We love it when family gets together! Whether it’s a casual Sunday get-together or the annual family reunion, these occasions are a great time to see old faces, reminisce and reconnect – usually over food.

It’s not unusual for everyone to chip in a dish for these events. Crock pot delights, casseroles and large salads are king of reunion food, but anything will do as long as it hits certain criteria. Dishes have to be hearty, simple to make, good for feeding large crowds and are packed with flavors everyone will love.

So, you have just such an event on the horizon and you’re on the hook for cooking? Don’t sweat it! We rounded up some down-home recipes that not only hit all the right notes, but will be a hit at your next get-together. Some are sides, some are main courses. But every one is delicious. Just be sure you use Randall Beans when you are fixing them for yourself!

Spicy Mexican Pasta Salad for a Crowd

Who doesn’t love a good pasta salad, especially when it has beans in it? This dish from Mother Rimmy’s Recipes is bright, yummy and impossibly fresh. Don’t let the longer list of ingredients fool or intimidate you, after a few minutes of chopping you’ll be good to go. We love this recipe because it is perfectly balanced. There is lemon, lime and orange juices for acidity. Bell peppers and onion for crunchy. Avocado, black beans and cheese for smooth and rich flavor and texture. And don’t worry about seconds, this recipe should make up to 16 servings.

Bean Jambalaya

This one is one of Randall Beans’ own and it is one of our go-to’s for pleasing a crowd. Jambalaya is a Creole favorite dish that is loaded with superb flavors, spices and textures. Traditional jambalaya is a delicious mixture of meat, vegetables, stock and rice. It mixes “the trinity” which consists of 50% onions, 25% celery and 25% green or red bell pepper into the rice dish. If you stick to these basic principals, jambalaya is a real blank canvas and allows for a lot of trying new things. This recipe in particular should work for all comers as it uses ham and beans instead of seafood (which may not sit well with pickier eaters) and should feed enough for 8-10 servings. 

Tater Taco Casserole

Tater tot. Taco. Casserole. We sort of feel like we don’t need to say anything else, honestly. But, indulge us for a minute while we give you the skinny on this recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything. Hearty and big enough for around 8 servings, this genius casserole is easy as can be. Start off by browning up some beef with your favorite taco seasonings, mix it with corn, black beans and onion. Fill the bottom of a casserole dish and top it off with some slightly cooked tater tots, enchilada sauce and cheese and let it cook. This recipe is extremely kids friendly! There is no way you’ll do with just one serving.

Smoky Baked Beans

Whether eaten in the backyard or around a kitchen table, baked beans are one of our favorite dishes. This crock pot sensation from Taste of Home uses 4 different kinds of beans: navy beans, kidney beans, black beans and butter beans (although we suggest using out great northern beans instead). It also incorporates spicy pork sausage to give it some additional flavor and kick. What’s great about this dish aside from the fact that it serves around 16 people is that it is one of those ‘set it and forget it’ recipes. After you brown the sausage, toss it all in a crock pot for a couple hours and enjoy.

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