Need a Cool Recipe for Family Reunion

Updated on August 21, 2008
K.D. asks from Cumming, GA
10 answers

This Sunday is my annual family reunion. It's about 45min- 1hr away, and we'll be leaving right after church. I'm looking for a recipe that will travel well, can be prepared ahead of time, and doesn't need to be refridgerated. I thought maybe a sweet pastry would stand up well, but I'm not really experienced in that catagory. Also, I have a baby shower to attend on Sat. so I need something that doesn't take all day to prepare. If it fell into the catagories of simple, and inexpensive that would be great too! Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks!

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So What Happened?

Thanks everyone for the recipe ideas. I went to the foodnetwork site and found a paula deen recipe for blueberry tarts. These were mostly cream cheese and I was able to freeze them overnite and just let then thaw during church and on the way there. I topped them with blueberries when I got there and it worked beautifuly. Not only did you all help, but I have a reserve of recipes to reference the next time I have to cook for something like that!!

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answers from Lexington on

My favorite is Paula Deen's Gooey Butter Cake. Here is the link for the chocolate version. I've never put the nuts in mine but that's a judgement call. The regular recipe uses a regular yellow cake mix and omits the cocoa.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Chattanooga on

I know you don't want anything that needs to be chilled, but this is quick, easy and can pretty much keep itself cold (just have someone hold it in the front seat next to the air vent or on the floorboard under a vent. anyways.. quick n easy.. (and we have an hour fifteen minute drive to our family functions, and we have never used the cooler for this cake)

Punch Bowl Cake (easy version)
1 round pound cake
1 16 oz bowl of frozen strawberries (in juices)
1 LG bowl of strawberry-flavored cool whip
2 tub or bag of strawberry glaze

Thaw out strawberries on countertop or overnight in fridge. Thaw out cool whip for an hour or so on countertop. after strawberries are thawed, mix them with the strawberry glaze. Cut pound cake into thick slices broken in half, layer them onto bottom of the bowl. top that with a layer of strawberry mix. then a layer of cool whip, and then repeat until bowl is full. With leftover items, make a small one for yourself and family, because once people try the punch bowl cake, there won't be any left for you to have.

For decoration, just use some fresh cut strawberries and plop them on the top in some kind of decoration if you want. I usually don't bother our family knows our punch bowl cake and digs in.

P.S. if you want the tastier version, and a lil bit harder, but worth it, just send me a msg

P.P.S. On the pound cake, if you don't cut the slices in half, you wont have enough for your cake.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Wilmington on


Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45
Ready In: 55
Yields: 16 servings

2 apples
2 8-pack of crescent rolls
2 sticks butter (I use 1 1/4 sticks)
1 1/2 cups of sugar (I use only 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup Splenda)
1 Tbsp cinnamon
12 oz Mountain Dew (diet caffeine free)

1. peel core 2 apples--wedges--8 each apple so 16 wedges total (I don't peel the apples)
2. wrap each wedge in a crescent roll starting at wide end
3. butter (or spray) 9x13 pan and put the cresent in -put on sides so skinny side down. (I don't always notice what dumpling side I put down. I also fill gaps in between with extra apple slices, if available.)
4. Melt butter--add sugar and cinnamon and spoon over the rolls. (I bring butter, sugars, cinnamon to boil in a pan first, then pour over the rolls.)
5. Pour 12 oz Mountain Dew over the whole lot
6. 350 for 45 minutes

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Raleigh on

This pasta salad is really good, and you can either leave out the cheese or put the cheese in a cooler and add it when you get there.
Pasta and Spinach Salad
1/2 cup olive or cooking oil
1/2 c vinegar
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp dried oregano, crushed
1 tsp dried basil, crushed
1/3 c sliced pitted black olives
1 clove garlic, minced
8 oz corkscrew macaroni (rotini)
8 oz colby cheese, cubed
1 large sweet red pepper, chopped
3 c torn fresh spinach

Combine oil, vinegar, dry mustard, oregano, basil, and minced garlic for marinade; set aside. Cook pasta and drain. Place pasta in container and pour marinade over it. Cool pasta to room temperature. Then add cheese cubes, peppers, and olives. Toss mixture again. Chill for several hours or overnight. Before serving, add fresh spinach. Mix again to coat. Serves 8.

