ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Holiday Pies and Treats to Make Ahead

Updated on November 18, 2019
Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Patty collects recipes and gadgets from the past and is particularly interested in early American history and all Indigenous Peoples.


Freshen Your Meals With Make Ahead Recipes

The following are delicious recipes that I have collected over the years from the Midwest and near- southern states. While they can be used all year, they are handy during the harvest season and its feast days. Some of them are great for Mother's Day, Father's Day and the 4th of July as well.

These recipes include dishes they can be - or must be - stored at least overnight in the refrigerator to blend flavors and/or to set up to a required firmness, and others that can be kept up to seven days in the refrigerator, and still others that can be frozen.

Traditional Midwest Pecan Vinegar Pie (A Spice Pie)

Provides 8-10 servings

This recipe is much like the Southern Vinegar Pie of the American South, but with the addition pecans. You may prefer English or black walnuts.


  • 1.5 Cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon each of nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice
  • 1.5 Tablespoons powdered cocoa or 1/2 cup chopped pecans – or both
  • 4 Whole eggs, well beaten
  • 1/4 Cup butter, melted and cooled a bit - don't allow it to congeal
  • 1.5 Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 9-inch pie shell – your own recipe or purchase from the market freezer case. Some stores sell pie shells in a package in the baking aisle as well.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Mix the sugar and all the spices until mixed thoroughly.
  2. In another bowl, combine the beaten eggs, butter, vinegar, and vanilla and beat together
  3. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until well mixed.
  4. Pour the batter into the pie shell and bake until set, for 45 - 50 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack. Store overnight in the refrigerator, covered tightly, if required.


Grape Salad in 10 Minutes or Less

Use a combination of two or three varieties of grapes - my favorite includes seedless green, purple, and black grapes.

This salad needs to refrigerate at least overnight and can be kept for a total of 2 days in the refrigerator in an air tight container.

Provides 6-8 servings for a meal or a great holiday celebration. Try it for a potluck!

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Ready in: 10 min
Yields: A family meal or celebration dinner


  • 1 Cup low-fat sour cream
  • 8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature and softened
  • 1 Cup Cool Whip or whipped cream
  • 1.5 Cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 3 Pounds of seedless grapes
  • Nuts and crunchies for toppings.

Easy Fast Directions

  1. Rinse grapes and Place everything all at once into a large mixing bowl and stir until the grapes are coated.
  2. Place salad in an air tight container and refrigerate overnight.


Kentucky “Transparent Pie”

Serves 8

This is nicknamed Transparent Pie for its light, almost translucent color of the batter.


  • 1 stick of butter, melted
  • 2 Cups granulated sugar
  • 1 Cup cream
  • 4 Whole eggs, well beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell


  1. Beat the butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl, then add in the cream and mix again.
  2. Beat in eggs a little at a time and make sure all is well blended.
  3. Stir in the flour and vanilla, mix well and pour the better into the pie shell.
  4. Bake in a 375 F oven for 35 -40 minutes, until golden brown.


Chocolate Candied Apples - No Cooking!

Serves 10 and can be made 1-2 days ahead of time. Keep covered in a plastic container in the refrigerator.


  • 10 of your favorite "eating" apples, sweet or tart
  • 10, 6-inch wooden apple skewers or Popsicle sticks
  • 1, 13-oz jar of a good chocolate hazelnut spread like Nutella
  • Assorted edible decorations - chopped peanuts, raisins, dried cranberries, colored sugar sprinkles, powdered sugar, small chocolate chips, slivered almonds, crumbled cookies, crumbled waffle cones, etc.


  1. Remove all of the stems from the apples and wash them, then pat dry with a clean towel.
  2. Insert a stick in the stem end of each apple. With a spatula, cover the apples with chocolate-hazelnut spread.
  3. Next, roll the choco-covered apples in the decorations of your choice and place them carefully on a plate covered with waxed paper.
  4. Place dessert into the refrigerate until chocolate is set firm. Store in a plastic Tupperware-type container with the lid on of not serving the same day.

A Creamy pumpkin dip. Add some pimento or chopped sweet peppers, if you like a little savory additions.
A Creamy pumpkin dip. Add some pimento or chopped sweet peppers, if you like a little savory additions. | Source

Pumpkin Dip - Good for Seven Days!

This flavorful dip can be made up to one full week ahead of time.


  • 8 oz brick or tub of cream cheese at room temperature & softened
  • 2 Cups powdered sugar 1, 15-oz or 16-oz can of pumpkin (not the pie filling or pumpkin pudding)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • Cookies and fruit slices for dipping. Try sliced apples!


  1. Put the cream cheese and powdered sugar into a mixing bowl and beat well.
  2. Next, add in the pumpkin, cinnamon, and ginger and beat again.
  3. Pour the dip mixture into an airtight container, cover it, and chill at least 8 hours or overnight before serving.
  4. When ready to serve the dip, sit it on the kitchen counter until it reaches room temperature. Place dip in a serving dish and surround it with gingersnaps, vanilla wafers, apple slices, pear slices or whatever else you might like.
  5. Keep remainder refrigerated up to 1 week.


Pumpkin Loaves

This recipe makes two loaves that can be frozen


  • 2, 15- or 16-oz Cans of pumpkin <OR> 1, 26-oz can (bread will not be quite as moist with this size can, so add another Tablespoon of oil)
  • 3.5 Cups flour
  • 3 Cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons soda
  • 1.5 teaspoons salt
  • 4 Whole eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2/3 Cup Spring water
  • 1/3 Cup vegetable oil
  • 1 Cup chopped almonds or pecans or walnuts


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and cooking spray and dust with flour, two 9- by 13-inch loaf pans.

  2. In a mixing bowl, mix the pumpkin, flour, sugar, cinnamon, soda, and salt well. Then add the eggs, water, oil, and nuts of your choice.

  3. Divide the batter equally between the loaf pans and then bake for one hour or until a knife blade inserted in center comes out clean.


Stove Top Turkey Bake

Serves 6 and is great for the days after a holiday and can be frozen.


  • 3½ Cups leftover cooked turkey
  • 4 Cups spring water
  • 2 boxes (about 6 OZ each) of quick-cooking long grain and wild rice mix
  • 1 can reduced-fat cream of mushroom soup
  • ½ Cup skim or 2% milk
  • ¾ Cup of shredded sharp Cheddar cheese


  1. Coarsely chop the turkey and set it aside.
  2. In a deep nonstick skillet with a lid, stir the water, rice mix, and seasoning packets, cream of mushroom soup, and the milk.
  3. Next, put the skillet over medium heat and bring it to the boil.
  4. Just as the mixture boils, cover the skillet and reduce the heat to medium-low and cook 5 minutes.
  5. Uncover the pan and cook 5 minutes, until nearly all liquid is absorbed. Add in the turkey and stir briefly.
  6. Sprinkle the cheese over the new mixture and cover again -- cook on low heat for 2 - 3 minutes until the cheese melts and turkey is heated through.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2008 Patty Inglish MS


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)