Favorite holiday recipes will leave you eager for more


Cooking is an important part of my family and favorite element of the holidays. In the words of my father, “No one in our family ever wrote these recipes down. Everyone just knew them.”

Whether you’re looking for a last-minute dish to bring to a holiday dinner or a delicious recipe to make for friends, here are a few secret family recipes that will add excitement to your holiday meal.

‘Mazing Mac and Cheese

This delicious side dish is the hit of every family get-together. What makes this family recipe stand out is the perfect mix of three different cheeses coming together in one delectable bite.

Serves 4 to 5 people


1 stick butter

pinch of salt

ground black pepper

2 cups of elbow macaroni

4 ounces shredded Sharp cheddar cheese (about 1 cup)

4 ounces shredded Colby/Jack cheese (about 1 cup)

1 cup Pet evaporated milk (12 ounce)

2 large eggs, beaten


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2. Non-stick spray a 9-by-13-inch ovenproof casserole dish. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the pinch of salt.

3. Add the macaroni and cook until tender (about 12 minutes), drain well in a colander, and place hot macaroni in a large casserole dish.

4. Stir in 1 stick of sliced butter, salt and pepper.

5. In a large bowl, beat in both eggs and half the can of Pet milk.

6. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the macaroni.

7. Begin adding and folding in the three cheeses (save some cheese to cover the top).

8. Add the rest of the can of milk.

9. Sprinkle the top with remaining cheese for good presentation.

10. Bake until golden brown and bubbly, for about 15-20 minutes.

11. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly before serving.

The Sweetest Potatoes

This recipe from my Dad’s side of the family makes sweet potatoes that are as much a desert as they are a “vegetable.”

Serves 4 to 7 people


4-5 medium yams (sweet potatoes)

powdered nutmeg

1 stick of butter

2 ½ cups of sugar


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Wash and peel the yams into a bowl.

3. Slice the yams into bite size slices into a bowl with cold water (enough to cover the sliced yams).

4. In a large, deep casserole dish with a lid, layer the first layer of the yams on the bottom, covering the bottom of the dish.

5. Sprinkle a ½ tablespoon of nutmeg over the layer of yams.

6. Sprinkle a ¼ cup of sugar over the layer of yams.

7. Cut a four, 1/16 inches of the stick of butter, and even lay them on the layer of yams.

8. Repeat steps 5 through 7, until the casserole dish is full, and the top can barely still fit on the dish.

9. Bake at 350 degrees for 3 1/2 hours.

10 Let cook for 15 minutes before serving.

Grandma’s Roast Beef

Perhaps the most unique and tasty of all three recipes, this mushroom-infused roast beef will make you rethink what a tradition chuck roast should taste like.

Serves 4 to 6 people


1 8lb boneless (or bone in) chuck roast

1 can of Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup

1 envelope of dry onion soup, preferably Mrs. Grass Onion Soup


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Line a two-inch deep pan with aluminum foil.

3. Place the defrosted chuck roast in the middle of the aluminum foil-lined pan.

4. Spoon over the uncooked Campbell Cream of Mushroom soup, and spread it all over the top of the roast with the back of the spoon.

5. Fill the empty soup can to the top with cold water and pour it over the roast and soup.

6. Shake the envelope of dry onion soup on top of the roast, covering the entire top of the roast.

7. Cover the pan with more aluminum foil, and curl the edges of the foil under to securely seal the pan.

8. Cook the roast in the oven for three hours.

9. While still covered, let the roast rest on top of the oven for 15 minutes before serving.