Our Top 100 Recipes of 2016
To cap off a great year, we like to reflect on the recipes that made the biggest impact on our lives (and taste buds!) this year. From savory chicken dinners to mouth-watering chocolate desserts, we’ve rounded up our 100 best recipes from 2016. Whether you're looking for a great dish to serve for the remainder of the year or are just looking to get a leg up on next year, these great dishes are the perfect place to start.
This sensational spud riff on nachos is an hommage to party food lovers everywhere. Loaded with toppings and drizzled with a hot cheese dip, these totchos are ready to rock and roll right onto your plate. This dish has all of the goodness of trashy, delicious bar nachos but are made with potato tots for a warm comfort food addition. Fresh jalapeno slices and cool avocado round out this dish, leaving the end impression and flavor as simply drool-inducing.
BBQ Sandwich Salad
This amazingly flavorful salad gives the full experience of a sauce-laden bbq sandwich, but without all of the extra bread (or the mess). Resting on a bed of hearty mixed greens and drizzled with a from-scratch buttermilk-ranch dressing, this salad is a bright and fresh cookout alternative that just might be the bbq experience that beats them all.
Chocolate Tiramisu Poke Cake
The poke cake technique is incredibly easy, but that doesn't mean that poke cakes have a simple flavor. Enjoy the irresistible textures of pudding, cake, and crushed espresso beans in each bite of with this chocoatey take on Tiramisu.
Spicy Apple-Glazed Chick 'n' Grits Gorgonzola
Tired of the same dinnertime routine? Cheesy, creamy grits pair perfectly with savory chicken dish that’s brushed in an apple butter and spicy brown mustard glaze. Spicy Apple-Glazed Chick 'n' Grits makes for a unique and impressive 30-minute meal, and at just 371 calories, you won’t have to feel bad about going in for seconds. Apple butter can be hard to find in small jars, but it will keep in the refrigerator for over a year once opened. This is a meal the whole family will love.
Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Whisk warm milk into the flour mixture to ensure a lump-free sauce. We also recommend shredding your own cheese for a creamier texture. We tested with Cracker Barrel Extra-Sharp Cheddar.
These easy, cheesy chicken enchiladas come together in a snap and are faster and way more delicious than fast food. If you have leftover roast chicken, use that here. Alternatively, you can buy a rotisserie chicken if you don't feel like cooking your own. Also, don't use corn tortillas, as these have a tendency to break and be hard to roll. Whatever you do, though, don't forget the fresh tomato, avocado, cilantro, and green onion topping—the freshness livens up the dish.
Best Carrot Cake
Truly our best-ever carrot cake recipe, make this classic favorite for a crowd and you might not have any leftovers to bring home.
White Chocolate and Bourbon Pecan Slab Pie with Caramel Sauce
It doesn't get much better than this decadent version of a Southern classic. White chocolate, bourbon, and caramel give this pecan pie a flavor much more dynamic than the original.
Sweet Potato Casserole
Whip sweet potatoes until they're smooth and top with a buttery brown sugar and pecan mixture for a satisfying cool-weather casserole.
Classic Beef Pot Roast
If you're looking for a traditional pot roast recipe, try this 5-star, no-fail version. Cuts of beef that perform well for pot roasting go by many different names: Blade roast, cross-rib roast (or shoulder clod), seven-bone pot roast, arm pot roast, and boneless chuck roast are all acceptable cuts. Either way, this roast beef recipe will become unbelievably tender and flavorful in the Dutch oven. Make this pot roast on a cold, rainy day for a cozy dinner that the whole family will love. For a slow-cooker version of this beef chuck roast, check out our crock-pot recipes.
Creamy Brioche and Egg Bake
This stand alone breakfast dish is an upgrade from the usual breakfast casserole. Baking eggs in brioche and heavy cream allows for perfectly set, soft, and runny eggs. Fresh herbs and rich egg and meaty sausage flavors round out this bake and give it irresistable texture. Ask for brioche at your local grocery store or bakery and they are sure to have it.
