30+ Recipes to Make for a Fall Potluck
If there's any season more perfect for potlucks, it's fall. Between holidays, study sessions, and tailgates, the season teems with opportunities for families and friends to gather and bring a feast of different dishes to one place. Whether you're looking for the perfect casserole to bring to Friendsgiving, game day-friendly finger foods, or sweet desserts, these highly shareable, crowd-pleasing dishes will be gone long before the party's over.
Hot Bacon, Onion, and Swiss Dip
Hot Bacon, Onion, and Swiss Dip Recipe
This ridiculously-good baked cheese dip is one of test kitchen chef Karen Rankin's all-time favorite dishes to bring to parties and tailgates. It's the ultimate oozy-gooey cheese appetizer. As Rankin puts it, the way Swiss cheese, savory bacon, and sweet caramelized onions play together is nothing short of divine. Cream cheese and mayo contribute a necessary touch of creaminess, while scallions and fresh thyme offer a added savory flavor intrigue, and a finishing touch of crispy onions on top delivers a pleasant crunch.
Apple Cinnamon Bread
Besides being simple enough to whip up on a moments notice, as it bakes, this easy apple cinnamon bread puts off the kind of warming, buttery, spiced aromas that usher in all the fall feels. And given just how well a warm slice pairs with a cup of coffee, don't be surprised if you find yourself making a loaf of apple cinnamon bread on a weekly basis throughout the season. The rich quick bread is incredibly moist, thanks to the apple and sour cream, but the key to ensuring it's as tender as possible is to avoid over-mixing. In fact, once the final addition of dry ingredients has been added to the batter, it's helpful to finish incorporating everything together by hand, using a rubber spatula, rather than continuing to whip the batter with an electric mixer. We used Granny Smith apple in testing the recipe, but you can really use any apple variety you have on hand. Feel free to substitute the pecans called for walnuts, or leave the nuts out entirely.
Nacho Sausage Balls
Nothing says party like two of the all-time greatest finger foods uniting as one. And that is exactly what is happening with these Nacho Sausage Balls. Adding chorizo, Mexican cheese, pickled jalapeño, cilantro, and crushed nacho cheese flavored Doritos to the mix gives traditional sausage balls a hit of spicy personality. They're perfect for tailgating or holiday parties—plus, these next-level sausage balls can be made ahead of time and frozen for up to 1 month.
Easy Butternut Squash Casserole
Easy Butternut Squash Casserole Recipe
This delightful twist on sweet potato casserole is sweet, warm, and comforting. If you're short on time, use Whole Foods' canned butternut squash purée instead of roasting your own. Marshmallows are optional, but recommended.
Chocolate-Hazelnut Brownies Recipe
Fair warning: Our editors and test kitchen staff LOVED these gluten-free brownies. Words like "decadent" and "divine" were thrown around liberally. In short, these delicious brownies absolutely deserve a spot at your potluck dessert table.
Instant Pot Green Bean Casserole
Instant Pot Green Bean Casserole Recipe
This take on green bean casserole removes the add-ins you'd encounter with canned soup and frees up the stove and oven for all the other Thanksgiving dishes. Browning the onions adds so much flavor to the gravy while maintaining a Thanksgiving side that's still somewhat light—there's just enough sauce, but plenty of flavor. This casserole is also great reheated, or even chopped up and mixed in to a stir-fry.
Looking for an easy eggplant rollatini recipe? This savory eggplant rollatini is an easy and unexpected party appetizer. Cut each roll-up in half and serve with toothpicks for a pop-in-your-mouth bite.
Million Dollar Dip
Million Dollar Dip is like pimiento cheese, but better. The mixture of cheddar cheese, bacon, almonds, green onions, and mayonnaise will please anyone with a cracker or slice of celery. According to The Vintage Church Cookbook, it originated in the Neiman Marcus department store restaurant in the 1950s and became an instant favorite. This recipe doubles effortlessly, so go ahead and make a bigger batch. If there are any leftovers, you can always use it in a sandwich.
French Onion Soup Bites
French Onion Soup Bites Recipe
Easy to assemble and perfectly portable, these French Onion Soup bites are the perfect addition to any holiday party spread. They're like your favorite Trader Joe's freezer aisle find, but tastier.
Cauliflower-Goat Cheese Casserole
Cauliflower-Goat Cheese Casserole Recipe
This simple but hearty casserole has a good balance of sweet-vegetal cauliflower, deeply sweet shallots, and tangy goat cheese, while pine nuts provide some tastiness and textural contrast. Parcooking the cauliflower keeps it from mushing out in the casserole, and using a shortcut like pre-floreted cauliflower helps get this done super fast. Go for a goat cheese log instead of crumbles—it melts much more easily. It's easy enough for a weeknight, but is tasty and comforting enough for a special occasion.
