25 Southern Sunday Suppers the Whole Family Will Love
Sundays in the South are sacred. Whether you're at church, in the garden, or swinging on the links, the last day of the week (or first, depending on how you look at it) is a time for restoration and preparation. And that includes the meals we eat. Indeed, the Southern Sunday dinner is still revered as one of the few opportunities a family (both immediate and extended) can gather to see one another and really slow down enough to enjoy a meal. Here, we've collected 25 Southern dinners, from classic favorites like country fried steak to newer trends like barbeque-topped totchos, so your family will never be without a delicious meal to look forward to.
Chicken Pot Pie
If comfort food is what you're seeking for this Sunday dinner, chicken pot pie is the recipe to pick. This one is made in a pie dish (versus single-serving options made in muffin pans or custard cups), and you'll be boiling your chicken before making the pie filling. But to keep things more simple, this recipe uses a pre-made pie crust. You can be as creative as you want with any cut-outs.
Blackened Catfish and Spicy Rice
This 30-minute dinner is great for a weeknight, but on the weekends, you can really put out a tremendous spread when you don't have to spend all day cooking the main dish. Focus instead on the sides, and let the powerful seasoning on these catfish fillets make quick work of flavoring the fish before it's cooked.
King Ranch Chicken Casserole
Deep in the heart of Texas (and all throughout the South, for that matter), Sunday dinners are made for casseroles like this King Ranch-inspired one. A few reviewers suggest using pepperjack cheese in place of basic Cheddar for an extra kick.
Cajun Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
It doesn't have to be Mardi Gras for gumbo. Indeed, this thick and rich stew is served year-round, with alternating proteins based on seasonality. If you like a little extra heat, pick andouille sausage; smoked sausage is a milder heat but no less flavor.
Momma's Best Chicken and Dumplings
You know your momma's chicken and dumplings are really the best, but if your mother didn't make this comforting dish, you can use MA McBridges' recipe. They write, "There's a lot of love in those dumplings! This is comfort food at its best and so worth the time and effort. I love the ohhs, awws, and OMGs, smiles, and sighs of total satisfaction that come with this bowl of heaven."
Easiest Pot Roast Ever
You'll think you're in New Orleans with this recipe for grillades and grits. Traditionally served in Louisiana and the Crescent City, this style of dish is like a pot roast or slow-cooked stew, but much juicer. It's typically served at brunch, but there are no rules when it comes to Southern Sunday dinners.
Amazing Fried Pork Chops
The sprinkle of Parmesan cheese on these fried pork chops may cause a few raised eyebrows, but recipe contributor Cherry 87 says, "I'm telling you it's something about the Parmesan cheese that gets my family, especially my picky-eating husband, begging for me to make these!" So don't skip it, unless you just can't get the cheese by your Sunday dinner guests.
Chef John's Minestrone Soup
It might be an Italian soup, but the ingredient list feels straight from south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Everything here plays an important role, from the Swiss chard (you can use kale) to the pancetta (you can use bacon). Cranberry beans might be easier to find in the South, but if you can't get your hands on any, cannellini beans will work. Just make sure you have some crusty bread to sop up the last bits of soup in your bowl.
Southern Grilled Barbecued Ribs
These ribs have a two-step cooking process, which is perfect for a weekend dinner. Though the recipe calls for baby back ribs, recipe contributor MYSST says spare ribs will work, too. Just cook for less time.
Deep South Fried Chicken
Recipe contributor Marilyn says her Southern fried chicken is more than a century old, so if it has made its rounds for that long, you know this chicken recipe deserves a place in your Sunday dinner rotation. "Super easy! Tasted amazing. Chicken had a crunch on the outside but was still soft in the middle. I added a bit of chili powder to the flower mixture as well for a little spice," writes reviewer and Allrecipes cook Abigail Kordsiemon.
Memphis BBQ Pork Totchos
Invite a little fun to the Sunday dinner table with these loaded totchos (that's Tater Tots that act like the tortilla chips in nachos). These potato bites are loaded up with pulled pork, barbeque sauce, pickled jalapeño slices, and coleslaw. You can make your own pulled pork, of course, but don't be shy about stopping by your favorite BBQ joint and grabbing a pint.
Old Charleston Style Shrimp and Grits
Shrimp and grits, like grillades, is served as a brunch dish in many Southern restaurants, but no one will stop you if you make this for dinner. In fact, you may prefer it for dinner so you can let the shrimp really mingle with all the flavors.
The Best Chicken Fried Steak
Chicken fried steak and white gravy, two things every Southern cook knows how to cook — or at least a dish every cook wishes they did. This dish is on every diner menu, and all the meat-and-three places, too. For Sunday dinner, it's a great pick because you'll have time to clean — and time to make all the fabulous Southern sides that you'll want with this dish. Collard greens, anyone?
Quick and Easy Tuna Casserole
"You will never use Tuna Helper again after trying this recipe! I thought it was actually easier than Tuna Helper and the end result was fantastic," writes reviewer Homestead Grandma.
Zucchini Corn Fritters
Technically a side dish, fritters are the South's best savory pancake experience. Serve with a creamy mayo dipping sauce or a comeback sauce all your own. Make this a full meal with a plate full of vegetable side dishes, which some would argue is the best kind of Sunday supper (and the best thing to order at a meat-and-three, too).
Ground Beef and Cabbage
"My mother used to serve this with corn on the cob and cornbread. Very inexpensive and very good as well. Enjoy an Ozark memory," writes recipe contributor mtgraham2.
Slow Cooker Carolina BBQ
Bring out the slow cooker. This Sunday dinner could feed you for a week (which is a great way to meal prep). This dish takes 12 hours, and every minute is worth it, so get it going when you wake up.
Roast Chicken with Skillet Stuffing
Break out the cast iron. This Sunday dinner is going to use the heat-retaining pan to roast a chicken and turn sliced French bread into a company-worthy stuffing in just about two hours. "This was very good as written. I was concerned that the thyme and red pepper flakes would overwhelm the finished dish. That did not happen. There was a little heat but not much," writes Terry.
Creamy Chicken Bog With A Kick
This Low Country favorite is a cross between a casserole and a stew — a little stickier than a stew, a little looser than a casserole. But no matter how you classify it, this dish is on many dinner tables on Sunday afternoons and evenings. "My husband loved this dish and rated it a 10!! It was a little on the hot side for me but this dish really does need some heat," writes reviewer Joan. Bonus: it's a one-dish meal, so clean up is a breeze.
Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta
You'll be surprised that such simple ingredients can be so satisfying and special. Most of the ingredients are probably in regular rotation in your fridge anyway. Just make sure you have Cajun seasoning on hand to tie them all together.
"I have been making a similar recipe to this for years and it has always been a winner. Extremely quick and easy and oh so tender! The veggies make their own gravy which is always a plus for our household - very yummy," writes reviewer Laura Hudson Grant.
What makes this meatloaf different from all other states' meatloaves? That's unclear. But the brown sugar-ketchup glaze might be a start. Reviewers suggest you can use a ratio of ground meats you prefer (the original recipe has ground beef, pork, and veal).
Cajun Crab Cakes
If you're going to splurge on crabmeat, you better know the recipe is good. Otherwise, you'll be left sad — and with subpar crab cakes. This recipe from Tracy promises big flavor while still respecting the delicate sweetness of the crab. And don't skip the dipping sauce!
Oven Barbecued Beef Brisket
This brisket recipe uses cola, dry onion soup mix, and a bottle of chile sauce for an easy if not unconventional sauce. It can cook in the oven or slow cooker, which leave either of those appliances available for cooking sides.