26 Underrated Recipes for Winter
Get creative this winter by using seasonal ingredients in a new and delicious way. These recipes take popular winter dishes and ingredients like beets and butternut squash and go beyond their traditional presentation. Whether it’s Pizza-Stuffed Spaghetti Squash or Chicken Potpie Soup with Tater Tot Topping, these underrated recipes are fun, healthy and will make any cold winter day exciting and tasty.
Noodle-Less Butternut Squash Lasagna
Slices of butternut squash stand in for noodles in this veggie-packed lasagna with spinach, mushrooms and a creamy Parmesan cheese sauce. You can make the Parmesan cheese sauce with regular flour or swap in gluten-free flour to make this dish gluten-free. Look for a squash with a long, straight neck for the best results. Serve with a green salad for a vegetarian meal that you'd be happy to serve to company.
Pizza-Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
Skip the dough and stuff all of your favorite pizza toppings into spaghetti squash boats for a fun and healthy dinner that'll please the whole family. We love the combination of mushrooms, bell peppers, pepperoni and mozzarella, but feel free to mix it up with your favorite pizza ingredients. You could throw in a bit of chopped cooked broccoli, for example, or add some olives or chopped artichoke hearts. And of course feel free to omit the pepperoni to make the dish vegetarian. Round out the meal with a simple salad.
Corned Beet Reuben Sandwich
Tossing beets with coriander, mustard seeds, cinnamon and allspice gives them savory corned-beef flavor. With this vegetarian Reuben sandwich, you won't miss the meat.
Chicken Potpie Soup with Tater Tot Topping
This bubbling stewlike soup is a great way to use up leftover cooked chicken or turkey--and a perfect excuse to indulge in crispy, puffy tater tots. This easy dinner recipe is sure to be a hit with the whole family.
Beet Larb with Quinoa
Larb is a classic salad with roots in Laos and Thailand. It typically features seasoned ground meat and lots of herbs and vegetables, but our healthy vegetarian version swaps red beets for meat, reduces the sodium by adding more lime juice and makes it more substantial by serving it as part of a grain bowl. Spoon it over lettuce for a lighter take.
Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Fontina Cheese Sauce
This is a great fall dish--warming nutmeg pairs deliciously with sweet, roasty butternut squash gnocchi and a rich alfredo-like cheese sauce. Although the gnocchi aren't as pillowy as your classic white potato gnocchi, they're still light-tasting and come with the added benefit of a little extra fiber and some eye-healthy vitamins.
Brussels Sprout & Potato Hash
This vegetarian Brussels sprout and potato hash recipe is a quick, easy dinner, perfect for a cool fall evening. Resist the urge to stir it too much! Cooking the hash undisturbed allows a crispy caramelized crust to form on the potatoes at the bottom of the pan. Look for hash browns that don't have added salt to help keep sodium in check.
Crispy Smashed Beets with Goat Cheese
Cooked beets are lightly pressed and pan-fried for a charred, crispy outer crust--similar to that of smashed potatoes. The herbed goat cheese dip makes this healthy appetizer or easy side dish even more delicious.
Chicken Parmesan Pizza
Upgrade pizza night with this recipe makeover that combines two all-time favorites--pizza and chicken Parm--into one quick and easy pizza (no dipping and breading required!).
Butternut Squash & Spinach Lasagna
This delicious vegetarian lasagna recipe showcases seasonal vegetables. Butternut squash brings a sweet richness while spinach gives it a nutrition and flavor boost. As a bonus, this recipe makes an extra lasagna that you can freeze for an easy holiday-season meal.
Coconut Curry Cup of Noodles with Spiralized Butternut Squash Noodles
This untraditional spin on Thai red curry features spiralized butternut squash noodles in a cup-of-noodles-style mason jar soup, but you could also use spiralized sweet potatoes or fresh egg noodles.
Quick Stovetop Mac & Cheese with Red Beets
Red beets give this healthy mac and cheese recipe a pink hue. If that's a little too much for you, try using yellow beets instead.
