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40 Recipes You’d Find in a Dude Ranch Dining Hall

It's time to kick off your boots and hang up your hat. Unwind after a long day on the ranch with these hearty and delicious recipes!

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Cowboy Casserole

I tweaked my beefy skillet cobbler until it achieved the wow factor. I must have gotten it right, as it's now a family tradition. Top it off with lettuce, avocado, cherry tomatoes and a dollop of sour cream. —Gloria Bradley, Naperville, Illinois
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Effortless Black Bean Chili

My mom found the inspiration for this chili in a slow-cooker cookbook. After a few updates, all of us love it (even those of us who steer clear of beans). We think it's even better served over rice. —Amelia Gormley, Ephrata, Pennsylvania
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Grilled Onion & Skirt Steak Tacos

I grew up watching my grandmother and mother in the kitchen. My grandparents came from Mexico, and this steak marinated in beer and lime juice honors their passion for cooking. —Adan Franco, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Pesto-Corn Grilled Peppers

We grill almost daily and enjoy using fresh produce from our garden. These pepper halves filled with a basil-seasoned corn mixture is my husband's favorite recipe. —Rachael Marrier, Star Prairie, Wisconsin
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Slow-Cooked Chunky Chili

Slow-Cooked Chunky Chili

Pork sausage, ground beef and plenty of beans make this chili a marvelous meal. I keep serving-size containers of it in my freezer at all times so I can quickly warm up bowls on busy days. —Margie Shaw, Greenbrier, Arkansas
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Wyoming Cowboy Cookies

These cookies are very popular here in Wyoming. Mix up a batch for your crew and see why. —Patsy Steenbock, Shoshoni, Wyoming
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Flank Steak with Cilantro & Blue Cheese Butter

I love the combination of the sweet citrus marinade and the strong tang of the blue cheese butter. And my kids just love flank steak. —Gwen Wedel, Augusta, Michigan
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Southwestern Beef Brisket

This recipe makes the beef so tender that it comes apart with a fork. When served with mashed potatoes and a vegetable, it makes a hearty meal. —Lois McAtee, Oceanside, California
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Summertime Tomato Salad

My crazy good salad has cherry tomatoes, squash and blueberries together in one bowl. Then I layer on the flavor with fresh corn, red onion and mint. —Thomas Faglon, Somerset, New Jersey
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Mexican Chicken Chili

Corn and black beans give this satisfying chili Mexican flair the whole family will love. Adjust the cayenne if you have small children or are looking for a little less zip. —Stephanie Rabbitt-Schappacher, West Chester, Ohio
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Fiery Stuffed Poblanos

I love southwest-inspired cuisine, but the dishes are often unhealthy. As a dietitian, I try to come up with nutritious twists on recipes, which is how these stuffed peppers were born. —Amber Massey, Coppell, Texas
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Garlic Grilled Steaks

Take steak to new flavor heights by basting your choice of cuts with an amazing garlicky blend that requires only a few minutes to fix. It will be a mouthwatering change of taste at your next outdoor gathering. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Southwestern Hash with Eggs

Before I retired, this all-in-one skillet dish was constantly requested at office brunches. I'd leave out the eggs, double or triple the recipe and wrap servings of the zippy pork mixture in warm corn tortillas. —Barbara Beasley, Beaumont, Texas
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Baked Sweet Corn Croquettes

These delicious corn croquettes are baked like muffins instead of fried. They can be served with butter, but my family prefers salsa as an accompaniment. —Karen Kuebler, Dallas, Texas
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Chicken & Bean Chili

Chili Time is any time you want to make a hungry crowd happy. This creamy chili is a must at my soup party every year. —Theresa Baehr, Williamsburg, Michigan
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Muffin-Tin Tamale Cakes

We needed snack inspiration beyond peanut butter and jelly. These muffin tamales have all of the flavor without the fuss. Pair with skewered fruit. —Suzanne Clark, Phoenix, Arizona
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Stuffed Flank Steak

I like to make this on special occasions. The tender steak cuts easily into appetizing spirals for serving, and extra stuffing cooks conveniently in a foil packet on top of the steak. —Diane Hixon, Niceville, Florida
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Black Bean Potato au Gratin

The addition of black beans and vegetables adds hearty protein and fiber to this tasty side dish. For a southwestern twist, add a handful or two of chopped cooked ham or chorizo sausage and replace the peas with 1 cup of frozen, thawed corn. —Erin Chilcoat, Central Islip, New York
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Southern Cornbread Salad

To feed a crowd, especially when I want to make a good impression, I make this eye-popping cornbread salad. It’s beautiful in a trifle bowl. I love it in summer, when we can make it with our own garden produce. —Debbie Johnson, Centertown, Missouri
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Pork Chile Verde

Pork Chile Verde

Pork slowly stews with jalapenos, onion, green enchilada sauce and spices in this flavor-packed Mexican dish. It's wonderful on its own or stuffed in a warm tortilla with sour cream, grated cheese or olives on the side. —Kimberly Burke, Chico, California
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Chuck Wagon Tortilla Stack

