You don’t have to hunt for these Easter recipes; our staff shares their favorite meals to enjoy with friends and family.
We love all of the activities associated with Easter — dyeing eggs then hunting for them, receiving Easter baskets full of chocolate bunnies, and gathering with family and friends for lunch. These spring memories and recipes will ensure a colorful spread and put a spring in your step.
Lemon Chess Pie
My mouth is watering just thinking of this dang pie... it’s so good!
— Heather Truong, regional sales manager
Makes 2 Pies
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temp
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1/4 cup lemon juice [fresh is best!]
grated rind of 3 lemons
1. Cream together sugar and butter.
2. Add eggs, one at a time, then add milk, and beat well.
3. Add flour, cornmeal, lemon juice and grated lemon zest. Mix until incorporated.
4. Pour into unbaked 9” pie crusts. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 – 55 minutes.
Mamaw’s Deviled Eggs
A little unorthodox, but my favorite part of Easter as a kid always came after the egg hunt. My grandma would gather up all the painted boiled eggs we’d just recovered from her front lawn, and get to work peeling, dividing, and mashing yolks for the best deviled eggs you’ve ever tasted. And you knew they were they Easter versions because the colored dye would always seep through to the whites a little. The below recipe is my interpretation because like many wise cooks, Mamaw did not write a thing down for any recipe.
— Hunter Hauk, editorial director
1. Boil eggs. Anyone can boil eggs.
2. Decorate eggs, hide them in your yard, and have some children or bored adults retrieve them.
3. Peel them. Briefly mourn the loss of the beautifully dyed shells as you toss them in the trashcan.
4. Halve the boiled eggs however you prefer – lengthwise or crosswise.
5. Remove hardened yolk portions and put in mixing bowl. Salt and pepper pre-emptively according to number of eggs – less is better than too much. You can always add more later.
6. Squish up the yellows with an eatin’ fork, and then add Hellman’s mayonnaise in spoonfuls. Keep mixing until you have a bright yellow mixture with a creamy, but firm, texture.
7. Sample your concoction and mix in more salt and pepper to your liking.
8. Spoon the mixture into the egg white halves until they are heaping and irresistible.
9. Serve immediately if you must, but let set in the fridge for a bit if you can. Note: Garnish is discouraged.
Fire Roasted Peeps
My family’s favorite Easter treat is fire roasted Peeps. When my kids were little, we often had Saturday-night campfires and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows. One Easter weekend, my husband put a Peep over the fire in a culinary experiment. We laughed as the little sugar-coated bunny expanded, revealing a gooey inside, and even caught fire for a few seconds. But when the smoke cleared, it turned out to be delicious. The sugar carmelized, giving it a perfect crunch, and if you closed your eyes, it tasted a little bit like crème brulee.
— Kristen Tribe, managing editor
My mom gave me Grammy’s Pimiento Cheese recipe a couple of years ago when I was on the sourdough trend and needed something to go with the many batches of sourdough crackers I was making. This recipe is not a sweet pimiento cheese recipe; it is cream cheese-based. But to me, that just makes it more Texan or Western. I love to make this recipe around springtime and at Christmas, because if you add jalapeños, as I do, the red from the pimientos and green from the peppers make it look festive.
— Allie Jones, associate editor
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 ounces thick-cut sharp cheddar shredded cheese (I prefer thick shreds, but thin would still work.)
4 ounces diced pimientos, drained
juice from half a lemon
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1–2 tablespoons sour cream (add until it’s a spread consistency)
1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
1. In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese, sharp cheddar cheese, pimientos, lemon juice, and mustard.
2. Add sour cream 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency. It should not be like a dip, but instead the consistency of a spread.
3. Add jalapeños, if desired.
4. Store in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving. Best served with spicy crackers of any kind or as a sandwich on white bread.
My mom wasn’t much of a cook, so my memories of Easter food are mainly of those pastel-colored speckled malted milk balls. During the pandemic when we couldn’t visit each other, my brother and sister and I instituted a new holiday tradition for our kids: the family Zoom pizzelle-making. Pizzelle are thin, crisp waffle cookies made on a special patterned iron. Leave it to the aesthetically evolved Italians to come up with something so lovely. First made in the Abruzzo region of central Italy in the 8th century, they were cooked on irons embossed with family initials or other patterns.
Today, the delicate cookies are popular at Christmas, Easter, festivals, and other special occasions. Traditionally, pizzelle are slightly anise-flavored, but they can also be vanilla, almond, citrus zest, or chocolate.
You can eat them singly, or you can fill two like a sandwich. If you really want to go crazy, you can shape pizzelle into cones or bowls while they’re warm and pliable and fill them with fruit or custard or even ice cream. You could also try spreading your pizzelle with jam, Nutella, or do some riff on smores. But trust me, they are terrific plain. Electric pizzelle irons are available on Amazon and easy to use — seriously, if I can do it, you definitely can.
This Easter, everyone in my extended family will be firing up our pizzelle irons, pouring batter, and cooking while we talk. Somebody is bound to reminisce fondly about coloring hardboiled eggs together at the old black and yellow kitchen table when we were kids. Those were the days, but pizzelle-making is a worthy addition to our family repertoire of Easter traditions. Our kids certainly think so.
My sister, Deanne, who provided the recipes, is a committed vegan. I’m a dairy fiend, so where she’s got vegan butter and plant-based milk, I just used real butter and cow’s milk.
— Dana Joseph, editorial director
Vanilla Pizzelle Ingredients:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup rice flour
1 cup powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup melted vegan butter
3/4 cup plant-based milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Chocolate Pizzelle Ingredients:
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup melted vegan butter
3/4 cup plant-based milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
*Note on using the iron: Follow the instructions that come with it, and definitely don’t overfill or you’ll have batter oozing out the sides. There’s a little light that tells you when the iron is ready and when the pizzelle is done, so you’ll want to keep an eye on it. You’ll also want adequate counter space to get your pizzelle assembly line going.
Spray and heat your pizzelle iron. In a food processor, mix the dry ingredients together: flour, powdered sugar, salt, and cocoa (if making chocolate). Add the wet ingredients: melted butter, plant-based milk, and extracts. Process until smooth, about 15 – 20 seconds.
Photography: (Lemon Chess Pie, Pimiento Cheese, and Pizzette) courtesy C&I staff