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75 Vintage Fourth of July Recipes

Celebrate Independence Day with an old-fashioned 4th of July menu! With classics like apple pie and canapes, along with buttermilk biscuits and cucumber salad, these recipes are a guaranteed hit.

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Strawberry Pretzel Dessert

Need to bring a dish fit for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu? This make-ahead strawberry pretzel salad will disappear quickly at any potluck. —Aldene Belch, Flint, Michigan

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Discover more of our favorite 4th of July desserts.

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Simple Marinated Grilled Pork Chops Exps Ft20 49402 F 0311 1 3

Simple Marinated Grilled Pork Chops

This pork chop marinade is so simple that I use it on all kinds of meat. For a more robust flavor, let the meat marinate in the refrigerator overnight. —Lori Daniels, Beverly, West Virginia
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Easy Baked Beans

My family enjoys this easy baked beans recipe with cornbread, but it also rounds out any old-fashioned 4th of July menu. Canned pork and beans make meal prep quick. —Phyllis Schmalz, Kansas City, Kansas

If you’re hosting the holiday at your place this year, check out our 4th of July recipes for a crowd.

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Grilled Thighs And Drumsticks Exps Ft21  24818 F 0818 1 7

Grilled Chicken Thighs and Drumsticks

When Mom makes grilled chicken thighs and drumsticks, this is the way we like it prepared. It’s juicy, has great barbecue flavor and makes a big batch, so it’s perfect for a summer picnic, family reunions and to complete an old-fashioned 4th of July menu. —Brenda Beachy, Belvidere, Tennessee

Keep Independence Day simple this year with these 4th of July recipes that are super easy to make.

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Summer Macaroni Salad Exps Dia18 185628 B05 25 1b 12

Creamy Macaroni Salad

When we grill, my mother asks me to make this creamy macaroni salad. To make it extra creamy, I like to keep a small amount of dressing separate and stir it in just before serving. —Carly Curtin, Ellicott City, Maryland

Discover more of our best 4th of July appetizers.

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Key Lime Cream Pie  Exps Sdjj19 235337 B02 06 5b Rms 4

Key Lime Cream Pie

I am very proud of this luscious no-bake beauty. It’s so cool and refreshing—perfect for any old-fashioned 4th of July menu. Wherever I take this pie, it quickly disappears, with everyone asking for the recipe. —Shirley Rickis, Lady Lake, Florida

If you’re looking for easier desserts this year, check out these easy 4th of July desserts.

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Overnight Slaw Exps Thjj19 5716 B02 20 7b 3

Overnight Slaw

Think of slaw as a side for all seasons—but especially summer—and for all entrees. Fix this recipe ahead, and don’t forget to use your food processor for even easier prep. —Nancy Brown, Janesville, Wisconsin
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Kansas City-Style Ribs

Our family recipe for ribs has evolved to near perfection. These country-style beauties are a legend in our close circle. —Linda Schend, Kenosha, Wisconsin
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Smoked Deviled Eggs

Give all those leftover Easter eggs a flavor upgrade. Grilling these smoked deviled eggs gives them a distinctive taste that will have everyone talking. —Catherine Woods, Lexington, Missouri
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Triple Berry No Bake Cheesecake Exps Tohcom19 138951 B01 30 6b 3

Triple Berry No-Bake Cheesecake

I've made many cheesecakes and enjoy them all, but they're usually time-consuming. When I first tried this recipe, my husband said it was better than the baked ones, and that was a big plus for me! —Joyce Mummau, Baltimore, Maryland
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Three Bean Salad For 3 Exps Ft22 37206 F 0503 1

Three-Bean Salad for 3

We make this 3 bean salad all summer long! It’s a delicious side dish for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu. —Barbara Wiggins, Lexington, North Carolina
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Grilled Corn in Husks

If you're new to grilled corn in the husk, season the ears with butter, Parmesan cheese and parsley. It's especially good! Be sure to give the corn a long soak before putting it on the grill. Hot off the grate, the kernels are moist and tender with a wonderful, sweet flavor. Nancy Zimmerman, Cape May Court House, New Jersey
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Juicy Cherry Pie Exps Tohjj22 198033 Dr  02 03 12b 1

Juicy Cherry Pie

Lucky you! Tart, or sour, cherry season is in the heart of summer. When planning your old-fashioned 4th of July menu, choose fresh tart cherries that are bright in color, shiny and plump. They should feel relatively firm when pressed lightly. —Karen Berner, New Canaan, Connecticut

Discover more of our best 4th of July cookies.

