You’re just days away from an indulgent feast full of mashed potatoes, stuffing, yams and casseroles, not to mention the sweeter side of the Thanksgiving spread, like pies, tarts and turnovers. This week, as you get ready for what’s sure to be a deliciously decadent eating extravaganza, keep your meals simpler and lighter, both in preparation and flavors. A classic, no-fail combo, soup-and-salad is easy to make with whatever ingredients you have in the refrigerator and can be suited to your family’s tastes. Check out one of Food Network’s favorite soup-and-salad pairs below, then tell us your ultimate matchup in the comments.
For a light salad that serves as a simple lunch or easy side dish, try Tyler’s top-rated no-cook Pomegranate, Arugula Salad (pictured above). Tossed with toasted walnuts and juicy pomegranate seeds, this is a go-to recipe that can be made in only five quick minutes. The secret to Tyler’s bright, refreshing salad is its sweet and tangy dressing, a fruity vinaigrette made with pomegranate molasses, zesty lemon juice and red wine vinegar.
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This time of year, as the days get shorter and the weather turns chillier, few things are more comforting than a hearty, piping-hot meal that’s loaded with rich, bold flavors. A warming bowl that never disappoints, chili is a cinch to prepare and can be easily adapted to your family’s favorite tastes and ingredients.
Food Network Magazine take everyday chili to a hot new level with its one-pot Spicy Vegetarian Chili (pictured above), made with a fragrant spice mixture of chili powder, cumin and oregano and a single, spicy chipotle pepper in adobo. Fresh, seasonal vegetables and beefy pinto beans add so much heft to this thick and hearty bowl that you won’t miss the meat of a traditional turkey or chicken chili. For simple family-friendly serving, set up a chili bar with an assortment of your favorite toppings, like Cheddar cheese, fresh scallions and more, and let everyone build his or her ideal chili bowls.
With Thanksgiving just a few weeks away, you’re surely seeing yams pop up on supermarket shelves and an influx of recipes featuring these bright-orange beauties. But while they’re perhaps most often enjoyed at holiday feasts, yams’ season to shine lasts throughout autumn, and they’re easy enough to prepare that they can be enjoyed with everyday dinners. Serve these yam side dishes with your favorite fall-inspired suppers to create a seasonal spread and round out your meal in a flash.
Food Network Magazine dresses up warm yams by topping them with a cool, creamy sauce in their Baked Yams With Saffron Aioli. An aioli is a fancy name for a mixture of mayonnaise and garlic, and this recipe’s aioli comes together not with from-scratch mayo, made with egg yolks and vinegar, so you can be sure it’s going to be extra-rich and comforting. For subtle orange-yellow color and a bit of sweetness, add just a pinch of crushed saffron threads to the aioli, and mix in a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to add a light, refreshing taste.
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When you’ve run through your repertoire of supper staples and want to add something new to the mix of weeknight meals, try thinking beyond dinner recipes and incorporating breakfast favorites into your routine instead. Offering just as hearty a meal as more traditional dinners, eggs can be dressed up beyond their everyday scrambles and be turned into satisfying dishes in a flash.
In their recipe for Huevos “Ranch”eros (pictured above), Food Network Magazine takes humble fried eggs to the next delicious level by preparing a rich tomato-bean mixture to serve with them. The secret ingredient in this combination is the chipotles in adobo sauce — they pack a hefty punch of flavor, a bit of heat and plenty of traditional Southwestern taste. Serve the eggs atop a scoop of beans and finish with slices of creamy, cool avocado and a sprinkle of Cotija cheese. As a crispy-crunchy side dish, deep-fry a batch of corn tortillas and finish them with a dusting of dry ranch dressing mix.
When autumn hands you a bounty of butternut squash, what do you do with it? You could caramelize it with butter, roast it until tender or serve it with pasta, but you might also puree it into a thick, hearty soup. Butternut squash pairs well with other flavors of fall, like pumpkin and cinnamon, and Michael Chiarello’s Roasted Butternut Squash Soup recipe combines them all to create an in-season bowl of comfort.
To prepare, Michael first roasts butternut squash with a sweet and tangy mixture of balsamic vinegar and molasses before adding it to a pot of sautéed vegetables, coriander and a single cinnamon stick. A pass through the blender before serving guarantees that this hearty soup will turn out thick and smooth every time. For added texture, top each bowl with a dollop of creamy mascarpone cheese and a few crunchy pumpkin seeds before enjoying. Be sure to swap in vegetable stock or broth for the chicken stock to keep this meal meatless.