Also, someone else mentioned a Paula Deen recipe, which made me think of her orange brownie recipe:
They are really good, and are excellent with white chocolate chips added.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

Just wanted to add to the comment aboutt he punch bowl cake. I make this alot as well.. you can also add into your layers.. drained chunk pineapple just to give it a little extra kick. But its a great summer dessert!



answers from Chattanooga on

My brain is not working at the moment (I have 2 small toddlers, need I say more?) but my favorite recipe site could help you. Try I think you will love this site! I sure do.



answers from Clarksville on

I don't know any recipes that you could use off the top of my head, but look at and and search for recipes within your parameters. Good luck!



answers from Huntington on

One of the easiest things I make that always goes wonderful at get-togethers is my salsa dip.
1 lb of browned hamburger
1 jar of salsa (I find the cheap kind actually tastes better)
1/2 block of Velvetta cheese - cubed (again, the cheap brand is usually better)

mix the browned hamburger with the whole jar of salsa. Cut the blocked cheese into cubes and add a few at a time into the mix and melt in the microwave. Mix in melted cheese. Keep ading and mixing cheese until it's as cheesy as you like. Add a bag of Tortilla Chips.

That's it.
You may not be able to take it to the reunion, but maybe the shower. I usually put it in a small crockpot and plug in the crockpot when I get where I'm going. Or put it in a bowl small enough for the microwave and put it in the microwave when I get where I'm going, whichever it easier.
Hope everything goes well. Good Luck!!



answers from Nashville on

This may not work for the family reunion, but it would be great for your baby shower! This has become a staple at all our family and work's healthy and cheap and EASY! =0) Even if you don't like black-eyed peas, you have to at least give it a chance before you say "yuck" ok? TRUST ME! =0)....

2 cans black-eyed peas (drained)
1 can white shoepeg corn (drained)
1 can original rotel (mostly drained)
1 small bottle kraft italian dressing
1 chopped green bell pepper
1 bunch of green onions, chopped

Combine all of the above in a big bowl. It's best if you can chill it in the fridge for a couple of hours, or even over night because all the flavors will marinate together. Just serve with tortilla chips and watch it disappear!



answers from Lexington on


I have a couple of Pampered Chef recipes here. They are wonderful. The first is Brown Sugar-Dijon Brie and the other is Warm Nutty Caramel Brownie. There are 2 variations on the brie recipe. I have tried the Tangy Pepper Pecan Brie, and it is great! I am a picky eater and I didn't think that I would like it, but I did. (You can control how hot it gets by the jalepeno seeds, more seeds=more hot) This is a quick recipe, you could fix it after church.

The Warm Nutty Caramel Brownie is heaven in your mouth! I have made it at several shows and it is always a hit! The rolos in the brownie is genius! Be sure to pop them in immediately after you take the brownies out of the oven. If you wait too long, its harder to stick them in. You can fix it pretty quickly the night before, cover it up and have it ready to go the next morning.

Good luck!

The Pampered Chef ®
Brown Sugar-Dijon Brie

1/2 cup sliced almonds, divided
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 4-in. round (8 oz) Brie cheese with rind, room temperature
1 loaf (16 oz) French baguette
Vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Coarsely chop 1/4 cup of the almonds using Food Chopper. In Small Batter Bowl, combine chopped almonds, sugar and mustard; mix well using Skinny Scraper.

2. Cut Brie in half horizontally using Utility Knife. Place one half of Brie, cut side up, onto center of Large Round Stone with Handles. Spread half of the sugar mixture evenly over bottom half of Brie using Small Spreader. Top with remaining half of Brie, cut side up. Spread remaining sugar mixture over Brie; sprinkle with remaining almonds.