When we say easy, we mean easy. You don't even have to cook the noodles for this speedy yet impressive lasagna that always gets rave reviews. Lasagna is a family favorite, but this version is extra-special because it only requires 5 quick ingredients: ground beef, pasta sauce, lasagna noodles, ricotta cheese, and shredded mozzarella (we don’t count the water!). It’s rated 5 stars for a reason. Pro tip: Make a double batch: Enjoy one now and freeze one for a quick meal on a busy weeknight.
These little jars filled with fiber, whole grains, and protein are a necessary solution to your busy weekday mornings. The best part is, they're extremely customizable. Feel free to experiment with any of these additions: A spoonful of plain Greek yogurt or natural peanut butter, a handful of nuts (we prefer walnuts), some raisins or other dried fruit, or a tablespoon of chia seeds or ground flax meal. Not a fan of cold oats? Simply place the glass jar in the microwave (without the metal lid!) and nuke for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Weeknight Lemon Chicken Skillet Dinner
It doesn't get much easier, or more satisfying: a complete dinner in one pan in half an hour. Lemon brightens up this cozy meal.
Fried Apple Spirals
Serve sweet fried apples as a delicious snack, appetizer, or dessert for an impressive fall treat that comes together in just 25 minutes. In place of Fuji, you can also try Gala or Honeycrisp. For this peeling technique, you'll need to use an apple peeler similar like this or this.
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 streusal topping that the kids will love.
Orange-sauced chicken is a super fast supper idea that is rich with flavor, yet only has around 200 calories per serving. Serve over rice or with mixed vegetables.
Pimiento Cheese Deviled Eggs
Two appetizer favorites team up for one incredible bite in these pimiento cheese-loaded deviled eggs. Combining two types of cheese creates a robust, smoky-sharp flavor for the eggs' filling that's richened even further by the addition of egg yolks. Especially for deviled eggs (when keeping the white intact counts most), steaming is the way to go. This cooking technique makes for near foolproof, easy peeling--the egg shells practically slip right off. Just make sure to give the hot eggs a few minutes to rest in ice water, this makes a huge difference when it comes time to peel the shells off.
Old-Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup
Old-Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup is classic American comfort food. Flavorful stock, fresh-cooked chicken, traditional vegetables, and egg noodles lend starchy body to the broth of this favorite soup.
Loaded Potato Soup
Make this reviewer favorite the star attraction of your next soup night. Kids of all ages will enjoy topping it with bacon and cheese.
Easy Baked Fish Fillets
Looking for a simple fish dinner? Try this easy recipe for baked fish fillets. You can use any firm white fish: cod, haddock, or grouper work well.
Chicken Enchilada Casserole
This Tex-Mex chicken enchilada casserole is a delicious dinner option when you're craving Southwestern-style comfort food.
Traditional Sweet Potato Casserole
Top this lightened version of the classic sweet potato casserole with both marshmallows and toasted pecans. (For more classic dishes, visit our sweet potato recipes collection.)
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Garlic, and Shallots
Garlic, bacon and shallots are all you need to add intense flavor to the Brussels sprouts in this easy, 5-ingredient side-dish recipe.
Look no further for the ultimate classic, easy chili recipe. Made in a slow-cooker for simple a weekday meal. Top with shredded Cheddar cheese and corn chips.
Three-Bean Vegetarian Chili
While meatless, this veggie three-bean chili is super hearty with cubed butternut squash.
The ultimate recipe for Hummingbird Cake. It's the most requested recipe in Southern Living magazine history and frequents covered dish dinners all across the South, always receiving rave reviews.
Easy Blackberry Cobbler
Make the easiest blackberry cobbler ever using fresh berries plus 5 more ingredients. To make it special, top with whipped cream and a mint garnish.
Coconut Cream Pie
When it comes to pie recipes, this classic coconut pie recipe takes the blue ribbon. The use of a refrigerated pie crust makes it easy and the whipped cream makes it stunning.
This potato-topped shepherd’s pie gets extra flavor from the cheese and carrots that are added to the mashed potato crust. And you can take a shortcut with the crust because the recipe calls for frozen mashed potatoes.
Shrimp Pad Thai
Smother homemade Pad Thai with spicy shrimp, bean sprouts, peanuts and green onion for an Asian dish you will prepare again and again.
