Toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) add crunchiness to this main-dish recipe from Macy's Walnut Room in Chicago. Dried cranberries, sweet red pepper and sage add color.
There's no butter or shortening in this braided sweet bread, but you won't miss it. The recipe comes from Margaret Kassing of Beatrice, Nebraska. "We're the sixth generation to bake this holiday bread," says Margaret. "The 12 strips of dough represent 12 months in a year."
These breakfast rolls are a family tradition with Jean Haviland of Carroll, Iowa. "My mom made these rolls with a maple-cream filling every Christmas -- and still does!" she says. "Mom always makes extra and freezes them for later. They're great for breakfast or any time of day!"
Maple Butter Twists 
Small bits of sweet potato fleck these moist dinner rolls from Sandra Schifferle of Lansing, Kansas. She puts Kansas wheat to good use in this recipe. For a quick prep, microwave your sweet potato, then cool and mash the veggie for the rolls.
Sweet Potato Rolls 
These treats are so adorable, it's obvious why this is Judeen Brown's favorite Christmas recipe. "All the children, old and young, expect to see them at family gatherings," says Judeen, who lives in Dundas, Minnesota.
Christmas Mice 
Graham crackers form the base for this bar cookie with layers of marshmallows, brown sugar, almonds and coconut. "I've made these cookies each Christmas since 1984," says Georgine Simmonds of Genesee, Michigan. "They're one of my family's favorites."
Caramel Heavenlies 
Orange and chocolate: a holiday cookie combo that tempts every Santa to take seconds. This recipe comes from Jill Drury in Milwaukee, who loved to bake cookies with her grandmother. "For the longest time I couldn't decide which cookie I liked best, until one day Grandma had me mix my favorite flavors: chocolate and orange," she says. "We came up with this cookie that I now call my holiday favorite."
Valencia Delights 
This slice and bake cookie recipe brings several favorite holiday flavors to the cookie tray. Beverly Olson of Marshfield, Wisconsin, added cranberries and orange peel to her butter cookies along with pecans. Finely chop these additions so they won't get in the way when you slice the dough.
People in Pukwana, South Dakota, come to bake sales just to buy Gwen Swanson's signature chocolate-cherry treat. Cherry-flavor chips create a red center between the chocolate layers. You can substitute peanut butter-flavor pieces if you prefer a peanut butter-chocolate combo.
Bing Candy 
Salty meets sweet as cereal, pretzels and peanuts get a coating of melted white baking pieces. Ann Midkiff from Jackson, Michigan, recommends using mint-flavor milk chocolate pieces in this recipe for a hint of the holidays. Make this a gift from the kitchen by packaging it in boxes that resemble takeout containers.
Snowflake Mix 
A coating of spicy and sweet turns toasted pecans into a holiday party snack. "My sister Rose sent me this recipe years ago when she was living in New Mexico," says Linda Zabel of Corydon, Indiana. "I've used it every year since. I order Chimayo chile online because it's hard to find in the Midwest."
Chili Pecans 
The word "adorable" about sums up this dessert served to kids in the Walnut Room of Macy's in Chicago. Stack scoops of ice cream for this edible snowman. The recipe uses marshmallows, chocolate chips, maraschino cherries and licorice whips to accessorize the dessert and turn ice cream into Frosty's twin. Or substitute other candies.
Snowman Sundae 
This decadent pie is a favorite at Macy's on North State Street in Chicago. Stir in candy from a box of famous Frango Mints (order at Macys.com ), or use solid mint-flavored chocolate candies from the grocery store.
This brunch recipe comes from Carol Mortensen of Flossmoor, Illinois. "My husband and I began hosting brunches in 1986. This goat cheese, artichoke and smoked ham strata became our favorite brunch dish," she says. "The best part is preparing it the night before to bake in the morning."
French meat pie with spiced ground beef and pork is a long-standing Christmas tradition in Escanaba, Michigan. Many families serve the pie after midnight Mass. "Our church held a contest in early December to find a meat pie recipe to use for pies sold at a fund-raiser. This recipe was the lucky winner," says Kathy Maanika.
Kathy's Meat Pie