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55 Vacation Recipes We Brought Back from Our Trip

Great vacation recipes are the ultimate souvenir. Check out the dishes that readers have picked up on road trips, cross-country travels and journeys around the globe.

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Grilled Huli Huli Chicken

I got this grilled huli huli chicken recipe from a friend while living in Hawaii. It sizzles with the flavors of brown sugar, ginger and soy sauce. Huli means “turn” in Hawaiian. This sweet and savory glaze is fantastic on pork chops, too. —Sharon Boling, San Diego, California

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Looking for more? Check out these recipes from around the world.

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Mango Getaway Bars

I’ve always enjoyed the flavor of mango, so I created this recipe to feature the sweet tropical fruit. —Patricia Harmon, Baden, Pennsylvania
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Polynesian Macaroni Salad Exps Tohjj21 258994 E02 03 11b 2

Polynesian-Inspired Macaroni Salad

I have always loved SPAM, so I decided to combine it with pineapple to make this Polynesian-inspired macaroni salad recipe. It reminds me of vacationing in Hawaii. —Susan Bickta, Kutztown, Pennsylvania
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Coconut Pineapple Upside Down Cake Exps Tohrc20 252032 E06 23 11b 3

Pineapple Coconut Upside-Down Cake

This recipe is one of my favorites! The tropical flavors remind me of being on vacation with my family in the Caribbean—I have so many fun memories. —Stephanie Pichelli, Toronto, Ontario
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Slow Cooked Chicken Caesar Wraps Exps Scm2bz20 191086 E01 22 7b 15

Slow-Cooked Chicken Caesar Wraps

I first made these slow-cooker chicken Caesar wraps for our daughter who loves Caesar salads, then later for our extended family while on vacation. It's such an easy meal—perfect for times when you'd rather be outside than inside cooking all day. —Christine Hadden, Whitman, Massachusetts
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Skinny Huckleberry Cocktail

I re-created a skinny huckleberry cocktail I had during a vacation in Idaho and Wyoming. The flavor of vodka and the drink mix can be varied to suit your taste preferences. —Susan Franck, Rapid City, South Dakota
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Macadamia Sunshine Bars

Your guests will be delighted with my bars. They are packed with nuts and dried fruit. I think that when you take a bite of this treat it’s like a mini-vacation to a Polynesian paradise. —Jeanne Holt, Mendota Heights, Minnesota

We can’t get enough of these tropical recipes.

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Dried Cranberry Scones Exps Tohca19 57909 B03 19 3b Rms 3

Dried Cranberry Scones

I go on vacation with my best friend to Michigan every July. Her cousin is allowed to come, too—but only if she brings her special cherry scones! I make them with cranberries for the holidays. Don't try to double this recipe. If you need more than 12, make two separate batches of dough. —Sherry Leonard, Whitsett, North Carolina
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Sparkling Sangria

This is my sixth attempt at re-creating a sangria my friends and I enjoyed at a Pennsylvania inn. We all agree it's as good as—if not better than—the one we remember!—Pam Mele, Franklin, New Jersey
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Jamaican Ham And Bean Soup Exps Ssbz18 33265 B04 10  5b 2

Jamaican Ham and Bean Soup

"Island vacation in a bowl” might be the best way to describe this hearty soup. A splash of lime juice and a hint of jerk seasoning add tropical taste. —Mary Lou Timpson, Colorado City, Arizona
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Chipotle Mexican Street Corn Dip With Goat Cheese Exps Sdjj19 234246 B02 06 4b Rms 4

Chipotle Mexican Street Corn Dip with Goat Cheese

I was craving Mexican street corn that I had during a recent trip to Puerto Vallarta, so I came up with this fabulous dip. It blends the traditional profile of the popular street food with updated flavors for a tasty twist. —Joseph A Sciascia, San Mateo, California

Check out more of our favorite Mexican eats.

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Bourbon Peach Jam

Bourbon has been popular at our house since we visited the Kentucky Bourbon Trail a few years ago. Every bite of this jam reminds me of that fun trip. —Katie Ferrier, Houston, Texas
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Luau Pork Lettuce Wraps

I first made this recipe when our family took a trip to a beach house in Florida. On my night to cook, I did a luau theme and used this recipe as the appetizer. These are still a favorite today! —Joyce Conway, Westerville, Ohio
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Circus Peanut Gelatin

Circus peanuts are one of the most popular candies in my hometown's old-fashioned candy shop. When I saw this circus peanut Jell-O recipe, I knew just where to buy them. Kids love the cool fruity taste, and older folks enjoy the trip down memory lane. —Ruthanne Mengel, De Motte, Indiana
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Margarita Gelatin Shots

