Sometimes the holidays have the tendency to sneak up on you. Before you know it, it's Christmas Eve, you have people coming over for dinner the next day, and you don't know what you're going to make.
You hop on the interwebs, navigate to Pinterest, and search for "last minute holiday recipes."
And you find me! Which I'm so happy about, by the way. It sounds weird, but my readers are like an extended family of sorts.
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Onward with the last minute holiday recipes! This short list will get you from "oh crap" to "I had this planned all along" in no time.
Citrus Baked Olives from From Pasta to Paleo
These citrus baked olives look so fancy. In reality, they are olives baked with citrus. (Mind blowing, right?) 🙂 They take no time at all and will make your guests think you're a culinary star. Set them out while still warm, when your guests are arriving, and they will never doubt you.
Cranberry Orange Relish from Paleo Scaleo
I've never been a canned cranberry kind of girl. This Cranberry Orange Relish has the brightest flavors, and livens up any holiday meal. (Confession: I've been known to eat the leftovers with a spoon. It's that good.)
Sage Rubbed Spatchcocked Smoked Turkey from Foodal
My husband Brandan wanted to smoke a turkey. He's done this in the past, and he's definitely got a talent for it. The turkey comes out tender and delicious. However, it also takes about 12 hours to do. With a 5 week old baby in the house, I didn't see this as working out well for anyone. More likely, I saw him being in the yard for 12 hours, me with the baby for 12 hours, us not eating until naptime, baby having a meltdown, me having a meltdown, and our guests looking at us like we were crazy.
Anyway, in lieu of all that, I found this recipe. I've spatchcocked a chicken before, and it was delicious and tender. And 90 minutes of smoking sounded way better than 12 hours. Amiright? So, we're having spatchcocked turkey for dinner! If you're short on time and need a quick way to cook a turkey, this is it. You can even roast it in the oven if you don't have a grill or smoker, or if cooking outdoors in December isn't really a thing where you live.
Baked Sirloin Roast with Herb Rub from Beauty and the Foodie
Have a smaller group that you don't need an entire huge turkey for? Try this baked sirloin roast. Tender, juicy, and a more appropriate size for a smaller crowd.
Rustic Rosemary Thyme Mashed Potatoes from Strength and Sunshine
Some people don't like their mashed potatoes chunky. Sometimes, though, a little bit of texture can be nice, rather than just puréed smooth potatoes. Rosemary and thyme bring in an herby flavor appropriate for the holiday season.
Hasselback Sweet Potatoes from The Healthy Foodie
Sometimes sweet potatoes can get a bad rap. These hasselback sweet potatoes look oh so fancy when presented, and look like you spent a bunch of time on them, when in reality you just put a lot of little cuts in them to get them some crispy edges. Sprinkle them with some herbs and nuts, and bam, fancy ass potatoes are served.
Pan-Fried Green Beans Almondine from Wholesome Yum
Have you ever had that green bean casserole with the can of Campbell's cream of mushroom soup? Yeah, this is not that. Thinly sliced almonds and bacon crumbles take these fresh green beans to a whole other level.
Coconut Creamed Spinach with Pork Crackling from Low Carb Yum
Brandan has an affinity for all things pork. More specifically, pork rinds. (Which most people don't realize are a paleo snack. Ingredients? Pork skin, salt. Try them as chips, dipped in salsa, or as the base for a plate of nachos. You won't be sorry.) Anyway - creamed spinach, made with coconut cream and coconut milk. This recipe calls for you to make your own pork crackling, but if you're reading this post, I'm pretty sure we can agree ain't nobody got time for that. Grab a bag of pork rinds, crush them up, and add them as a crumbly, crispy topping before serving. Nom.
Almond Butter Ginger Cookies from DIY Candy
Disclaimer: I got a little ginger cookie happy in this post. I really want someone to make me some ginger cookies, apparently. All three of these options look delicious, and all fairly easy. When you're in a time crunch, making a whole pie or cake is just not an option. Pick one of these, serve them with some coffee, and you're good to go! Option one: almond butter ginger cookies.
Paleo Salted Gingerbread Cookies from Skinny Fitalicious
Option two: salted gingerbread cookies. Also yum. Also easy. Also I want to eat them.
Peppermint Cream Ginger Cookies from Beauty and the Foodie
Option three: add some peppermint cream frosting if you have a bit of extra time! That sprinkle on top makes them look even fancier.
If you were in dire straits before you found this post, hopefully I've helped get you from point A to point B.
If you make any of these recipes for your holiday meal (or otherwise), post in the comments and let us know how they fared with the crowd. Best wishes to you and yours for the holiday season!
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