fbpx vie magazine subscribe button

Brunch for the Holidays

Let’s Get Together

Recipes courtesy of Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan | Photography by Susan Barnson Hayward

No matter how you plan to get together with family and friends this holiday season, Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan’s new cookbook says celebrate with brunch!

The holidays are a time of year when family and friends get together, usually over a prepared meal. This year, holiday celebrations may look totally different, but we can still sit down to a delicious brunch, be it brunch à deux, a brunch buffet with immediate family, or a group of friends hanging out on the patio via Zoom eating frittatas and drinking Bellinis. Still, one thing is clear—brunch is here to stay.

In Let’s Brunch: 100 Recipes for the Best Meal of the Week, Chef Belinda brings all these flavors and feelings together and lends a little Southern hospitality to your holiday brunch menu with delicious, flavor-packed recipes for breakfast and brunch, including front porch–worthy libations.

“Brunch is a meal designed for leisure and good times spent with family and friends,” says Chef Belinda, who is also the author of Just Peachy, a food writer, a spice blends entrepreneur, and a commercially rated pilot. She is an active member of the Southern Foodways Alliance, the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the American Culinary Federation, and Les Dames d’Escoffier. “In my opinion, brunch is the most creative meal because there are no rules— menus can range from a full array of breakfast items to steak and potatoes and everything in between.”

Let’s Brunch provides full menu ideas focusing on starters, soups, salads, egg dishes, casseroles, meats, pastas, grits, sandwiches, breads, jams and syrups, desserts, and brunch cocktails. Some of the book’s recipes include Ramp Buttermilk Biscuits, Panettone Grand Marnier French Toast, Croque Madame, Smoked Salmon Blinis, Spinach and Goat Cheese Eggs Florentine, Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Scallops, Southern-Style Succotash, Blackened Catfish on Herb Grits, Red Velvet and Pecan Waffles with Fried Chicken, Black Walnut–Cardamom Pound Cake, Rum–Chocolate Chip Pecan Pie, Mint Julep, and Chef Belinda’s Creole Mary.

This year, as you plan your holidays, make room for brunch. Let’s Brunch is the perfect cookbook to lift the spirit and delight the taste buds. Brunch just might become the new dinner party!

— V —

Recipes and photos reprinted from Let’s Brunch by Belinda Smith-Sullivan with permission from the publisher. Photography by Susan Barnson Hayward. ® Gibbs Smith, September 2020

Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan, Let’s Brunch: 100 Recipes for the Best Meal of the Week

Grapefruit, Champagne, and Vodka Spritz

Yield: 1 cocktail

Nothing says brunch like a breezy cocktail to accompany your meal! A spritz is a cocktail made with champagne or prosecco, a bitter liqueur, and soda water. Aperol is an Italian bitter aperitif, though sweeter and fruitier than its elder sibling, Campari. Aperol gets its name from the Italian slang word apero, which means aperitif.


1 ounce Aperol
4 ounces champagne
1 1/2 ounces grapefruit juice
1⁄2 ounce vodka
Club soda
1⁄2 grapefruit wheel, for garnish


Pour Aperol, champagne, grapefruit juice, and vodka into a tall glass. Add ice and a splash of club soda. Stir gently and garnish with grapefruit wheel. Holiday cheers!

Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan, Let’s Brunch: 100 Recipes for the Best Meal of the Week

Breakfast Macaroni and Cheese

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Mac and cheese is an “anytime of the day” meal or treat, but served for breakfast or brunch on the same plate next to eggs, biscuits, and gravy elevates this beloved side dish to center plate.


1 pound cavatappi or elbow macaroni
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
4 cups whole milk
1 large clove garlic, smashed
1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1⁄2 onion, studded with 1 whole clove
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 pound thick-sliced bacon, cut crosswise into 1⁄2-inch pieces
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and small diced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Kosher salt, to taste
White pepper, to taste
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
3 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
3 cups grated aged Gouda cheese
1 tablespoon chopped basil, divided
1⁄2 cup Parmesan cheese
1⁄4 cup bread crumbs


Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large pot of salted water, cook pasta until al dente, 5–7 minutes. Drain and toss with 2 tablespoons butter. Set aside.

In a large saucepan, add milk, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, onion with clove, and mustard. Warm over medium-low heat until the milk starts to steam, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, set aside, and let the flavors infuse.

To a medium skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel–lined plate. Sauté jalapeño and bell pepper until soft. Remove and transfer to another paper towel–lined plate.

Strain the milk, discarding the solids. To a 10-inch ovenproof skillet over medium heat, add remaining butter and flour. Whisk for 3–4 minutes. Do not let brown.

Whisk the milk into the roux to avoid lumps. Continue to cook, whisking constantly, until thickened, 3–4 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt, white pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cheddar and Gouda and stir until melted, then add the cooked pasta, peppers, half of the bacon, and half of the basil, stirring to combine thoroughly. You can bake this in the skillet or transfer the mixture to a casserole dish.

