We’re finally getting a little snow here in Vermont, but it’s nothing like the dumping the mid-Atlantic states have been getting (and will continue to see, according to the latest news reports). I have family in Virginia, Maryland, New York and Pennsylvania and while the snow is hitting them hard and keeping them home from work, they’re hitting the kitchen to cook some warming winter meals  during their extra time stuck in the house.
Like so many people who are snowbound and in the kitchen, members of my family have been making comfort foods like spaghetti with homemade pasta sauce and cookies. (And calling me for recipe tips for EatingWell’s healthier versions of these comfort food favorites  so they don’t pack on the pounds while they’re stuck inside.) Our snowed-in (or wishing they were) Facebook fans  are also cooking up big pots of comfort foods: chili and soups and slow-cooker meals.
With their appetites in mind, here are a few of our favorite comfort food recipes to keep you warm and satisfied when it’s cold and snowy outside. (Maybe if I make a few myself, we’ll get more snow in Vermont!)
• Healthy Pancakes and more satisfying breakfasts : When you’ve got the whole day ahead of you filled with little more than shoveling and sledding, why not take the time to make a yummy breakfast? With a 4-star rating, these pancakes are an EatingWell favorite, and they’re made with 100 percent whole-wheat flour and get an additional fiber boost from flaxseed meal.
• Old Fashioned Spaghetti & Meatballs : When I was a kid, spaghetti was the number 1 comfort food in our house. It’s still my go-to when I want something to make me feel warm and cozy. This recipe gets a healthy twist by baking the meatballs instead of frying them.
• Hearty Soups like Cream of Mushroom & Barley : I think soups run a close second to chili as the favorite snowstorm food. Whether you choose to make this healthier version of cream of mushroom soup or go with a classic like chicken noodle, pair your soup with a piece of fresh-baked bread for maximum satisfaction.
• Slow Cooker Favorites like Flemish Beef Stew and Rich Chicken Stew : When you use your slow cooker, you can enjoy the smells of dinner all day long (and you don’t have to do any work while it’s cooking!). More time to play in the snow, shovel and watch movies.
• Chocolate Chip Cookies and more treats : Fresh-baked cookies are the perfect post-sledding treat. This recipe tastes amazing and is packed with healthy whole grains.
What are your favorite recipes to cook on a snow day? Tell us what you think below.