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Mom’s Best Comfort Foods

Get ready to feel like a kid again with the most comforting recipes from moms across the country.

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Mom's Macaroni and Cheese

The wonderful homemade goodness of this creamy Velveeta mac and cheese makes it a staple side dish in my mother's kitchen and in mine as well. It has tender noodles and a crowd-pleasing golden crumb topping. —Maria Costello, Monroe, North Carolina
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Mom's Chicken Tetrazzini

Rotisserie chicken turns this baked spaghetti into a warm, cozy meal our family craves. If we have leftover turkey, we use that, too. —Jennifer Petrino, Newnan, Georgia
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Mom's Meat Loaf

Mom made the best meatloaf, and now I do, too. When I first met my husband, he didn't care for homemade meatloaf, but this won him over. —Michelle Beran, Claflin, Kansas
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Mom's Italian Bread

I think Mom used to bake at least four of these tender loaves at once, and they never lasted long. She served the bread with every Italian meal. I love it toasted, too. —Linda Harrington, Windham, New Hampshire
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Rhubarb Cherry Pie

As a young girl, I dreamed of being able to make pies like my mother. (Her rolling pin, which I inherited, was 2 ft. long and 8 in. wide!) In fact, this is Mom's rhubarb strawberry pie recipe with cherries instead. I first made this pie for a church gathering 20 years ago—ever since, everyone's looked for it at every potluck! —Eunice Hurt, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
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Mom's Roast Beef

This well-seasoned roast is Mom’s specialty. Everyone loves slices of the fork-tender roast beef and its savory gravy, and people always ask what her secret ingredients are. Now you have the delicious recipe for our favorite dish! —Linda Gaido, New Brighton, Pennsylvania
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Sour Cream Cucumbers

We have a tradition at our house to serve this creamy cucumber salad with the other Hungarian specialties my mom learned to make from the women at church. It’s especially good during the summer when the cucumbers are freshly picked from the garden. —Pamela Eaton, Monclova, Ohio
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Mom's Chocolate Bread

My mom made this divine chocolaty bread for holidays or at special request. I always think of my family when I smell it baking. —Rachel Rhodes, Princeton, North Carolina
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Beef Short Ribs in Burgundy Sauce

As an Army general, my stepdad got this beef short ribs recipe from his aide, who said it was his mother's best Sunday meal. It’s a mouthwatering family favorite. —Judy Batson, Tampa, Florida
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Quick Cream of Mushroom Soup

My daughter-in-law, a gourmet cook, served this cream of mushroom soup recipe as the first course for a holiday dinner. She received the recipe from her mom and graciously shared it with me. Now I'm happy to share it with my own friends and family. —Anne Kulick, Phillipsburg, New Jersey
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Moist Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake recipe with coffee reminds me of my grandmother because it was one of her specialties. I bake it often for family parties, and it always brings back fond memories. The cake is light and airy with a delicious chocolate taste. This recipe is a keeper! —Patricia Kreitz, Richland, Pennsylvania
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Cheeseburger Cups

A terrific recipe for moms with young kids and busy lives, this simple, inexpensive dish is made with handy ingredients and takes just a short time. Best of all, kids will go absolutely crazy for these darling dinner bites! —Jeri Millhouse, Ashland, Ohio
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Fried Chicken Strips

I recently made this recipe of Mom's for my in-laws and they told me it was the "best fried chicken ever." Slicing the chicken breasts into strips cuts down on cooking time and ensures every piece is crunchy and evenly coated. Serve the homemade chicken tenders with your favorite dipping sauce. —Genny Monchamp, Redding, California
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Banana Bread Pudding

When I visited my grandmother in summer, I always looked forward to the comforting banana bread pudding she'd make. With its crusty golden top, custard-like inside and smooth vanilla sauce, this pudding is a real homespun dessert. Now I make it for my grandchildren. —Mary Detweiler, Middlefield, Ohio
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Easy Beef Stroganoff

I wanted to lighten up my mother-in-law's wonderful stroganoff recipe and came up with this tasty spin. In our home, we call my easy beef stroganoff "special noodles." —Jennifer Riordan, St. Louis, Missouri
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Drop Doughnuts