Piling on loads of hearty flavor at mealtime is easy when I roll out this skillet specialty. I layer the meat mixture with tortillas in a deep skillet and let it simmer a little longer. It’s easy to cut and spoon out of the pan. —Bernice Janowski, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
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Fajita in a Bowl

Pull out the skewers and take a stab at grilling peppers, onions and corn for an awesome steak salad that’s all summer and smoke. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Frito Pie

Frito pie is legendary in the Southwest for being spicy, salty and cheesy fabulous. Here’s my easy take on this crunchy classic. —Jan Moon, Alamogordo, New Mexico
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Cheesy Ham & Corn Chowder

When the day calls for a warm bowl of chunky soup, we make a big pot of the goods—potatoes, corn, ham and cheese. —Andrea Laidlaw, Shady Side, Maryland
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Black Bean Turkey Chili

This busy-day chili is packed with flavor. We make it ahead and freeze some to eat later. —Marisela Segovia, Miami, Florida
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Cake & Berry Campfire Cobbler

Cake & Berry Campfire Cobbler

This warm cobbler is one of our favorite ways to end a busy day of fishing, hiking, swimming or rafting. It's yummy with ice cream—and so easy to make! —June Dress, Boise, Idaho
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Loaded Stuffed Potato Pancakes

Loaded Stuffed Potato Pancakes

When I make mashed potatoes, I always cook extra so I can prepare these over-the-top potato pancakes. Fill them with sour cream, ranch dressing, melted cheese—or all three. —Jane Whittaker, Pensacola, Florida
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Balsamic Steak Salad

My husband loves blue cheese and I like a hearty salad that eats like a meal, so I put the two things together to make this steak salad recipe. The sweet-tartness of dried cranberries pairs deliciously with the cheese, creamy avocado and balsamic vinegar. It's irresistible! —Marla Clark, Albuquerque, New Mexico
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Tex-Mex Cheesesteak Sandwiches

We adore cheesesteak sandwiches and anything with southwestern flavor, so I combined the two. If you crave even more firepower, add chopped jalapenos. —Joan Hallford, Fort Worth, Texas
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Jalapeno Popper Mexican Street Corn

One of the best things about summer is fresh sweet corn, and this recipe is a definite standout. We love its creamy dressing, crunchy panko coating and spicy jalapeno kick. If you're really feeling wild, sprinkle these with a bit of cooked and crumbled bacon! —Crystal Schlueter, Northglenn, Colorado
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Fiesta Breakfast Bake

I get a kick out of making breakfast for a crowd when I have weekend guests, and my family also loves breakfast for dinner. I created this dish by combining my family's favorite southwestern flavors in an all-in-one-pan recipe.—Whitney Gilbert, Smithville, Missouri
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Veggie Steak Salad

This salad just explodes with flavors. It's easy and quick to prepare, tastes delicious, and is a healthy dinner all on one plate. —Tiffany Martinez, Aliso Viejo, California
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Cowboy Calico Beans

This is a tradition at the table when my girlfriends and I go up north for a girls' weekend. The husbands and kids are left at home, but the slow cooker comes with us! —Julie Butsch, Hartland, Wisconsin
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Corn Quesadillas

My cheesy corn quesadillas take only minutes going from skillet to table. They make craveable leftovers for brown bag lunches, so pack the salsa, too. —Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon
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Crispy Fried Chicken

If you've wanted to learn how to make crispy fried chicken, this is the recipe for you. Always a picnic favorite, this deep fried chicken recipe is delicious either hot or cold. Kids call it my Kentucky Fried Chicken! —Jeanne Schnitzler, Lima, Montana
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Spicy Beef Salad

This recipe was inspired by my love of spicy flavors and light, nutritious entrees. The pretty salad has an appealing variety of textures. I make it year-round because it's fast and easy to prepare after a long day at work. —Peggy Allen, Pasadena, California
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Tex-Mex Sloppy Joes

Sloppy joes are a favorite of adults and kids. I deviated from the traditional recipe by adding a little Southwestern spiciness. —Geraldine Saucier, Albuquerque, New Mexico
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Slow-Cooker Sriracha Corn

A restaurant here advertised Sriracha corn on the cob, but I knew I could make my own. The golden ears cooked up a little sweet, a little smoky and a little hot—perfect if you ask my three teenage boys! —Julie Peterson, Crofton, Maryland
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White Turkey Chili

Here's proof that chili doesn't have to be red. I combined several recipes and changed flavors until the recipe was just right. Trust me, this one is a keeper. —Tina Barrett, Houston, Texas

Carrie Madormo, RN
Now a freelance health and food writer, Carrie worked as a nurse for over a decade. When she isn't hunched over her laptop with a baby in hand, you will find her cooking her grandmother’s recipes, lacing up her running shoes or sipping coffee in the bathroom to hide from her three young children.

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