31 Comfort Food Recipes for Spring
Enjoy the flavors of spring in these delicious comfort food recipes. Whether it’s a side dish, main dish or dessert, these recipes highlight seasonal produce including rhubarb, asparagus, kale and more. Recipes like Mac and Cheese with Charred Broccoli & Onion and Strawberry Crumble Bars put a healthy, bright twist on your favorite comfort foods.
Mac & Cheese with Charred Broccoli & Onion
In this recipe we've taken basic macaroni and cheese to a whole new level. Charred broccoli and onions are added to cooked elbow pasta, mixed together in a mustardy cheese sauce and cooked on a sheet-pan in the oven. Simple to make, and not much to clean up!
California-Style Breakfast Sandwich
This fresh-tasting bagel breakfast sandwich comes together in minutes with just a few ingredients. Creamy avocado pairs with crunchy onions and sprouts for a filling, healthy breakfast with layers of flavor.
Smashing steamed carrots coated in curry powder then finishing them under the broiler lets the flavor set in and gives the carrots a light, crispy edge.
Strawberry Crumble Bars
After you haul all your fruit home from the orchard or farm, bake a batch of these bars. Change up the fruit with the seasons—peaches come summertime or apples in the fall.
Chicken Sausage & Spinach Skillet Pasta with Lemon & Parmesan
This one-pan pasta combines tasty chicken sausage and sautéed spinach for a one-bowl meal that's garlicky, lemony and best served with a little Parm on top. It's a quick and easy weeknight dinner everyone is sure to love. This recipe is a variation on our Chicken & Spinach Skillet Pasta with Lemon & Parmesan, which is a super-popular recipe developed by Devon O'Brien.
Crêpes may seem fancy-slash-scary, but once you get the hang of the process, making them is a snap—the eggs make them surprisingly sturdy. Fill them with just about anything, like ham and cheese with an egg on top for brunch or fresh fruit and Nutella for dessert.
Baked Tomato, Mushroom & Goat Cheese Pasta
Cherry tomatoes and mushrooms bake along with goat cheese to form the base of the sauce that cooks the pasta right in the baking dish—no stovetop required.
Crispy Smashed Broccoli with Za'atar
Za'atar spice coats broccoli florets that crisp up under the broiler. A dollop of yogurt adds a creamy finish. Serve as an easy side paired with grilled kebabs or a light appetizer.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders with Snap Pea Slaw
The buttermilk marinade lets these fried chicken tenders get crispy on the outside and stay deliciously juicy on the inside. The fresh crunchy slaw helps balance the richness of the chicken. Don’t have buttermilk on hand? Make a substitute by mixing the equivalent amount of milk with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar.
Pineapple Oatmeal Upside-Down Cake
Adding whole-grain oatmeal to this upside-down cake and topping it with fresh pineapple makes this diabetic-friendly dessert right-side-up.
Creamed Cabbage & Sauerkraut with Rye Breadcrumbs
Hot Hungarian paprika gives this casserole subtle heat but you could use sweet instead. Adding sauerkraut to the mix adds bites of salty tangy flavor throughout. Try leftovers layered with turkey, Swiss and Russian dressing on a panini for a Reuben-inspired sandwich.
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.
Potato, Asparagus & Mushroom Hash
Made with asparagus, roasted red pepper and mushrooms, this hash has a fresh and light, springtime taste. Serve with hearty whole-grain toast for an easy vegan breakfast or with an egg on top for a vegetarian take.
Mini Angel Food Strawberry Shortcakes
These adorable strawberry shortcakes are made with mini angel food cakes. These single-serve desserts are perfect for a picnic or party on a warm summer day.
Adobo Chicken & Kale Enchiladas
Put out your favorite toppings for these quick and healthy layered enchiladas. We like cilantro, sour cream, guacamole and jalapeños.
Spiralized broccoli stems transform into tender noodles in this lo mein-inspired vegetarian recipe. Serve on top of brown rice or buckwheat soba noodles.
