My mom has a way of describing our family’s cooking expertise, and that’s a “good bad cook”. While I’m not huge on categorizing food as “good” and “bad”, there are certain dishes that are total crowd pleasers that wouldn’t be found on the pages of a healthy or gourmet cookbook. Read on for my top favorite EASY (basically 3 ingredient or less) most crowd-pleasing recipes.
“Grandma’s Dip”- This one could not possibly be any easier or more addictive. All you need is a packet of Knorr Vegetable soup mix (with the dried soups) and a container of sour cream. Mix the two together and let them sit for a few hours (if you can!), and serve with Fritos scoops. Anyone who tries to serve this with veggies is trying to trap you.
Bacon Breadsticks– This recipe comes from my favorite cookbook, “What Can I Bring?”. You simply take thin dried breadsticks (often in the cracker aisle of the grocery store) and wrap them in bacon. Sprinkle them with brown sugar and place them on parchment paper in a 350 degree oven until crispy. Keep an eye on them closely, because the sugar does tend to burn!
Sausage Dip– Another name for this is “engagement dip”, because it’s rumored to have caused a friend of mine’s boyfriend to finally pop the question! This addictive dip is a 1-1-1 ratio of cream cheese, Rotel and a roll of sausage. Brown the sausage, and while it’s hot, mix in an undrained can of the Rotel tomatoes and peppers and a block of cream cheese. Serve with tortilla chips!
Cheese Slaw– A famous Roanoke tradition, and one that can be easily “jazzed up” in a bread bowl or hollowed out head of cabbage. This is by far the most involved of the recipes here, but it’s worth it! Mix one pound of shredded Swiss cheese with just enough mayo to moisten it (SORRY FOR THAT WORD Y’ALL) and allow it to stick together. Add in one bunch of chopped green onions, and 1/2 cup each of chopped banana peppers and chopped jalapeño peppers (seeds removed). This is best served with Fritos, crackers or I guess a vegetable if you must.
Chicken Dip– This is a heartier option, and combines shredded chicken (however much you’d like), a block of cream cheese and a packet of powdered Ranch dip. Serve with Club Crackers!
Ham Biscuits- These are definitely on the heartier side as well, and perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner! You’ll start with 3 packs of Hawaiian rolls (or mini soft buns of a different style if you don’t prefer the sweetness). I recommend opening the rolls and cutting them horizontally- don’t break them up, just cut them right through the middle to create “sheets” of tops and bottoms. Mix together grated onion (1 medium), butter (2 sticks, softened), mustard (3 Tbs.) and Worcestershire sauce (1 tsp.) and spread over both sides of the buns. Place an ample amount of thinly shaved ham (usually 1lb) on top (it should be falling apart!) and wrap in foil. You can warm them up in the oven all at once, individually or even freeze them if that works best!
Strawberry Dip– Here’s one for you healthy weirdos… sort of! For a lighter dessert, whip together one jar of marshmallow fluff with a block of cream cheese (gotcha!). Serve with strawberries or other fruit for dipping.
I can guarantee that people will be licking the bowls and trays of each one of these easy treats. Hopefully they’ll bring some fresh ideas into your rotations for summer cookouts and parties this year!