Two Meals in One

By: Alison Sickelka

Are you anticipating a house full of holiday guests in just a few short days? Being surrounded by family and friends for Christmas is a wonderful thing, but facing the daunting task of keeping everyone sated is not. Fortunately, I've found the perfect recipe for feeding the masses this holiday season.

My secret recipe is Rachel Ray's Zinfully Delicious Short Ribs. What makes this recipe my go-to for feeding a large crowd?

First, it can be made in advance. You can do all the prep work before your house erupts in Christmas chaos.

Second, short ribs are cheap. Sure, plunking down over $60 for them might seem painful at the time. But remember, we're feeding up to 10 people (and we're feeding them twice). Plus, the rest of the ingredients are wallet-friendly.

The other thing that's great about this meal is that it has leftovers built in. Reinvent the extra short ribs into meal #2: Drunken Pappardelle.

The short ribs get served over egg noodles for meal 1, and the recipe allots 2 short ribs per person. All the meal needs to be complete is some crusty bread (and maybe a salad). The reserved short ribs get reinvented as a hearty meat sauce served over pappardelle for lunch or dinner the next day. And there you go. The ribs can be made in advance, are easy and cheap, and do double duty: a trifecta of a meal. One tip: be sure to price comparison for the short ribs. We want to make this meal as budget-friendly as possible, after all.

Let us know if you give the recipe a try. And if short ribs aren't your thing, here's a list of suggestions from our Facebook friends for easy large-group meals:

  1. Lasagna
  2. Shepherd's Pie
  3. Pozole
  4. Enchiladas
  5. Slow-Cooked Chuck Roast
  6. Pulled Pork Sandwiches
  7. Chili
What's your go-to for large group cooking?
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