Food52 Life

Too Many Cooks: Your Most-Cooked FOOD52 Recipe

July 20, 2012

You'll be hearing from the staff at FOOD52 every week in Too Many Cooks, our group column in which we pool our answers to questions about food, cooking, life, and more.

The thrill of discovering a new recipe to test and share with friends is always great, but sometimes you just want to lay back and enjoy your old standbys. This week in Too Many Cooks, we answer the question, which FOOD52 recipe do you cook the most?

The answers are full of delicious, simple workhorses that would be as welcome at Thanksgiving as they would be on a weeknight. Chime in with your favorite recipes in the comments!

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Peter S.

The Food52 recipe my family cooks the most is a contest runner-up from Ashleyza: extremely easy and addictively delicious Mashed Maple Chipotle Sweet Potatoes. Why? Well, mainly because it's so absurdly good. But beyond that, it takes mere minutes to make (thanks to the rare appropriate use of the microwave), reheats extremely well, ages even better, impresses dinner guests, can be adjusted in heat and spice to suit any palate, and can be toyed with in terms of ingredients (yogurt or creme fraiche instead of the sour cream, cayenne or smoked paprika instead of the chipotle in adobo, honey instead of the maple syrup, etc.)

Michael Hoffman

(Michael just started this week as our new developer -- welcome!)
We've made gingerroot's Chevre Devils quite a few times. In fact, they've become something of a Thanksgiving tradition. Assembling them is fun and easy, so it's the perfect task to get friends and relatives involved in making the meal, and they're delicious with a glass of sparkling wine or a cocktail.


Reeve's Roasted Carrot Soup! It's my favorite thing to serve to groups -- it's friendly to vegetarian, lactose intolerant, and gluten-free friends, and it's satisfying to the friends who like rich foods. It's also super easy to make, and I almost always have the ingredients on hand (not that I'm well-stocked all the time, it only calls for a few things). I love the method. I just think it's genius.

Merrill's Steak with Arugula, Lemon and Parmesan because I love it and I love seeing my boyfriend Mike freak out when he learns I've brought steak home. The whole thing takes about 20 minutes, start to finish. You use one cutting board and one pan. And a big steak feeds 2 people, especially if you serve it with Amanda's Squashed Potatoes (which Mike calls "Splats") and crisp them in the steak-y skillet while the steak is resting. Another lazy trick: Sometimes I steam the potatoes in the microwave to hustle the Splats along.


Since deensiebat's One-Pot Kale and Quinoa Pilaf is equally good hot, room temperature, or cold, I find myself constantly going back to it for dinner, for lunch the next day, and for parties where I need a trustworthy make-ahead dish. Sometimes, I make a gigantic batch and eat it all week. It's also easy to adapt; sometimes, I use feta instead of goat cheese, or I use walnuts and almonds instead of pine nuts.

What I always say is, why make espresso when you could be making Amanda's affogato?


The Double Chocolate Espresso Cookies from KelseyTheNaptimeChef. Which will surprise no one. I like chocolate and I like cookies. It's as simple as that.


This is a tough question for me, because I'm still working on cooking my way through our lovely database, but I find myself throwing together Midge's Okonomiyaki for dinner more than I'd care to admit.

Well, the obvious answer is Grandma DiLaura's Ricotta Gnocchi - I would have 100+ fingers if I counted how many times I've made that memory-evoking dish. It is my standby easy comfort meal.

