The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
As the weather has gotten colder, I have found myself craving more warming, comforting recipes filled with seasonal vegetables. Seasonal food is more nutrient-dense, fresh, and flavorful. Additionally, eating seasonally supports more local agriculture, rather than increasing demand for suppliers to ship out-of-season produce from other countries.
- Warm Butternut Squash & Pomegranate Quinoa Salad
This salad has been my go-to for a filling and yummy but simple lunch or dinner these last few chilly months. It is both fresh and warming and filled with nutritious ingredients. Both butternut squash and pomegranate are in season during the winter and this recipe is a great way to combine the two.
- Butternut squash
- ½ bundle of kale
- Avocado oil
- Feta (optional)
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
In a pot, pour 1 cup water and ½ cup vegetable broth. Add ½ cup dry quinoa and bring to a boil. Let the mixture boil for about 5 minutes, then turn off the heat and let quinoa sit with a lid on the pot.
Peel and slice the butternut squash into small cubes (about 2 cups), spread on a baking sheet, and drizzle with avocado oil.
Roughly chop kale, add to a separate baking sheet, drizzle avocado oil and massage the oil into the kale (fun fact: massaging kale makes it easier to digest and absorb the nutrients).
Add generous pinches of salt to both squash and kale. Place both in the oven and set a timer for 10 minutes.
While the veggies are cooking, de-seed about half a pomegranate, slice a honey crisp apple into small cubes, and roughly chop pecans.
After 10 minutes, the kale should be slightly crisp, but not brown. Remove kale from the oven and let sit. With a spatula, mix around and flip the butternut squash cubes. Set another timer for 10-15 minutes and put the squash back in the oven to finish cooking.
When the butternut cubes are done (they should be soft and golden brown), remove them from the oven.
After everything is cooked, it’s time for the easy part! Throw kale and squash in a large bowl and add as much quinoa as desired (I often have some leftover). Then add apples, pecans, pomegranate, and crumbled feta on top (would highly recommend for a delicious tangy garnish).
Comforting Veggie Curry
This comforting veggie curry is warming, nutritious, and simple! I love making this when I’ve got lots of random vegetables in the fridge. The root veggies in this recipe — potatoes, sweet potatoes, and butternut squash — are in season in the fall and wintertime, and add heartiness and flavor to this recipe.
- Vegetable broth
- Oat or cashew milk
- Sweet potato
- Bell peppers
- Canned chickpeas
- Butternut squash
- Spinach (optional)
- Yellow curry powder
- Garam masala spice
- Green curry paste
- Any other veggies you want to add!
Chop sweet potato, potatoes, bell peppers, butternut squash, and any other veggies you like into as small of cubes as possible (mine are usually around ¼ inch by ¼ inch). The smaller the veggies are cut, the quicker they will cook. The amount of veggies you use will depend on how chunky you want your soup and which vegetables you prefer more of!
Pour 2 cups vegetable broth and 1 cup oat or cashew milk into a pot and set to medium-high heat. Add your chopped veggies. Then add 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp yellow curry powder, 2 tsp garam masala, and ½ tsp green curry paste. After adding the spices, stir until mixed, then taste your broth. Add more spices as desired (note that green curry paste will be the one to add the most spice).
Let the mixture heat for 10-15 min, then add ½ cup of drained canned chickpeas. Let your soup continue to cook for another 15 minutes, occasionally stirring and adding spices as desired. At this time, veggies should be cooked and soft.
When veggies are cooked and broth is to desired taste, add a generous handful of spinach and stir briefly.
This curry soup is great on its own or with a grain like brown rice or quinoa. It is one of my go-to’s for meal prepping and is great to save and heat up later.
I hope you try out and enjoy these seasonal, delicious plant-based recipes for some nutritious, warming meals this winter!