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77 Tropical Recipes for a Taste-cation Anytime

When you really need to get away but you're stuck at home, treat yourself to a little taste-cation. Whether you're dreaming of the Caribbean, the Baja Peninsula, Hawaii or a beach in Thailand, these tropical recipes are your ticket to paradise.

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Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps

This recipe is so flavorful and fresh tasting. The teachers and staff at my school love it because it's fun to put together. —Laureen Pittman, Riverside, California

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Baja Fish Tacos

Crisp mahi mahi pans out beautifully when dressed up with fresh lime, cilantro and smoky adobo. One bite and you’ll be hooked on these baja fish tacos! —Brooke Keller, Lexington, Kentucky

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Hawaiian Dinner Rolls

Pineapple and coconut give a subtle sweetness to these golden homemade rolls. If there are any leftovers, they're great for sandwiches. —Kathy Kurtz, Glendora, California

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Grilled Chicken, Mango & Blue Cheese Tortillas

Tortillas packed with chicken, mango and blue cheese make a light appetizer to welcome the summer season. We double or triple the ingredients for parties. —Josee Lanzi, New Port Richey, Florida

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Fresh Lime Margaritas

This basic margarita recipe is easy to modify to your tastes. Try it frozen or with strawberries. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Coconut Curry Chicken Soup

Similar to a Vietnamese pho rice noodle soup, this red curry soup packs big flavor and a bit of heat. The crisp raw vegetables help cool things down. —Monnie Norasing, Mansfield, Texas

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Mango Chutney Pork Roast

Bright mango and red bell pepper really liven up this roast. The tropical fruit chutney packs a nice punch. Make an extra batch for tacos the next night. —Pamela Vitti Knowles, Hendersonville, North Carolina

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Tropical Island Chicken

The marinade makes a savory statement in this all-time-favorite chicken recipe that I served at our son's pirate-themed birthday party. It smelled so good on the grill that guests could hardly wait to try a piece! —Sharon Hanson, Franklin, Tennessee

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Topsy-Turvy Sangria

I got this recipe from a friend a few years ago. It’s perfect for relaxed get-togethers. It’s even better if you make it the night before and let the flavors steep. But watch out—it goes down easy. —Tracy Field, Bremerton, Washington

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Caribbean Jerk Chicken

Get ready to rock the grill with this wonderfully fragrant, spicy chicken. The bold marinade includes hints of cinnamon, cayenne and thyme. We like to think of this dish as “chicken with attitude." —Judy Kamalieh, Nebraska City, Nebraska

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Tropical Fusion Salad with Spicy Tortilla Ribbons

Fresh fruits and veggies pair up for a fantastic summer salad that's savory, sweet and spicy all at once. Make the tortilla strips with your pizza cutter—so easy! —Jennifer Fisher, Austin, Texas

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Grilled Huli Huli Chicken

I got this grilled 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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Hawaiian Pork Roast

Bananas, liquid smoke and soy sauce flavor this fall-apart-tender pork roast. It's just like the kind I enjoyedat the luaus I went to in Hawaii. —Mary Gaylord, Balsam Lake, Wisconsin

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Pina Colada Bundt Cake

We named this bundt a “pina colada” because it has coconut, pineapple and rum. It’s a soothing finish at the end of a big spread. —Debra Keil, Owasso, Oklahoma

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No-Fuss Avocado Onion Salad

My mother, Nena, grew up in Cuba and learned many styles of cooking. She had a knack for making something incredibly simple taste incredibly amazing. This salad is proof. By itself, the dressing is really tart, but add the avocados and onions and it's the perfect complement. —Marina Castle Kelley, Canyon Country, California

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Arroz Con Leche (Rice Pudding)

Sweet and simple, this creamy arroz con leche recipe is real comfort food in any language. You’ll love the warm raisin and cinnamon flavors. It’s great served cold, too. —Marina Castle Kelley, Canyon Country, California

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Conga Lime Pork

Dinner guests won’t be too shy to get in line when this yummy chipotle pork moves to the buffet table. —Janice Elder, Charlotte, North Carolina

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Pineapple Curry Chicken

Curry has a moderate to strong flavor, so add it early in the cooking process for good balance with pineapple, coconut and ginger. —Robin Haas, Cranston, Rhode Island