In a small bowl, combine Parmesan, bread crumbs, and remaining basil, and sprinkle over the top along with remaining bacon. Bake for 25–30 minutes until golden brown and bubbly. Let rest 15 minutes before serving.

Read Responsibly

VIE Magazine - The Art & Design Issue November 2021
VIE Magazine January 2021 Special Commemorative Edition
VIE Magazine September 2020 Wanderlust Issue, Fancy Camps, The Idea Boutique
VIE Magazine August 2020 Art & Culture Issue, Nathan Alan Yoakum Art
VIE Magazine - Architecture & Design Issue - July 2020
VIE Magazine - Decor and Home Issue - June 2020
VIE Magazine May 2020 Entertainment Issue, Leslie Odom Jr
VIE Magazine - April 2020 Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine March 2020 The Fashion Edit, VONDOM, Alys Beach Fl, Digital Graffiti, Tres Chic, isidro dunbar Modern Interiors, Digital Graffiti Festival
VIE Magazine February 2020 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Travel Issue - January 2020 - Tanzania Safari Cover
VIE Magazine - Women's Issue - December 2019 - Tina Brown Cover
VIE NOV19 Goodness Issue
VIE Magazine, September 2019 Art & Culture Issue, Paul Hanninen
VIE Magazine - August 2019 - The Architecture and Design Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2019 - The Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - June 2019 - Fashion Edit
VIE Magazine - May 2019 - Culinary Issue
VIE Magazine - April 2019 - The Health & Wellness Issue
VIE Magazine - Special Entertainment Edition - March 2019
VIE Magazine February 2019 Luxury Homes & Technology Issue with Robbie Antonio of Revolution Precrafted
VIE Magazine - January 2019 - Southern Sophisticate Issue Cover
VIE Magazine - Special Anniversary Travel Edition - December 2018
VIE Magazine - The Goodness Issue - November 2018
VIE Magazine - The Art & Culture Issue - October 2018
VIE Magazine - Home & Garden Issue - September 2018
VIE Magazine - August 2018 Animal Issue
VIE Magazine - July 2018 Architecture & Design Issue - Subscribe to the magazine!
VIE Magazine - June 2018 Travel & Tech Issue
VIE Magazine - May 2018 Couture Issue
VIE Magazine - The Culinary Issue - April 2018 Cover - Chef James Briscione and Brooke Parkhurst
VIE Magazine - The Entertainers Issue - March 2018
VIE Magazine - February 2018 Destination Travel Issue
VIE Magazine - January 2018 Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine, The Sophisticate Issue, December 2017
VIE Magazine - November 2017 Art & Culture Issue
VIE Magazine - October 2017 Home & Garden Issue
VIE Magazine | September 2017 | The Stories and Storytellers Issue
VIE Magazine - The Adventure Issue - August 2017
VIE Magazine - July 2017 - Art & Artist Issue
VIE Magazine - The Voyager Issue - June 2017
VIE magazine 2017 March-April Cover South Walton Fashion Week
VIE Magazine - January/February 2017 - The Health & Beauty Issue
VIE Magazine - Nov/Dec 2016 The Sophisticate Issue
christian siriano vie magazine september october 2016 vie magazine
the modern minimalist issue
the culinary and couture issue march april 2016 vie magazine
the voyager issue alys beach vie magazine january february 2016
cultural issue vie magazine november december 2015
home and garden issue vie magazine september october 2015
the art and style issue vie magazine july august 2015
the wedding issue 2015 May June vie magazine
the food and fashion issue vie magazine march april 2015
the travel issue vie magazine january february 2015
the music issue vie magazine 2014 november december
The Animal Issue vie magazine september october 2014
the home and garden issue vie magazine july august 2014
the wedding issue vie magazine may june 2014
emeril lagasse food and fashion vie magazine
the men's issue january february 2014
the music issue november december 2013 vie magazine
the home and garden issue 2013 october september
the wedding issue vie magazine july august 2013
the artist issue may june 2013 vie magazine
the food and fashion issue march april 2013
the men's issue january february 2013 vie magazine
The Holiday Issue
the love issue july august 2012
the all american summer may june 2012
the entertainment issue march april 2012
the fashion issue vie magazine winter 2011
the home and garden issue vie magazine fall 2011
the anniversary edition vie magazine summer 2011
the wedding issue vie magazine spring 2011
vie magazine the holiday issue 2010 Dec
vintage swimsuits vie magazine 2010 Fall
judith march designer vie magazine summer 2010
wedding giveaway vie magazine spring 2010
holiday gift guide vie magazine winter 2009
emarketing explosion vie magazine fall 2009
tribute to mother's day vie magazine summer 2009
james and robert redford vie magazine spring 2009
zz top vie magazine fall winter 2008
project dreams vie magazine new york fashion week
Sign-up for VIEmail

Sign up for VIEmail