Many people look to the stock market as a place to get rich quick. What smart investors like Warren Buffett have figured out, though, is that thinking long-term about your investments can produce the returns over time that can make you truly wealthy. 

In the following slideshow, Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool's director of investment planning, looks at what makes a stock a good long-term holding for a 25-year time horizon or longer. He then takes a closer look at Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B), MasterCard (NYSE:MA), and PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP), running them through the wringer to identify why they might fit well in your portfolio or why you might prefer other choices. Regardless of which stocks you pick, focusing on a company's long-term prospects is the best way to find the best returns.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.