26 Retro Recipes Worthy of a Comeback

published Apr 18, 2023
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Nostalgic food is supposed to be a huge trend this year. So there’s no time like the present to dig through our library to uncover some of our most retro recipes. Chances are that you’ll be reminded of the iconic dishes your grandma or an uncle was (in)famous for bringing to a family gathering, or maybe you’ll learn the history of an old-school dish that might work well on your modern table.

Here are 26 retro recipes we believe are worthy of a comeback, from classic party fare like cheese fondue and shrimp cocktail, to the wackier (yet highly lovable) ones with fun names like Johnny Marzetti, porcupine meatballs, and coronation coleslaw

1 / 26
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
A classic cake for good reason, this rich, buttery cake topped with fragrant, caramelized pineapple and amber cherries is pantry-friendly and easy to make.
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2 / 26
Popcorn Salad
Satisfy your curiosity and add this retro dish to your next cookout or potluck.
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3 / 26
Watergate Salad
This cool and creamy retro dessert is sure to surprise and delight you.
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4 / 26
Cheeseburger Pie

This retro 1970s-era cheeseburger pie is how you feed a summer dinner crowd without breaking a sweat under the nose of a hot grill.

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5 / 26
Pear Salad
In this ulta-retro fare, delicate canned pears are topped with a dollop of creamy mayo and garnished with shreds of sharp cheddar and a vibrant maraschino cherry.
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6 / 26
Baked Alaska
A step-by-step recipe for making a classic baked Alaska.
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7 / 26
Silver Cake with Pink Frosting
This early to mid-twentieth-century white cake, made with copious amounts of stiffly peaked egg whites, is perfectly tender and light.
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8 / 26
Porcupine Meatballs
These retro beef meatballs are made with uncooked rice, which cooks as the meatballs bake in the oven. The result is a saucy, satisfying weeknight dinner.
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9 / 26
Tuna Casserole
A modern-day tuna casserole that keeps the classic, comforting flavors but loses the can of condensed soup.
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10 / 26
Chocolate Wacky Cake

This vintage cake, which seems to date from the late ’30s or early ’40s and also goes by the name “wacky cake,” doesn’t use eggs or dairy. The whimsical texture and taste screams classic chocolate cake right out of the box.

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11 / 26
Cranberry Salad

Cranberry salad is holiday nostalgia at its finest — complete with fruit, mini marshmallows and nuts — all tied together with heaps of soft whipped cream.

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12 / 26
Peanut Butter Bread

Inspired by the Depression-era recipe that went viral in 2020, this recipe is just as easy and even more delicious.

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13 / 26
Clam Dip
This clam dip features a holy trinity of creamy, briny, and lemony flavors. Grab a bag of potato chips.
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14 / 26
Green Tomato Pie

In the 19th century, this pie apparently stood in place of classic apple pie. Today, it's a great tart-and-sweet dessert to make with ripe green tomatoes.

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15 / 26
Hot Crab Dip
A recipe for classic crab dip made with cream cheese and cheddar cheese and baked in the oven.
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16 / 26
Classic Cheese Fondue at Home

Making the ultimate '70s dinner-party stunner from scratch is easier than you might think. Serve this perfect cold-weather meal with bread cubes, apple slices, cornichon pickles, and pickled onions.

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17 / 26
Lobster Thermidor
A classic thermidor cooked in a rich cream sauce and topped with melted Gruyère cheese.
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18 / 26
Johnny Marzetti

You really can’t go wrong with a classic American comfort food dish like this extra-cheesy noodle and sausage casserole from the 1890s.

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19 / 26
Shoofly Pie

Shoofly pie, a classic Pennsylvania Dutch dessert, is basically a molasses crumb filling covered with a cake-like layer, then topped with sweet buttery crumbs.

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20 / 26
Jell-O Poke Cake

Poke cakes first appeared in American kitchens around the 1970s. This moist and fluffy strawberry-soaked version looks jazzy and tastes like pure nostalgia.

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21 / 26
Coronation Coleslaw

Coronation chicken was a salad created in celebration of (yes, you guessed it!) the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. This coleslaw with creamy curry sauce is inspired by the legendary dish.

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22 / 26
Josephinas, also known as Howell’s Bread, are slices of French bread topped with a mixture of softened butter, shredded Monterey Jack, mayonnaise, garlic, and green chiles, then broiled until golden-brown.
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23 / 26
Easy Chicken and Dumplings

This version of chicken and dumplings starts with a couple of smart shortcuts, without skimping on the rich, savory flavor and tender dumplings you expect.

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24 / 26
Beach Glass Jelly Squares

This vintage-inspired broken glass Jell-O recipe is guaranteed to be a classic dessert favorite!

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25 / 26
Chicken Kiev
If you’re a firm believer that garlic butter makes everything better, you’ve got to try chicken Kiev.
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26 / 26
Shrimp Cocktail for Dinner

The easiest, most luxurious hot-weather meal involves exactly zero cooking: Just open a bag of shrimp and swish up a quick cocktail sauce.

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