Make-ahead recipes to help you make it through the holidays.
Check your calendar—it’s nuts, right? Between the social (potlucks, cookie swaps, work parties, real parties) and the functional (cooking for potlucks, prepping for cookie swaps, appetizers for work parties, fancy yum for real parties) there’s not a moment to spare. We feel ya. We’re working ahead over here, pulling together a list of make-ahead recipes that make you look a total holiday hero.
Bring a couple to a wrapping party with a BFF. Bring dozens to the office for the lunch-hour Secret Santa fest. Cute little jars, who can resist that?
The holidays burn a lot of calories; true story. This prep-and-roll entrée sets you up with grab-one, grab-em-all individual rolls, so you’re ready for dinner-for-one or to host the whole crew for an impromptu feast.
It’s a breakfast bake that mixes all your faves together, but we think it’s also great as a lunch bake, dinner bake, or an any-old-time bake. We’re rebels like that.
Every bite is like chowing down on a full-on burger (pickles included). And since you’re pre-making and pre-baking, you are locked and loaded for every "Would you bring some appetizers?” for the next month.
On the healthy side with turkey as the protein, on the easy side with no-mix, no-simmer readiness. Make two, eat one, and freeze the other for that night when there are zero minutes to spare.
Making a snowman is one of the best parts of winter. This cute cheese ball comes together in two steps: at a time convenient to you, you assemble the parts and prep cheese balls. When it’s party time, simply stack, decorate, and serve. You for the win.
Take a few minutes to pull it together the night before. When the morning alarm goes off, roll out of bed, pitch it in the oven, and let the fresh-baked aroma do the wake-up work on the rest of the crew.
A full, hearty breakfast you can hold in one hand—what day doesn’t need that? Make enough for the weekend or to get you through the whole week.
Roll-up a bunch of these bad boys and freeze ‘em for later. Then just reheat for a quick and easy snack.
You know those crispy, luscious treats that you get at your favorite Chinese takeout joint? These muscle them up a titch with pre-made crescent roll dough, and are great for grabbing, bagging and taking on the road.
Send some of these sweet treats in a jar home with friends, or keep a few on hand for yourself whenever the dessert craving hits.
You’ll own the dessert table with these teeny-tiny in size, mega-gigantic in chocolate flavor pies. Make them a day or two before the party, saving those last minutes before the guests arrive for a quick sampling for yourself.
It’s the sauce that makes this a killer meal, and it’s the easiest make-ahead fancy dinner we know. The recipe breaks out every step, except for how to talk people into leaving some leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch.
We love how you don’t even need to hit the store to whip this up, since the recipe uses pretty much everything we always have on hand. Make a batch for a couple of dinners or a bunch of lunches.
If you want to totally rock this holiday thing, make the meals that let you focus on nothing but the festivities. Put your favorite toppings—and only your favorites—on these homemade frozen pizzas, and it’s like opening a gift every time you bake one up.
So many smart hacks, from flavored frozen potatoes to using prepped Alfredo sauce as the pot pie gravy. And one more shortcut: make 'em, freeze ’em, and reheat ’em at your whim.
Casseroles are a go-to comfort food, especially when you need a break from all that shopping (and all that working to pay for all that shopping). Picture this evening in your near future: putting your feet up while your pre-made bake gets perfectly crispy in the oven. Dreamy, right?
Super gourmet. Super simple. These tiny cheesy lovelies come together quickly and easily, so prepping ahead of time feel like no work at all.
There’s not a lot to plan in terms of pulling off this fantastically filling and delicious chili. Oh, there’s plugging in the slow cooker, so that’s a little work there... Beyond that, dinner is as good as done. Future you says “Thanks.”