The High Holidays mean meals, and meals need to have food! For any and all inspiration on what to cook this Rosh Hashanah, we have compiled a list of the most delicious and elegant mains to grace your table. No need to wrack your brain any longer; our choices span the spectrum for all flavors and palates. You will enjoy, your guests will enjoy, and with all the heavenly aromas wafting in your kitchen, your neighbors might enjoy, too. Happy cooking!
1. Roasted Chicken with Cabbage, Leek, and Fennel by Menachem Goodman
This chicken may sound scary, but it’s so good. The leek and cabbage not only make a perfect side dish, but are also included in the simanim.
2. Pomegranate-Glazed Tongue over Couscous by Faigy Grossmann
I like to incorporate the symbolic foods throughout my Rosh Hashanah meal. I’ve heard of people with fish allergies using a tongue to represent “shenihiyeh l’rosh,” so this tongue together with the pomegranate seemed like a perfect combo. My go-to tongue recipes usually call for a heavy, sweet sauce. I enjoyed the lighter, more acidic flavor of the pomegranate juice here.
3. Za’atar Salmon with Pomegranate Gremolata by Sina Mizrahi
When my kids were little (not very long ago), the afternoons stretched out and I’d join them on the floor — building Lego towers and erecting forts. I miss that stage more than I wished for it to pass. (Take note, young mothers, it flies by.) Play time was all day, and when dinner hour came along, I turned to easy, minimal recipes. This za’atar fish is nothing more than sprinkling some spices before the fish gets a short roast. We would eat it straight from the pan, flaking pieces of fish with our forks, swooping it into our mouths, like they were jet planes. The gremolata is a beautiful, fruity topping that adds brightness and contrast. I save it for when I’m particular about presentation. More often than not, I skip it, because some (many?) days, simplicity wins.
4. Super-Savory Roast by Michal Frischman
I was looking for a relatively inexpensive cut of meat that would still be great at medium rare, and Reb Yehoshua of Gourmet Glatt suggested the California roast, which is a netted chuck-eye roast. Try to buy one with good marbling!
5. Red Wine Veal Roast by Chaia Frishman
We were zocheh to have Bubby Pauline Goldberg on this earth for over 101 years. As the family reminisced about her recently, her popular dishes came up in conversation: shepherd’s pie, brisket, and — my favorite — tomato sauce veal roast. This interpretation of her dish is my homage to a woman who defined cooking with love.
6. Simanim Stuffed Pargiot by Erin Grunstein
This beautiful fall dish incorporates many Rosh Hashana simanim into one show-stopping dish.
7. Chicken with Dates, Shallots, and Orange by Paula Shoyer
A really fantastic sweet chicken dish braised in orange juice and white wine with dates, shallots, and clementines. Tastes amazing!
8. Honey, Fig and Red Wine Ribs by Tammy Israel
9. Wine-Braised Cherry, Mushroom, and Shallot-Stuffed Veal Roast by Elizabeth Kurtz
Stuffed veal roast is special-occasion food to me. It’s dressy and elegant and looks so impressive sliced on a platter. This one has lots of contrast in color, texture and taste and has a sweet and rich taste that is pleasing to everyone.
10. Lamb Chops with Citrus and Sage by Kim Kushner
This recipe’s super-easy marinade comes together in minutes! Orange and sage make a fantastic combo, but an unexpected introduction of wine and honey elevates flavor to new heights. Sometimes I’ll throw the whole orange, unpeeled, into the food processor—it adds vibrant color and just the right amount of bitterness.
11. Apricot Balsamic Cornish Hens by Esther Deutsch
12. Sweet and Savory Cornish Hens by Charnie Kohn
We really don’t have to work too hard to make this Cornish Hen the star of the show. With a few staple spices and a quickly prepared glaze, we elevate the bird from incredible to overwhelmingly delicious. Enjoy.
13. Chicken Thighs with Roasted Fall Fruit by Jamie Geller
In this delicious perfect-for-fall chicken recipe, chicken thighs are pan-seared and then braised with apples and pears.
14. Apples & Honey Mustard Chicken by Danielle Renov
Check out our complete collection of Rosh Hashanah recipes for mains, sides, soups, desserts, and more inspiration for the holiday.
15. Pomegranate Mint Chicken by Erin Grunstein
This recipe is inspired by a chicken recipe in Susie Fishbein’s Kosher by Design.
16. Sephardic Roasted Lamb Shoulder (Coedero Al Horno) by Gil Marks
This dish is a Passover and Rosh Hashanah favorite in many Sephardic households, corresponding to the time when the largest supply of lamb is available.
The younger the animal, the more tender the meat and delicate the flavor. When choosing lamb, look for meat that is a lighter red than beef with a bright, pink color; a fine-grained texture; bright white fat; and soft pinkish bones. A darker color indicates a more mature animal. A whole shoulder of lamb weighs 4–6 pounds; a boned shoulder weighs about 30 percent less, 3–4 pounds. Since bone conducts heat, the cooking time for boned lamb is actually longer.
17. Oven-Baked Glazed Corned Beef by Renee Chernin
Many people are reluctant to make corned beef because it usually has to simmer on the stove top for several hours, heating up the house with a pungent aroma. Once I discovered the oven method, I find the preparation much easier to handle. This is my younger daughter’s favorite recipe of all. Perfect for any Yom Tov.
18. Pastrami-Topped Chicken by Esther Ottensoser
When I tasted this dish at my sister Leah’s house, I knew it would become a family favorite. The sauteed pastrami mixture is a great way to enhance a chicken cutlet dish.
19. Sweet and Tangy Spare Ribs by Renee Muller
A friend once called me, asking for a meat recipe. “It has to be amazingly good and incredibly easy,” she said. “I’m kidding,” she then added, but I knew she really wasn’t. And I had just the thing. Whenever I meet her husband, he makes sure to thank me, AGAIN, for “those awesome ribs.” Where does it say that great dishes have to be long, hard, and complicated?
20. Orange and Berry Glazed Duck with Roasted Vegetables in Honey Pomegranate Glaze by Draizy Wercberger
21. Glazed Salmon Purses with Figs by Dorit Teichman
There’s a reason there’s a run on salmon Erev Yom Tov. You can never tire of its subtle and refreshing mild flavor. Here, I show you how to elevate this prolific fish into a showstopper.
22. Apricot Pistachio Salmon by Guila Sandroussy
Sweet, easy, and flavorful, this is a delightful salmon for any holiday meal.
23. Rosh Hashanah Plov with Currants, Pomegranate, and Quince by Caroline Eden, Eleanor Ford
A festival in Central Asia demands a large gathering—and of course a large plov. This recipe is celebratory, studded with fruits and spices. For Bukharan Jews, the autumn festival of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) is a perfect occasion to use glorious quinces and pomegranate at the height of their season.
Plov should be eaten from one large dish placed on the table to share, each diner digging in their fork. It is said people form mutual love from a communal plate and the joy of eating plov.
24. Roasted Stuffed Bronzini by Mindy and Tuli Feferkorn
25. Gefilte Leek Patties with Beet Aioli by Molly Hagler
When I growing up, Manischewitz gefilte fish was always a part of our holiday meals. It brings back memories of the whole family sitting around my grandmother’s table. I decided to give a modern twist to this classic.