Sailing Through Christmas: Getting Organized Guide Part 4 (Just Bring a Sidedish!)

Many casseroles can be prepared ahead and frozen.

If you long to sail through Christmas, this series of articles about getting organized can help. In the last article, we talked about saying no and limiting the number of events you attend. Now, let’s talk about what happens when you are going to an event and you’re asked to bring a sidedish.

Call it “Type A”, “anal”, “over eager”, “kiss up”, “hyper” or whatever you want, many people go overboard when asked to bring a dish. Are you the type who brings at least three dishes, because you never feel the first one is good enough? Perhaps you spend hours upon hours cooking and preparing cheese balls, desserts and homemade bread.

Well, stop that! Most people don’t pay that much attention to who brought what and you were just asked to bring a single dish, not a mountain of food to feed an army. You will save yourself much frustration and a ton of time if you follow just this one simple rule.

In addition, you can find dishes that can be prepared in advance of the holidays, frozen and them simply unthawed and heated for the big event. Many casseroles are perfect for this type of advanced cooking as are appetizers. You’ll find a lot of different freezable recipes with a simple Google search, so I’m not going to go into those here, but suffice it to say that anything that is a finger food is almost always a big hit at a holiday party. I do have one last minute recipe I want to share with you that you can make in a pinch.



  • Flour tortillas (burrito size is best)
  • Cream cheese (use light if you’re on a diet)
  • Deli ham (the thinner sliced the better)
  • Ranch dressing (dry or wet is fine)


  • Mix the ranch dressing and the cream cheese together thoroughly. You can add seasonings to this, if you’d like. Some people like a little parmesan, some Italian herbs, parsley or whatever else suits your fancy. A few tiny dices of a red onion (uncooked) can be tasty as can green onion slices (scallions).
  • Spread the cream cheese mixture onto the tortilla until is serves as a thin layer all the way across. Leave about 1/4 of an inch around the sides unspread.
  • Layer slices of ham on top of the cream cheese.
  • Now, roll up the tortillas into a tight roll and secure with toothpicks.
  • Create several of these, depending upon how many pinwheels you want.
  • Cover and refrigerate if you have time.
  • Slice the rolls across about 1 inch thick each and lay down on plate so that you have a little circle.

This is also far less expensive that buying premade pinwheels. You can make these ahead of time, wrap tightly and freeze. When you need them for a party, simply lay them out in a single layer on a plate or platter and head to the party. They will unthaw on the way and be perfect by the time you get there.

Happy cooking and partying!



Crabby Housewife

AuthorCrabby Housewife

Lori is a full-time housewife and writer, living in the Midwest with her husband of 27 years - they have two daughters. They have a house full of pets and her house is never quite perfect.