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Memphis Barbecue Sauce

I created this Memphis BBQ sauce recipe for our summer picnics because we love to grill. It can be made ahead, so it's ready whenever you fire up the grill. —Angela Spengler, Niceville, Florida
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Grandma’s Potato Salad

Our old-fashioned 4th of July menu wouldn’t be complete without this chilled old-fashioned potato salad. It’s my grandma’s treasured recipe. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
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Roast Beef Finger Sandwiches

These simple sandwiches are ideal for a bridal shower, brunch or high tea, when the menu is a bit more substantial. The mustard adds a nice kick without being overly spicy. —Anndrea Bailey, Huntington Beach, California
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Salmon Mousse Canapes

It’s so easy to top crunchy cucumber slices with a smooth and creamy salmon filling. Guests rave about the fun presentation, contrasting textures and refreshing flavor. —Barb Templin, Norwood, Minnesota
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Patchwork Quilt Cake

Looking for dessert for your old-fashioned 4th of July menu? This cake has a great homemade flavor and tender crumb. Be sure to pile on the buttery frosting, which adds a burst of vanilla. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Refrigerator Dill Pickles

Easy and economical, Refrigerator Dill Pickles are tangy, zesty and crispy. No one will believe you made them yourself! —Jake Haen, Ocala, Florida
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Burger Americana

Go on a burger road trip in your own backyard. Grill the patties and load them sky-high with your favorite toppings. For instance, peanut butter and bacon make them southern style; coleslaw and tomatoes, a northern version. —Susan Mahaney, New Hartford, New York
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Pennsylvania Dutch Coleslaw

My mother used to make this salad on holidays. With all the cabbage that is grown here in the Northwest, the recipe is a real natural for us! —Deb Darr, Falls City, Oregon
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Grandma S Old Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake Exps Tham17 186286 B12 16 3b 23

Grandma's Old-Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake

When my grandma served this shortcake, she usually topped it with homemade vanilla ice cream. —Angela Lively, Conroe, Texas
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Old-Fashioned Coney Hot Dog Sauce

Camping and hot dogs go hand in hand. Roast some up over the fire, then top with this irresistible one-pot sauce. —Loriann Cargill Bustos, Phoenix, Arizona
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Corn ‘n’ Cucumbers Salad

This was one of my mother’s recipes and I think of her whenever I make it. It’s a nice change from a regular cucumber salad and perfect for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu.
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Simple Bbq Brisket Exps Rc21 263238 B07 28 9b 1

Cuts-Like-Butter BBQ Brisket

This brisket cuts like butter—no joke! With just a few ingredients and steps, the recipe is nearly impossible to mess up. The thin, fall-apart-tender slices are delicious on their own but also make everything from tacos to Frito pies taste better. —Darla Andrews, Boerne, Texas
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Favorite Bread Butter Pickles Exps174953 Cp143300b02 21 2bc Rms 2

Favorite Bread & Butter Pickles

I made these pickles while growing up and love them because you can eat them with just about anything. Now, both of my children love these pickles, too. I think you’ll enjoy them as much as we do! —Linda Weger, Robinson, Illinois
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Martha Washington Candy

Passed down by my grandmother and mother, this Martha Washington candy recipe is a cherished family tradition. We've even had each grandchild and great-grandchild take a turn stirring the candy mixture! —Cindi Boger, Ardmore, Alabama
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Watermelon Gazpacho

This is a delightfully simple, elegant dish. Serve as a side or with pita and hummus for a meal. It’s so refreshing—guests will love it. —Nicole Deelah, Nashville, Tennessee
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Baked Two-Cheese & Bacon Grits

In the South, everyone loves three things: bacon, cheese and grits! After playing around with this recipe, I took it to my first family party as a newlywed, and it was a huge hit. This recipe has become a family tradition that I'm sure will be passed down for generations. —Melissa Rogers, Tuscaloosa, Alabama
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Red, White 'n' Blue Salad

