The Top 20 Comfort Food Recipes of 2020
2020 was a crazy year, so it’s no surprise that we turned to warm and familiar dishes at an exponential rate. From our cheesy Ground Beef & Pasta Skillet to our Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup with Rotisserie Chicken, these were the top comfort-food recipes of the year. And of course we couldn’t forget about dessert with recipes like No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies and Mug Brownie (which we will be making tonight).
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup with Rotisserie Chicken
This rich-tasting but better-for-you creamy chicken soup has a delicious chicken pot pie feel to it. We call for rotisserie chicken to streamline your prep time--look for a nice big one with lots of breast meat on it. Pair this comforting and easy soup recipe with a green salad, or, if you're really hungry, a grilled cheese sandwich.
EatingWell's Eggplant Parmesan
Here we bake breaded eggplant for crispy results with fewer calories to boot. This makeover of the classic recipe was originally developed by our Test Kitchen in 1995 and got an update in 2020 for our 30th anniversary issue.
The name for these spuds hints at their creamy interior. Roasting these melting potatoes at high heat ensures they get crunchy on the outside. Then, adding a little broth at the end allows the potatoes to absorb the liquid, making the insides extra moist.
Loaded Cauliflower Casserole
You'll never want to eat roasted cauliflower any other way once you try this tasty recipe. Bacon, sour cream and sharp Cheddar cheese coat good-for-you cauliflower in deliciousness for an easy side that will make everyone actually want to eat their vegetables.
No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies
Creamy natural peanut butter and chocolate team up in these easy and healthy no-bake cookies! Whip up a batch for after-school snacks, dessert or anytime your sweet tooth comes calling.
Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Stew
This Mediterranean stew is a healthy dinner chock-full of vegetables and hearty chickpeas. A drizzle of olive oil to finish carries the flavors of this easy vegan crock-pot stew. Swap out the chickpeas for white beans for a different twist, or try collards or spinach in place of the kale. Any way you vary it, this stew is sure to go into heavy rotation when you are looking for healthy crock-pot recipes.
Muffin-Tin Spinach & Mushroom Mini Quiches
Switch up your morning routine with these easy vegetarian mini quiches. Earthy mushrooms and spinach pair nicely with rich and creamy Gruyère cheese. Serve them on a platter with a fresh fruit salad for a simple weekend brunch.
20-Minute Creamy Italian Chicken Skillet
Chicken cutlets cook quickly and are highlighted with a creamy sauce made with tomatoes, zucchini and Italian seasoning. This recipe is sure to become a new weeknight favorite the whole family will love. Serve it with whole-wheat pasta or rice to make it a meal.
Ground Beef & Pasta Skillet
Sneak extra vegetables into your child's day (and yours too!) with this easy one-skillet pasta recipe. Finely chop mushrooms to resemble the texture of ground beef and stir them into a classic meat sauce for an extra-healthy twist on a dinnertime favorite.
This easy everyday apple-pie bread makes a great breakfast-on-the-go with a cup of coffee. The fragrant spices typical of apple pie and the tender bits of baked apple inside also make it worthy as a healthy after-dinner dessert. Enjoy it warm from the oven with a pat of butter or cream cheese or keep it on your counter for a tasty treat during the week.
Easy Spicy Salmon Cakes
Looking to add some interest to an easy dinner recipe? Five-spice may be your new best friend. What is five-spice powder? A mixture of these five spices: cinnamon, clove, fennel, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns. (There are regional recipes in China that include more spices, including white pepper, nutmeg and orange peel.) It adds a distinct warm flavor to these healthy salmon cakes.
20-Minute Chicken Cutlets with Creamy Pesto Sauce
Serve these quick chicken cutlets with creamy pesto sauce over your favorite pasta or zucchini noodles. This easy dinner recipe is sure to become a new family favorite.
Low-Carb Blueberry Muffins
Just because you're watching carbs doesn't mean you can't have the classic breakfast pastry. In place of all-purpose flour, nutty almond and coconut flours make these muffins fluffy while slashing carbs. A bit of brown sugar blunts the tartness of fresh blueberries. Make these ahead for a grab-and-go breakfast for the week.
Broccoli, Cheese & Rice Casserole
Ditch the baking dish and make this easy skillet broccoli, cheese and rice casserole. Cooking the casserole in a skillet keeps the flavors and textures fresh--no mushy, sad broccoli! Serve this easy side with baked chicken for a family-pleasing healthy dinner that's ready in just 30 minutes. It would also be a great addition to your Thanksgiving spread or a party buffet.
Chickpea & Potato Curry
This fast Indian-style curry comes together with ingredients you most likely have on hand, like frozen peas and canned tomatoes and chickpeas. Plus, using these spices shows how simple it is to make a curry sauce for an easy vegetarian recipe. Serve with whole-wheat naan to sop it all up.
You might want to keep a copy of this recipe in the pantry beside the cocoa for those moments when you crave a chocolaty treat. Cook this fudgy brownie in a mug in the microwave and it's ready in less than a minute!
Melting Sweet Potatoes with Maple Butter
As the name implies, these sweet potatoes melt right in your mouth. After browning in a hot oven, thick slices of sweet potato simmer in broth and soak up the flavors of maple syrup and lemon. This simple dish is great alongside roasted chicken or pork and makes a great Thanksgiving side dish.
American goulash, also known as old-fashioned goulash, is the perfect economical family meal. The pasta cooks right in the sauce, so this satisfying dish can cook in just one pot.
Shrimp Cauliflower Fried Rice
Cut down on carbs and amp up your veggie servings with this healthy cauliflower fried rice with shrimp, broccoli, bell peppers and garlic. Everything is cooked in one wok or skillet, but in stages, so each element keeps its integrity in the finished dish instead of being all mushed together--it may seem fussy, but it's worth it and actually quite easy. Resist the urge to stir the cauliflower rice right away; letting it cook undisturbed for a few minutes allows it to brown and develop sweet, nutty flavors. This better-than-takeout healthy dinner comes together in just 25 minutes, so it's perfect for busy weeknights.
The secret to the sparkling flavor of these delicately crumbed muffins is the strips of lemon zest finely ground into the sugar. Enjoy the muffins warm right from the oven.