When the markets crashed in March due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus, it happened suddenly and without warning. And while it was a scary ride for many investors, it didn't end up lasting all that long. By April, the Dow Jones was already on the path to recovering, and today it sits at all-time highs. A crash in the markets doesn't have to last months or years, and investors who are prepared can quickly take advantage if bad news triggers a sell-off.

When there's such a strong overreaction in the markets, it's a great time to look for possible deals to pick up. Dividend stocks are great options, given that lower prices mean a better-than-normal payout ratio. Two stocks you'll want to put on your watchlist in case there is another crash include AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) and Kraft Heinz (NASDAQ:KHC). Here's why they would be attractive buys if the markets plummet again.

Suitcase full of cash marked Dividends

Image source: Getty Images.

1. AbbVie

AbbVie already offers investors a great dividend, paying $1.30 every quarter and yielding 4.9%. That's much higher than the 1.8% payout you can expect from the average stock on the S&P 500. And if there's a crash in the markets, this yield would get even larger. When AbbVie's stock crashed along with the markets in March, its share price fell below $65. At that price, its annual dividend of $5.20 per share would be 8% of the stock price -- a monstrous yield for a stock that's a pretty stable buy.

And don't forget, that dividend would also likely increase over time. AbbVie is a Dividend Aristocrat, and in October hiked its payouts by 10.2%. The company's business is robust, with the now-completed $63 billion acquisition of Botox maker Allergan adding to the diversity of its product mix. This has helped to alleviate some concerns about the upcoming loss of patent protection on AbbVie's blockbuster immunosuppressant, Humira, in 2023. Year to date, Humira has generated $14.7 billion in revenue for AbbVie, accounting for just under half (46%) of the company's total net revenue of $31.9 billion.

With the Allergan acquisition, AbbVie will have more opportunities to grow, which should provide more long-term stability for the drugmaker's stock and its dividend. That's why buying up the stock if the markets plunge again could be a great move that pays off for your portfolio. Year to date, shares of the healthcare stock are up 22% and have outperformed the S&P 500 and its 15% gains.

2. Kraft

Another stock that pays an attractive dividend today is Kraft. Its quarterly payments of $0.40 per share mean investors can earn a yield of 4.7% today, slightly lower than AbbVie's payout. Its wide assortment of products, including condiments and sauces, snack foods, and beverages, makes Kraft an especially appealing choice for investors looking to benefit in diverse ways from people spending more time at home.

Year to date, Kraft's sales of $19.2 million are up by 4.4% from the same period last year. Its top-growing segment this year has been what it calls "ambient foods" (products that normally have a long shelf life), where sales of $2.1 billion were up by more than 19% from the prior-year period. 

It's been a challenging year for many businesses, but Kraft has done well thanks to brands that are known all over the world -- brands that should continue to provide the business with stability for many years. It's also hard to go wrong with a stock that Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway has a 26.6% stake in. 

In March, Kraft's stock fell to about $20 a share. At that price, its dividend yield would be as high as 8%. While there's no guarantee that it will reach that price again, there's plenty of incentive for investors to keep this stock on their watchlists. Kraft has a predictable, steady business, and coupled with a high dividend, it could help grow your portfolio's value for many years to come. Year to date, Kraft's stock is up 7%.

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.