Classic Banana Bread
This healthier take on banana bread uses yogurt instead of butter, but it's just as moist and indulgent as classic recipes. This banana bread recipe isn't just easy. It's also highly customizable and can adapt to a number of flavors and substitute ingredients. Banana bread should form a crack down the center as it bakes--a sign the baking soda is doing its job. Serve toasted with a smear of cream cheese, Greek yogurt, or peanut and top with mixed nuts, if desired. You can even customize your bread with a crunchy streusel topping that the kids will love.
Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna
Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna Recipe
Silky roasted butternut squash stands in for noodles in this more nutritious take on the starchy pasta casserole.
Heavenly Taco Pie
This taco pie is a great alternative to a build-your-own taco bar. It can be made ahead of time and baked off right before the party. Just slice it up and set out some traditional toppings, buffet-style so everyone can customize. Be sure to let it stand before serving, as that's the key to everything holding together.
Ambrosia Fruit Salad
Whether you consider it a salad, side dish, or dessert, ambrosia is a holiday classic. It's quick and easy to make and can sit overnight if you like.
Garlic Knot Chicken Parmesan Sliders
Garlic Knot Chicken Parmesan Sliders Recipe
Chicken Parmesan meets a garlicky, buttery roll in this super simple yet impressive recipe. Everything comes together quickly with the help of pizza dough, but you could also use dinner rolls like Hawaiian rolls to skip a step and save time. Dress them up with wine, or dress them down with beer and bring them to a tailgate. These sliders also pair nicely with a salad or chips and dip.
Greek Salad Lasagna
Greek salad and lasagna work well as individual entities, and together they meld together in a family friendly, big ol' plate of food. Sharp flavors from olives, feta, red pepper and red wine vinegar liven up an otherwise classic dish. We used olives from the bar at Whole Foods—if you use brine jarred olives, you may want to reduce the amount so it doesn't overpower the rest of the dish. Use bell peppers that are the same size so they'll finish cooking at the same time. You can make this ahead of time and store it in the fridge for up to 4 days—if you cook from cold, you'll need to increase the cooking time. For nice clean cuts on the lasagna, let it rest for an hour before cutting it.
Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Celery
Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Celery Recipe
We can't decide what we love more about these Buffalo celery bites—the fact that they require zero cooking, come together in about 15 minutes, and are roughly the easiest appetizer ever OR the sheer magnitude of how delicious they are. But then, that's the beauty of these seriously upgraded stuffed celery sticks, you don't have to choose between convenience and full-on flavor. Crisp celery sticks are loaded with a creamy Buffalo chicken mixture—made entirely from store-bought staples—and topped off with crumbled blue cheese, making every bite the perfect Buffalo bite. Perfect for game day, these got-it-all snacks are sure to score more than a few devoted fans.
Brussels Sprouts Casserole
Brussels Sprouts Casserole Recipe
This solid casserole is perfect for a winter gathering and would especially be welcome around the holidays. The strong flavors of sharply biting Brussels sprouts and salty bacon are rounded our with creamy, cheesy goodness while buttery breadcrumbs add a nice crunch. It'd make a perfect side for roasted chicken or pot roast, but it's also a nice addition to a Thanksgiving or Christmas table.
Best Fudgy Brownies
Meet your new go-to recipe for homemade brownies. These decadent treats are extra rich and fudgy, thanks to a double hit of baking chocolate and bittersweet chocolate morsels. They're incredibly easy to make, plus you probably have most of the ingredients in your pantry already. And while we're definitely not above boxed brownie mixes, these homemade brownies would certainly steal the show at any party or get-together.
Pimento Cheese Puffs
Classic French gougères with a Southern remix. These airy pimiento cheese puffs make an impressive addition to virtually any party spread. While the choux pastry dough may seem intimidating to make, trust us—success is just a matter of not walking away from the pan. As long as you can stay put and keep stirring (so that your dough doesn't burn), you can make gougères.
Apple Pie French Toast Casserole
Apple Pie French Toast Casserole Recipe
This overnight casserole could be breakfast, but it could also be bread pudding—in short, it's the perfect thing to serve on a chilly Saturday morning. Cinnamon and comforting, it's just sweet enough to be eaten as-is, but it's also nice topped with a little butter and maple syrup. The chopped pecans absorb some of the moisture from the apples, leaving a nice caramelization and crunch. Assembly is super easy: Get everything together the night before, or even the day of—just be sure to let it sit at room temperature for an hour. Serve with your toppings of choice and a cup of coffee.
