Our Top Warming Winter Recipes

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Winter means plenty of time to be cozy and warm inside – maybe curled up on the couch in front of a fireplace, reading a good book, or cooking away in the kitchen, trying out new recipes and old favorites alike. This is certainly the season to eat well, and not stress around the dining room table. No, winter is the time to rest, reflect and recover – and everyone knows good food can work wonders in all those regards. Here are our favorite winter recipes that we return to time and time again – they’re full of nutrients to fight off any colds or flus, brimming with energy to power you through winter runs and skiing adventures and – of course – tasting divine. Plant-based food at its best, be sure of it.

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Vegan Chorizo and Potato Stew

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This, here, will be a slightly unusual addition to our recipe archive. Itʼs more or less the first one relying on a meat substitute kind of product (vegan sausage in this case), and we typically neither cook nor post recipes featuring those types of ingredients. But if thereʼs one thing we can both miss, itʼs the concept of sausage. Plain and simple. So every so often, we get a pack of some sort of veggie-sausage and traditional hot dog buns, and eat them straight up with mustard (and ketchup, for me). Itʼs delicious, and also fun to try different brands and varieties. What makes it even better, I guess, is that we only do it a few times a year, so it feels special and like a true treat.

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Quick Butternut Squash Soup with Carrots, Apple and Crispy Chickpeas

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Winter squashes are incredible. They really are. From a storing perspective, they beat all other vegetables. As opposed to being picky about exact degrees and humidity levels, winter squashes can be stored at room temperature without complaining. And they won’t start to look sad and soggy come late winter – oh no, they’ll happily be stored for another 3 months, and another 3 after that. We’ve so far grown our own delicata and acorn squashes, and these are two of our absolute favorites. But the loyal butternut is of course not to be looked down upon – we just haven’t tried growing our yet, much due to the (wonderful) fact that we can buy Swedish-grown at the store for fairly cheap. Until we have unlimited growing space, we then choose to grow other things in our garden. When there’s a good deal on butternut squash, we buy half a cart full and then store them in our little guest house/storage space for the winter. Then it almost feels as if we grew them ourselves, as that’s where we store a bunch of our own produce too 🙂

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Broccoli & Potato Soup with Thyme Croutons

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That colder weather equals soup season is established since forever. We make no exception. From no soups at all since May, we’re now having it for dinner at least a few nights every week. Some we cook from recipes we have here on this website, others from our cookbook selection and a good portion we make from whatever leftover stuff we find in the fridge. We lean towards blended soups in general – something so comforting about that creaminess – but won’t say no to other versions either (a non-blended favorite is our Onion Soup with Kale and Chickpeas).

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Pantry Lentil Tomato Soup with Spiced Sunflower Seeds

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We’ve been clearing out the cabinets lately, and when you do, you realize how many quick and easy meals you can whip up using mostly shelf stable items forgotten in the back of the pantry. This is an excellent example of such a dish – it comes together in 30 minutes start to finish, and really only requires ingredients most of us have at home. We like to make this for a warming lunch – perfect when you work from home – and of course we serve it with a thick slice of bread on the side. The spiced sunflower seeds both look and taste great, and are well worth the extra few minutes of prep work.

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Simple and Creamy Green Pea Soup

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This soup would most likely win the award for cheapest, most climate friendly meal ever – and it’s not lacking nutrients either. To top it all off, it also comes together in 20 min, start to finish, making it a weeknight savior extraordinaire. Green peas are great to have on hand in the freezer all throughout the winter for us – besides being versatile in dishes, they’re also very good as a stand alone vegetable side. A quick, filling meal we tend to turn to when time is limited (but hunger is real) is boiled potatoes, green peas and some sort of bean/veggie patty from the freezer. Some sort of dipping sauce added to the mix and we’re satisfied! This soup is a little more sophisticated looking than that, but in the end – the ingredients are about the same. Slow carbohydrates, protein and a whole range of micro nutrients make this a nutritious bowl for sure – and with a slice of bread with hummus on the side, it’s as complete as can be. And yummy. Enjoy!

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Onion Soup with Kale and Chickpeas

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Cheaper food than onion soup is hard to find – and more flavorful too, for that matter. Despite being such a cooking essential, onions rarely get the spotlight all to themselves. With the winter season (almost) coming to an end, we definitely have to dig deep into our pantry and really scratch our heads in order to come up with inventive, fun things to cook. It seemed a great opportunity to allow the good old yellow onion to shine, in other words. Onion soup is a classic, of course, but here’s a jazzed up version with both chickpeas and kale, for a nutritious ad well as colorful winter soup. Enjoy!

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Winter Minestrone

The best thing about minestrone is that you can whip it up with things you most likely have at home already. Some kind of pasta, some kind of lentil or bean, random vegetables and a few tetras or cans of crushed tomatoes – that’s it. The heartiness of minestrone makes it one of our cold season favorites. We tend to make it more stew-like than soup-like, and filling enough to not need bread on the side (even though bread is always a good idea). Using both green lentils and cannellini beans ups the protein content nicely, so even hungry athletes can trust this meal to do the trick. All in all, it’s a winner any day of the week.

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West African Peanut Stew

I know, I know, we do like to put peanut butter in/on just about anything around here. What can I say – it’s just one of many glorious things Michael (and America) has opened my eyes to. As a matter of fact, I think peanut butter has an undeservedly bad reputation – why, really? If you get (or make) unsweetened peanut butter, it’s just ground up nuts with a dash of salt. That’s all. Peanuts pack a lot of protein, good fats (both mono and polyunsaturated), vitamins (especially folate, some B’s and E) and minerals (good amounts of phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and iron, for example). And it’s energy dense. All of the above together make peanut butter a great staple for athletes. And while it’s quite amazing slathered on bread, we use it primarily as an ingredient in energy bars/balls, as an oatmeal topping (oh my, it’s the best) and as an amazing flavor and nutrient booster in savory meals, such as this stew. 

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Lentil-Potato Dal

Dal – spelled daal, dhal and dahl as well – is a term used for legumes (that is, lentils, beans and peas) in the Indian subcontinent. It also refers to a variety of soups or stews prepared with any of the said ingredients. Most commonly, one tends to associate dal with a curry-laden lentil concoction, and that goes for us too. In our opinion, that’s just the best. Sometimes we make it without potatoes and serve it over rice instead (which, we’re not going to lie, is ridiculously yummy), but with potatoes already in there, it turns into a one-pot complete meal AND a much more eco-friendly alternative (naturally, buying locally grown potatoes is a far better choice than imported rice). Another great alternative is to serve it over wheat berries, which gives you some rice-like chewiness from a far more sustainable food source (at least for us up here in the north).

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