The Best Holiday Recipes From Every Decade (2024)

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The Best Holiday Recipes From Every Decade (1)Katie BandurskiUpdated: Jan. 27, 2024

    These vintage holiday recipes can be enjoyed in Christmas present, too.

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    The 1910s: Grandma's Christmas Cake

    One bite of this old-fashioned spice cake will bring back memories. Loaded with raisins and nuts, it tastes extra special drizzled with the rich buttery sauce. —Linda Stemen, Monroeville, Indiana

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    The 1910s: Fancy Baked Potatoes

    I can't count the times I've turned to this tried-and-true recipe when company is coming. The potato filling is creamy and rich tasting, plus the servings are attractive. But the best part is you can spare yourself the hassle of mashing potatoes at the last minute. —Audrey Thibodeau, Gilbert, Arizona

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    The 1910s: Christmas Morning Popovers

    Popovers have been a Christmas morning tradition in my family for 30 years. I get up early to make the popovers, then wake the family to begin opening gifts. When the popovers are ready, I serve them with lots of butter and assorted jams. My father-in-law began the tradition. —Sue A. Jurack

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    The 1910s: Tiny Tim's Plum Pudding

    In A Christmas Carol, everyone claps for plum pudding. Our family has made this pudding our own tradition, and it really is something to clap for. —Ruthanne Karel, Hudsonville, Michigan

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    The 1910s: Christmas Goose with Orange Glaze

    Steeped in tradition and rich with flavor, a holiday goose is an impressive centerpiece to your Christmas dinner. The delicious aroma and tangy orange sauce make this a bird even Scrooge would love. —Terri Draper, Columbus, Montana

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    The 1920s: Orange-Pistachio Divinity

    Old-fashioned divinity candy is even yummier with a hint of refreshing orange zest and bits of crunchy pistachios. Store-bought versions just can’t compare! —Lorri Reinhardt, Big Bend, Wisconsin

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    The 1920s: Oysters Rockefeller

    My husband and I are oyster farmers, and this classic Oysters Rockefeller dish always delights our guests. It's deliciously simple! —Beth Walton, Eastham, Massachusetts

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    Here’s a simple yet elegant soup for fall and winter. Everyone enjoys the smooth texture and earthy veggies. For a colorful garnish, sprinkle on chives and pomegranate seeds.—Merry Graham, Newhall, California

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    The 1920s: Fluffy Cranberry Mousse

    This is a delicious and pretty salad for the holidays, but it's so good that I serve it at other times, too. I got the recipe from a neighbor who had served it with a traditional turkey dinner. —Helen Clement, Hemet, California

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    The 1920s: Pretty duch*ess Potatoes

    Comfort-food flavor comes in attractive packages that are just the right size! This recipe is a favorite Christmas dinner or Thanksgiving menu idea. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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    The 1930s: Chestnut Stuffing

    It wouldn't be Thanksgiving without a serving of my family's favorite stuffing. If you can't find jarred chestnuts at your grocery store, check gourmet cooking shops or order them online. —Lee Bremson, Kansas City, Missouri

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    The 1930s: Candied Pecans

    I pack these easy candied pecans in jars tied with pretty ribbon for family and friends. My granddaughter gave some to a doctor at the hospital where she works, and he said they were too good to be true! —Opal Turner, Hughes Springs, Texas

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    The 1930s: Cloverleaf Rolls

    When I was a girl, it was a rare occasion when Mom made a gourmet meal. Most often, she relied on traditional recipes like this one. My sister and I ate more than our share of these versatile golden rolls.-Brenda DuFresne, Midland, Michigan

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    The 1930s: Easy Homemade Chunky Applesauce

    Here's a comforting, home-style treat that never loses its appeal. Dish up big bowlfuls and wait for the smiles! —Marilee Cardinal, Burlington, New Jersey

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    The 1930s: Traditional Mashed Potatoes

    Mashed potatoes make a wonderful accompaniment to most any meal, so keep this recipe handy.

