39 Mother's Day Lunch Recipes To Celebrate Mama

We are sure Mama will love any of these ideas.

Fresh Salmon Cakes with Buttermilk Dressing
Photo: Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Missie Neville Crawford; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Celebrate all the moms in your life this Mother's Day with a homemade meal that she doesn't have to lift a finger to prepare. Let her sit back and enjoy the day as you get busy preparing any of these delicious yet relatively simple recipes.

Whether you prefer a one-dish recipe or want to make a complete lunch spread, we are sure Mama will love any of these Mother's Day lunch ideas. From fresh salads, like our Fresh Salmon Cakes with Buttermilk Dressing, to decadent dishes, like our Creamy Rice with Scallops, these spring favorites are bursting with color and flavor and are sure to be a hit. After you've indulged and pampered Mama with the best lunch in town, complete your celebration with a beautiful Mother's Day cake that is almost as sweet as she is. Nothing says "I Love You" more than a freshly prepared meal made with love.

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Egg Salad Sandwiches

Egg Salad Sandwiches
Jen Causey

If you'll have a large crowd gathering to celebrate Mother's Day, this big-batch recipe is perfect for the occasion. This egg salad recipe, making 44 finger sandwiches, can be assembled the day before your event and stored (covered) in the refrigerator. This relatively simple recipe will create a deviled egg-inspired salad flavored with dried salad seasoning, Dijon mustard, and sweet pickle relish.

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Ham Biscuits

Buttermilk Biscuits with Ham
Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Torie Cox; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

There's nothing more comforting than a fluffy buttermilk biscuit with ham. Make the biscuits up to two weeks in advance and freeze them. When ready to serve, bake the frozen biscuits for 12 to 14 minutes at 450°F.

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Tarragon Chicken Salad

Tarragon Chicken Salad
Jennifer Davick

This chicken salad recipe has it all. This recipe, filled with crunchy, zesty, and creamy flavors, uses fresh chopped tarragon as its secret ingredient. Toast the pecans before chopping them into this chicken salad for the best flavor.

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Slow-Cooker Pork Tacos with Fresh Tomato Salsa

Slow-Cooker Pork Tacos with Fresh Tomato Salsa
Greg Dupree

Fresh tomato salsa—made with tomato, red onion, lime juice, jalapeño, and salt—is sprinkled on top of these pork tacos. The best part about this recipe is your slow cooker does most of the work. Add the fresh herbs after removing the pork from the slow cooker to preserve their flavors.

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Cheese Puffs with Ham Salad

Cheese Puffs with Ham Salad
Alison Miksch; Prop Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Light and airy cheese puffs paired best with this tangy ham salad. Start with smoked, chopped ham and combine it with finely chopped scallions and flat-leaf parsley. Try seasoning with Creole mustard and cayenne pepper based on your heat preferences.

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Lemon-Rosemary-Garlic Chicken and Potatoes

Lemon-Rosemary-Garlic Chicken and Potatoes
Becky Luigart Stayner

This one-dish meal is flavorful and filling. Serve with crusty French bread to soak up the sauce. Citrusy lemon, rosemary, and garlic are a dynamic trio.

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Hot Chicken Salad

Hot Chicken Salad with Potato Chip Crust
Sheri Castle

Try this upgraded version of a classic Southern lunch recipe this Mother's Day. After combining the delicious chicken salad mixture, top it with water chestnuts, slivered almonds, and crisp potato chips. Fresh lemon juice adds the perfect touch of tart flavoring.

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Fresh Salmon Cakes with Buttermilk Dressing

Fresh Salmon Cakes with Buttermilk Dressing
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Missie Neville Crawford; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Ready in just 30 minutes, this meal is light and refreshing. Buttermilk dressing pairs just as well with a garden salad as it does with these salmon cakes. Try to find salmon from the fish's tail, which is thinner, contains a little more fat, and is generally more flavorful than fillets.

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Fried Chicken Sliders with Pimiento Cheese

Fried Chicken Sliders with Pimiento Cheese
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

We love fried chicken and pimiento cheese separately, so these sliders that put them together are a Southern dream. Add a creamy mayonnaise spread and grated sweet Vidalia onions, and this recipe will burst with flavor. Use the extra chicken mixture as a dip.

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Sheet Pan Chicken with Dressing

Sheet Pan Chicken with Dressing
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis; Food Styling: Tina Bell Stamos

Try a lighter version of this classic supper recipe. Sheet pan dinners are ideal when you don't feel like making a mess in the kitchen. Start baking the chicken, then add the vegetables for a simple, one-pan meal.

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Skillet Pot Pie with Chicken and Spring Vegetables

Skillet Pot Pie with Chicken and Spring Vegetables
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Lydia Pursell; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Frozen puff pastry sheets elevate the look of this classic dish. Save time on Mother's Day by chopping the vegetables and shredding the chicken up to two days in advance. Complete this dish by covering the chicken mixture with flaky, buttery pastry squares.

