Search Term

Enter a search term (optional)


Select One (optional)



Show only results that have an image


Select as many as you like (optional)

  • Christmas
  • Cinco de Mayo
  • Earth Day
  • Easter
  • Fall
  • Father's Day
  • Halloween
  • Jewish Holiday
  • Kwanzaa
  • Mother's Day
  • New Year's
  • Patriotic Holiday
  • Spring
  • St. Patrick's Day
  • Summer
  • Thanksgiving
  • Valentine's Day
  • Winter
  • Back to School
  • Birthdays
  • Fourth of July
  • Labor Day
  • Memorial Day
Cuisine Type

Select as many as you like (optional)

  • American
  • Amish
  • Asian
  • Chinese
  • French
  • Greek
  • Indian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Jewish
  • Mexican
  • Southern
  • Tropical


Select as many as you like (optional)

  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Fall
  • Winter
Cooking Method

Select as many as you like (optional)

  • Casserole
  • Grilling
  • Microwave
  • No Bake
  • Oven
  • Pressure Cooker
  • Skillet
  • Slow Cooker
Cooking Time

Select One (optional)

Preparation Time

Select One (optional)

Chill Time

Select One (optional)

Number of Ingredients

Select One (optional)

Slow Cooker Time HIGH

Select One (optional)

Slow Cooker Time LOW

Select One (optional)


The Best Recipes to Make Ahead of Time: 22 Make Ahead Recipes for Any Occasion

By: Rachel Bernstein, Editor,

We're all busy and sometimes we just don't have the time to prepare a nice, home-cooked meal every single night of the week. That's where these Recipes to Make Ahead of Time come in. Check out 22 of our favorite Make Ahead Recipes for Any Occasion and find out how you can prepare delicious meals on your own time. These easy make ahead dishes will save you time and energy and are perfect to serve up for family dinners, get togethers with friends or any other event.

The Best Recipes to Make Ahead of Time:
22 Make Ahead Recipes for Any Occasion

Arkansas CaviarMake Ahead Pizza Meat LoavesSlow Cooked German SauerbratenCranberry Apple Bread Pudding

Table of Contents

Make Ahead Appetizer Recipes

Main Course Recipes to Make Ahead

Make Ahead Recipes for Sides

Dessert Recipes to Make Ahead


Make Ahead Appetizer Recipes

Bubblin' Make Ahead Cheese Dip

Delectable dips, fantastic finger foods and so much more!  All of the easy appetizer recipes in the list below can be prepared ahead of time and then popped in the oven or put on your serving table whenever you're ready. Planning a party is tough on its own; reduce your stress by making some of your food in advance!

Bubblin' Make Ahead Cheese Dip (shown above)

Arkansas Caviar (shown at top of page)

Make Ahead Cheese Puffs

Make Ahead Tortilla Roll Ups


Main Course Recipes to Make Ahead

Make Ahead Cheesy Ham Breakfast BakeSlow Cooker Oriental Lemon Chicken

Making a homemade meal, whether it's breakfast or dinner, takes both time and effort.  With the make ahead meal ideas in the list below, you can prepare dishes on your own time and then serve them when you're busy or in a pinch. It's freezer recipes like these that are true lifesavers for those of us with jam-packed weekday schedules. 

Make Ahead Pizza Meat Loaves (shown at top of page)

Slow Cooker Oriental Lemon Chicken (shown above)

Make Ahead Chicken Casserole

Make Ahead Cheesy Ham Breakfast Bake (shown above)

Cheeseburger Pasta Bake

Siberian Style Dumplings

Slow Cooker German Sauerbraten (shown at top of page)



Make Ahead Recipes for Sides

Overnight Angel Biscuits


Side dish recipes are often overlooked, but they're no less important than your main course. Turn your side dish into the star it should be by preparing one of these easy make ahead recipes. When you fix one of these simple side dishes in advance, you'll be able to serve your family a completely from-scratch meal without breaking a sweat!

In a Hurry Buttermilk Herb Biscuits

Creamy Make Ahead Potatoes

Overnight Angel Biscuits (shown above)

Make Ahead Macaroni Salad

Mom's Baked Potato Salad


Dessert Recipes to Make Ahead

Peanut Butter Cheese Ball

After putting a ton of effort into a home-cooked meal, the last thing you want to think about is making dessert.  That's why we love dessert recipes to make ahead of time, like the ones in our list below. These sweet sensations are every bit as delicious as other dessert recipes, the only difference is that these treats can be prepared in advance and then brought out when you need them (or whenever your sweet tooth strikes!).  Find your favorite easy dessert recipe below and enjoy a stress-free after-dinner treat! 

Make Ahead Caramel Cream Pie

Muffin Pan Apple Crumb Cakes

Nana's Secret Angel Dessert

Peanut Butter "Cheese" Ball (shown above)

Tropical Paradise Ice Box Cake

Cranberry Apple Bread Pudding (shown at top of page)



If you're looking for make ahead meal ideas for Christmas, check out our collection of 18 Recipes for Overnight Christmas Casseroles.  Plus don't miss this roundup of 18 Delicious Make Ahead Casseroles for any occasion. 




Free recipes, giveaways, exclusive partner offers, and more straight to your inbox!

I have not made this yet so I cannot rate it.

Include a Photo Include a Photo

Click the button above or drag and drop images onto the button. You can upload two images.

Cancel Reply to Comment

Thanks for your comment. Don't forget to share!


Report Inappropriate Comment

Are you sure you would like to report this comment? It will be flagged for our moderators to take action.

Thank you for taking the time to improve the content on our site.

Recipe of the Day

Cheesy One Pot Hamburger Casserolevideocam

This Cheesy One Pot Hamburger Casserole is one of those easy weeknight meals you can make in a hurry when you have hungry mouths to… Continue reading: "Cheesy One Pot Hamburger Casserolevideocam"

Something worth saving?

Register now for FREE to:

  • SAVE your favorite recipes
  • ADD personal notes
  • GET fast cooking tips


Connect With Us

Facebook Instagram Twitter Pinterest Twitter
Blog Email RSS

About Us Advertise Contact Us FAQ Do Not Sell My Personal Information Keyword Index Privacy Policy Submit Your Recipes Subscribe Terms of Service Unsubscribe

---- 1 ----