I love the Moroccan Carrot Salad with Harissa from Cordeliah. It's a perfect side dish-- even my friend who doesn't love vegetables like this dish. My favorite recipe that I've never tried or tasted is the Chocolate Thai Green Curry Cake. i just dream about it and aspire one day to take on the challenge of gathering the ingredients and preparing this cake.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • gingerroot
  • AAK
  • inpatskitchen
  • Brain Health Kitchen
    Brain Health Kitchen
  • daphne.hayer
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


gingerroot July 24, 2012
I tend to have seasonal favorites: Amanda's Peach Tart in the summer, mrslarkin's Butternut Squash and Sage scones for Thanksgiving breakfast, cookinginvictoria's Huevos Rancheros for dinner on a cold night (relatively speaking of course!) just to name a few. Then there are the everyday favorites, like monkeymom's Soy Saucy Chicken with Eggs, deensiebat's One Pot Kale and Quinoa, Midge's Okonomiyaki and sweet enough's Perfect Pancakes.
AAK July 22, 2012
Short rib ragu, short rib ragu! I am counting down the days until Fall arrives and I can make a big batch and eat over cheesy polenta.
inpatskitchen July 22, 2012
One of my favorites is boulangere's First Night in Florence just sings!
Brain H. July 22, 2012
kayB's Fig and Olive Tapenade. I always have figs and olives in the pantry, and rosemary in the garden, so can whip up a batch in a few minutes before guests arrive. Leftover tapenade makes a killer panini sandwich with smoked mozzarella and prosciutto. I've even tossed it with pasta, and smeared it on my toast for breakfast.
daphne.hayer July 21, 2012
I make Melissav's Lemon Ricotta Spaghetti with Arugula on a regular basis. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. I have prepared or been inspired by many recipes on this site, but this one is my absolute favorite!
Jennifer A. July 21, 2012
So many lovely and delicious Food 52 recipes have graced my kitchen, but the one I have made the most?Antonia James' lentil and sausage stew for a cold winter's night. It makes me feel happy. I adore it to the moon.
LucyS July 21, 2012
Amanda's peach tart is my go to, though I think I first started making it years and years ago after reading it in her book. I make an enormous batch of her tomato soup every summer when the tomatoes are good, and then freeze for the winter!
Miafoodie July 21, 2012
OOH, there are several that have become favorites, i.e. Merrill's Grilled Apricots w/whipped ricotta, basil & sherry vinegar syrup; mrslarkin's Radish Mascarpone Honey & Salt; annouchka's Clafoutis with fruits; Merrill's Mom's Cream Cheese cookies; kaykay's Absurdly Addictive Asparagus; mrslarkins Carrot Parsnip Fettuccine;and Amanda's Mom's Chocolate Dump-It cake. Each and everyone receive rave reviews and a recipe is always requested.
Miafoodie July 21, 2012
I almost forgot...Ann Seranne's Genius Rib Roast. It has forever changed the way I roast beef.
Love the Genius Recipes.
calendargirl July 20, 2012
Mrslarkin's Lemon Posset -- such a snap and the perfect lemon finish to so many meals, it is loved by all; Amanda's Peach Tart (with every kind of fruit, just made it on vacation with fresh wild Maine blueberries and discovering the almond extract on hand to be more like kerosene -- very, very old extract! -- used vanilla in the crust to excellent effect); Lizthechef's Artichoke Lemon Chicken --- this one makes my spouse just so happy, me too
thirschfeld July 20, 2012
Nora Ephron's Sweet Potato Anna with Prunes, Amanda's Summer Squash Gratin with Salsa Verde, Kelsey's double chocolate expresso cookies. Those are just for starters. Oh yeah and a totally odd and unknown one Beetroot burgers by greenkitchenstories
em-i-lis July 20, 2012
Amanda's plum tart and Jenny's ricotta!! Meraviglioso!!!! I do love rivka's mujadarra too. Ooh!
meganvt01 July 20, 2012
Midge's Okonomiyaki (at least 3 times a month) and Monkeymom's Caramelized pork bahn mi
LLStone July 20, 2012
This is a fun thread! I ditto the Okonomiyaki and the Dump it Cake. I've made both more than 5 times over the last year. Additionally, I love Merrill's Carrot Avocado Salad and her Cheese Biscuits, the Genius Granola and the Genius Lemon Caper Dressing. I have made each of these several times. But the recipe I make the most is Jennifer Perillo's Creamy Homemade Ricotta. I make a batch every couple of weeks and I use it for many things; mostly though, I use it for the 2nd recipe I've made more than any other - Merrill's Bruschetta w/ Ricotta, Honey and Lemon Zest!
drbabs July 20, 2012
I live on the Brussels sprouts salad a la m.wells all winter. And the kale and quinoa crustless quiche and rivka's mujaddara are two of my mainstays. I second kitchen butterfly on Amanda's chocolate cake. It is fabulous. I make it frequently, but I think she wins the prize for most times made. I also frequently make Winnie's pho and healthier kitchen's jambalaya-ish.
drbabs July 20, 2012
Oh, and dymnyno's lemon tart--so easy and delicious. And the simple summer peach cake...a major favorite.
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
chocolate cake on the brain but I second you too DrBabs on Dymnyno's lemon tart. I brought 3 Meyer lemons back with me! One went on the tart (I had to be judicious) and it was all gone before dinner. Even the picky daughter who doesnt do desserts gobbled up a slab.