3. Using Bread Knife, cut baguette on a bias into twenty-four 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange baguette slices around Brie; spray with oil using Kitchen Spritzer. Bake 8-10 minutes or until baguette slices are golden brown and Brie begins to soften. Remove from oven; let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Yield: 12 servings

Nutrients per serving: (Light): Calories 260, Total Fat 4.5 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Carbohydrate 46 g, Protein 9 g, Sodium 460 mg, Fiber 2 g

Variations: Tangy Pepper-Pecan Brie: Substitute 1/2 cup pecan halves, coarsely chopped, for the almonds, 1/4 cup apricot preserves for the sugar and 1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded and chopped for the mustard. Proceed as recipe directs.

Sun-Dried Tomato-Pesto Brie: Substitute 1/4 cup pine nuts for the almonds, 2/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained, patted dry and chopped for the sugar. Substitute 1 tbsp prepared basil pesto for the mustard. Proceed as recipe directs.

Shopping List
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 4-in. round (8 oz) Brie cheese with rind, room temperature
1 loaf (16 oz) French baguette
Vegetable oil

Variations: Tangy Pepper-Pecan Brie
1/2 cup pecan halves
1/4 cup apricot preserves
1 jalapeño pepper
1 4-in. round (8 oz) Brie cheese with rind, room temperature
1 loaf (16 oz) French baguette
Vegetable oil

Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Brie
1/4 cup pine nuts
2/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil
1 tbsp prepared basil pesto
1 4-in. round (8 oz) Brie cheese with rind, room temperature
1 loaf (16 oz) French baguette
Vegetable oil

© The Pampered Chef, Ltd.,
The Pampered Chef ®
Warm Nutty Caramel Brownies

1 pkg (12 oz) semi-sweet chocolate morsels, divided
1 pkg (18-21 oz) brownie mix (plus ingredients to make cake-like brownies)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar, divided
1 cup salted mixed nuts, divided
5 rolls (1.7 oz each) milk chocolate-covered chewy caramels, divided (40 pieces total)
Vanilla ice cream (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly brush Large Bar Pan with vegetable oil using Chef's Silicone Basting Brush. Chop 1 1/2 cups of the chocolate morsels using Food Chopper. In Classic Batter Bowl, combine brownie mix, water, oil, eggs and 1/4 cup of the brown sugar; mix well. Fold in chopped chocolate; pour batter into bar pan, spreading evenly using Small Mix ‘N Scraper®.

2. Chop nuts using Food Chopper. Combine half of the nuts and remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar; sprinkle evenly over brownie batter. Bake 20-22 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

3. Meanwhile, using Utility Knife, cut 16 caramels into quarters. Place remaining 1/2 cup chocolate morsels in Prep Bowl; microwave on HIGH 1 minute or until melted, stirring after each 20-second interval. Spoon melted chocolate into resealable plastic bag; set aside.

4. Remove bar pan from oven to Stackable Cooling Rack. Immediately press remaining 24 caramels evenly into brownie in four rows of six caramels each. Sprinkle quartered caramels and remaining nuts over brownies. Trim corner of chocolate-filled bag with Utility Knife; drizzle chocolate evenly over brownies. Cut into squares; serve warm using Mini-Serving Spatula. Serve with ice cream, if desired.

Yield: 24 servings

Nutrients per serving: Calories 300, Total Fat 16 g, Saturated Fat 4.5 g, Cholesterol 25 mg, Carbohydrate 38 g, Protein 3 g, Sodium 135 mg, Fiber 2 g

Shopping List
1 pkg (12 oz) semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1 pkg (18-21 oz) brownie mix (plus ingredients to make cake-like brownies)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup salted mixed nuts
5 rolls (1.7 oz each) milk chocolate-covered chewy caramels (40 pieces total)
Vanilla ice cream (optional)

© The Pampered Chef, Ltd.,

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