The simplicity of this dish is that it bakes in one pan and is a great use of any leftover chicken or turkey you may have. When coupled with pasta, this classic dish is truly a creamy and comforting dinner solution. A great thing about this recipe is that is involves enough ingredients to make two casseroles—one for now and one for later. This chicken recipe provides great freezing and baking instructions for prepping your second leftover casserole as well. This is the perfect family dinner dish.
Layered Buffalo Chicken Dip
This buffalo chicken dip is a completely homemade labor of love, and your guests will fall head over heels for this incredible appetizer. This dip offers the complete buffalo chicken experience all in one dish and combines layers of different ingredients and flavors along with a unique scratch-made carrot ranch dressing. There is a crunch, a richness, and a level of spice all mixed together in this wow-worthy dip that make it the perfect contributiion to any party or tailgate. This dish delivers intense flavor and an all-inclusive and truly delicious buffalo chicken experience.
BLT-Stuffed Baked Avocados
Far from the traditional bacon, lettuce, tomato sandwich, loaded out BLT-Stuffed Baked Avocados topped with Parmesan Breadcrumbs and Sriracha Mayo will blow your mind as an appetizer, lunch or even a dinner when served with a side salad.
Louisiana Hot Crab Dip
Fresh crab meat is the star of this classic New Orleans appetizer.
This easy lemon chicken recipe is one of our most popular main dish chicken recipes. Pair it with crisp veggies and a side of rice for a delicious dinner.
Cauliflower Pizza Crust
This cheesy cauliflower pizza crust is—dare we say it—even better than bread.
Fish Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Crema
Cumin, coriander, and paprika lend these fish tacos a delightfully warm, smoky flavor. They're the perfect foundation for the zippy sour cream sauce. For an appealing variation, substitute peeled medium shrimp for the snapper or romaine in place of cabbage.
Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork
This slow-cooker pulled pork recipe makes budget-friendly homemade barbecue a breeze! 7 ingredients and 10 minutes of prep time are all you need to get this dish cooking for dinnertime.
Charred Lemon Chicken Piccata
Lightly charring the lemon slices intensifies their flavor and creates a gorgeous look. Be sure to include any of the sweet, tangy liquid the lemons give off in the bowl; it adds incredible depth to the sauce.
Grilled Meatloaf Melt
One of the best things about meatloaf for dinner is enjoying it the next day in the form of a fantastic and delicious down-home sandwich. Piled high with hearty layers of thick-sliced tomatoes, Havarti and cheddar cheese slices, and of course - meatloaf, this sandwich is sure to be an appetite satisfier. When prepped in a skillet, this grilled sandwich gets the ultimate homestyle flavor, reminiscent of getting a nostalgic bite to eat from a warm and welcoming Southern diner.
Best Appetizer. This warm, creamy, cheesy dip appears frequently at staff gatherings. People make it time and again because it's tasty and a snap to prepare. Assemble up to two days ahead, and bake just before serving.
A chocolate-coated, powdered sugar-doused cereal treat is the perfect, portable dessert for shareable snacking. Classic Puppy Chow comes together in under 10 minutes using just a few simple ingredients. It's always a fan-favorite dessert, but if sharing isn't your style, curl up with your remote and a gigantic bowl and indulge all by yourself. Either way, we're not judging.
Zuppa Toscana (Better than Olive Garden!)
This wonderful soup is easy, quick & in a Crock Pot! Need I say more? Note: use Spicy Italian Sausage to get that signature Olive Garden flavor.
Easy Slow-Cooker Jambalaya
Featuring chicken, shrimp and smoked sausage, this classic Creole rice dish is well-suited to the slow cooker because the slow cooking allow all the flavors to blend in a marvelous way.
Easy Refrigerator Pickles
Refrigerator pickles are easy to make, and there's no need for kettle steamers, special jars, and vacuum-tight lids. Plus, unlike store-bought pickles, these scrumptious homemade pickles are low in sodium.
Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs
One of the most popular Cooking Light chicken recipes, these sweet and spicy broiled chicken thighs are flavored with chili powder, cumin, garlic and cider vinegar.