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Spaghetti Casserole

Spaghetti Casserole
Jennifer Davick

Your go-to pasta recipe transformed into a casserole. With only eight ingredients, this dish will be your new favorite way to make pasta. Plus, store-bought tomato sauce and canned tomatoes make this the ultimate time-saving recipe.

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Mama's Fried Chicken

Mama's Fried Chicken
Southern Living

Crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. You can't go wrong when deciding to make fried chicken for any event. Soak the chicken in buttermilk for at least two hours before frying for the best results.

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Cheesy Beef-and-Spinach Ravioli

Cheesy Beef-and-Spinach Ravioli
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Substitute ground turkey or chicken for the beef if Mama prefers. This comfort dish comes together and is ready to serve in about half an hour. Garnish with fresh basil.

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Strawberry-Spinach Salad

Strawberry-Spinach Salad with Sweet Vidalia Onion Dressing
Greg Dupree; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

There's nothing that feels more springy than a strawberry and spinach salad. Add in chopped pecans, crumbled blue cheese, and dressing, and you have a salad you'll want to serve at every family gathering. The key to this salad is using the freshest strawberries you can find.

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Heirloom Tomato Pie

Heirloom Tomato Pie Recipe
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

Roasting the tomatoes before the pie goes in the oven adds flavor and keeps them from getting soggy. Save time by roasting the tomatoes the day before and storing them in an airtight, refrigerated container. The Parmesan-Buttermilk crust is the perfect complement to this traditional Southern dish.

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Crab-and-Bacon Linguine

Crab-and-Bacon Linguine
Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Torie Cox

This seafood pasta is everything you want in a dish—elegant, easy, and delicious. This recipe feels fancy enough for a special occasion but is easy enough to make any day of the week. Buttery jumbo lump crab pairs perfectly with white wine, heavy cream, and bacon sauce.

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Sautéed Radishes with Bacon

Sauteed Radishes with Bacon
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch; Food Styling: Torie Cox

This simple but flavorful spring side dish will prove you can use radishes for more than crudité platters. Hickory bacon covers the radishes in a smoky, savory flavoring. Before serving, sprinkle a mixture of thyme and lemon juice.

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Sautéed Sugar Snap Peas with Orange Zest and Buttery Almonds

Sugar Snap Peas with Orange Zest and Buttery Almonds
Greg Dupree; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

Instead of old-school green bean casserole, serve this lightened-up, modern side this Mother's Day. A seasoned butter sauce covers the sugar snap peas instead of the traditionally thick soup-based sauce. Creole seasoning, almonds, and orange zest are the ideal complements.

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Orzo Salad with Shrimp and Lemon Dressing

Spring Shrimp-and-Orzo Salad with Lemon Dressing
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Chelsea Zimmer

This seasonal salad is delicious, served chilled or at room temperature, so it's perfect for hosting. Adjust the amount of asparagus, sugar snap peas, and English peas based on your preferences. A light lemon dressing tops this salad with bright and tangy flavors.

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Radish, Avocado, and Citrus Salad

Radish, Avocado, and Citrus Salad with Orange-Poppy Seed Dressing
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch; Food Styling: Torie Cox

If Mama appreciates a pretty table, impress her with this gorgeously colorful salad. Check your local farmer's market if you need help finding watermelon radishes because you might not find them at your supermarket. Pre-cut your oranges and grapefruits to save time.

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Chicken Spaghetti Casserole

Chicken-Spaghetti Casserole
Hector Sanchez

This casserole is easy to transport and easier to enjoy. Sure to be one of your new favorites, this casserole has all the classic Southern ingredients: chicken, butter, cheese, pasta, and a dash of hot sauce. Depending on your heat preferences, add more or less hot sauce.

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Chilled Radish-and-Avocado Soup

Chilled Radish-and-Avocado Soup
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Start your Mother's Day meal with a refreshing spring soup. It balances the peppery bite from radishes, hot sauce, and chile powder with creamy avocado, tangy buttermilk, and sweet honey. The best part about this recipe is you can prepare it a day in advance.

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Shrimp and Grits Casserole

Shrimp and Grits Casserole
Antonis Achilleo; Prop Styling: Christine Keely; Food Styling: Tina Bell Stamos

We turned Mama's favorite shrimp and grits into a one-dish casserole. This dish is as easy for you to make as it is to enjoy. On the side, serve the "shrimp gravy" or savory pan sauce.

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Easy Egg Salad

Easy Egg Salad
Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall

This go-to egg salad recipe looks beautiful for Mother's Day on tea sandwiches. Start with well-seasoned hard-cooked eggs, and add your favorite mayonnaise. Avoid overworking the eggs.

