Before working at EMR in 2014, I had been a guest at the ranch three times as a child. Between being a guest and working in the kitchen, I can safely say I’ve tried every delicious meal at Elk Mountain. As the cook, one of my favorite jobs each week was the day I spent waitressing. It was then that I could see firsthand the wide eyes and expressions of delight when guests ate my food.

I’m a bit biased, but I truly believe Elk Mountain serves up the best food. I know how much time and effort goes into each meal, and how much care the wait staff puts into making it as pretty as possible. Although I know cooks aren’t supposed to have favorite meals, I definitely have a few. Here are the 10 foods Elk Mountain does best, in no particular order.

  1. Turkey DinnerIMG_9716

Elk Mountain’s turkey dinner is the best way to kick off your week of fun. After a short Sunday evening hike, guests get to tuck in to a full turkey dinner. Roast turkey, buttery egg noodles, gravy, and a slice of apple pie are just what the doctor ordered after a long day of traveling.

  1. Cowboy Cookies

These bad boys are as big as your face and should definitely be shared. Loaded with chocolate chips, oats, and other secret ingredients, you’ll wish you had another stomach to fit more cowboy cookies in. Be careful though; if you don’t eat your cookie fast enough, a hungry wrangler might steal it!

  1. Campfire Potatoescookout2

The brunch ride is really something special. After riding all morning, nothing beats scrambled eggs and potato hash cooked over an open campfire. And yes, we always make a bit extra so you can have seconds.

  1. Buttery Crescent Rolls

The crescent rolls at Elk Mountain are one of the most underrated menu items, in my opinion. They’re so simple to make, but knowing that they’ve been made from scratch makes them taste even better. In fact, all of the rolls served at dinner are homemade, so make sure you grab one at every meal.

  1. Cinnamon Rollsfood

If you’ve never had homemade cinnamon rolls, you’re in luck. On the rare occasion that we had leftover rolls, I’d put them on top of the oven to keep them warm. Having eaten more than my fair share of the leftovers, I can promise you that they taste even better than they smell.

  1. Homemade Applesauce

Another underrated item at the ranch is our homemade applesauce. It complements the pork tenderloin perfectly and is the perfect side. Since leaving the ranch, I’ve made Elk Mountain’s applesauce every fall during apple season, and I make sure to have a big tub of it to snack on throughout the winter.

  1. Breakfast Burritos with Pork Green Chilidude ranch dining

Breakfast burritos loaded with eggs, cheese, and potatoes and topped with spicy homemade pork green chili is one of life’s simple pleasures. I always kept my fingers crossed that there’d be leftover chili so I could hide it in the fridge to eat for lunch later. Unfortunately, guests know how good this chili is and rarely left any leftovers.

  1. Cookies + Creme Ice Cream

I kid you not, we had to hide this ice cream in the freezer by Tom and Sue’s house to keep the staff from eating it throughout the week. It is ridiculously good, so make sure you get a scoop before square dancing!

  1. Brandied French ToastIMG_6666

This French toast is made extra special by the splash of brandy and almond extract in the batter. It tastes like it’s been candied, without it being too sweet. It’s the perfect way to start your morning, so don’t hesitate to grab a second slice!

  1. Baked Brisket

I’ll never forget Elk Mountain’s baked brisket. First, because I burned it two weeks in a row (oops!). And second, because it’s so good that I still make it for Thanksgiving every year. The brisket juices are perfect when poured over a buttered baked potato. This is yet another dish we never had leftovers of—it’s just that good.

Elk Mountain’s meals are some of the best around, and I encourage you to sample a bit of everything. Also feel free to pop your head into the kitchen throughout the week to see what the cook is up to. We’re always more than happy to share our cooking secrets!mt

If you want to keep up with Claire, head over to her travel blog, Tall Girl Big World.