Our striking "flag" salad drew plenty of attention at our Independence Day party. The shimmering stripes are formed with distinctive gelatin layers. It makes you want to salute before spooning some up! —Laurie Neverman, Green Bay, Wisconsin
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Slow Cooked Bbq Pork Ribs Exps Scsbz21 74423 B01 14 5b 4

Slow-Cooked BBQ Pork Ribs

Check your pantry; you probably have everything needed to turn these ribs into a sweet, tangy, fork-tender treat. —Annette Thompson, Woodbury, Vermont
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Cucumber Canapes

I always get requests for the recipe for these canapes whenever I serve them. They're delicate finger sandwiches with a creamy herb spread and festive red and green garnishes. —Nadine Whittaker, South Plymouth, Massachusetts
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Rosemary Lemonade

A friend suggested I add a sprig of rosemary to lemonade. The herb makes the drink taste fresh and light, and it's a pretty garnish. —Dixie Graham, Rancho Cucamonga, California
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Soft Buttermilk Dinner Rolls Exps Thn16 174969 06b 23 8b 11

Soft Buttermilk Dinner Rolls

Warm, buttery dinner rolls are absolutely irresistible. I save time and use a stand mixer to make my dough. —Jennifer Patterson, Shoshone, Idaho
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Apricot Salad Exps Thca18 4042 B04 27 5b 5

Apricot Salad

Colorful gelatin salad adds a spot of brightness to any table. It blends well with this old-fashioned 4th of July menu. We children didn’t know if it should be a salad or dessert, with its smooth texture and delicate flavor. —Fae Fisher, Callao, Virginia
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Slow-Cooker Memphis-Style Ribs

After my dad and I had dinner at the legendary Rendezvous Restaurant in Memphis, I was inspired to create a slow-cooked version of tasty dry-rub Memphis ribs. Smoked paprika in the rub mimics the flavor that the ribs would get from being grilled over hot coals. —Matthew Hass, Ellison Bay, Wisconsin
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Easy Bourbon Pecan Pie Exps Thn17 205281 D06 15 3b 3

Easy Bourbon Pecan Pie

This pie has a mellow bourbon flavor that's not too strong and not too sweet. And it is easy, crunchy and chewy—just what you want in a pecan pie. —Nick Iverson, Denver, Colorado
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Garlic-Dill Deviled Eggs

In my family, Easter isn't complete without deviled eggs. Fresh dill and garlic perk up the flavor of these irresistible appetizers that you'll want to eat on every occasion. —Kami Horch, Calais, Maine
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Green Chile Creamed Corn

When cooking my old-fashioned 4th of July menu, I would sometimes run out of burners. Then I realized my slow cooker could help by simmering corn and green chilies with pickled jalapenos. —Pat Dazis, Charlotte, North Carolina
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Patriotic Cookies & Cream Cupcakes

Bring on the red, white and blue with these creative cupcakes, perfect for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu, Memorial Day or any favorite occasion. With some delicious and colorful frosting and a careful arrangement, your sweet display will be a patriotic nod to our great American flag. —Rebecca Wetherbee, Marion, Ohio
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Potato Wedges With Sweet Spicy Sauce Exps167809 Sd143203d10 16 8bc Rms 1

Potato Wedges with Sweet & Spicy Sauce

I'm a small-business owner, so most of my recipes are a result of not having time to run to the store, and doing with what's on hand. Here's a perfect example. Dip these wedges in anything. —Dana Alexander, Lebanon, Missouri
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Red White And Blue Berry Delight Exps Thjj19 32653 B02 20 9b 5

Red-White-and-Blue Berry Delight

Loaded with fresh strawberries and blueberries, this luscious JELL-O is perfect for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu! —Constance Fennell, Grand Junction, Michigan
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Sour Cream Cucumbers Exps Fttmz18 26502 B11 16 6b 4

Sour Cream Cucumbers

We have a tradition at our house to serve this creamy cucumber salad with the other Hungarian specialties my mom learned to make from the women at church. It’s especially good during the summer when the cucumbers are freshly picked from the garden. —Pamela Eaton, Monclova, Ohio
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Homemade Cherry Crisp

Our family loves this pretty, tasty dessert. It uses convenient pie filling, so you can make it in no time—and it takes mere minutes to heat in the microwave. —Laurie Todd, Columbus, Mississippi
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Potluck Fried Chicken Exps Mitiar22 18707 E05 19 3b 7