For 30 years, I've been using leftover mashed potatoes to make these light and fluffy doughnuts. The recipe was originally created by my neighbor's mother-in-law. The doughnuts are great for breakfast or as a snack anytime. —Marilyn Kleinfall, Elk Grove Village, Illinois
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Cauliflower Casserole

To dress up cauliflower, Mom used a delightful mixture of a cheesy sauce, bright red and green pepper pieces, and crushed cornflakes. We enjoyed this casserole so much that leftovers were rare. -Linda McGinty, Parma, Ohio
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Mom's Buttermilk Biscuits

These fluffy biscuits are so tasty slathered with butter or used to mop up every last drop of gravy off your plate. I can still see Mom pulling these tender gems out of the oven. —Vera Reid, Laramie, Wyoming
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Turkey Chili

I've taken my mother's turkey chili recipe and made it thicker and more robust. It's a favorite, especially in fall and winter. —Celesta Zanger, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
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Sausage and Spinach Tortellini Soup

My husband’s grandmother used to make this soup with her own homemade sausage and tortellini. Since the recipe has been passed down, we don’t make those ingredients from scratch, but this version is almost as good as hers. It's also an excellent way to get the kids to eat spinach!—Joyce Lulewicz, Brunswick, Ohio
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Chicken Escarole Soup with Meatballs

This is an old recipe from southern Italy. My mother gave it to me when I was first married. It started out as a holidays-only dish...but my children and grandchildren love it so much that we have it every chance we get!—Norma Manna, Hobe Sound, Florida
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Italian Pasta Sauce

As a special part of their wedding buffet, my daughter Kris' husband fixed a big batch of this thick flavorful pasta sauce. The recipe was brought by his grandmother from Italy more than 80 years ago. —Judy Braun, Juneau, Wisconsin
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Mom's Sweet Potato Bake

Mom loves sweet potatoes and fixed them often in this creamy, comforting baked sweet potato casserole. With its nutty topping, this side dish could almost serve as a dessert. It's a yummy treat! —Sandi Pichon, Memphis, Tennessee
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Salisbury Steak Supreme

When I was running late one night, a go-to recipe of my mom's popped into my head. Now it's one of my husband's favorites. It also makes a fast and satisfying solution for what to serve unexpected company. —Patricia Swart, Galloway, New Jersey
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Caraway Seed Rye Bread

My parents were immigrants from Czechoslovakia and my mother would pull out this rye bread recipe when guests came over for dinner. Every time I bake it, I get nostalgic for those days. —Millie Feather, Baroda, Michigan
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Mashed Potatoes with Cheddar

Who doesn’t love fluffy, homemade mashed potatoes? Make them even better with sharp cheddar cheese. To get them really creamy, my mother's secret was to add whipping cream instead of half-and-half. —Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon
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Mom's Chicken Noodle Soup

My mother was a pastor's wife, and she did a lot of cooking for potlucks. This recipe's one she created herself. I serve it frequently to my husband and to our four children. Every one of them is a hearty eater! —Marlene Doolittle, Story City, Iowa
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My Mother's Lemony Chicken with Broccoli

My mom used to make super succulent chicken with broccoli for our family in Montana. The few lucky guests invited for supper could not stop raving. —Jessy Drummond, Springfield, Tennessee
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Mom's Maple-Apple Pie

Mom's apple pie might be a cliché, but others have tried and failed to rival my mom's recipe. My siblings and I panic when anyone else takes the holiday apple pie assignment, but we make sure Mom is making hers, too. —Rebecca Little, Park Ridge, Illinois
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Mom's Italian Beef Sandwiches

My mom made the best Italian beef. I’ve added to it over the years, but it’s still her recipe. She made these sandwiches for family reunions, and there were never leftovers. —Mary McVey, Colfax, North Carolina
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Best-Ever Fried Chicken

Crispy, juicy and perfectly seasoned, this really is the best fried chicken recipe, ever. Summer reunions and neighborly gatherings will never be the same. When I was growing up, my parents had a farm, and every year, Dad would hire teenage boys to help by haying time. They looked forward to coming because they knew they would be treated to some of Mom's deep fryer recipes, including this delicious fried chicken. —Lola Clifton, Vinton, Virginia
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Mashed Potato Beef Casserole