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Shrimp Cobb Salad with Bacon Dressing

Shrimp Cobb Salad with Bacon Dressing
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Missie Neville Crawford; Food Styling: Torie Cox

This colorful twist on a classic Cobb feels indulgent when drizzled with bacon dressing. Substitute chicken or ham for the shrimp or feta for the blue cheese, depending on your preferences. This fresh and nutritious recipe will be a crowd favorite.

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Ham and Noodle Casserole

Ham and Noodle Casserole
Jen Causey

Hosting is easy when lunch is ready to go from the freezer with a family-friendly casserole recipe. The secret ingredient to this casserole is the chive-and-onion flavored cream cheese. Make one for Mother's Day and freeze a second for a later date.

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Asparagus Quiche

Asparagus Quiche
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Christine Keely; Food Styling: Tina Bell Stamos

Mama will be so impressed with your braided crust on this easy and fresh quiche recipe. Save time with store-bought pie crust. Spring vegetables and Gouda cheese are a dynamic duo.

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Creamy Rice with Scallops

Creamy Rice with Scallops
Photo: Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Missie Neville Crawford; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Balance sweet corn with smoky bacon in this creamy seafood special. Combine these ingredients with Arborio rice and sea scallops for a simple dish. Remember to pat the scallops dry with a paper towel before adding them to the pan.

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Shrimp-Okra-and-Sausage Kebabs

Shrimp-Okra-and-Sausage Kebabs
Antonis Achilleos; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro Levine; Food Styling: Tina Stamos

Cook these kebabs in mere minutes. The key to correctly cooking these is letting the grill get hot before adding the kebabs. Smaller okra pods tend to work better for this recipe.

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Grilled Shrimp Po'Boys with Quick Rémoulade Sauce

Grilled Shrimp Po'Boys with Quick Rémoulade Sauce Recipe
Max Kelly

A fun twist on a Louisiana classic, our Po'Boys are made with grilled shrimp on a bed of creamy-dressed romaine lettuce stuffed inside a hoagie roll and cooked on the grill. These flavor-filled sandwiches are ready in 15 minutes.

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Tangy Slow-Cooker Pork Shoulder

Tangy Slow-Cooker Pork Shoulder
Hector Manuel Sanchez

For a laid-back Mother's Day backyard barbecue, serve this slow-cooked pork shoulder with potato salad, baked beans, and plenty of extra sauce. This recipe gets unique sweet and tangy flavoring from the soy sauce, vinegar, and brown sugar sauce. This pork is great served on a bun or on its own.

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Roasted Chicken Caesar Salad

Roasted Chicken Caesar Salad
Becky Luigart Stayner

Elevate Caesar salad by roasting the lettuce to caramelize it for extra flavor. Mix in fresh herbs to make your store-bought dressing taste homemade. Try arranging salad toppings, like Parmesan cheese, black pepper, parsley, and croutons, in side dishes so guests can help themselves.

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Shrimp and Peas with Farfalle

Shrimp and Peas with Farfalle
Alison Miksch

Lemony breadcrumbs are an easy upgrade to add some extra crunch. In 30 minutes, you can have homemade pasta with a restaurant-quality taste. Top with remaining panko, parsley, black pepper, and lemon zest.

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Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions

Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Onions
Becky Luigart Stayner

This hearty dish comes with a side and a sauce all in one. Browning the chops will give the pan sauce a deep, mustardy flavor. Substitute your favorite apple variety, but this recipe works well with Granny Smiths.

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King Ranch Chicken Casserole

This comforting casserole is ideal for using leftover cooked chicken (or Thanksgiving turkey) or a large, shredded rotisserie chicken. The recipe also calls for canned tomatoes with diced green chiles, which adds a good amount of tanginess and heat to balance out this rich and creamy dish.

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Chicken-and-Wild Rice Casserole

Chicken-and-Wild Rice Casserole
Becky Luigart-Stayner

Up to one month before your event, prepare this casserole and keep it frozen. Chicken and rice pair perfectly in this dish. Sliced toasted almonds add a sophisticated quality to this comfort dish.

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Creamy Spring Pasta Bake

Green Bean Potato Salad with Lemon-Soy Vinaigrette (Wade's Potato Salad)

Make this fan-favorite pasta ahead for a no-fuss Mother's Day lunch. This cheesy baked pasta, topped with crispy breadcrumbs, will convince even picky eaters to love kale. Pre-chopped kale and pre-shredded cheese save time.

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Pasta Shells with Spring Vegetables

Pasta Shells with Spring Vegetables
Alison Miksch

This fresh dish gives you plenty of veggies while satisfying your pasta cravings, too. Top with pea tendrils (the tender tips of pea vines) for an unexpected garnish. This dish is the perfect combination of pasta, cheese, and vegetables.

Want to make the best Mother's Day brunch? These 45 Mother's Day Brunch Recipes Mama Will Love have you covered.

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