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    The 1940s: Cauliflower Au Gratin

    Count on this dish to make new vegetable converts. Whenever I serve it, people ask me for the recipe. Sometimes I’ll substitute broccoli for all or half the cauliflower, and the green veggie tastes just as good! —Jacki Ricci, Ely, Nevada

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    The 1940s: Oyster Stuffing

    This recipe came from my mother. She made it every Thanksgiving for my father, who absolutely loved it. —Amy Daniels, Brodhead, Wisconsin

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    The 1940s: Old-Fashioned Fruit Compote

    A perfect partner for your Christmas goose, this warm and fruity side dish can simmer while you prepare the rest of your menu, or make it a day ahead and reheat before serving. —Shirley A. Glaab, Hattiesburg, Mississippi

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    The 1940s: Duck Breasts with Apricot Chutney

    When serving this entree as part of a buffet, try using chafing dish to keep it warm. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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    The 1940s: Molded Cranberry-Orange Salad

    When I take this dish to potlucks during the holidays, people always ooh and aah. Feel free to top with whipped cream for added appeal. —Carol Mead, Los Alamos, New Mexico

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    The 1950s: Celebration Cheese Balls

    A handful of simple ingredients that go together in minutes, three fun flavorful options…these creamy cheese balls from our Test Kitchen are a darling, do-ahead delight for busy holiday hostesses! Why not whip up several batches? —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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    The 1950s: Eggnog Pie

    A holiday favorite of mine, this creamy pie delivers wonderful eggnog flavor. It’s very pretty, too, with a sprinkling of nutmeg on top. —Florence Shaw, East Wenatchee, Washington

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    The 1950s: Crown Roast with Apricot Dressing

    I have been making crown roasts for many years but was only satisfied with the results when I combined a few recipes to come up with this guest-pleasing version. It’s beautifully roasted with an apricot glaze and a nicely browned stuffing. —Isabell Cooper, Cambridge, Nova Scotia

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    The 1950s: Flaky Butterhorn Rolls

    The recipe for these dinner rolls, slightly sweet and so very flaky, was my mother’s. They are simple to prepare because kneading skills are not required and the dough is easy to handle. My grandchildren have renamed them "Grandma’s croissants"! —Bernice Smith, Sturgeon Lake, Minnesota

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    The 1950s: Cranberry Eggnog Salad

    For a bright salad with a vintage holiday feel, we stack a layer of raspberry gelatin and cranberry sauce over a yummy pineapple-eggnog base. —Nancy Foust, Stoneboro, Pennsylvania

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    The 1960s: Nutty Stuffed Mushrooms

    Basil, Parmesan cheese and mushroom blend together well, while buttery pecans give these treats a surprising crunch. Our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren always ask for them! —Mildred Eldred, Union City, Michigan

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    The 1960s: Three-Cheese Fondue

    I got this easy recipe from my daughter, who lives in France. It’s become my go-to fondue, and I make it often for our family.—Betty A. Mangas, Toledo, Ohio

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    The 1960s: Burnt Custard

    The recipe for this smooth-as-silk custard came from a local restaurant years ago. With its broiled topping it looks pretty in individual cups. —Heidi Main, Anchorage, Alaska

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    The 1960s: Mom's Roast Beef

    Everyone loves slices of this fork-tender roast beef with its savory gravy. The well-seasoned roast is Mom's specialty. People always ask about the secret ingredients. Now you have the delicious recipe for our favorite meat dish! —Linda Gaido, New Brighton, Pennsylvania

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    The 1960s: Creamy Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes

    I like to make these twice-baked sweet potatoes because they can be prepared ahead of time. With the addition of cream cheese, they are very creamy and not overly sweet. It is so easy to increase the quantity to any number. —Linda Call, Falun, Kansas

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    The 1970s: Oyster Cheese Appetizer Log