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‘Tis the season for all things pumpkin, right? This fall, Food Network Magazine is thinking beyond pumpkin bread and pumpkin seeds with a family-friendly recipe for Tortellini With Pumpkin Alfredo Sauce. It’s a go-to weeknight meal that’s as decadent and satisfying as it is quick to prepare. In just 20 minutes, you can combine Alfredo mainstays like cream and nutty Parmesan cheese with the seasonal flavors of nutmeg and pumpkin to create a rich, hearty sauce that pairs perfectly with bite-sized cheese tortellini. When you’re shopping for the ingredients to the make this recipe, be sure to pick up pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling – the two cans can be scary-similar to one another, and the pie filling will be too sweet in this savory dish.
No longer confined to just meager veggie trays, cauliflower is a staple of fall produce that shines in bold, full-flavored dishes of the season. Since it’s a hearty, filling vegetable, it’s a go-to ingredient for those avoiding meat, as it can easily beef up salads, sides and main dishes alike. Think of cauliflower as the starting point to your dish and add other flavors and ingredients, like fragrant spices, fresh herbs, creamy cheeses and more, to take it to the next delicious level. Check out Food Network’s favorite three ways to enjoy cauliflower then tell us how you like to prepare it.
With just a handful of ingredients, Anne Burrell prepares Spice-Roasted Cauliflower and Jerusalem Artichokes (pictured above), a five-star side from Food Network Magazine with a crispy texture and warm flavors. She tosses the cauliflower and Jerusalem artichokes — root vegetables — with a mixture of cumin and cayenne pepper and slowly roasts them until they’re tender and golden brown. Just a scoop of these beauties will round out any fall-inspired meal.
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Now that fall has officially arrived and the temperatures are starting to dip, it is time to dig into the rich, stick-to-your-ribs dishes that we have gone without all summer long. One of those hearty meals is risotto, an Italian-style rice dish featuring any combination of vegetables, herbs, cheeses and more. If you’ve never made from-scratch risotto, know that it takes a bit more TLC than your average weeknight meal, but that the results, the tender-firm rice, smooth sauce and comforting taste, are well worth the extra few minutes of cooking.
Food Network Magazine’s Mushroom and Squash Risotto is packed with in-season butternut squash, a mix of dried and fresh earthy mushrooms and plenty of nutty Parmesan cheese. The secret to this risotto is the mushroom broth, made by steeping mushrooms in hot water and adding to the liquid a bay leaf and fragrant cinnamon. When the rice is slowly cooked in the broth, it creates a thick, starchy sauce that’s deliciously creamy. Before serving, shower the risotto with additional cheese and season to taste.
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Just when you think that there’s no way to improve upon the classic beauty of a traditional grilled cheese sandwich, Sandwich King Jeff Mauro puts his royal spin on this all-American favorite.
Made with in-season produce, richly flavored onions and plenty of cheese, Jeff’s Squash, Manchego and Balsamic-Onion Grilled Cheese (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine is a next-level sandwich that’s as comforting and deliciously gooey as the original. The secret to this grilled cheese is the balsamic-laced onions. Be sure to let them cook slowly on a low temperature for about 30 minutes so that they can concentrate their taste and become soft and sweet.
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Many vegetarians struggle to track down filling sources of protein, since it’s most often found in meat. But maintaining a meat-free diet doesn’t mean that you have to gulp protein shakes in order to get enough of this essential food group. Quinoa is a go-to grain that’s packed with protein and easy enough to make on a weeknight.
Melissa d’Arabian makes a five-star Lentil Quinoa Salad (pictured above) that works well as a hearty side dish or a brown bag-ready lunch option. After combining tender quinoa with smooth lentils, she tosses the mixture with green onions and fresh cilantro and dresses it with a light mustard vinaigrette. Watch this video to see how Melissa prepares this simple-to-make salad.
Similar to other healthful grains like bulgur, barley and farro, quinoa is a blank canvas that can be dressed up with your favorite ingredients. Check out more quinoa recipes below, and experiment with different combinations of vegetables, cheeses, crunchy nuts, simple dressings and more to find what your family likes best.
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