This recipe came out of my mother's cookbook. The smudges and splatters show that Mom used it extensively to feed our large family. The tarragon really comes through to make a flavorful main dish. Now I prepare this recipe for our four children and six grandchildren. —Helen McGeorge, Abbotsford, British Columbia
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English Muffin Bread Loaf

Many years ago, a good friend gave me her mother's recipe for this delightful bread, and I've made it ever since. Toast it up for breakfast and don't forget to slather on your favorite jam. —Jane Zielinski, Rotterdam Junction, New York
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Mom's Paella

I enjoy cooking ethnic foods, especially those that call for lots of rice. Like my mom, I often prepare this dish for special Sunday get-togethers. Traditional paella uses saffron, but turmeric is a budget-friendly alternative. —Ena Quiggle, Goodhue, Minnesota
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Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

When I was a girl, Mama used Texas longhorn cheese in this recipe. After it melted all over the macaroni, I loved to dig in and see how many strings of cheese would follow my spoonful. —Imogene Hutton, Brownwood, Texas
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Blackberry Apple Pie

My mother made this pie so often, she could do it with her eyes closed! We picked the berries ourselves, and the apples came from the trees in our orchard. I can still taste the delicious combination of fruits encased in Mother's flaky pie crust. —Fran Stanfield, Wilmington , Ohio
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Mom's Beef Lasagna

This meat lasagna recipe is one of my mom's specialties. It's a hearty main dish that gets requested time and time again. The from-scratch sauce makes each cheesy slice extra flavorful and softer-textured than other versions. —Kim Orr, West Grove, Pennsylvania
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Momma’s Turkey Stew with Dumplings

I love my slow cooker, especially during the holidays. My mother used to make this turkey stew every year with our Thanksgiving leftovers. The recipe is simple and really celebrates the natural flavors of good, simple ingredients. To this day, it is one of my favorite meals. —Stephanie Rabbitt-Schapp, Cincinnati, Ohio
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Spiced Devil's Food Cake

One of my mom's friends gave her this recipe when I was a child, and it has been a family favorite ever since. When your chocolate sweet tooth acts up, this really hits the spot! —Linda Yeamans, Ashland, Oregon
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Baked Beans with Bacon

This recipe was one of my mother's and was always a hit. The chopped jalapeno pepper spices it up a bit. It's an easy-to-remember recipe because most of the ingredients are 1/2 cup.—Nadine Brissey, Jenks, Oklahoma
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Mom's Swedish Meatballs

Mom fixed this Swedish meatball recipe for all sorts of family dinners, potluck suppers and PTA meetings. The scent of browning meat is intoxicating. Add to that the sweet smell of onions caramelizing, and everyone’s mouth starts watering. —Marybeth Mank, Mesquite, Texas
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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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Traditional Hot Cross Buns

On Easter morning, our family always looked forward to a breakfast of dyed hard boiled eggs and Mom's hot cross buns. I still serve these for special brunches or buffets. —Barbara Jean Lull, Fullerton, California
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Mom's White Lasagna

My mom made this lasagna for special occasions, such as birthdays. When she passed, I inherited her cookbooks—tucked inside one of them, I found this recipe folded into a letter she wrote to me while I was stationed overseas. It's a hearty, rich dish that reminds me of home. —Janet Wing, Minot, North Dakota
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Spanish Noodles & Ground Beef

Bacon adds crunch to this comforting stovetop supper my mom used to make when I was a kid. Now I prepare it for my own family. —Kelli Jones, Perris, California
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German Butter Pound Cake

Cardamom and lemon peel mix with almond and vanilla flavors to add zip to a classic butter pound cake. — Kristine M. Chayes, Smithtown, New York
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Lemon Poppy Seed Slices

My mom taught me to bake, and I use lots of recipes from her abundant collection, including this one for lemon cookies. —Pauline Piraino, Bay Shore, New York
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Mother's Rolls

These golden cloverleaf dinner rolls were one of my mother's specialties. We always looked forward to them on holidays and special occasions. —Patricia Baxter, Great Bend, Kansas

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