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40 Reasons Why You Should Have a Can of Evaporated Milk in the Cupboard

This old-school pantry staple is more versatile than you'd think. Use every last drop in our delicious recipes for breakfast, dinner and dessert.

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Contest-Winning German Chocolate Cream Pie

I've won quite a few awards in recipe contests over the past 10 years, and I was delighted that this luscious pie sent me to the Great American Pie Show finals. —Marie Rizzio, Interlochen, Michigan

Don’t swap evaporated milk with condensed milk—they’re not interchangeable. Here’s what makes them different.

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Ribbon Fantasy Fudge

I developed this recipe especially for my husband, who likes anything that has chocolate and peanut butter together!
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Bacon Cheeseburger Soup

This creamy recipe brings two of my absolute favorite foods together in one! The tomato, fresh lettuce and crisp bacon toppers make this soup taste just like burger time. —Geoff Bales, Hemet, CA
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Classic Swedish Meatballs

I'm a "Svenska flicka" (Swedish girl) from northwest Iowa, where many Swedes settled at the turn of the century. This recipe was given to me by a Swedish friend. It's obviously a 20th century version of a 19th century favorite, since back then they didn't have bouillon cubes or evaporated milk! I think you'll agree that these modern-day "Kottbullar" are very tasty. —Emily Gould, Hawarden, Iowa

meatballs

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Fluffy Waffles

A friend shared this fluffy waffle recipe with me a few years ago. The cinnamon cream syrup is a nice change from maple syrup, and it keeps quite well in the fridge. Our two children also like it on toast. —Amy Gilles, Ellsworth, Wisconsin
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Creamy Chicken Rice Soup

I came up with this creamy chicken rice soup recipe while making some adjustments to a favorite stovetop chicken casserole. We like this soup for lunch with a crisp roll and fresh fruit. —Janice Mitchell, Aurora, Colorado
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Chocolate Cream Pie

Our teenage son, John, has done lots of 4-H baking. His favorite is this old-fashioned chocolate cream pie recipe with a flaky crust. —Mary Anderson, De Valls Bluff, Arkansas
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Cheesy Chile Casserole

Cheesy Chile Casserole

A short list of ingredients packs full flavor in this easy-to-assemble casserole. Serve it as the star of your next southwestern meal. —Phyllis Bidwell, Las Vegas, Nevada
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Broccoli-Mushroom Bubble Bake

I got bored with the same old breakfast casseroles I'd see at our monthly moms' meetings, so I decided to create something new. Judging by the reactions of the other moms, I think I have a winner. —Shannon Koene, Blacksburg, Virginia
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Garlicky Cheddar Cheese Bisque

I came up with a cheddar cheese soup a while ago and decided to give it a boost with a variety of root vegetables. Crushed pita chips and fresh parsley make fun garnishes. —Patricia Harmon, Baden, Pennsylvania
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Butterscotch Pumpkin Fudge

Each one of these creamy, heartwarming treats is like a bite-sized pumpkin pie. —Kathleen Henne, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania
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Buttermilk Chocolate Cupcakes

Good any time of the year, a chocolate cupcake recipe make a great get-up-and-go treat on busy summer days. These buttermilk chocolate cupcakes have been a frosted favorite with family and friends for at least 35 years. They're really popular at bake sales. —Ellen Moore, Springfield, New Hampshire
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Homemade Irish Cream

Add some creamy goodness to your cup of joe with a splash of this alcohol-free version of the Irish favorite. —Marcia Severson, Hallock, Minnesota

irish cream

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Saucy Scalloped Potatoes

For old-fashioned flavor, try these scalloped potatoes. They cook up tender, creamy and comforting and chopped ham adds a hearty touch. —Elaine Kane, Keizer, Oregon

scalloped pot

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Cranberry Orange Pancakes

As special as the holidays, these fluffy pancakes are drop-dead gorgeous, ready in just minutes and brimming with sweet, tart and tangy flavor. Seconds, anyone? —Nancy Zimmerman, Cape May Court House, New Jersey
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Farmer's Casserole

Between family and friends, we average 375 visitors a year! This casserole is handy—you can put it together the night before, let the flavors blend, then bake it in the morning. —Nancy Schmidt, Center, Colorado
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No-Fuss Potato Soup

For a busy-day supper, my family loves to have big steaming, delicious bowls of this soup, along with fresh bread from our bread machine. —Dotty Egge, Pelican Rapids, Minnesota
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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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Ravioli with Snap Peas & Mushrooms

Topped with the toasty texture and flavor of hazelnuts, this pasta makes an easy, earthy weeknight dinner. I serve it with an herb and lettuce salad and white wine. —Charlene Chambers, Ormond Beach, Florida
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Pretzel-Topped Sweet Potatoes

Friends I've shared this recipe with say it's their favorite way to serve sweet potatoes. I like to make it for brunch as a colorful go-with dish. The mingled sweet, tart and salty tastes are an unusual treat. —Sue Mallory, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
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Overnight Ham and Egg Casserole

