11 Winning Potluck Ideas For Nurses and Healthcare Workers

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Wow, another potluck? But more specifically, yes, a potluck for nurses, created by nurses.

I don’t know about your facility, but it seems like every other week someone is trying to coordinate a potluck for some reason or another. But hey, I’m not complaining. Okay, yes I am, but only when I have no idea what to bring.

It can seem tedious, but when the day does roll around, it is nice to have a fun lunch with your coworkers. Who can complain when someone shows up with warm and yummy food that they put thought and care into?

My goal with this list was that they would be recipes that are either easy to meal prep the night before, or heat up at work, but hopefully both.

Actually, seems like a good chance to mention that if you sometimes struggle with easy things to cook after a long shift, you can read our list of meal ideas right here.

So here is our list of easy recipes to bring to your next potluck for nurses that will make everyone’s day.

1. EASY FRITO PIE by One Happy Housewife

potluck ideas for nurses

This would easily be a fan favorite with your work peers. After a stressful shift, how can you go wrong with Fritos, chili, and cheese? Come on.

Looking over this recipe, you can easily heat this one up in a slow cooker when you get to work. If you are worried about the Fritos getting soggy, you can just skip the layering them in. Just heat up the chili recipe, with Rotel, in the slow cooker and just have everyone layer it in their own bowls when they are ready to serve themself.

2. Classic Macaroni Salad by Foodie Crush

I am always super stoked when someone brings macaroni salad to a potluck.

I can truly think of no easier recipe for a potluck for nurses. You can easily prep this the night before, and then right before serving, just stir in some mayo to freshen it back up. This is one of those dishes where there will be nothing left behind, but a clean serving bowl.

3. Rainbow Pasta Salad by Gypsyplate

potluck ideas for nurses

If you arent feeling the macaroni salad, here is a healthier and more vibrant pasta salad to share with your coworkers.

Your coworkers will be seriously impressed with this dish. Usually, a potluck for nurses is full of packaged convenience foods, which is fine, we’re busy healthcare heroes over here… However, it is always nice to have some real and nourishing fresh food on your break. So definitely give this one a try if you like to serve healthier dishes.

4. Pork and Beans by Seasons & Suppers

This recipe will make seriously make you hungry when you read it. This is a great recipe to meal prep the night before, and then bring it to work in the slow cooker and keep it on low until it’s time to eat.

The author gives you the option to cook it either in the oven, or slow cooker, but you really could do both. You could cook it in the oven the night before, and then keep it in the slow cooker in the break room at work.


Holy cow! If you have never had slow cooker cheesy potatoes are you in for a treat! This is a super simple recipe that will for sure be the biggest hit at your potluck for nurses. These come out so rich and delicious and are also so comforting during a tough shift. You will probably be expected to bring these every time there is a potluck though, so you’ve been warned.

6. Easy Ham & Cheddar Potluck Sandwiches by All She Cooks

potluck ideas for nurses

I used to work at a dialysis clinic that had a full kitchen. So if you are lucky enough to have access to an oven in your breakroom, these hot sandwiches would be a great idea to feed your coworkers. You can’t ever go wrong with a ham and cheese sandwich after all.

However, If you don’t have access to an oven, and/or are super short on time, you can just bring all the makings for people to build their own sandwiches. People love to do that too. Remember, it’s a potluck for nurses. We all know how busy we are.


Talk about keeping things so easy! Just bring your crockpot, and a few packs of hotdogs and cook them on low when you get to work. Bring the buns, ketchup, and mustard and people are going to be so happy. It would be really cool if someone else brought the chili and then people could make chili dogs. This is such an easy way to do a potluck, for nurses especially.


Here is another one you could make mostly ahead of time, and just heat it up when you get to work. I grew up eating tuna noodle casserole, and I bet so have many of your coworkers. This would be a great nostalgic potluck meal to share. It is also subjectively a healthier option. This would also be a great recipe to save for after long shifts.

9. A Make-Your-Own-Nachos Party Buffet by The Yummy Life

Here is a great idea to get everyone involved in! When it comes to potluck ideas for nurses, it doesn’t get simpler than this. Write out a list of all these ingredients, and then everyone signs up for what they want to bring. Who doesn’t love nachos? Also, this way things can be easily made vegetarian friendly, or gluten-free, etc. It gives people a lot of control and let’s face it, seems like everyone is on a special diet these days.

10. Ambrosia Salad by Insanely Good

Sometimes everyone gets so caught up in thinking about savory potluck meals, we forget we need a little something sweet afterward. This is an easy and delicious ambrosia salad. Ambrosia salad is a picnic and potluck favorite because it is pretty easy to make ahead and you can just keep it chilled in the work fridge until you are ready to serve.

11. World’s Best Peanut Butter Bars by Tastes Better From Scratch

I don’t know about you, but I would be SO happy if someone brought these. Enough said. Seriously. Look at these.

To conclude our potluck for nurses:

What makes potluck ideas for nurses unique? As I mentioned before, nurses are just super busy people. We wake up super early for our shifts, so we don’t have time to get things ready right before a shift. We need to be able to have everything pretty much cooked and prepped the night before.

So I hope these ideas are helpful and please share below if you used any of them. What are some of your favorite potluck ideas for nurses?

Jackie Jimenez BSN, RN
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