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50 Recipes That’ll Impress Your In-Laws

In-laws coming or dinner? Treat them to a fantastic meal with these stepped-up classics and surefire winners.

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Herb-Brined Cornish Game HensTaste of Home

Herb-Brined Cornish Game Hens

Instead of a turkey or a big roast, why not serve individual Cornish game hens for the holidays? They cook in a fraction of the time and they're guaranteed to impress all your guests. —Shannon Roum, Cudahy, Wisconsin

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Nantucket Cranberry TartTaste of Home

Nantucket Cranberry Tart

While everyone is enjoying a bountiful meal, this eye-catching tart can be baking to perfection in the oven. The pretty holiday dessert calls for very few ingredients, and it's a snap to assemble. —Jackie Zack, Riverside, Connecticut

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Citrus Salmon en PapilloteTaste of Home

Citrus Salmon en Papillote

This salmon dish is so simple and easy to make yet so delicious, elegant and impressive. —Dahlia Abrams, Detroit, Michigan

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Grapefruit Yogurt CakeTaste of Home

Grapefruit Yogurt Cake

We eat grapefruit for breakfast and in winter fruit salads—why not for dessert? Here's a sweet-tart cake that's easy, delicious and one of a kind. Oh, and healthy, too! —Maiah Miller, Montclair, Vermont

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Warm Apple & Pistachio Spinach SaladTaste of Home

Warm Apple & Pistachio Spinach Salad

I'm really not a salad person, but this unusual salad is actually worthy of bringing to a dinner party or even eating by itself. Plus, it's super quick and easy to make. —Justine Kmiecik, Dupont, Washington

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Greek Salad RavioliTaste of Home

Greek Salad Ravioli

Turn the fresh flavors of a Greek salad into a warm dish for cold winter nights. I like to make a large batch, freeze it, then simply drop ravioli into simmering water for dinner in about five minutes! —Carla Mendres, Winnipeg, Manitoba

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Slow-Cooker Short RibsTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker Short Ribs

These ribs are an easy alternative to traditionally braised short ribs—you don't need to pay any attention to them once you get them in the slow cooker. (That makes it my favorite beef short ribs recipe!) —Rebekah Beyer, Sabetha, Kansas

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Slow-Cooker Mashed PotatoesTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker Mashed Potatoes

Sour cream and cream cheese give richness to these smooth make-ahead potatoes. They are wonderful for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner since there's no last-minute mashing required. —Trudy Vincent, Valles Mines, Missouri

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Rosemary Pork with Cherry-Pistachio ToppingTaste of Home

Rosemary Pork with Cherry-Pistachio Topping

Thirty years ago, my new mother-in-law asked me to do something with a large frozen pork loin being served for a crowd at a Christmas Eve buffet. I assembled some fragrant ingredients and this is the result. —Shelia Brown, Canton Michigan

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Blueberries and Cream Coffee CakeTaste of Home

Blueberries and Cream Coffee Cake

This blueberry coffee cake is a Saturday morning tradition my boys grew up with. It's also my go-to recipe for all of our holiday get-togethers because it's perfect for breakfast or dessert. It's easy to make, and it's the most delicious coffee cake I've ever had. —Susan Ober, Franconia, New Hampshire

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Goat Cheese and Spinach Stuffed ChickenTaste of Home

Goat Cheese and Spinach Stuffed Chicken

This spinach-stuffed chicken breast recipe is special to me because it has so much flavor, yet not too many calories. I love Italian food, but most of the time it is too heavy. This is a healthy twist on an Italian dish! —Nicole Stevens, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina

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Butter Pecan Ice Cream TorteTaste of Home

Butter Pecan Ice Cream Torte

A simple nut crust and smooth caramel sauce are all the preparation required for this impressive dessert. Be sure to start making it at least 12 hours before serving. It will keep in the freezer for one month—just be sure to wrap tightly so there are no air leaks! —Judy Wilson, Sun City West, Arizona

