cut Oatmeal

Ina Garten says she’s eaten the same breakfast every day for ten years. She loves Irish oatmeal, also known as steel-cut oats. Nutritious and delicious, no one should ever doubt Ina’s taste.

Learn more about oatmeal’s health benefits.

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Chocolate Mousse

Ina’s most-loved recipe from another famous cook is Julia Child’s chocolate mousse. Both chef’s know that a lot of butter goes a long way, especially in chocolate. The silky dessert is rich, sophisticated and easy to make.

Read the cooking lessons Julia Child taught us, too.

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Overnight Mac and Cheese

Ina Garten strikes again with this overnight mac and cheese that’s perfect for a potluck or party. It combines twisty pasta with Gruyere, cheddar and plenty of cream, then tops it with a crispy gratin.
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Parmesan Polenta

One of the Barefoot Contessa’s go-to comfort foods is creamy Parmesan polenta. She serves hers with meatballs or ratatouille for the perfect winter meal.
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Lemon Capellini

You only need 15 minutes and three ingredients to make Ina Garten’s lemon capellini, or angel hair pasta. With lemon juice, zest, butter, salt and pepper, the result is light and fresh.
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Chicken Stew

Instead of a chicken pot pie, Ina Garten likes to make a chicken stew and top it with flaky biscuits. She names it as one of her all-time favorite comfort foods, and we can easily see why. We think she would approve of this soup version on a cold night.

Craving the classic? Here are our most comforting chicken pot pie recipes.

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Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

This dessert is perfect for spring. The crispy crumble topping couples perfectly with the warm sizzling strawberry mixture. You’ll want this dish all to yourself, and we don’t blame you!

For another taste of spring, check out Ina’s crab nachos.

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Avocado Toast

Ina doesn’t get super-fancy with her everyday meals at home. She says the most extravagant thing she makes for herself is avocado toast topped with an egg! Her secret is that rather than slicing the avocado, she like to smash it over the bread for a nice and even texture.
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Chocolate Pecan Scones

There’s nothing Ina Garten loves more than a good butter recipe. These buttery, nutty and chocolatey scones are perfect for brunch. Best served with tea, they are light and airy.
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Beef Bourguignon

Beef bourguignon is a French dish in which beef is stewed in red wine and beef stock along with pearl onions, mushrooms and braised vegetables. This was one of Julia Child’s signature dishes. Ina Garten’s version is simplified, tender and delicious! It’s a fancy night out right from the comfort of your own home.
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Hot Dogs

Somewhat surprisingly, Ina Garten says her last meal would consist of a hot dog with French fries from Frenchie to Go in Paris. She even posted the hotdog to her instagram with the caption “best lunch ever!”

To make this classic even more delish, don’t miss our top hot dog recipes!

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Whiskey Sour

Ina Garten’s favorite cocktail of all time is a whiskey sour. This spin on the classic drink is flavored with honey, lemon and ginger beer.

Learn how to make this drink, and more classic cocktails.

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Apple Crisp

This old-fashioned apple crisp starts with plenty of apples and is piled high with an oat streusel topping. It’s the ideal dessert for Thanksgiving, or just for a nice night in. Ina Garten says to top it with good vanilla ice cream for the best result.
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Quick and Easy Lemon Chicken

This delicious lemon chicken is great for a weeknight meal. It’s made in under an hour and can be served with an assortment of veggies. In true Ina Garten fashion, the ingredients are simple but the flavor pay off is huge. If you want to try more recipes, learn to make Ina Garten’s chicken in a pot with orzo.
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Beef Bolognese

Another of Ina Garten’s favorite comfort foods is bolognese, which she makes using sirloin, plus heavy cream, a pinch of nutmeg and a splash of wine. Sounds perfect for any night of the week! To make it creamier, just add butter to the sauce.
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French Omelet

The classy Ina Garten’s favorite restaurant is Café de Flore in Paris. She loves to go and enjoy an omelet with a glass of champagne. Omelets, according to the Barefoot Contessa, are simple once you get the hang of them. We couldn’t agree more!
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Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Ina has a number of favorite Thanksgiving recipes, including sausage-stuffed mushrooms, turkey roulade, pumpkin spice cupcakes and balsamic-roasted Brussels sprouts. Brussels sprouts are slowly making their way into people’s hearts after years of a bad reputation. The quickest way to show this veggie some appreciation? Through this sheet pan recipe that’s so similar to Ina Garten’s recipe.

Next, check out Ina’s turkey hack that will improve the taste of any Thanksgiving turkey.

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In-N-Out Burger

Ina Garten says In-N-Out Burger is the only fast food restaurant she’ll visit. And for good reason! People might have differing opinions over which fast food joint has the best burger, but you can’t deny that at In-N-Out, you really get the most bang for your buck.

For anyone who’s not on the West Coast, check out our In-N-Out Burger copycat recipes.

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Outrageous Brownies

What makes these brownies so outrageous? Is it the chocolate or the walnuts? Neither! Similar to Ina Garten’s chocolate cake recipe, the secret ingredient is instant coffee that brings out the natural chocolate flavors.
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Turkey Lasagna

Ina Garten’s take on lasagna uses turkey sausage and mozzarella. It’s rich and thick, but not watery like other lasagna recipes. This will quickly become a staple in your recipe collection.