Everyone's favorite cocktail becomes a celebratory shot! Serve this margarita gelatin shot recipe in shot glasses garnished to look like mini margaritas or, for a fun twist, pour the mixture into hollowed-out lime halves, chill and then slice into wedges. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Rhubarb Beef

My daughter made a trip around the world and brought home this recipe from Iran. I've served it often to many of my friends, and they always seem to savor its different, zingy taste. —Bertha Davis, Springfield, Missouri
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Slow-Cooker Peach Crumble

I look forward to going on our beach vacation every year, but I don't always relish the time spent cooking for everybody. This slow-cooker dessert (or breakfast!) gives me more time to lie in the sun and enjoy the waves. Melty ice cream is a must. —Colleen Delawder, Herndon, Virginia
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Favorite Baked Potato Soup

My husband and I enjoyed a delicious baked potato soup at a restaurant while on vacation and I came home determined to duplicate the flavor. It took me five years to get the taste right! —Joann Goetz, Genoa, Ohio
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Cherry Chip Waffles with Cherry Syrup

While on a recent trip to Door County, Wisconsin, for a family reunion, I created this yummy recipe using some freshly picked cherries. It was a hit with all ages and everyone was asking for more. —Heather Karow, Burnett, Wisconsin
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Gouda And Roasted Potato Bread Exps Tohon19 236979 E06 13 3b 7

Gouda and Roasted Potato Bread

Our family tried roasted potato bread at a bakery on a road trip, and I came up with my own recipe when we realized we lived much too far away to have it regularly. It makes for a really amazing roast beef sandwich and also goes well with soups. —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Matt's Jerk Chicken

Get ready for a trip to the Islands. You may think jerk chicken is complicated, but really, all it takes is time. Throw on some tunes, grab an icy drink and prepare to be transported. Have a smoker? You can smoke the chicken first and finish it on the grill. —Jenn Hall, Collingswood, New Jersey
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Lime Raspberry Pie With Coconut Cream Exps Hc16 187119 C07 06 7b 1

Lime-Raspberry Pie with Coconut Cream

During my family trips to Florida, I've had Key lime pie from many restaurants, and each one is different. I wanted to create my own spin on the pie to make it my signature dessert. Whipped egg whites in the filling make it light and mousselike, sweet raspberries balance the tartness, and coconut and cashews amp up the tropical flavor. Garnish with fresh raspberries and toasted shredded coconut if you'd like. —Elise Easterling, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
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Mushroom Spinach Risotto Exps Tohca20 84504 E10 17 7b 1

Mushroom & Spinach Risotto

I had never tried mushroom spinach risotto until a trip to Paris a few years ago. Since then, I worked hard to create a recipe that tasted similar, and I think I finally succeeded with this version. It is very rich and indulgent! I often add cubed cooked chicken to make this a more satisfying and protein-packed main dish. —Sandi Ogden, Clinton, Missouri
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Greek Tilapia

While on a trip through the Greek islands, my husband and I had a dish that we loved. I tried to duplicate it by combining several different recipes and came up with this. —Sally Burrell, Idaho Falls, Idaho
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Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes with Pancetta

Classic American mashed potatoes take a trip to Italy with the flavors of olive oil, garlic, and pancetta. —Bryan Kennedy, Kaneohe, Hawaii
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Slow Cooked Ropa Vieja Exps Tohescodr20 239047 E02 11 4b 1

Slow-Cooked Ropa Vieja

I traveled to Cuba a few years back and experienced some of the best food imaginable. One staple dish stuck out more than the rest, and that was ropa vieja. I had multiple variations, and when I returned home, I began to experiment making ropa vieja in the slow cooker. I went through roughly 5 trials before coming to this recipe. —Joshua Boyer, Traverse City, Michigan
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Tortilla Crunch Turkey Cutlets

I was inspired to create more Southwestern-flavored foods from our travels there. This is a great way to use leftover chips and salsa. You can substitute chicken cutlets for the turkey if you like. —Lisa Varner, El Paso, Texas
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Pineapple Grilled Chicken Exps Ft19 45180 F 0613 1 1

Grilled Pineapple Chicken

A trip to Hawaii is easy with this juicy grilled pineapple chicken. Simply give it a quick marinade, fire up the grill and let it sizzle. We love this low-carb recipe! —Charlotte Rogers, Virginia Beach, Virginia
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Grilled Chicken and Mango Skewers

