A Full Menu for Fun-Filled Holiday Festivities


When holiday gatherings turn into all-day events, having meals ready from morning to night becomes an important part of seasonal hosting. Starting with breakfast through the main course followed by a savory dessert, a full day of celebration calls for a variety of dishes. 

To help keep your crowd fueled for a wide range of activities, consider these recipes for Hot Cocoa Pancakes to get your morning started, Browned Butter Smashed Potatoes with Butternut Squash to pair with a holiday ham and Black Forest Cake to end the festivities on a high note. 

Find more holiday recipe inspiration at Culinary.net.

Begin the Holiday with a Family Breakfast

With so many activities scheduled and places to be during the holidays, starting the morning with a filling breakfast can help set your family on the path to enjoyable moments with loved ones. 

These Hot Cocoa Pancakes require little time in the kitchen, leaving you more time to spend with the family before hitting the road or working on decorations for seasonal gatherings. Made with Aunt Jemima pancake mix, containing no artificial coloring or flavors, this recipe makes it simple to put breakfast on the table quickly while still achieving a meal full of flavor. 

Visit auntjemima.com for more family-friendly recipes. 

Hot Cocoa Pancakes

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 2 minutes per pancake

Yield: 12 pancakes (3 per serving)

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1 cup 2% or non-fat milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups Aunt Jemima Original Complete or Buttermilk Complete Pancake & Waffle Mix

1/4 cup water

  marshmallow spread (optional)

chocolate syrup (optional)

Aunt Jemima Syrup (optional)

Heat skillet over medium-low heat or electric griddle to 375 F. 

In microwave-safe bowl, mix cocoa powder, sugar, milk and vanilla until well combined. Heat in microwave 30 seconds, or until warm. Stir again to ensure mixture is combined. 

Combine cocoa mixture, pancake mix and water. Stir until large lumps disappear (do not beat or overmix). If batter is too thick, add additional 1-2 tablespoons water.

Pour slightly less than 1/4 cup batter onto lightly greased skillet or griddle. Cook 90 seconds, or until bubbles appear on surface. Turn and cook additional 30 seconds. Repeat with remaining batter.

Top pancakes with marshmallow spread and drizzle chocolate syrup, or top with syrup.

Party-Perfect Potatoes

Almost every holiday meal calls for side dishes to complement the main course, and as one of the most versatile base ingredients available, potatoes often provide home chefs with a multitude of options. 

Served mashed, fried, scalloped, sliced, diced, boiled, roasted or just about any style in-between, potatoes are ideal for matching with the centerpiece of your family meal. These Browned Butter Smashed Potatoes with Butternut Squash call for Wisconsin yellow-flesh potatoes to achieve a dense, creamy texture with their just-buttered appearance. 

Find more dishes for your holiday gatherings at eatwisconsinpotatoes.com.

Browned Butter Smashed
Potatoes with Butternut Squash

Prep time: 25 minutes 

Cook time: 15 minutes

1 pound (3 medium) Wisconsin yellow-flesh potatoes, cut into 3/4-inch chunks

1 small butternut squash (about 1 pound), peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks


1 teaspoon salt, plus additional, to taste, divided

3 tablespoons butter, divided

8-10 fresh (2-3-inch) sage leaves, stacked and cut into 1/4-inch strips

1/2 cup 1% milk 

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In 3-quart saucepan, cover potatoes and squash with water; add 1 teaspoon salt.

Bring to boil over high heat; reduce heat, cover and cook until tender, 12-15 minutes.

In small saucepan over medium heat, mix 2 tablespoons butter and sage. Tilting pan and watching closely, cook about 3 minutes, until butter foams and begins to brown; keep warm.

Thoroughly drain potatoes and squash, return to pan and shake 1-2 minutes over low heat. Using hand masher, roughly mash to create chunky mixture.

Over low heat, gently mix in remaining butter and milk.

Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Spoon into serving bowl and drizzle with brown butter and sage. (Family Features)  

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