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Bacon-Wrapped Pesto Pork TenderloinTaste of Home

Bacon-Wrapped Pesto Pork Tenderloin

I love to serve this family-favorite tenderloin—maybe because of the compliments that come with it! When the weather warms up, we grill it instead. —Megan Riofski, Frankfort, Illinois

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Classic French Onion SoupTaste of Home

Classic French Onion Soup

Enjoy my signature French onion soup the way my granddaughter Becky does. I make onion soup for her in a crock bowl, complete with garlic croutons and gobs of melted Swiss cheese on top. —Lou Sansevero, Ferron, Utah

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Salmon with Horseradish Pistachio CrustTaste of Home

Salmon with Horseradish Pistachio Crust

Impress everyone at your table with this elegant but easy salmon that's delicious and nutritious. You can substitute scallions for shallots if you like. —Linda Press Wolfe, Cross River, New York

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Bacon Pear Salad with Parmesan DressingTaste of Home

Bacon Pear Salad with Parmesan Dressing

This simple salad is an elegant side dish for any menu. With a blend of fresh pears and warm, comforting flavors, it’s perfect for special meals. —Rachel Lewis, Danville, Virginia

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Bee Sting CakeTaste of Home

Bee Sting Cake

This bee sting cake (aka bienenstich) may look daunting, but it's well worth the effort. Take each step at a time, and you'll be surprised how easy it is to make. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Chicken Piccata with Lemon SauceTaste of Home

Chicken Piccata with Lemon Sauce

Once you've tried this tangy, yet delicate lemon chicken piccata, you won't hesitate to make it for company. Seasoned with parmesan and parsley, the chicken cooks up golden brown, then is drizzled with a light lemon sauce. —Susan Pursell, Fountain Valley, California

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Caesar Salad in Peppered Parmesan BowlsTaste of Home

Caesar Salad in Peppered Parmesan Bowls

This cheese bowl salad looks impressive but is a cinch to make. I won't tell if you don't! —Melissa Wilkes, St. Augustine, Florida

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Dark Chocolate-Caramel Macchiato PieTaste of Home

Dark Chocolate-Caramel Macchiato Pie

One of my first entries in the National Pie Championship was this impressive pie with coffee flavor and cool chocolate curls on top. —Amy Mills, Sebring, Florida

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Weekday Chicken CacciatoreTaste of Home

Weekday Chicken Cacciatore

Chicken cooked “cacciatore” means a dish prepared “hunter-style” with tomatoes, mushrooms, onions and seasonings. We add a touch of white wine to make ours northern Italian-style. —Lisa Bynum, Brandon, Missouri

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Pumpkin Pie Tartlets with Maple Pecan CrustTaste of Home

Pumpkin Pie Tartlets with Maple Pecan Crust

After discovering I had multiple food sensitivities, I began developing holiday recipes that would be safe for me, but enjoyable for others, too. These tarts are delicious—with no gluten, eggs or dairy! —Chantale Michaud, Guelph, Ontario

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Garlic-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard SauceTaste of Home

Garlic-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard Sauce

Don’t be afraid to bring out the Brussels sprouts. Mellowed by roasting and tossed with mustard sauce, they may just delight even the most skeptical folks. —Becky Walch, Orland, California

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Herb Focaccia RollsTaste of Home

Herb Focaccia Rolls

Yeast rolls speckled with fresh thyme and rosemary are a breeze to make without kneading and long wait times. Break out the good butter for these adorable rolls. —Linda Schend, Kenosha, Wisconsin

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Mustard-Crusted Prime Rib with Madeira GlazeTaste of Home

Mustard-Crusted Prime Rib with Madeira Glaze

This juicy prime rib is spectacular on its own, but the rich Madeira glaze takes it up a notch to wow at special dinners. What's even better is that it roasts with a bed of tender veggies, so you have the whole holiday meal covered in one pan. —Kathryn Conrad, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Strawberry Mascarpone CakeTaste of Home