The inspiration for this recipe came from the charbroiled chicken skewers I used to enjoy while strolling along Calle Ocho in Miami on Sunday afternoons. Feel free to garnish with sesame seeds or spritz with fresh lime juice. —Wolfgang Hanau, West Palm Beach, Florida
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Spanish Marinated Mushrooms Exps Thca19 64646 C08 22 3b 1

Spanish Marinated Mushrooms

I had some amazing marinated mushrooms in a little tapas bar in Seville when I was stationed in Spain with the U.S. Navy. A couple of months ago, I decided to see if I could make something close, and here’s what I came up with. The longer you keep them refrigerated, the stronger the vinegar taste will be. —Patricia Mitchell, Ingleside, Texas
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Greek Orzo Chicken

Take your first bite and set sail for a dinner-table tour of the sunny Greek isles. Sprinkle lemon zest on top to give it a little extra flair. —Angela Buchanan, Longmont, Colorado
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Raspberry Ribbons

I make these attractive, buttery cookies to serve at our remote guest lodge, and all the cooks in the kitchen are addicted to them! —Patsy Wolfenden, Golden, British Columbia
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Souvlaki Pita Pockets Exps Rc20 251248 07 14 E 6b 14

Chicken Souvlaki Pitas

These chicken souvlaki pitas are a favorite at our house, especially in summer. With just a few ingredients and a grill, we can enjoy a gourmet-style Greek dinner that's a snap to put together. Of course, a simple Greek salad on the side is a nice addition. — Becky A. Drees, Pittsfield, Massachusetts
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Muffuletta Wellingtons

This recipe is inspired by the muffuletta, a sandwich originating in New Orleans made with deli meat and olive salad. These are snack-sized sandwiches with all the goodness of a muffuletta baked inside pizza dough. You can substitute the meats for your favorites, like turkey or roast beef. —Chelsea Madren, Fullerton, California
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Mediterranean Sole Exps Tohas 244626 F04 13 1b Home 6

Mediterranean Sole

This Mediterranean sole recipe may be simple, but it's elegant and incredibly flavorful. Steaming in parchment is an easy and healthy way to cook fish and vegetables. Any white fish will work in place of the sole. —Andrea Potischman, Menlo Park, California
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Coconut Cold-Brew Latte

Cold-brew lattes are all the rage at coffee shops, but they're so easy to make at home. This coconut cold-brew version is ridiculously refreshing and it's vegan! —Natalie Larsen, Columbia, Maryland
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Moroccan Lamb Lettuce Wraps Exps Thedscodr20 239368 B01 10 5b 4

Moroccan Lamb Lettuce Wraps

I am a huge fan of both Moroccan lamb and lettuce wraps. This combination—with the creamy dressing and crunchy cucumber—makes a tasty slow-cooked dish. The wine and chili powder add even more flavor elements. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois
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Quinoa Fresh Fig And Honey Balsamic Parfait Exps Tohca20 88942 B02 21 5b 1

Quinoa, Fresh Fig & Honey-Balsamic Parfaits

This quinoa yogurt parfait is special to me because of its wholesome ingredients. Quinoa is gluten-free, which is good for those who have food allergies, like my daughter. And I love fresh ripe figs when they are in season. Enjoy this for breakfast or dessert. —Dawn Hutchins, St. Johns, Florida
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Authentic Pasta Carbonara Exps Tham17 172742 D11 08 2b 3

Authentic Pasta Carbonara

I learned on my culinary internship in Tuscany that real Italian cuisine is simpler than you think! This carbonara is quick, simple and delicious, just the way they like it in Italy. —Lauren Brien-Wooster, South Lake Tahoe, California
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Caramel Apple Coffee Cake with Walnuts

I created this recipe after a trip to an orchard with my family. This moist cake is full of hearty apples and nuts, while the caramel topping adds a delectable finish. —Sharon Cable, Dyersville, Iowa.
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Vibrant Black-Eyed Pea Salad

My black-eyed pea salad reminds me of a Southern cooking class my husband and I took while visiting Savannah, Georgia. People go nuts for it at picnics and potlucks. —Danielle Lee, Sewickley, Pennsylvania
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Grilled Veggie Sandwiches with Cilantro Pesto

I first ate this sandwich while vacationing in Sedona, Arizona, and fell in love with it. When I returned home, I developed this one that tastes just like the original. —Carolyn Phenicie, Titusville, Pennsylvania
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Chocolate Pear Hazelnut Tart Exps Thca19 171114 B02 23 1b 12

