Mother’s Day is upon us, and now that you’re finishing up with finals and heading home, it’s the perfect time to wow your mom with the oh-so-impressive cooking skills you’ve developed at school. Now that you’re (sort of) an adult, Mom isn’t going to pretend to appreciate that folded construction paper card that worked wonders when you were five.

Try showing your mother how much you love her all day long by preparing a homemade meal, whether it be breakfast, brunch, dinner or dessert.


1. Dutch Babies


Photo by Nur Eken

Imagine a tall, steaming stack of pancakes smothered with butter and drizzled with maple syrup, perhaps garnished with a dusting of powdered sugar and a few fresh berries. Now imagine those pancakes, but ten times classier and just as easy to make, and you get the Dutch baby. (Even more appropriate if your mom, like mine, is fond of reminding you that you’ll always be her little baby.)

2. Churro Waffles


Photo by Phoebe Melnick

I know Cinco de Mayo has passed, but there’s never a wrong time to devour anything that even remotely resembles a churro. Whip these up for Mom and try not to stuff all of them in your face before one makes it to her plate.

3. Cinnamon Rolls


Photo by Gabby Scelzo

These would be an ideal component of breakfast in bed. Warm, pre-sliced, easy to eat with your hands and totally luxurious—you’ll find it hard to resist taking the pan up to your room and crawling back under the sheets yourself. Sorry Mom.

4. Baked Grapefruit


Photo by Jocelyn Hsu

Start off the day right with a little springtime citrus. Your heart, your immune system, and your metabolism will thank you. As will your mom, obviously.


5. Balsamic-Braised Bacon Brussels Sprouts with Fried Egg


Say that five times fast. But seriously, you’ll want to eat five servings of this insanely savory, flavorful dish. Your mother definitely won’t have to cajole, bribe or force you into eating these Brussels sprouts.

6. Ham and Egg in a Nest


Photo by Lily Chin

This brunch item looks like a gift you would have drawn with crayons as a kindergartener and then watched while she proudly hung it on the refrigerator with the letter magnets that spelled your name. The cutout is also easily customizable—use whatever shape cookie cutter best shares the love.

7. Nutella Strawberry French Toast Twists


Photo by Kassie McIntyre

Like most self-respecting college students, you are probably living with a crippling addiction to Nutella. Why not bring that home and spread the love? This deceptively fancy-looking French toast can be in your hot little hands in just fifteen minutes.

8. French Toast Doughnuts


Photo by Sharon Cho

Alternatively, instead of stuffing your French toast with Nutella and strawberries, you could fry it and make a doughnut out of it. I know the Cronut has been the talk of the town, but this Spanish hybrid treat is really where it’s at.

9. Egg, Bacon, Cheese and Avocado Brunch Ring

Impress your mom with the totally legit cooking skills you’ve picked up at college and surprise her with this fancy brunch ring. See, you know how to make more than ramen and Easy Mac. You swear.


10. Tomato-Zucchini Crostata


Photo by Hannah Lin

A seriously suave and springy version of pizza. This is perfect for a low-key lunch together.

11. French Tomato Tarte


Photo by Gaby Mas

Pretend you and your mom are relaxing al fresco at a fancy bistro with this simple tart and a bottle of wine. Sophisticated, yet straightforward and scrumptious.


12. Sausage Artichoke Penne


Photo by Emma Danbury

Upgrade the boring pasta you’ve been making away at school for this more flavorful option with Mom. Sausage packs the protein, artichoke ups the fanciness factor, and the fact that you’re eating it together makes it even more special.

13. Pulled Chicken Barbecue Sandwiches


Photo by Sarah Silbiger

Now that spring is finally in the air, it’s time to return to the smoky, savory flavors of barbecue. There’s no better way to tell someone you love them than by handing them a hot, fresh sandwich piled with steaming, saucy meat and saying, “I made this for you.”

14. Steak Dinner


Photo by Daniel Schuleman

If you really want to go all out and show your mother how much you care, try preparing one of these easy steak dinners—they look a lot more difficult than they really are, but they’re just as classy and tasty as they sound, and Mom will appreciate the luxe yet relaxed feel of this meal.


15. Cherry Berry Pie


Photo by Kristin Brennan

This one-hour pie practically screams spring. It’s colorful, fruity, tart and sweet, and cutting your mom the first slice will be the perfect way to end the day.

16. Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars


Photo by Rachel Conners

With only five ingredients, these will be pretty easy to whip up and present to your mother. These sweet little bites would make a good present if not the last course of a meal—they’d be easy to freeze and candy is always a solid gift choice.

17. Molten Chocolate Cake


Photo by Emma Nosseir

You could also go for a classic chocolate cake: warm, gooey and sweet, just like your love for your mother. (Actually, I’m not sure how gooey the relationship you have with your mom is. Either way, she’ll totally fall for this rich chocolate cake.)

Away from home this Mother’s Day? Check these out for some gift ideas: