Four Weekday Meals to Fuel the Holiday Season


Just because it’s the holiday season, it doesn’t mean you can skip out on weekday meals! Nope. Something has to fuel those marathon gift wrapping sessions and Hallmark movie binges.

This month, I’ve got a tasty soup that’s as cozy as a night in watching Christmas Vacation, three entrees that will impress the crankiest of in-laws, and a superbly detailed brownie recipe. No, you don’t have time for anything superbly detailed at the moment, but drop what you’re doing and make these with the kids. A fun time and a fun treat? I’m in.

Holiday Meal Planning

Roasted Cauliflower White Cheddar Soup

I have been on the hunt for the perfect cauliflower soup for years and I think this one from Cooking Classy is the winner. Roasting the cauliflower before adding to the pot makes all the difference. The caramelization from roasting takes this dish over the top! Technically you can make this with frozen cauliflower, but I find it’s much better with fresh. Do the bread bowls if you’re feeling fancy, but it’s just as good out of any old mug.

Easy weekday meal for a busy holiday season: Sheet Pan Sausage and Veggies

2020 has been garbage overall, but it wasn’t all bad. For example, this was the year I was introduced to the simplest dinner the whole family will snarf – sheet pan sausage and veggies. This recipe from Chelsea’s Messy Apron is great, but also feel free to riff. I love trying unique chicken sausages with this recipe; you use whatever your family would eat. The same goes for your veggie selection.

Cashew Chicken with White Rice (and a Ton of Sneaky Veggies!)

Guys, I LOVE cashew chicken. Like I love it so much I would marry it if I could. My favorite in town is from Yen Ching, but when I’m making it at home this is my perfect iteration. The sauce hits the spot and all the veggies make me feel better about all the rice I’m certain to gobble up. Make this and throw some crab rangoon in the air fryer and you’ve got an at-home takeout night!

Creamy Pumpkin Spaghetti with Garlic Kale

Not that we are having out of town in-laws stay at our home this holiday season (right?!?), but if we were, I would totally serve this dish from Pinch of Yum. The sauce tastes like something straight out of Trader Joe’s seasonal aisle, but you can say you made it yourself! Instead of pumpkin, I used leftover butternut squash I had in the freezer and it was delish. And that garlic kale?? Trust me when I say it’s like a perfect little bed of crunchies on top!

Salted Pretzel Snickers Chocolate Chip Cookie Snickers Brownies

Yes, these brownies from Half Baked Harvest are ridiculous. Yes, you need every layer of gooey, chocolatey goodness. It’s almost the holiday break; the season of excess and you have nowhere to go. Perfect!

Bonus Restaurant Recommendation – BB’s Pizza on North in Wauwatosa

Besides being a great neighbor to my work kitchen, BB’s on North also serves as Tosa’s newest entry into the pizza contest. This one is my new favorite as they employ a crisp thin crust and bunches of unique topping combinations. The salads are huge, the entrees look perfect for date night and the appetizer list will give you plenty to choose from. Even better these days – I brought one home from work all the way to Shorewood one night and the pizza was still piping hot. I don’t know how they work that magic, but I love them for it.


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