Chocolate Pear Hazelnut Tart

As a teenage foreign exchange student in the south of France, I was horribly homesick. Then my host family's Grandmother Miette arrived and asked if I'd like to help her bake this nutty tart from scratch. It turned my trip around and inspired my lifelong passion for baking. Weighing ingredients, roasting nuts, kneading dough—the art of baking transcends language. —Lexi McKeown, Los Angeles, California
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Caribbean Shrimp & Rice Bowl

I had a similar rice bowl on vacation and re-created this lighter version at home. It takes me back to the islands every time I make it. Try grilling the shrimp for more beachy flavor. —Lauren Katz, Ashburn, Virginia
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Maple Syrup Pie Exps Ppp18 112917 B04 06  6b 2

Maple Syrup Pie

Folks in New Hampshire apparently appreciate maple syrup almost as much as we do in Vermont. When my husband and I took a road trip through New Hampshire, we discovered this pie at a number of diners and restaurants. We loved it so much we created our own version. —Laurie Herr, Westford, Vermont
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Greek Veggie Tartlets

The mixture in this recipe was originally a salad I made after a trip to Greece. When my husband suggested I serve it in phyllo cups, it became my most-requested appetizer!—Radelle Knappenberger, Oviedo, Florida
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Toasted Hazelnut And Chocolate Ice Cream Exps Thca18 121396 B11 02 5b 1

Toasted Hazelnut and Chocolate Ice Cream

The flavors in this ice cream take me back to European vacations I've enjoyed in the past. I am a big hazelnut fan, and who doesn't like chocolate? I've been caught red-handed eating Nutella out of the jar with a spoon! —Laura Majchrzak, Hunt Valley, Maryland
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Key Lime Cupcakes

I made these light, tangy cupcakes on a chilly day to remind me of our vacation in southern Florida, where Key lime pies are star attractions. —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan
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Parisian Chicken Bites Exps Cmz18 57242 D10 26 6b 1

Parisian Chicken Bites

When a friend of mine returned from a trip to Paris, she raved about the food she had and described one of her favorite meals. It inspired me to create a similar hors d’oeuvre. —Noelle Myers, Grand Forks, North Dakota
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Crab Quiche With Hollandaise Exps47716 Cw1794336d39c Rms 1

Crab Quiche with Hollandaise

I discovered this quiche at a diner during a motorcycle road trip with my husband. It was so amazing, I worked to duplicate it back home. Our family loves the results. —Amy Knight, Lake Linden, Michigan
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Cajun Pork And Rice Exps174893 Edsc143234b04 15 4bc Rms 9

Cajun Pork and Rice

I created this recipe upon returning home from traveling. With little food in the house, I used what was there. My husband loves this dish because it's tasty, and I love it because it's easy. —Allison Gapinski, Cary, North Carolina
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Aloha Brittle Exps Hmgrds18 29120 B06 21 5b 4

Aloha Brittle

A vacation to Hawaii inspired me to create this mouthwatering brittle. Coconuts, macadamia nuts and pecans make my tropical-tasting recipe deliciously different.
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Pulled BBQ Pork

During years of vacationing on the North Carolina coast, I became hooked on their pork barbecue. The version I developed is a favorite at potluck dinners. —Joseph Sarnoski, West Chester, Pennsylvania
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Michigan Cherry Salad

This recipe reminds me what I love about my home state: picking apples with my children, buying greens at the farmers market and tasting cherries on vacations. —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan
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Grilled Brussels Sprouts Exps Thca17 184375 D05 26 4b 4

Grilled Brussels Sprouts

During a beach vacation, in an effort to cook our entire meal outside on the grill, I made our not-so-simple veggie choice into a simple grilled side dish. For spicier sprouts, season with red pepper flakes —Tiffany Ihle, Bronx, New York

Lisa Kaminski
Lisa is an editor at Taste of Home where she gets to embrace her passion for baking. She pours this love of all things sweet (and sometimes savory) into Bakeable, Taste of Home's baking club. Lisa is also dedicated to finding and testing the best ingredients, kitchen gear and home products. At home, you'll find her working on embroidery and other crafts.
Rashanda Cobbins
When Rashanda’s not tasting and perfecting Taste of Home’s recipes, you’ll find this food editor sifting through our recipe collection, curating digital content or tracking the latest culinary trends. While studying for her bachelor’s degree in culinary arts, Rashanda interned in Southern Living’s test kitchen and later spent nearly a decade developing recipes and food content at ConAgra Brands. In her spare time, she loves scoping out local farmers markets and having picnics in the park.

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