42 Small-Batch Recipes from the Midwest
The Midwest is normally known for large portions, but Midwestern cooks have plenty of delicious small-batch dishes in their recipe boxes, too!
My mother made these hearty meatballs when we were growing up, and now my kids love them, too. My daughter likes to help shake the meatballs in flour. —Karin Ness, Big Lake, Minnesota
Here's a hearty dish for big appetites. The corn and apples make a tasty stuffing for the chops. —Judith Smith, Des Moines, Iowa
I love the sweet-salty flavor of this pretty layered dessert. Sliced strawberries and gelatin top a smooth cream cheese filling and crispy pretzel crust. I think it's best when eaten within a day of being made.
My husband and I love pie, but we can't eat a whole 9-inch pie by ourselves. So I make these easy tarts using rhubarb and raspberries picked at home. Sometimes I substitute apples, peaches or our garden blueberries for the rhubarb. —Naomi Olson Hamilton, Michigan
I love to serve this family-favorite tenderloin—maybe because of the compliments that come with it! When the weather warms up, we grill it instead. —Megan Riofski, Frankfort, Illinois
When you want a meatless meal with Mediterranean style, these flatbreads smothered with squash, hummus and mozzarella deliver the goods. —Matthew Hass, Franklin, Wisconsin
Crunchy veggies and noodles are coated in a tangy dressing in this pleasant slaw. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
For the chocoholic in you, get your fix early by whipping up a batch of hot cocoa pancakes dotted with mini chocolate chips! — Joyce Moynihan, Lakeville, Minnesota
A local fast-food pita restaurant inspired me to make my own Greek-style sandwiches at home. Add olives if you like. —Nancy Sousley, Lafayette, Indiana
I took up eating quinoa when I found out how much protein it has. This is really an easy dish to experiment with; my first version of the recipe was made with shredded apples instead of blueberries. It's just as delicious! —Shannon Copley, Upper Arlington, Ohio
My family loves pork tenderloin, so I created this hearty meal. This slightly sweet preparation is one of our favorites. It's also an impressive dish for company.—Joyce Moynihan, Lakeville, Minnesota.
This rich bread pudding recipe goes together in minutes. There’s plenty of old-fashioned flavor, so it’s sure to become a favorite! —Edna Hoffman, Hebron, Indiana
Chopped veggies provide crunch, and cherry tomatoes add vibrant color to this refreshing and creamy pasta salad. —Frankiee Bush, Freedom, Indiana
Refrigerated crescent rolls let you make these fruit-filled pastries in a hurry. My family loves these turnovers for breakfast, but they’re so delicious, they’d be welcome any time of the day. Feel free to experiment with other pie fillings as well. —Elleen Oberrueter, Danbury, Iowa
My mother, who was Japanese, made a dish very similar to this. After a lot of experimenting, I came up with a version that is very close to the one she used to make. This beef curry stew recipe is special to me because it brings back memories of my mother. —Gloria Gowins, Dalton, Ohio
I'm not joking when I say I make pancakes every weekend. I love them in any form and variation. —James Schend, Taste of Home Deputy Editor
When my garden basil goes nuts, I make pesto and keep it frozen in small containers for the right opportunity, like this saucy one-pot chicken with pasta. —Kimberly Fenwick, Hobart, Indiana
This one-dish meal tastes like it needs hours of hands-on time to put together, but it's just minutes to prep the simple ingredients. The meat juices cook the veggies to perfection. So easy. —Sherri Melotik Oak Creek, Wisconsin
This is a simplified version of a dish my Costa Rican host sister used to make when I was in the Peace Corps. It has become a favorite side dish at my house. —Katie Bartle, Parkville, Missouri
Ribs slow-cooked with carrots, celery, onions and red potatoes are pure comfort food for us. To add a little zip, we sometimes sprinkle in cayenne. —Rose Ingall, Manistee, Michigan
"This isn't Grandma's chicken soup, but it is comforting," assures Bill Hilbrich from St. Cloud, Minnesota. "The lemon juice gives this easy soup enough zip to make it interesting."
Waking up to the wonderful aroma of this cinnamon-sugar Crock-Pot oatmeal is a great way to start the day! —Brandy Schaefer, Glen Carbon, Illinois
For a dazzling summer dessert, you can’t beat juicy strawberries and fresh whipped cream over homemade shortcake. My father added even more indulgence to this recipe by buttering the shortcake. This is the best strawberry shortcake recipe. —Shirley Joan Helfenbein, Lapeer, Michigan.
I love the curly noodles in this creamy recipe. Cavatappi (aka cellentani pasta) has a corkscrew shape, but any type of spiral noodle will work. This dish is fun to make and looks so pretty topped with extra cheese and crunchy, golden panko. I like to add ground pepper to my serving. —Sara Martin, Brookfield, Wisconsin
Though it's one of my simplest dishes, this version of an Italian classic is also one of my husband’s favorites. It’s quick to prepare and a garnish of fresh parsley or basil makes it look elegant. —Dawn Bryant, Thedford, Nebraska
Trying new recipes is one of my favorite hobbies. It's also the most gratifying. What could beat the smiles and compliments of the ones you love? This recipe is easy yet fancy, perfect for when it's just you and one kid or a friend.
If you have never tried quinoa, start with my easy side, brimming with colorful veggies. I serve it with orange-glazed chicken. —Kim Ciepluch, Kenosha, Wisconsin
This herby one-dish garlic chicken dinner is a updated version of an old standby recipe. The smoky flavors pair well with the savory chicken hint of sweetness from the maple syrup. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Berry season is a real treat for me. This layered delight is an easy way to enjoy a hint of cheesecake, and it’s a refreshing change from traditional pudding and
fruit parfaits. —Patricia Schroedl, Jefferson, Wisconsin
fruit parfaits. —Patricia Schroedl, Jefferson, Wisconsin