One went in scones, finely blitzed with sugar and the last one is preparing for last rites, and a repeat of Dymnyno's tart!
LLStone July 20, 2012
Oh gosh, I forgot about the pho! I make that very often, too. It is a frequent request from my husband. Another recipe that gets a shout out is Trio of Peppers and Grilled Corn Salsa - I made it all summer last year and have made it several times this year.
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
Did I also mention that the chocolate dump it all cake can be made in a variety of pans - cupcakes, round cakes, tray bakes....I've done it all. The absolute stunner is that it makes wonderful layer cakes which when sandwiched together with some milk chocolate mousse (melted chocolate folded into whipped cream and refrigerated to set for 4-6 hours/overnight) tastes out of this world!
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
Hands down, Amanda's mum's Chocolate Dump it all cake. Since December 2011, I've made it close to 70 times! This week alone, I have made 6 cakes!

It is SO easy to whip up and I have no qualms in letting my kids lick the pot with the cooked batter. Plus it bakes in no time and is perfect every time!

I've tweaked it a bit (blame my science background) - I use dark brown sugar, or light brown if I'm out of dark and add Hershey's cocoa powder to the cooking mix but the absolute beauty of it is that every frosting or topping totally changes the character - the most popular are a chocolate caramel with chocolate shavings and a white chocolate and peppermint one! Please thank your mum for me Amanda, she has made me a STAR with this cake!
Nozlee S. July 20, 2012
You have to tell us why you made 6 cakes this week! Was it a lot of birthdays?
Hilarybee July 20, 2012
CreamTea's Dilled, Crunchy Sweet-Corn Salad is one of my favorites. I made this almost every week last summer. Corn's back and I'll be resuming my love affair.

Rhonda's Spaghetti with Fried Egg has kept me fed many a night while my husband was traveling.

RaquelG's Prosciutto, Nectarine and Fontina Panini is also popular in my house!
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
:-)! 2 went to the office for a leaving do; 2 have been ordered by my brother as a gift for a friend's son's birthday (that was a rather long explanation); one is going to a friend's 8 year old daughter who is in hospital and all she wants is me to make her mint tea and chocolate cake, very brave girl, and one went to 2 friends!
Nozlee S. July 20, 2012
You are a very, very good friend, Oz!
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
Ha, that's sweet. I havent yet tired of making this cake and it is such an easy 'labour' of love!
drbabs July 20, 2012
I've met KB, and she is, indeed, a wonderful person.
Kitchen B. July 20, 2012
DrBabs, thank you and Nozlee. After a pretty rough day at work, I am finding a LOT of comfort in your kind words. But you are both pretty awesome too!
aargersi July 20, 2012
arielleclementine's cake - The Snake Bite - without a doubt. I think I have made it more than she has! It is requested for every party and in fact I have a request for it in the next couple weeks for a birthday. I also really love and make the mujadarra from Rivka a lot - that one is on the slate for this weekend.