If you’re looking for easy Easter Sunday recipe ideas, you’re in the right place. From refreshing spring drinks and light side dishes to a non-traditional Easter centerpiece and fresh fruit desserts, there are plenty of delicious options to mix and match for a menu that perfectly suits you.
If your family is not one to break with tradition, though, all of the accompanying sides, desserts, and drinks will work just as well with ham or lamb—or roast chicken, for that matter. We propose trying something new, though! (Especially since most of us are likely to have much smaller guest lists this year.)
A Non-Traditional Easter Centerpiece
Easter may be synonymous with ham (or lamb, though usually not rabbit, at least when it comes to the dinner table), but you don’t have to cook low and slow to produce a hearty, meaty main for Easter dinner. You can turn up the heat for a faster (and healthier) springtime meal that still satisfies and feels special, featuring salmon. This also happens to be a great strategy for a strange year, when many of us won’t be able to celebrate directly with family and thus will have fewer mouths to feed. But however and with whomever you’re marking the holiday, these ideas will help you eat well.
When it comes to salmon, planking is the way to go. It’s easy: Soak a piece of cedar—you can get one at any gourmet grocer or fish market (easier said than done in the time of coronavirus, however)—plonk the fish on top, and broil or grill the whole thing. The plank contributes a smoky flavor to the fish and provides a perfect, flat cooking surface. Fresh dill and honey glazes are the most common toppings for salmon, but we go renegade with a tangy yogurt spread flavored with spring herbs. You can also go renegade with the wood: Try oak, cherry, or maple. Just make sure the plank is large enough and that it’s clean, untreated, and about an inch thick. Get our Cedar-Planked Salmon with Herbed Yogurt Sauce recipe.
In any case, it goes with a variety of spring dishes, like the ones below. Rustle up a small meal or a big banquet by mixing and matching your main with any of these recipes:
Whether you’re doing Easter brunch in the a.m./afternoon or easing into an early Easter dinner, any of these libations would be welcome (but if you love a good theme, consider trying a drink with eggs too).
Limoncello mingles with vodka, soda water, and mint, cooled with crushed ice in order to herald spring and all things bright and cheery, including Easter—even if you’re Skyping your sister or grandparents this year instead of joining them at the table. Get our Mint “Limonata” recipe.
This is a simple mixed drink that will feel fancy, especially if you serve it in Champagne glasses or other nice stemware (the kids will be delighted to sip it too). All you need is peach nectar and lemon-lime soda, but try it with other juice depending on what you can find or already have on hand. Get our Virgin Bellini recipe.
Opposites attract, apparently. Deep into a gritty neighborhood in San Francisco lies a bar named Rye, where they serve this light, bubbly cocktail made with elderflower liqueur, yellow Chartreuse, and Prosecco. If you have a well-stocked home bar (or the option to order alcohol online), get our Yellow Bicycle recipe.
When the weather warms up, this is a cool, refreshing, perky beverage you want in your hand. It’s nice for special occasions too, and delicious as-is, or spiked with bourbon. Get our Mint and Lime Iced Tea recipe.
Two boozy Italian beverages join forces in our Lo Scintillante recipe for a slightly sweet, dry, bubbly drink with hints of clove and other spices. But if you don’t have Cocchi Aperitivo Americano in stock (no kidding), use another amaro like Aperol or Campari along with the Prosecco—because this is basically just a twist on a classic spritz.
It may be a terrine, but this is not complicated. The instructions have one step, which doesn’t include any cooking whatsoever. Just slicing, spreading, and arranging. And you can use any goat cheese you can find. Get our Sainte-Maure, Basil, and Fresh Herb Terrine recipe.
These folded-over rolls were made famous about 100 years ago at the Parker House hotel in Boston. Although they take some time to make, they are beautifully soft with a chewy crust and will make a lovely addition to your holiday table. (And while they may not be easy, if you pick some of these simple salads and a quick-cooking main, you’ll have time to spare.) Get our Parker House Rolls recipe.
These bars have all the sweet-tart flavors of rhubarb pie with a simple buttery crust, but without the fussiness of rolling out pie dough. And you can still serve them topped with ice cream. Get our Rhubarb-Almond Bars recipe.
The brioche in this pudding doesn’t come out as dark red as the bread in other summer puddings, but rest assured that it is soaked thoroughly and the end result would do any Brit proud. Be sure to start this recipe a day in advance, as the pudding needs to rest 24 hours before serving. And though it looks very impressive, it’s not difficult, because you’re starting with already-baked brioche (preferably from your favorite bakery). Get our Almost Summer Pudding recipe.
What’s better than a few scoops of ice cream? Layers of ice cream stacked up in a cake. Here we pile up three flavors—fresh strawberry, vanilla bean, and roasted pistachio—and finish everything with a crunchy layer of crushed vanilla cookies, for a dessert that’s quintessential summer (but still springy enough to eat right now). And if you’re not feeling up to homemade ice cream, just sub in good-quality store-bought versions of each flavor. Get our Pistachio-Strawberry Ice Cream Cake recipe.