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Cranberry-Jalapeno Martini

I describe this cocktail as slightly tart, a little sassy and completely delicious. I make a big batch when I'm hosting a party because it tends to disappear quickly. Garnish with fresh mint and cranberries for an extra-special touch. —Kelli Haetinger, Virginia Beach, Virginia

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Tropical Muffins

I entered these muffins at our county fair and won the grand champion award for baked goods. They're so moist, they don't need butter. —Sylvia Osborn, Clay Center, Kansas

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Quick Tacos al Pastor

We loved the pork and pineapple tacos from a food truck in Hawaii. My husband, a high school football referee, gives my version a thumb’s up. —Lori McLain, Denton, Texas

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Colorful Shrimp Pad Thai

Bright, fresh veggie flavors, a splash of tart lime juice, the crunch of peanuts and a hint of heat make this healthy and beautiful shrimp stir-fry a real standout! —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Jamaican Salmon with Coconut Cream Sauce

We try to eat salmon often because it's so healthy, and I love thinking of new ways to make it different and delicious. It's easy, but this dazzler with jerk seasoning is my go-to meal for company. —Joni Hilton, Rocklin, California

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Refreshing Beer Margaritas

I'm always surprised when people say they didn't know this drink existed. It's a really refreshing cocktail, and it's easy to double or triple the recipe. —Arianne Barnett, Kansas City, Missouri

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Mini Hawaiian Burgers

These are great burgers for a luau or any backyard gathering. I came up with this while trying to find something new that my husband would enjoy. He had no idea they were turkey burgers, and now he asks for them all the time! —Kathleen Manasian, Whitmore Lake, Michigan

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Mexican Roasted Potato Salad

My husband is the No. 1 fan of this south-of-the-border potato salad. The leftovers make an awesome late-night snack, straight from the fridge. —Elisabeth Larsen, Pleasant Grove, Utah

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Coconut Lover's Frappe

I love frozen beverages, so I wanted to create one similar to those in coffee shops but without coffee as an ingredient. When I drink this frosty treat it's as good as any specialty shop drink but without the hassle or the cost. —Emily Semmelrock, Jewett City, Connecticut

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Pina Colada Carrot Salad

This carrot salad with pina colada yogurt, green grapes and macadamia nuts has a tropical theme. Just mix and chill out. —Emily Tyra, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Hawaiian Waffles

I created this waffle recipe to recapture the memorable tropical tastes we enjoyed while visiting Hawaii. —Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon

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Tropical Guacamole

Fresh pineapple stars in this fruity guacamole that sure hits the spot! Both kids and adults have enjoyed it as a poolside snack or as a satisfying appetizer at a summer barbecue. —Sarah White, Salt Lake City, Utah

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Tender Pork Chops with Mango Salsa

I make the salsa and season the pork in the morning so it's ready to throw on the grill later. For a spicier topping, I add jalapenos to the salsa. —Andrea Rivera, Westbury, New York

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Thai Lime Shrimp & Noodles

The flavors just keep popping in this quick dinner! Use as much lime peel and chili paste as you like. My family is into spicy foods, but I kept the heat moderate in this version. —Teri Rasey, Cadillac, Michigan

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Cozumel Red Snapper Veracruz

Cozumel, Mexico, is home to magnificent Veracruz-style red snapper. You can't bring it home, so create your own. Try parchment paper instead of the foil packet. —Barb Miller, Oakdale, Minnesota

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Grilled Street Corn

Mexican food is my grandmother’s favorite. I wanted a perfect side for her legendary tacos, and this chile-lime grilled corn turned out to be just right. —Ashley Crainshaw, Shawnee, Kansas

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Slow Cooker Kalua Pork & Cabbage

My slow cooker pork has four ingredients and less than 10 minutes of prep. The result tastes just like the kalua pig slow-roasted all day in an underground oven. —Rholinelle DeTorres, San Jose, California

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Chicken Mole

If you’re not familiar with mole (pronounced mo-LAY), don’t be afraid of this versatile Mexican sauce. I love sharing this chicken mole recipe because it’s a great one to experiment with. —Darlene Morris, Franklinton, Louisiana

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Horchata

In this Horchata recipe, the mixture of ground rice and almonds is accented with a hint of lime. Depending on your preference, you can use more or less water for a thinner or creamier beverage. —James Schend, Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin

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Flank Steak with Cilantro Salsa Verde