Potluck Fried Chicken

This Sunday dinner staple is first fried and then baked to a crispy golden brown. Well seasoned with oregano and sage, this classic is sure to satisfy diners at church potlucks, late-summer picnics or for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu. I love fixing it for family and friends. —Donna Kuhaupt, Slinger, Wisconsin
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Sour Cream Potato Salad Exps Ft22 33222 F 0415 1

Sour Cream Potato Salad

Italian dressing and horseradish make this creamy potato salad different from most, plus those ingredients really add some zip! It’s perfect for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu.
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Favorite Coconut Cake Exps Cwfm17 39030 B11 02 5b 6

Favorite Coconut Cake

When I need an impressive dessert for a special occasion, this is the recipe I turn to. My guests are glad I do! —Edna Hoffman, Hebron, Indiana
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Chili Mac Casserole Exps Dsbz17 15634 C01 13 1b 19

Chili Mac Casserole

This cheesy casserole uses several of my family's favorite ingredients, including macaroni, kidney beans, tomatoes and cheese. Just add a leafy salad for a complete meal. —Marlene Wilson, Rolla, North Dakota
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Cucumber and Red Onion Salad

This cucumber and onion salad is one of the first recipes I came up with myself. It’s a great salad for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu. I always come home with an empty bowl! —Brynn Steckman, Westerville, Ohio
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Blueberry Pie With Graham Cracker Crust Exps Bdsmz17 33096 C03 03 5b 2

Blueberry Pie with Graham Cracker Crust

We live in blueberry country, and this pie is a perfect way to showcase these luscious berries. A neighbor first made this pie for us when we had a death in the family several years ago. Our whole family enjoys it. —R. Ricks, Kalamazoo, Michigan
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Wisconsin Butter Basted Burgers Exps Thsum18 205850 D02 02 5b Wo Beer 130

Wisconsin Butter Burgers

It’s no secret that Wisconsinites love their dairy—so much that they sometimes top their burgers with a generous pat of butter. My recipe is a lot like the butter burgers you’ll find in popular restaurants all over the state. —Becky Carver, North Royalton, Ohio
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Dad S Creamed Peas Pearl Onions Exps Thca18 187734 D11 03 3b 3

Dad's Creamed Peas & Pearl Onions

While I was growing up, it was our family tradition to make creamed peas with pearl onions for every Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. My dad was not a happy camper if he didn't see this dish on the table. It was his favorite! I made it for my own family while our kids were growing up, and now my daughter makes this dish for her family. —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, Nevada
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Oat Coconut Icebox Cookies Exps Ucsbz17 124192 D06 06 2b 6

Oat & Coconut Icebox Cookies

This recipe was passed down through my family from Grandma Irene and is a favorite of my dad and cousin Dennis. It's a true cookie lover's cookie: crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside and perfectly dunkable. —Lori Rowe, Tigerton, Wisconsin
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BBQ Country-Style Ribs

Quick to prep for the slow cooker, this dinner is terrific with a salad and a fresh side. My family practically cheers whenever I make it! —Cheryl Mann, Winside, Nebraska
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Thomas Jefferson S Vanilla Ice Cream Exps Thjj19 159803 B02 21 11b 2 36

Thomas Jefferson’s Vanilla Ice Cream

The third U.S. president is credited with jotting down the first American recipe for this treat. No vanilla bean on hand? Substitute 1 tablespoon vanilla extract for the vanilla bean. Just stir the extract into the cream mixture after the ice-water bath. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Grilled Peppered Steaks

I once wanted a peppered steak for supper, so I tossed some spices together and came up with this recipe. My family thoroughly enjoyed it. —Stephanie Moon, Boise, Idaho.
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Oven-Fried Cornbread

Nothing completes an old-fashioned 4th of July menu like a crisp cornbread baked in a cast-iron skillet. This old family recipe has been passed down to each generation. —Emory Doty, Jasper, Georgia
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Old-Fashioned Applesauce

We had all kinds of apple trees in the yard when I was growing up, so I don't know for sure which ones Mother liked best for applesauce. (Today I use Cortlands.) I do know that her applesauce was very white. The secret, she said, was to keep the apples in salt water while she peeled them so that they wouldn't darken. —Doris Natvig, Jesup, Iowa
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Red, White and Blue Dessert

