When we face cold weather, meals should warm our bodies inside and out. This also means we are probably walking around with our shoulders up to our ears, hunched over by stress or chilling winds. No need to put more stress on your back. Here are four delicious dinners that will come together faster than a kid who hears mom in the pantry with an open bag of chips.
When we start really hunkering down into winter, I want stick-to-your-ribs kind of food. The kind where even holding the warm plate calms you down in anticipation of the satisfying meal that’s about to go down. This month’s cold-weather meals will satisfy all of these cravings in a new and different way.
We all remember that potato casserole our moms made for every big gathering, right? The frozen hashbrowns + sour cream + cheese + crushed cracker thing – that’s what I’m talking about. Well, imagine my surprise when I tried this version from Spends with Pennies that tastes even better than the original!! Yes, it takes a bit more work, but make it once, and you’ll never go back. For a complete meal, I’d dice a half-pound of ham right into the casserole or serve alongside grilled or roasted meat.
Y’all, I am officially a convert to the church of Half-Baked Harvest. Girlfriend just cannot put out a bad recipe. This Korean BBQ chicken dish is a cumulation of my favorite things – Asian flavors, butter, spice, garlic, corn, and rice. Throw a few herbs on top, and man, I could eat this for every meal for the rest of my days! No chicken on hand? I bet this would be just as tasty with thin strips of pork or beef. Just be sure to adapt the cooking time accordingly.
Has anyone else tried Butcher Box or other meat subscriptions? I have, which is how I ended up with a beef chuck roast. I don’t often cook beef that’s not in ground form, but this recipe for Beef Barbacoa may train me otherwise. In it, Ali from Gimme Some Oven gives us a great base layer to so many cold-weather meals! The spicy beef can be used in tacos, over rice, or on a salad. Or do as we did – use the beef in tacos on night one, salads for lunch the next day, and then freeze the rest of the meat to do it all over again in a couple of weeks.
During last month’s Amazon Prime Days, I got a lid for my Instant Pot that turns it into an air fryer. Yep, just as life-changing as everyone predicted. But even before this revelation came into my life, I enjoyed this recipe for coconut shrimp and green bean fries. (Yep, the recipe comes from my own blog. Check out other recipes there or even better – let us make dinner for you those weeks where you need a break!) The crunch on the green beans lead the kids into munching their way through handfuls and the dipping sauce for the shrimp well… Do your kids like sauce as much as mine do? If so, they are going to love. This. dish.
Sometimes you feel like baking. Other times, you want to get to dessert faster. Enter this chocolate chip cookie dough dip. Whip it up in no time and try to portion out your late-night treats. (Though I don’t judge if it somehow disappears a spoonful at a time!) This dip is great with pretzels, strawberries, or graham crackers. And if you can stand it, let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before digging in. You’ll get better scoops that way.
Bonus Restaurant Recommendation – The Bay in Whitefish Bay
If you are anywhere in the North Shore area, you should consider The Bay for your next takeout meal. They have mastered the COVID-safe process all the way down to having special parking in the back just for takeout orders. As for the actual food – I’ve yet to be disappointed with anything. The burgers (especially the Bay Stack), the Friday Fish Fry, and the tomato soup are all tasty. Ask for extra onion dip if you get fries. It’s delish!
Those are the cold-weather meals I’m enjoying this month. How about you?