Even though steak is always a winner in our house, to make it even more special I add jarred salsa verde and top with freshly chopped tomato and avocado. —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia

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Teriyaki Pineapple Drumsticks

We have a large family and throw big parties, so I look for ways to free my husband from the grill. Roasted drumsticks keep everyone happy. —Erica Allen, Tuckerton, New Jersey

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Lime-Chipotle Carnitas Tostadas

Here's a great recipe for your next weeknight dinner. Set out various toppings and garnishes so your family members can custom-make their own tostadas with the lime-kissed shredded pork. —Jan Valdez, Chicago, Illinois

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Black Beans with Bell Peppers & Rice

My meat and potatoes husband goes for this cheesy, hearty black beans and rice recipe, and the kids gobble it up. For extra kick, add a splash of hot sauce. —Stephanie Lambert, Moseley, Virgina

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Shortcut Tres Leches Cake

My mom's favorite cake is Tres Leches, a butter cake soaked in three kinds of milk. I developed a no-fuss version that’s rich and tender. —Marina Castle Kelley, Canyon Country, California

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Curried Coconut Chicken for Two

Looking for a new way to fix chicken breasts? This five-ingredient recipe is a nice change of pace. It's sweet, savory and a little exotic. Serve it over rice or couscous. —Becky Walch, Manteca, California

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Tostones

I grew up eating many dishes from Pureto Rico but tostones have always been a favorite dish for me. I still make the fried snacks when I miss my family. —Leah Martin, Gilbertsville, Pennsylvania

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Hawaiian Joy Bars

With the hint of rum plus the nuts and coconut, these bars are like a trip to the islands. I served them to my family and at my work and church, and I always hear murmurs of appreciation. —Jennifer Neckermann, Wentzville, Missouri

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Hawaiian Breakfast Pizza

Tropical and flavorful, this pizza puts a fun spin on breakfast for dinner. Kids love layering on the toppings, and it's a great way to use leftover ham. —Holly Ciani, Taberg, New York

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Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork with Mojito Sauce

Growing up in South Florida, my culinary taste buds were influenced dramatically by the Cuban culture here. Infused with Cuban flavor, this twist on slow-cooked pulled pork is knock-your-socks-off good, whether you serve it up with rice and beans on the side or press it into a classic Cuban sandwich. — Kristina Wiley, Jupiter, Florida

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Islander Nachos

Take a tasty trip to the tropics without leaving home by making these Hawaiian-style snacks. Of course, pineapple, coconut and macadamia nuts are involved. —Jennifer Heasley, York, Pennsylvania

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Tropical Pulled Pork Sliders

I used what I had in my cupboard to make this pork, and the results were fantastic! I enjoy transforming an inexpensive cut of meat to something extraordinary. —Shelly Mitchell, Gresham, Oregon

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Coconut-Pineapple Sherbet Torte

I made up this torte one afternoon, and when I served it that night, it vanished within minutes. That's when I knew I'd struck gold. —Joni Hilton, Rocklin, California

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Green Chili Ribs

I like my food with a spicy kick; my wife does not. These ribs with green chilies suit her taste. For more firepower, add cayenne or jalapenos. —Guy Newton, Nederland, Colorado

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Thai Coconut Beef

My husband and I love Thai food, but going out on weeknights can be challenging with busy schedules. I wanted to create a Thai-inspired dinner that could double as an easy lunch the following day. The beef is fantastic in this dish, but chicken or pork would be equally delicious! —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin

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Guava Coconut Rum Cocktail

My beverage is so sensational it's like a taste of the tropics in a glass. The guava adds a touch of sweetness to this coconut drink. —Melanie Milhorat, New York, New York

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Refreshing Tropical Fruit Salad

Want a family-friendly side dish? This colorful medley is kid-pleasing and a great way to encourage healthy eating. —Sharon Ricci, Spooner, Wisconsin

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Steakhouse Strip Steaks with Chimichurri

Chilies and lime juice give this version of chimichurri sauce a zesty Southwest flair that’s dynamite with cumin-rubbed steaks. You’ve got to try the thick herb sauce with salmon, too! —Gilda Lester, Millsboro, Delaware

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Caribbean Grilled Ribeyes

I made this mind-blowing steak with my father-in-law in mind. He loved it, and so did everyone else. You can serve it as part of all types of meals, but it's especially good alongside seafood. —De'Lawrence Reed, Durham, North Carolina