Lasagna Dip With Pasta Chips
Lasagna Dip With Pasta Chips Recipe
Olive Garden got this one right, folks—lasagna in dip form is all kinds of wonderful, especially served with freshly fried, crisp pasta chips. Trust us, this meaty, cheesy appetizer will be a welcome addition to any party.
Two-Toned Scalloped Potatoes
Two-Toned Scalloped Potatoes Recipe
Using both sweet potatoes and Yukon gold potatoes gives classic, comforting scalloped potatoes a delicious upgrade. Perfect for family gatherings and holiday dinners at any point in the year, this impressive potato side dish delivers creamy richness, robust savory flavor, and a delightful crunch with a herby panko-pecan topping. You can assemble the dish (minus the topping) ahead of time and refrigerate up to 12 hours before you're ready to bake.
Taco Mac & Cheese
When taco night meets mac and cheese, magic happens. Melty cheese, hearty ground beef, and a creamy Tex-Mex inspired sauce come together in this taco-mac skillet for a maximum comfort food meal. You can absolutely prep this cheesy dinner bake ahead of time to make for even easier weeknight prep; simply assemble (following the recipe through step 4), then cover tightly and refrigerate until you're ready to bake (add a few minutes to the bake time if you're going from the fridge to the oven). You can typically find taco skillet sauce shelved near the dry taco seasoning and tortillas in the supermarket.
Skillet PB&J Monkey Bread
Skillet PB&J Monkey Bread Recipe
Ooey gooey peanut butter and jelly goodness! Kids and adults alike will go nuts for this sweet and decadent treat, which gets its chewy, light-as-air feeling from store-bought pizza dough.
If you love ramen, you'll love this casserole. It's got that rich, comfort-food vibe, all while feeling like an upgraded college microwaveable ramen. The smoke from the pork and nori, combined with rich hits of mushrooms, egg, and bamboo add a lot of depths to instant noodles. You can find smoked pork near ham cubes, which is in the meat section by the chicken, or you can get it prepared in the deli. For an upgrade, grab pulled pork from your favorite barbecue place—it'll be worth the extra deliciousness.
Basic Cheese Dip
Say hello to our best-ever basic cheese dip. So creamy, decadently cheesy, and perfectly easy to whip up at a moment's notice, this simple cheese dip recipe is the one to keep on hand to address any and every queso craving. Rich, but not too thick, our basic cheese dip makes a primo last-minute party appetizer or "something special" treat to make a weeknight meal feel a little more festive.
Cinnamon Apple Pull-Apart Bread
Cinnamon Apple Pull-Apart Bread Recipe
For a special breakfast that's sure to impress, this easy Cinnamon Apple Pull-Apart Bread is a must. Not only is it a looker, but every fluffy crevice and golden fold of this loaf is smattered with irresistibly buttery, apple and cinnamon-brown sugar goodness.
Pepperoni Pizza Casserole
Pepperoni Pizza Casserole Recipe
Rich and filling, this pizza-meets-garlic-bread casserole is perfect for a Friday night when your kid invites over half the neighborhood. The cheese, pepperoni, and mushrooms are a match made in heaven for buttery bread, and the bottom of the casserole gets nice and crisp. Pepperoni slices have a tendency to stick together, so make sure to separate them nicely when you stick them into the pan with the marinara.
Thai Tea Pie
Warmly spiced Thai tea mix—which you can purchase at an Asian market or online—stars in this show-stopping, no-bake pie. The tea is steeped in sweetened condensed milk which is then used to make a stovetop custard; after straining out the tea leaves (definitely use cheesecloth), you'll simply pour the vibrantly colored custard into a peanutty, no-oven-necessary crust and refrigerate until set. If you're looking for a pie that's sure to impress, trust us, the sweet Thai tea against the salty, toasty flavor of the peanuts is a combo you won't be able to get enough of.
Sweet Potato Casserole with Rosemary and Goat Cheese
Sweet Potato Casserole with Rosemary and Goat Cheese Recipe
This savory take on sweet potato casserole has a lovely nuttiness and aromatic nature. The tang of the goat cheese plays nicely with the sweetness of the potatoes, while the crunchy pecans and crispy rosemary give a great texture and incredible looks. It's like the traditional sweet potato casserole aesthetic, but with a little more personality, plus cheese. Be sure to brown the butter with the fresh rosemary—not only does it infuse the butter with flavor, but it also crisps the rosemary leaves and provides a nice crunch.