Winter is a time when we turn to cozy comfort foods. I’m sure our ancestors needed high calorie meals to get them through the cold winter months, but even though it’s cold outside most of us aren’t burning significantly more calories to stay warm. Today I’m sharing 5 comforting plant based winter foods that will fill you up without blowing your calorie budget.
Tortilla Soup – This is my kids’ favorite. Their version is just black beans, lentils, corn, cream corn, and chicken broth. For grownups, we add red peppers, onions, and tomatoes – or just salsa if we are in a hurry. This is an absolute staple at my house. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, a bit of Mexican Cheese blend, and tortilla chips.
Red Beans and Rice – Small red beans slow cooked with celery, onion, tomatoes, and chili spices. Served over rice with sun dried tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and maybe some avocado.
White Bean Chili – Potatoes, onions, green chilis, red peppers and white beans. Sometimes I add mustard and curry for an infusion of Indian flavor.
Veggie Shepard Pie – I usually start with peas, carrots, a bit of corn and onions with either beans, edamame, or lentils. I cover all that with about 1 1/2 cups of gravy. Then top with mashed potatoes (probably 3-4 cups of mashed potatoes).
Vegetable or Minestrone Soup- This serves as a clean out the frig soup so the ingredients vary a lot. This week I used carrots, onions, corn, potatoes, red pepper, mushrooms, snap peas, zucchini, and tomatoes. I like to cook quinoa, pasta or barley separately and combine with the soup when serving. Add some warm, crusty bread and this is comfort food at it’s best.
Hope you’ve gotten some inspiration!