While I'm doing our holiday food shopping, I always pick up a few specific items for us to eat on New Years Day. I've had the same meal on January 1 for as long as I can remember. And this tradition has carried on well into adulthood because it's so tasty!

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So my holiday food shopping list always includes a can of black-eyed peas, bacon, a bag of coleslaw and corn bread. If you didn't grow up in the American south, you're probably confused by this list of ingredients. But these are a variation of a longstanding southern tradition, which my family carried on with their own variations. Either way, this delicious ritual is supposed to usher in luck for the new year!

According to the Farmer's Almanac, these are the lucky foods for the new year:

  • Greens - Including collards, mustard or turnip greens, cabbage, etc. - symbolize the green of money and will ensure you have a financially prosperous New Year.
  • Black-eyed peas - Symbolize coins and point to monetary gain.
  • Cornbread - Yellow, representing gold.
  • Pork/Ham/Bacon - Meant to bring "forward motion" or "advancement" in the year ahead.

So as long as you have these four items on your plate January 1, you're in for a lucky year!


Here's how I make our annual Lucky Lunch on New Years Day:

  1. I start off by prepping the corn bread. I use Jiffy Honey Cornbread as it adds a nice sweetness to the dish!
  2. Then I begin cutting up the bacon into little strips and frying them up in the cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  3. As the bacon's cooking, I'll empty the can of black-eyed peas into a pot over medium heat to warm them up.
  4. Once the bacon starts to brown, I'll remove it from the skillet and empty some of the excess grease into the grease jar.
  5. I'll then add the bag of coleslaw to the skillet. (You can use collards or a head of cabbage. My grandma used a bag of coleslaw and it's definitely the easiest option.)
  6. I'll add a pinch of salt and pepper to the coleslaw, along with a dash of white vinegar to add some acidity.
  7. Once the coleslaw is wilted a bit, I'll add back in the bacon.
  8. When the cornbread is done, you're ready to serve yourself a Lucky Lunch!

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