Potato, Leek & Goat Cheese Galette
This galette recipe pairs very classic French flavors--sweet onions, thyme and tangy goat cheese--with creamy potatoes. A whole-wheat crust adds nutrition and also a slightly sweet and nutty flavor. This whole-wheat galette makes for a delicious light meal or a hearty side.
Baked Spiralized Butternut Squash Fries
Sweet spiralized butternut squash is encased in a salty, extra-crunchy exterior for a serving of slightly sweet curly fries. You can pair these baked butternut squash shoestring fries with any protein of your choice, but we're partial to grilled fish or chicken. Look for pre-spiralized squash in the refrigerated produce section.
Brussels Sprouts and Goat Cheese Flatbread
Brussel sprouts--the once-dreaded side dish--get a tasty overhaul as a crunchy and nutritious pizza topper in this quick-and-easy flatbread recipe.
Taco Spaghetti Squash Boats
Spaghetti squash stuffed with ground turkey taco filling, pico de gallo and chopped avocado is a fun alternative on family taco night. This recipe is sure to please the kids (omit the spices if your children are sensitive to spices) and perfect for a family dinner.
This quick and healthy lasagna soup recipe has all the comforting flavors of classic lasagna with plenty of tomatoes, Italian turkey sausage and lasagna noodles broken into bite-size bits. A dollop of ricotta cheese mixed with mozzarella and Parmesan adds a creamy finishing touch. Serve the soup with a green salad and crusty bread to sop up what's left in the bowl for an easy healthy dinner that's ready in under 30 minutes.
Beet & Goat Cheese Quesadillas with Chile-Lime Crema
Use every part of the vegetable in this healthy quesadilla recipe that includes the beet greens as well as the beets. Serve with a green salad topped with pepitas.
Brussels Sprouts & Pepperoni Pizza
If you want to spark some joy in your house, give this pizza combo a try. Brussels sprouts, pepperoni, lemon zest and fontina cheese make this healthy pizza recipe anything but boring. Preshredded Brussels will speed up your prep time, but try to get pepperoni sliced fresh from the deli--it has better flavor and texture than the shelf-stable kind.
Braised Beef and Root Vegetables with Butternut Squash Polenta
Tender pot roast and tasty root vegetables are served on a bed of creamy butternut squash polenta. If you aren't a fan of polenta, you can serve this recipe with mashed sweet potatoes. Peel and cube 2 medium sweet potatoes; cook in boiling water until tender. Drain and mash, adding fat-free milk, then season with salt.
Slow-Cooker Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash
It's hard to believe this filling dish that's full of rich flavor is also good for you! This recipe creatively combines "melted" butternut squash with tender cooked barley for an ultra-creamy, ultra-comforting risotto.
Butternut Squash & Cauliflower Enchiladas
The butternut squash and cauliflower in these easy layered enchiladas are frozen and don't need to be thawed, making this a healthy and quick dinner. Look for canned tomatillos, sometimes labeled green tomatoes, in the international aisle of your grocery store.
Spaghetti Squash Shrimp Scampi
Give buttery shrimp scampi a healthy update with delicately sweet spaghetti squash. The parsley-flecked squash "noodles" slash calories, add fiber and leave this classic dish still plenty decadent.
Caramelized Onion & Brussels Sprout Galette
Serve this vegetarian tart recipe as a main dish or in thinner slices for an appetizer or side dish. Since you'll be pleating the dough to create a rustic look, buy ready-to-roll pie crusts rather than prepared pie shells--you'll find them in the dairy section of your market with other ready-to-bake items or near the frozen desserts.
Butternut Squash Queso Fundido
This cheesy dip recipe is lightened up by subbing mashed butternut squash for some of the melted cheese. We also loaded it with chili-spiced caramelized onions. Serve this healthy makeover with tortilla chips or sliced jicama for dipping.
Individual Brussels Sprout & Potato Frittatas
Brussels sprouts and preshredded potatoes make these oversized muffin-shaped frittatas hearty. They're as good served warm for dinner as they are at room temperature for lunch. Pair with a mixed green salad with cherry tomatoes and buttermilk dressing.