Holiday treats from the Post Independent |

Holiday treats from the Post Independent

Kelley Cox Post Independent

All through the year, seven days a week, we bring you local news, sports and photographs documenting the events and trends experienced by our communities. Today, we’re taking a break from that steady diet of local news to share our favorite holiday recipes.

We have gathered recipes in three categories: savory appetizers, savory dishes and sweets. It’s a collection of traditional recipes that our friends and families have loved over the years. We hope you will find a tempting recipe here for your holiday celebrations.


This is a recipe from my girlfriend, Katie. Sausage meatballs remind her of family Thanksgivings in Richmond,Virginia. They are supposed to be served for breakfast, but I think they’re good any time of the day.

Avocados are about the only reason I would ever consider living in California, and guacamole is the underlying cause. I like my “guac” simple, spicy and limey, and have been using the same basic recipe for a couple of decades. A key ingredient is my homemade salsa, using organic canned or fresh tomatoes and a measure of Joy’s Salsa Mix, with extra garlic.

Crab and Artichoke Dip is a great and easy appetizer that I cooked various versions of during my 20 years in the restaurant business. It’s always been one of my customers’ favorite starters here in the valley and back in the Midwest, too. It’s fairly expensive to make, but a little goes a long way. The dip is better if it’s made a day ahead.

Back in the days when friends would want to ski on Christmas Day we would hold dinner until after 6 p.m. In the meantime, we would feed the folks at the house appetizers. My husband, who would has a lot of restaurant experience, is in charge of the prime rib, goose and sides. My job is the apps, and the artichoke platter with three dipping sauces is my favorite. I like to cook the artichokes in a pressure cooker, with water, white wine, shallots, garlic and various herbs. They look so pretty on the table, and clean-up is super easy!

I’m quite certain I never touched the stuff as a kid, when we’d have our family holiday dinner at Grandma’s house. Once I developed a taste for oysters as an adult, it became a favorite at my sisters’ house.

Curried Pumpkin Mushroom Soup is a favorite at our house at the holidays, when pumpkins are plentiful.

Baked Barley and Mushrooms is a dish I made for one of our potlucks. It seems warm and fitting for the holidays if you’re a vegetarian. It’s one of my favorite recipes from “Vegetarian Classics,” by Jeanne Lemlin.

I’ve been making these rolls for holiday meals for about 20 years. They’re small, soft and tasty, so they go down one after another. Teenagers, especially, find these rolls irresistible. The recipe first came from “The Vegetarian Epicure” by Anna Thomas. I’ve made a few variations to add whole-grain nutrition without sacrificing the soft texture. Makes 24 rolls.

Sauteed Christmas Apples are a wonderful sweet and tart side dish, or it can be served with ham or on top of Christmas morning waffles.

These chewy, savory and sweet cookies are a mainstay at my mom’s house at Christmas. She makes them every year. Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without Mom’s homemade Chinese Chews. The recipe has been passed down from my mom’s mother, Betty, who I lost at a young age. She is always on my mind during the holidays, and these cookies are a sweet reminder of what a wonderful grandmother she was to me.

Whoopie Pies are a great snack for the holiday season … the kids will go crazy over them.

I am a horrible cook, but Chocolate Chess Pie is one of my favorite recipes because it is easy to make, always turns out great and makes me look like a culinary superstar. This pie is good served with vanilla ice cream, but at Christmas it is especially good and a little more special served with peppermint ice cream.

I usually bake this apple pie for the holidays.

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