I changed a recipe I found and ended up with this rich, fresh-tasting dessert. Decorated to resemble a flag, it’s perfect for an old-fashioned 4th of July menu or any other patriotic occasion. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
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Tender Barbecued Chicken

After a long day at work, a slow-cooked meal is a great help. One of my family’s favorites is this moist slow-simmered chicken. For an appealing look, choose a darker brown barbecue sauce. —Jacqueline Blanton, Gaffney, South Carolina
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Garden Tomato Salad

For as long as I can remember, Mom made a salad of tomatoes and cucumbers. Now I make it whenever beautiful tomatoes are in reach. —Shannon Arthur, Upper Arlington, Ohio
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Sandy's Chocolate Cake

Years ago, I drove 4-1/2 hours to a cake contest, holding my entry on my lap the whole way. But it paid off. One bite and you'll see why this velvety beauty was named the best chocolate cake recipe and won first prize. —Sandra Johnson, Tioga, Pennsylvania
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Quick & Easy au Gratin Potatoes

On holidays, a friend serves these creamy, cheesy potatoes when we gather together to celebrate with lifelong friends and grown children. —Carol Blue, Barnesville, Pennsylvania
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Strawberry Gelato Exps Sdam18 212175 D11 30 2b 9

Strawberry Gelato

You'll love this smooth and creamy gelato with bright strawberry flavor and just a hint of sea salt and honey. —Shelly Bevington, Hermiston, Oregon
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Pork Chops with Glaze

Rosemary adds a special touch to these beautifully glazed pork chops that are just right for any meal. —Louise Gilbert, Quesnel, British Columbia
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Blue-Ribbon Apple Pie

This pie is special to me because I won a blue ribbon for it at the local fair and was able to compete at the state farm show. —Collette Gaugler, Fogelsville, Pennsylvania
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Homemade Potato Chips Exps Wrsm17 39614 C03 22 1b 8

Homemade Potato Chips

Forget buying a bag of potato chips at the grocery store when you can make these at home. This quick and easy recipe will complete your old-fashioned 4th of July menu. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Jumbo Chocolate Cutouts

The recipe for these light cookies has been passed down from generation to generation. Have a little extra fun with frosting if you like. They freeze well, too! —Helen Brown, East Dover, Vermont
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Corn Spoon Bread

This slow-cooked spoon bread is more tender than corn pudding made in the oven, and the cream cheese is a nice addition. —Tamara Ellefson, Frederic, Wisconsin
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Star Studded Blueberry Pie Exps Bdsmz17 33915 B03 09 4b 3

Star-Studded Blueberry Pie

Family and friends say this patriotic pie is better than a local favorite from one of our best neighborhood restaurants. Sometimes, I switch things up and use gooseberries for half of the blueberries. —Nancy Barker, Silverton, Oregon
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Green Bean-Cherry Tomato Salad

My grandmother made a cold green bean salad with potatoes for every family barbecue. Now I bring my own version of the recipe to parties. With added color and taste from the cherry tomatoes, this classic favorite is even better. —Angela Lemoine, Howell, New Jersey
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Rosemary Citrus Sorbet

This pretty pastel dessert bursts with the fresh flavors of grapefruit, lime and rosemary. —Rebecca Baird, Salt Lake City, Utah
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Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits Exps Bk22 14975 Dr 12 02 3b

Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits

Planning an old-fashioned 4th of July menu? The recipe for these four-ingredient homemade buttermilk biscuits has been handed down for many generations. —Fran Thompson, Tarboro, North Carolina
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Grilled Three-Potato Salad

Everyone in our extended family loves to cook, so I put together all of our favorite recipes in a cookbook to be handed down from generation to generation. This recipe comes from that cookbook. It's a delicious twist on traditional potato salad. —Suzette Jury, Keene, California
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Winning Rhubarb-Strawberry Pie

While growing up on a farm, I often ate rhubarb, so it's natural for me to use it in a pie. I prefer to use lard for the flaky pie crust and thin, red rhubarb stalks for the filling. These two little secrets helped this recipe win top honors at the 2013 Iowa State Fair. —Marianne Carlson, Jefferson, Iowa

Caroline Stanko
As Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. When she’s not at her desk, you can probably find Caroline cooking up a feast, planning her next trip abroad or daydreaming about her golden retriever, Mac.