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Pear Ginger Mojito

A pear, flavored vodka, ginger beer and cinnamon syrup turn a traditional mojito into a seasonal refresher for fall and winter. Add a lime slice to each glass for a festive garnish. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Stuffed Turkey with Mojo Sauce

I love Latin food so I created this recipe that combines wonderful spices and fresh ingredients. This is a traditional turkey recipe with a healthier twist because it uses chicken sausage instead of chorizo. —Melissa Lauer, San Antonio, Texas

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Island Breezes Coffee Cake

With the island flavors, this simple pull-apart bread is perfect for a spring brunch. —Debra Goforth, Newport, Tennessee

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Tropical Snap Pea & Mango Salad

We toss romaine with chunks of mango, avocado, sugar snap peas, red onion and a homemade honey-lime dressing. A little toasted coconut sprinkled on top adds extra texture. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Date Shake

The shake has the rich taste of dates. We recommend using Medjool dates for the most flavor. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Mango Pie with Coconut Crust

This was the first pie I created myself. Mangoes are one of my favorite fruits, and they deserve to be represented in a pie. Of course, everything is better with coconut. —Jennifer Worrell, Niles, Illinois

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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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Sunrise Pops

Bright, beautiful, cool, refreshing, sweet, delicious and wholesome—what's there not to like in these homemade pops?—Colleen Ludovice, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin

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Lime & Coconut Cream Pie

My custard pie features two tropical flavors I love. Plus, it’s a breeze to make. I throw most of the ingredients in the blender to whip up the filling, then pour it into a purchased crust. —Mandy Rivers, Lexington, South Carolina

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Mango Avocado Spring Rolls

As a fan of mangoes and avocados, I love these wraps. You can substitute tortillas for rice paper wrappers, and lettuce or spinach for sprouts. —Gena Stout, Ravenden, Arkansas

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Caribbean Chipotle Pork Sliders

One of our favorite pulled pork recipes combines the heat of chipotle peppers with cool tropical coleslaw. The robust flavors make these sliders a big hit with guests. —Kadija Bridgewater, Boca Raton, Florida

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Creamy Coconut Rice Pudding Parfait

When my daughter’s friends come over for lunch, she treats them to her tropical parfaits made with brown rice and coconut milk. They’re fresh, creamy and comforting. —Suzanne Clark, Phoenix, Arizona

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Tropical Island Shrimp Kabobs

Shrimp, mango and pineapple on skewers make a sunny presentation at parties. To boost flavors, we use a coconut milk, lime juice and cilantro marinade. —Mary Marlowe Leverette, Columbia, South Carolina

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Panna Cotta with Papaya Coulis

Panna cotta is an Italian dessert that means “cooked cream.” My friend and I developed a tropical version that’s rich, creamy, tangy and so refreshing. —Shauna Havey, Roy, Utah

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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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Pina Colada Grilled Pineapple

During a cookout with friends, I forgot about dessert. I had a fresh pineapple and coconut, so I improvised. Now I grill pineapple at every cookout. —Josee Lanzi, New Port Richey, Florida

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Shrimp Avocado Salad

This salad can be served as a cool and satisfying dinner or lunch. The delicious taste and smooth texture of avocados mixed with the crisp shrimp salad is heavenly. —Teri Rasey, Cadillac, Michigan

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Coconut Macaroon Pie

Coconut macaroons are divine, but they can be a little messy to make. I turned the batter into a pie filling, and the luscious results speak for themselves. —Becky Mollenkamp, St. Louis, Missouri

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Pineapple-Coconut Smoothie

Use fresh or frozen fruits in this coconutty recipe. It's like a pina colada, but better for you and more versatile. —Gunjan Dudani, Bellevue, Washington

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Ham & Pineapple Kabobs

For a twist on the usual holiday fare, we turn ham and pineapple into juicy kabobs. The marinade gets its zip from hoisin, teriyaki and soy sauces. —Chandra Lane-Sirois, Kansas City, Missouri

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Hawaiian Bacon & Pineapple Breakfast Bake

Sweet meets savory in this fun twist on the typical breakfast casserole. It's great for parties and potlucks because you can make it the night before. —Katie Osborn, Toledo, Ohio

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