Winter Pantry

What's Your Go-To Winter Dinner? We Asked the Pollans, Beekmans and More

By Dina El Nabli | February 20, 2015

On a bitter cold day, there's nothing like being able to use what you have on hand to make a hearty dinner. We asked the authors of some of our favorite recently-published cookbooks what they make in the winter using fresh in-season ingredients plus staples from the pantry. The recipes they shared are sure to hit the spot on a frigid day.

celery soup by the Beekmans recipe
Photo by Paulette Tavormina

Double Cream of Celery Soup
"We love recipes that "use stuff up." Most recipes only call for one or two stalks of celery to use as seasoning, and we're left with a 3/4-full bag in our crisper drawer. Our Double Cream of Celery Soup helps use them up before them wilt away completely. In fact, most of the ingredients in this recipe are living on the verge of extinction in your pantry right now. The best part about pureed soups like this are that no one will know if the potato and onion you used were growing soft over a long winter.
As a bonus, the recipe includes celeriac...which is one of those relatively inexpensive, alien-looking root vegetables at the supermarket that you've always wanted to try, but don't know how to use. Once these fairly ignoble ingredients are blended together with a touch of cream and butter, they turn into a luxurious starter--or even main--course."     --Brent Ridge and Josh Kilmer-Purcell, authors of The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Vegetable Cookbook

What were the best seasonal recipes of the year? Find out and vote for your favorite in the Reader's Choice EDDY Awards!


vegetable chili recipe by The Pollans
Photo by John Kernick

Fully Loaded Vegetable Chili
"Chili is the perfect winter meal––who doesn’t love a piping hot bowl on a frigid day! Our Fully Loaded Vegetable Chili is hearty and satisfying and very simple to prepare. Even better, most of the ingredients, like the spices and the beans, can be found in your pantry, and many of the market ingredients are probably already in your refrigerator. Cook up a big pot on Sunday and enjoy it throughout the week—no need to brave the elements."      --Corky, Lori, Dana and Tracy Pollan, authors of The Pollan Family Table


collard green sukiyaki recipe by Terry Walters
Photo by Julie Bidwell

Collard Green Sukiyaki with Buckwheat Noodles
“I am always discovering new ingredients and my pantry, at any given time, reflects the changing seasons and changing marketplace. But two ingredients are ever present – the dried sea vegetable, kombu, and dried shiitake mushrooms. Both available in natural food stores (although drying shiitakes is as easy as leaving them to dry in a paper bag), and both essential for imparting significant health benefits and umame when added to cooking grains, legumes, soups, sauces and stews. In winter, I combine the two to make a savory stock for soups. Add some buckwheat noodles and a rainbow of vegetables (often, whatever is on hand), and I can yield a nutritious and delicious meal in minutes. My whole family devours this dish right out of the skillet – it’s my Collard Green Sukiyaki.”     --Terry Walters, author of Eat Clean, Live Well

Help decide the Reader's Choice Winner for Best Healthful Recipe of the year!


Curry Cauliflower Pizza recipe by Suzanne Lenzer
Photo by Christopher Testani

Curried Cauliflower with Tomatoes and Cilantro Pizza
“Curry is one of those flavors that I start to crave when the air turns brisk. Coupled with creamy cauliflower, the warmth of the spice transports me out of the depths of winter and off to somewhere exotic and sensual. With little more than a few sprigs of cilantro to add some brightness, this pizza is thoroughly surprising and yet comforting at the same time.”    

--Suzanne Lenzer, author of Truly Madly Pizza


cauliflower cheese soup
Photo courtesy of Stefanie Sacks

Cauliflower Cheese Soup
"Cruciferous cauliflower, a winter season vegetable, is packed with vital nutrients including anti-cancer phytochemicals. And it is especially high in Vitamin C. Getting creative with this cruciferous can be tough for many so I have made it super simple with this soup. All you need is cauliflower. If you want to opt out of the dairy, add a little miso (about 2 teaspoons) to lift the flavor."     --Stefanie Sacks, author of What the Fork Are You Eating?


sweet potato brownie recipe
Photo by Alexandra Grablewski

Sweet Potato Brownies
“During the winter when I bake sweet potatoes for a dinner vegetable, I always put in 2 more in the oven.  Why?  I will bake brownies with them the next day.  Surprised?  With this root vegetable, you’re adding a whopping dose of beta-carotene to a favorite chocolate dessert.  And absolutely delicious brownies!” --Patricia Helding, author of Fat Witch Bake Sale

Vote for your favorite recipes of the year and more in the Reader's Choice EDDY Awards!