I love how easy it is to assemble this savory egg casserole. Putting it together the night before really frees up my time the next morning. —Jennifer Howell, Fort Collins, Colorado
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Pumpkin Patch Pie

If you'd like to make pumpkin pie from a fresh pumpkin, here's and easy recipe that eliminates the guesswork. Use a pie pumpkin for maximum flavor.—Jane Van Deusen, Oneonta, New York
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Sue's Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Our family absolutely loves zucchini, especially when we grow it ourselves. We’ve found many ways to use it, including this spiced cake that’s super moist and chocolaty good. —Sue Falk, Warren, Michigan
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Shrimp Chowder

I simmer my rich and creamy shrimp soup in the slow cooker. Because the chowder is ready in less than four hours, it can be prepared in the afternoon and served to dinner guests that night. —Will Zunio, Gretna, Louisiana

Short a can? You can always use a substitute for evaporated milk.

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Butter Pecan Layer Cake

Pecans and butter give this cake the same irresistible flavor as the popular butter pecan ice cream flavor. —Becky Miller, Tallahassee, Florida
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Polynesian Meatballs

With pretty bits of pineapple, these meatballs are sure to attract attention—and the sweet-tart sauce brings people back for seconds. —Carol Wakley, North East, Pennsylvania
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Butternut Squash Bake

If I ask our two girls (ages 7 and 14) what to fix for a special meal, this dish is always requested. I discovered this slightly sweet and crunchy-topped casserole at a church dinner about 10 years ago, and now I take it to potluck dinners and come home with an empty dish! -Julie Jahn, Decatur, Indiana
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Makeover Slow-Cooked Mac 'n' Cheese

This recipe is a clear example of comfort food at its finest; it's rich, hearty and extra cheesy. And because it's made in the slow cooker, it's also extremely easy. —Shelby Molina, Whitewater, Wisconsin
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Cherry & Spice Rice Pudding

I live in Traverse City, the Cherry Capital of the World. What better way to celebrate our wonderful orchards than by using plump, tart dried cherries in my favorite desserts? This slow-cooked rice pudding recipe always turns out wonderful. —Deb Perry, Traverse City, Michigan
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Italian Sausage & Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta

Flavor-packed sausage and sun-dried tomatoes are sure to liven up any simple pasta dish. I have a feeling that once you've tried it, it'll become a family favorite!—Dawn Singleton, Eighty Four, Pennsylvania
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Great Pumpkin Dessert

Great Pumpkin Dessert

Canned pumpkin and cake mix make these bars an effortless alternative to pumpkin pie. It's a tried-and-true dessert that always brings big smiles. —Linda Guyot, Fountain Valley, California
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Mama's Potato Salad

This old-fashioned potato salad recipe doesn't have many ingredients, so it isn't as colorful as many that you find nowadays. But Mama made it the way her mother did, and that's the way I still make it today. Try it and see if it isn't one of the best-tasting potato salads you have ever eaten! —Sandra Anderson, New York, New York
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Three-Chocolate Fudge

I make this fudge at Christmastime to give to friends and neighbors. That tradition started years ago when I made more candy than my husband, three sons and I could eat, so we shared it. It's a tasty tradition I'm glad to continue. —Betty Grantham, Hanceville, Alabama
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Cream of Wild Rice Soup

Tender cubes of chicken, fresh vegetables and wild rice make this soup hearty enough for a meal. You can't beat the down-home comfort of a warm bowlful. I like to serve it with whole wheat rolls. —J. Beatrice Hintz, Neenah, Wisconsin
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Overnight Pumpkin French Toast Casserole

Recipes that don't tie me to the kitchen—that’s what I’m all about. I make this luscious dish the night before breakfast or brunch with guests. —Patricia Harmon, Baden, Pennsylvania
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Coconut Clouds

Coconut lovers will have extra reason to celebrate when they taste these cakelike drop cookies. The generous frosting and coconut topping make them a hit at holiday cookie swaps. —Donna Scofield, Yakima, Washington
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Pumpkin Pie Smoothies

My pie-flavored smoothie is loaded with fruit. The spices make it all come together. —Karen Sikora, Dayton, Nevada
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Spiced Sweet Potato Pudding

One of my favorite fall desserts, this treat's rich flavors are well-suited to the chillier months. I like to serve it over a slice of pound cake or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. —Aysha Schurman, Ammon, Idaho
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Gingersnap Sweet Potato Praline Pie

This luscious mix of sweet potatoes, spices and nuts is like serving pecan pie and sweet potato pie together. Bake it and watch everyone devour it. —Emily Hobbs, Ozark, Missouri
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Chocolate-Caramel Rum Coffee

This decadent coffee drink can stand alone as a final course or as a delightful complement to any chocolate or caramel dessert. Our family loves it after a special dinner or just for sipping in front of the fireplace. —Joyce Conway, Westerville, Ohio

Kristine Hansen
A former editor of a regional home and garden magazine, where she edited the entertaining section, Kristine writes for national travel, design and food outlets about culinary trends. Her book on Wisconsin cheese serves as a love letter to her adopted state of Wisconsin and she loves to travel in search of regional cultural foods.
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