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Homemade for the Holidays

Sally Ekman

December 15, 2014


Home cooking and the holidays go hand in hand. While every family has a different idea of what constitutes a proper holiday meal, most can agree that food is the linchpin of any holiday gathering.

In the spirit of the holidays, I’ve asked my colleagues to share their favorite homemade recipes. So if you’re in a bind over what to bring to the celebration, or just trying to distract relatives by shifting the conversation to “these delicious homemade cookies” you brought, these recipes are for you!


[No Bake] Christmas Wreath Cookies

Shared by Alyssa Erickson, Vendor Sales

Christmas Wreath Cookies

“This is one of my favorite recipes and one that my mom and I can never NOT make. It’s simple, but oh so delicious! These cookies are not too sweet, and you will definitely be taking two as the Christmas cookie tray gets passed around!”
Christmas Wreath Cookie Recipe

Sweet Potato Casserole

Shared by Kevin Otte, Head of Office (San Francisco) and Carrie Roberts, Client Sales

Sweet Potato Casserole

Carrie says, “Nothing says the holidays to me more than my grandmother’s sweet potato casserole. Of course, having a mom from NC and growing up in VA, pecans (pee-cans, pick-ons, pee-cons, pick-ans, whatever toots your fancy) aren’t optional in this recipe. But really… what could be better? It’s essentially a dessert that disguises itself as a side!”

Kevin says, “Despite sweet potato casserole’s association to Thanksgiving day, I always cook this dish for Christmas dinner too. My dad taught me how to make this dish when I was 10, and from that point on, I considered myself an expert. Even if you’re a novice in the kitchen, the taste of this casserole will have everyone clamoring for the last bite.”

Dueling Sweet Potato CasseroleCarrie’s recipe:

Carrie's Sweet Potato RecipeKevin’s recipe:

Kevin's Sweet Potato Recipe

Rosemary and Toasted Caraway Shortbread

Shared by Kayla Adams, Vendor Sales
Rosemary Bread

“Oh baby, this is gooood! I love the idea of marrying savory with sweet. I actually stumbled on this recipe in Bon Appetite magazine a couple years ago and have made it every Thanksgiving and Christmas since. This is one of those recipes where your end product actually looks like the photo in the magazine – it’s an amazing feeling that rarely happens.”

Shortbread Recipe

Beef Short Ribs

Shared by Drew Nordstrom, Vendor Sales

Short Ribs

“In my family, we typically do La Vigilia, the Italian Feast of the Seven Fishes on Christmas Eve; then, a heartier, more comforting dinner on Christmas Day. This dish I’ve made a couple times, and it goes over really well. It’s a riff off of a dish we cooked at Restaurant Passione in Montclair, NJ, where I worked as a line cook in high school.”

Short Ribs Recipe

Cinnamon Diamond Cookies

Shared by Kealy O’Donnell, Vendor Sales

Cinnamon Diamond Cookies

“My favorite holiday treat is my mom’s Cinnamon Diamonds, which she only makes during Christmas. Cinnamon Diamonds are part cookie, part bar that have a slightly crunchy crust of cinnamon, sugar and chopped walnuts on top. Growing up, my mom would make them to give away as gifts to neighbors, friends, and family. Although they’re very easy to make, no matter how many times I make them, mine never come close to being as good as my mom’s.”

Diamond Cookies Recipe


Shared by Alex Lorton, Co-founder


“For the past 125 years, Ohioans have cheered their Ohio State Buckeyes on to victory on the gridiron as the weather turns cold each fall. As family and friends gather together for the games and for the winter holidays, this spirit carries through to the food we eat. Buckeye candies have been a staple at every Thanksgiving and Christmas for as long as I can remember. To me, they are a symbol of home and a connection to all my fellow Ohioans.”

Buckeyes Recipe

Cuban Black Beans

Shared by Tess O’Brien, Vendor Sales

Black Beans

“My grandmother brought her three young daughters to Miami after the Cuban revolution. They were only able to bring one suitcase for the four of them, and nestled in my grandfather’s journals was the family black bean recipe.  While my grandmother can barely use a microwave, her daughters have made these beans for every holiday since.”

Black Beans Recipe

But let’s be real: it’s not a holiday gathering without the adult beverages (and a relative getting drunk and saying something inappropriate)!


Gløgg (Danish Mulled Wine)

Shared by Sally Ekman, Community Manager


“I spent four (very cold) months living in Denmark. While the holiday lights were cheery, the one thing that truly warmed up those long, dark nights was drinking gløgg with friends.”

Glogg Recipe

Have a wonderful and delicious holiday season from your friends at!



“ has been able to get our employees from all different departments together, to get away from our desks, recharge, and be able to return to our work, happy and full.”

—Ellen K., Employee Experience Specialist,