Shrimp Risotto with Asparagus
Asparagus, snap peas and a touch of lemon zest bring fresh spring flavor to this riff on classic risotto made with a whole-grain rice blend.
In this cheesy baked asparagus recipe, asparagus spears are roasted whole smothered in a creamy, cheesy garlic sauce. This low-carb side dish is a great way to entice picky eaters to eat their veggies! Pair it with roast chicken or steak.
Smothered Cabbage with Ham
Use up your leftover ham in this comforting one-pot dish made with cabbage and potatoes. The simple flavors get brightened at the end with a splash of cider vinegar. Serve alongside roast chicken or pork.
Strawberry-Rhubarb Cobbler with Granola Streusel
Tart rhubarb and sweet strawberries turn tender in their own juices beneath a brown sugar and oat crumble topping. This spring-inspired dessert comes together quickly without pie crusts to unroll; the tender fruit cooks quickly to make this a great last-minute dessert option too. Serve warm for the most luscious texture.
Pork & Pineapple Tacos
Plan ahead so you can use your slow cooker to prepare the pulled pork for these tacos. This recipe is a better-for-you twist on the classic tacos al pastor. Pork loin is a lean cut that's a healthier option than traditional pork shoulder, which has more fat.
Kale is simmered with leeks and garlic then “creamed” with flour and milk in this healthy take on creamed spinach. Serve alongside steak or roast chicken and a baked potato.
Sweet & Sour Cabbage Rolls
Lean ground turkey and brown rice seasoned with fresh dill and caraway seeds makes a moist filling for these stuffed cabbage rolls. They're baked in a combination of tomato sauce, lemon juice and honey for the familiar sweet-and-sour flavor typical of the dish.
This simple strawberry tart shines with the natural sweetness of fresh strawberries. A lightly sweetened cream cheese filling holds the berries in place, while a light glaze of strawberry jam gives the tart an extra boost of strawberry flavor.
Garlic, Sausage & Kale Naan Pizzas
We love sausage, but it can be high in sodium. In this fast, healthy dinner, we make our own turkey sausage with crushed red pepper, garlic, fennel seeds, paprika and just a touch of salt.
Hand Pies with Curried Beef & Peas
These samosa-inspired savory hand pies call for curry powder and garam masala, spice blends that allow you to add the power of 10 spices in just two ingredients.
Creamy Mushroom, Chicken & Asparagus Bake
This comforting weeknight casserole recipe features plenty of mushrooms and asparagus combined with chicken and brown rice and a creamy Parmesan cheese sauce. Whip this up anytime you have leftover chicken or cooked brown rice to spare.
Rhubarb is a tangy counterpart for sweet raspberries in this fruit crumble recipe. For a nutty flavor and a boost of nutrition, this healthy dessert uses whole-grain rye flour and toasted pecans. Serve the crumble with your favorite vanilla frozen yogurt or a dollop of whipped cream.
Tuna Casserole with Peas
Maya Feller, M.S., RD, CDN, of Brooklyn-based Maya Feller Nutrition, has worked with many low-income families and is well-versed in the realities of putting food on the table that is healthy, tastes good, isn’t time-prohibitive and is affordable. “A traditional tuna casserole provides both protein and carbohydrates to keep you full, and is kid-friendly and easy to make,” she says about this tuna casserole recipe. (This recipe was part of a feature story, "The Real Cost of Healthy Food," in EatingWell magazine and has not been tested by our Test Kitchen.)
Pineapple-Coconut Layer Cake
In this stunning dessert recipe, two layers of coconut cake, made with white whole-wheat flour for extra nutrition, are filled with sweet pineapple curd and topped with creamy coconut frosting, chunks of fresh pineapple and toasted coconut.
Blanching the asparagus before assembling this casserole helps to maintain its vibrant green color. Feel free to skip that step if you’re crunched for time, but the vegetables will be more army green.