Strawberry Mascarpone Cake

Don't let the number of steps in this recipe fool you —it's easy to assemble. The cake bakes up high and fluffy, and the berries add a fresh fruity flavor. Cream cheese is a good substitute if you don't have mascarpone cheese handy. —Carol Witczak, Tinley Park, Illinois

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Blackened Tilapia with Zucchini NoodlesTaste of Home

Blackened Tilapia with Zucchini Noodles

I love quick and bright meals like this one-skillet wonder. The way it tastes, you'd think it takes a lot more effort, but it goes from prep to dinner table in half an hour. The recipe works well with any light fish, or even shrimp. —Tammy Brownlow, Dallas, Texas

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Beef Brisket in BeerTaste of Home

Beef Brisket in Beer

One bite of this super tender brisket and your family will be hooked! The rich gravy is perfect for spooning over a side of creamy mashed potatoes. —Eunice Stoen, Decorah, Iowa

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Best LasagnaTaste of Home

Best Lasagna

Want to know how to make lasagna for a casual holiday meal? You can't go wrong with this deliciously rich meat lasagna recipe. My grown sons and daughter-in-law request it for their birthdays, too. —Pam Thompson, Girard, Illinois

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Pressure Cooker Curried Pumpkin RisottoTaste of Home

Pressure Cooker Curried Pumpkin Risotto

This easy pumpkin risotto tastes like fall and gets a flavor boost from the curry. —Andrea Reaves, Stephens City, Virginia

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Royal Broccoli SouffleTaste of Home

Royal Broccoli Souffle

Talk about impressive! This side dish never fails to impress even the toughest of critics--my family. —Linda Evancoe-Coble, Leola, Pennsylvania

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Roast Beets with Orange Gremolata and Goat CheeseTaste of Home

Roast Beets with Orange Gremolata and Goat Cheese

My grandma always grew beets then pickled or canned them, but I prefer to prepare them differently. I like these roasted beets in the winter but they can be enjoyed all year with the addition of fresh herbs and tangy goat cheese. —Courtney Archibeque, Portland, Oregon

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Spiced Grilled Chicken with Cilantro ButterTaste of Home

Spiced Grilled Chicken with Cilantro Butter

The spicy heat of the chicken pairs beautifully with the flavorful cilantro butter in this original recipe from Diane Halferty of Corpus Christi, Texas. We added spicy chocolate cinnamon cane sugar to the chicken, which complemented the other spices that are brushed over the chicken before grilling. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Skillet Hasselback Sweet PotatoesTaste of Home

Skillet Hasselback Sweet Potatoes

Treat your sweet-salty tooth! Sweet potatoes dressed with buttery, herby, garlicky goodness make for a stunning, delicious side dish. —Lauren Knoelke, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Chocolate Truffle CheesecakeTaste of Home

Chocolate Truffle Cheesecake

If you delight in the taste of chocolate, then this is the cheesecake for you. Every creamy bite melts in your mouth. It's so impressive yet not difficult to prepare-I whip up this dessert each time I want a yummy treat for my family, friends or co-workers. —Mary Jones, Cumberland, Maine

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Lemon Popovers with Pecan Honey ButterTaste of Home

Lemon Popovers with Pecan Honey Butter

My mom passed this recipe down to me many years ago. We love the delicate lemon flavor with the pecan honey butter. The popovers are a nice addition to any dinner, but they're especially delicious at breakfast with a bowl of fruit and yogurt. —Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, Texas

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Rhubarb TartTaste of Home

Rhubarb Tart

The rhubarb flavor in this tart balances nicely with the honey and amaretto. The mascarpone cheese makes it rich and creamy. Sometimes I'll even double the rhubarb for really sumptuous tarts. —Ellen Riley, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

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New Zealand Rosemary Lamb ShanksTaste of Home

New Zealand Rosemary Lamb Shanks

When I was young my family lived in New Zealand for two years after the war. One item that was always available was lamb shanks. Mother cooked them all the time with root vegetables, and to this day I love lamb! —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, Nevada