    When you say "holiday tradition" around our house, this appetizer comes to mind immediately. Every winter, I make lots of cheese logs and freeze them for when I'm expecting company or need to take food to someone's home. The blend of smoked oysters, chili powder, nuts and cream cheese tastes good-even people who don't like oysters may enjoy this interesting appetizer. —William Tracy, Jerseyville, Illinois

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    The 1970s: Classic Beef Wellingtons

    Perfect for holidays, this beef Wellington recipe is also impressively easy. Find ready-made puff pastry sheets in the frozen food section. —Kerry Dingwall, Ponte Vedra, Florida

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    The 1970s: Three-Cheese Souffles

    No matter when I've made these soufflés, they have always been a success. Although I've never seen the centers start to fall, it's best to plan on serving them hot from the oven. —Jean Ference, Sherwood Park, Alberta

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    The 1970s: Honey-Butter Peas and Carrots

    This classic combination of peas and carrots is enriched with a handful of flavor enhancers. Slow cooking allows the ingredients to meld for maximum richness. —Theresa Kreyche, Tustin, California

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    The 1970s: Molded Cranberry Nut Salad

    We try lots of cranberry recipes, and this one is always requested when we have family get-togethers at Thanksgiving and Christmas. It has also been a favorite dish at every church potluck I've taken it to! —Eleanor Arthur, Seattle, Washington

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    The 1980s: Party Potatoes

    These creamy, tasty potatoes can be made the day before and stored in the refrigerator until you're ready to pop them in the oven (I often do that). The garlic powder and chives add zip, and the shredded cheese adds color. —Sharon Mensing, Greenfield, Iowa

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    The 1980s: Cranberry-Apple Red Cabbage

    When I was looking for something new, I started playing with flavors and came up with this very tasty dish. My German grandmother would be impressed, I think! The colorful side dish is just right with pork. —Ann Sheehy, Lawrence, Massachusetts

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    The 1980s: Glazed Cornish Hens

    If you're looking to add a touch of elegance to your holiday dinner table, our Test Kitchen experts suggest these Cornish game hens topped with a sweet apricot glaze. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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    The 1980s: Pumpkin Bisque with Smoked Gouda

    I love the smell of this rich, cheesy soup as it bubbles on the stove. The Gouda cheese adds a delightful smokiness that just says autumn to me.—Kerry Dingwall, Ponte Vedra, Florida

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    The 1980s: Appetizer Blue Cheese Logs

    Three kinds of cheese and some curry powder make this cheese log a little more lively than most. Swipe it on your favorite cracker with a drizzle of honey for a sensational snack. —Ethel Johnson, North Saanich, British Columbia

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    The 1990s: Orange-Glazed Pork Loin

    This is one of the best pork recipes I've ever tried. My family looks forward to this roast for dinner, and guests always want the recipe. The flavorful rub, and the glaze brightened with orange juice, are also outstanding on pork chops. —Lynnette Miete, Alna, Maine

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    The 1990s: Tangerine & Roasted Beet Salad

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    The 1990s: Cranberry Wild Rice Pilaf

    This tender side dish is perfect for the holidays or any time you want to add a special touch. Dried cranberries, currants and almonds serve up color and texture. My co-workers all make this rice pilaf for their families. —Pat Gardetta, Osage Beach, Missouri

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    The 1990s: Herb-Buttered Baby Carrots

    The herb butter can be used for everything from vegetables to roast chicken, turkey, game hens—let your imagination be your guide.—Sandra Corey, Caldwell, Idaho

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    The 1990s: Linzer Cookies

    This specialty cookie takes a little extra effort, but the results are sweet! They really help to make the holidays feel special. —Jane Pearcy, Verona, Wisconsin

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    Originally Published: October 29, 2018

    The Best Holiday Recipes From Every Decade (45)

    Katie Bandurski

    As Senior Shopping Editor, Katie connects Taste of Home readers with the best gifts, deals and home products on the market. An avid foodie and a holiday enthusiast, Katie is an expert at cultivating meaningful moments.When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and watching Christmas movies.

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