Dark Chocolate Avocado Cake with Chocolate Avocado Frosting
This vegan cake (no eggs or butter!) is so delicious that our kids begged for more. The frosting is silky smooth, and the cake is light and loaded with chocolate flavor, and healthy fats.
Chicken with Carrots and Potatoes
All you need is twenty minutes to get this dish in the slow cooker. You'll have a hearty chicken and veggie supper waiting for you when you get home. If you don't care to use the wine, you can use 1/2 cup of additional chicken broth.
This all-American chili recipe is perfect for an outdoor cookout but can also be made on the stove for a comfort classic on a cold day.
5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork
Three family dinners start with this one recipe for succulent and tender 5-Ingredient Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork.
Mini Vegan Key Lime Icebox Pies
Mini Vegan Key Lime Icebox Pies RecipeThis “custard” has an insanely rich and silky mouthfeel born from a partnership between avocado (which also provides the natural green coloring) and tofu. The blend of fats released from the ground nuts and a bit of added coconut oil combined with the sugary moisture of the dates create not only a cohesive crust, but one that is deep in flavor and wonderfully crisp once chilled.
Zucchini Oven Chips
Breaded, oven-fried zucchini chips taste like they’re fried, yet they are baked and amazingly crispy. These chips make a healthy substitute for French fries or potato chips.
If you prefer milder foods, reduce or omit the crushed red pepper. Add warm naan on the side of this classic Indian dish.
Easiest Peanut Butter Cookies
Impress your guests with these simple, 4-ingredient peanut butter cookies.
Traditional Spanish Paella
Nourishing, vibrant, and without pretension, paella has held a place of honor and practicality in Spanish homes for centuries. To round out this meal, choose a good Spanish red wine from the Rioja region, a crusty baguette, and a light salad.
Funnel Cake Ice-Cream Sandwiches
Make these for your next party and watch them disappear faster than you can say "funnel cake." The ice cream add-ins are suggestions, but you can use whatever you like--such as chopped candy bars, toasted and chopped nuts, or marshmallows. You can also roll the edges in toppings like sprinkles, graham cracker crumbs, or crushed Oreos. Keep in mind that hot oil is critical to a crispy funnel cake, so use a candy thermometer to monitor and maintain the oil's temperature.
Balsamic Pork Chops
Turn basic skillet pork chops into a main dish that's company-worthy by drizzling a tangy balsamic glaze over the pork and serving on a bed of long-grain and wild rice.
Braised Chicken Thighs With Carrots and Potatoes
All you need is 20 minutes to get this dish in the slow cooker, then you have a hearty chicken and veggie supper waiting for you when you get home.
Spicy Thai Coconut Chicken Soup
Coconut milk tames the heat and combines deliciously with shredded chicken breast in Spicy Thai Coconut Chicken Soup.
Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie
A gooey skillet brownie topped with scoops of vanilla ice cream and drizzled with melted peanut butter and rich chocolate syrup– what could be better?
This classic soup gets a double hit of cheese--stirred into the soup and sprinkled over the top.
Pan-Seared Strip Steak
A little butter adds richness and keeps leaner-than-usual beef moist without adding much total fat. WARNING: This recipe is smoky! Keep exhaust fan on high, or cook in a skillet on a hot outdoor grill.
Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas
Trade the traditional enchilada sauce for a creamy, cheesy topping on this Mexican chicken casserole recipe. Your family will never know they're enjoying a lightened meal.
A symbol of Creole cooking, gumbo is ubiquitous in homes and restaurants across Louisiana. Andouille sausage and file powder make this chicken-and-sausage gumbo a classic and, as in any good gumbo, a deep, rich roux thickens the stew.
Take all of the glory of a bacon cheeseburger topped with caramelized onions and served with French fries (and ketchup, of course), wrap all of it up in fluffy eggs, and pal, you have yourself one heck of a cheeseburger experience. This ridiculously delicious omelet is appropriate served at any hour of the day and is an excellent use for leftover burger fixin's, if you have them. Note: This recipe provides for 3 times as many burgers and caramelized onions as you'll need for a single omelet. If you don't use them for additional omelets, you can always enjoy the leftovers as regular ol' caramelized onion burgers.