Many recipes shared around the holidays benefit from being made in advance, leaving more time to socialize and less time stressing around the already busy season. With these delicious recipes in your back-pocket, festive entertaining just got a whole lot easier.
Make-Ahead Christmas Morning Strata
Don’t forget about a special holiday brunch to celebrate the season. Strata makes early-morning entertaining attainable and delicious, and it has to be prepared the night before. An hour before you’re ready to eat, just bake in the oven. Meanwhile, put out a bowl of peel-your-own clementines, brew a pot of coffee and set the table – brunch is sorted.
The Pioneer Woman's Turkey Roulade
If cooking a whole turkey for your holiday dinner, especially if you’re hosting a smaller group, feels like a bit too much food (there’s only so many leftover turkey sandwiches one can eat!), turn to this stuffed turkey breast roulade instead. Sausage, herbs and vegetables are rolled in a turkey breast, creating a never-dry roasted bird. Roll everything ahead, cover and refrigerate for a couple of days, and then pop in the oven when guests arrive.
Anna Olson’s Mincemeat Pie
Heavily spiced and filled with dried fruit, citrus peel, and brandy, mincemeat pie is a holiday classic. The filling benefits from sitting for a few days (some old-school recipes call for more booze-forward fillings to cure for months!), as does the pie crust.
Broccoli and Cheese Casserole
A cheesy way to get your greens this holiday season, broccoli and cheese casserole is always a crowd pleaser. Make the broccoli base a couple of days ahead and top with the cracker crumbs immediately before baking.
Anna Olson’s French Canadian Tourtiere
Tourtière is a savoury pie that appears around the holidays in Québécois households (more on the history of the pie here). The spiced meat filling and pastry can both be made a couple of days in advance of baking, kept separately, covered in the refrigerator and then assembled and baked right before serving. You can also assemble the entire pie, wrap and freeze for up to a month, and then bake from frozen.
Sweet Potato Casserole With Bacon Crumble
Sweet and savoury, creamy and crunchy, this decadent vegetable side can be made a few days in advance and then baked up right before serving. Add it to your buffet table or bring along to a holiday potluck.
The Pioneer Woman's Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Turkey
The Pioneer Woman developed a whole roast turkey that can be made ahead, providing tips and tricks for keeping the bird juicy, even the white meat that’s prone to drying out. A true holiday dinner game-changer.
The Pioneer Woman's Make-Ahead Creamy Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes can often become dry and crumbly, losing their comfort-food appeal just hours after they’re prepared. But this recipe is different. With the addition of cream cheese, mashed potatoes stay rich and creamy for a couple of days until you’re ready to reheat and eat.
The Pioneer Woman’s Chickpea Curry with Rice
Curries provide warming, hearty comfort food on cold holiday nights, and they often benefit from being made in advance, developing in flavour for a best-ever festive meal with a kick. Here, chickpeas are spiced to perfection and stewed until plump, which you can do a few days ahead of time. Reheat the stewed chickpeas on the stovetop, cook up some rice to ladle your curry over and serve with tender naan, cooling cucumber and yogurt (or your family’s go-to curry accompaniments).
Stained Glass Sugar Cookies
Whip up a big batch of basic sugar cookie dough to transform into a range of colourful, buttery cookies that will put a smile on anyone’s face. This cookie tree gets its sparkle from crushed candies.
Anna Olson’s Nanaimo Bars
You’re sure to see Canada’s own Nanaimo bars appear more often on festive sweets trays during the holiday season, and they can be made well in advance. Freeze prepared bars tightly wrapped for 1 to 2 months, defrost, slice and devour.