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Crab Cake Stuffed MushroomsTaste of Home

Crab Cake Stuffed Mushrooms

These tender mushrooms with their crispy golden topping are always popular at parties! The crab filling is a delicious special occasion treat. Serve them while they're warm. —Nancy Aiello, Bloomery, West Virginia

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Ginger-Glazed Lemon BundtTaste of Home

Ginger-Glazed Lemon Bundt

Tangy ginger, tart lemon and puckery cranberries make this melt-in-your-mouth cake as crisp—and gorgeous—as autumn. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Five-Cheese Ziti al FornoTaste of Home

Five-Cheese Ziti al Forno

After having the five-cheese ziti at Olive Garden, I tried to make my own version of it—and I think I got pretty close. I always double this when I'm making it and freeze the second one for another meal. —Keri Whitney, Castro Valley, California

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Citrus-Herb Roast ChickenTaste of Home

Citrus-Herb Roast Chicken

This dish is one of my all-time favorites...flavorful, juicy chicken with the aromas of spring: fresh herbs, lemon and spring onions. It’s the perfect one-pot meal. I make the gravy right in the pan. —Megan Fordyce, Fairchance, Pennsylvania

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Lemony Scallops with Angel Hair PastaTaste of Home

Lemony Scallops with Angel Hair Pasta

This delicate dish tastes so bright with a touch of lemon and tender sauteed scallops. Serve with crusty whole grain bread, and you have an impressive dinner that comes together in a flash. —Thomas Faglon, Somerset, New Jersey

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Ultimate Chocolate Bread PuddingTaste of Home

Ultimate Chocolate Bread Pudding

When I really want to impress guests, I serve this decadent bread pudding. With just a few staple ingredients—bread, eggs, sugar and chocolate—I'm able to turn out this masterpiece in no time! —Erin Chilcoat, Smithtown, New York

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Grampa's German-Style Pot RoastTaste of Home

Grampa's German-Style Pot Roast

Grampa was of German heritage and loved the old-world recipes given to him by his mother. I made a few changes to give this recipe an updated flavor and to use my slow cooker instead of the oven. —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, Nevada

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Air-Fryer Crumb-Topped SoleTaste of Home

Air-Fryer Crumb-Topped Sole

Looking for a low-carb supper that's ready in a flash? These buttery sole fillets are covered with a rich sauce and topped with toasty bread crumbs. They're super speedy thanks to your air fryer. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Red, white and blue summer saladTaste of Home

Red, White and Blue Summer Salad

Caprese and fresh fruit always remind me of summer. In this salad, I combine traditional Caprese flavors with summer blueberries and peaches. I also add prosciutto for saltiness, creating a balanced, flavor-packed side dish. —Emily Falke, Santa Barbara, California

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Key Lime Cream PieTaste of Home

Key Lime Cream Pie

I am very proud of this luscious no-bake beauty. It's so cool and refreshing—perfect for any summer potluck or get-together. Wherever I take this pie, it quickly disappears, with everyone asking for the recipe. —Shirley Rickis, Lady Lake, Florida

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Chicken PaprikashTaste of Home

Chicken Paprikash

Some recipes for chicken paprikash include vegetables like bell peppers and celery, but not my Grandmother Alta’s. Hers was a simple combination of chicken, onions, garlic, paprika and sour cream. —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia

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Apricot-Rosemary Pork MedallionsTaste of Home

Apricot-Rosemary Pork Medallions

I needed to use pork tenderloin from my fridge, but I didn't want to wait for it to roast. I tried this, and it was not only quick but my family loves it. You can play with different preserves to make your favorite flavors. —Mildred Lynn Caruso, Brighton, TN

Sue Stetzel
Sue has been part of the Taste of Home family for over 16 years. Her collection of magazines dates back to the premier issue in 1993. When she isn’t writing, she’s answer your burning cooking questions and working with our team of Volunteer Field Editors.

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