When the weather starts to get chillier and the sun starts to set earlier, I have a tendency to lose all motivation to maintain a healthy diet. There is a common misconception that healthy food is boring and flavorless — but this couldn’t be less true, especially during the fall months. One of the most appealing parts about fall is that there are so many in-season veggies this time of year, which is great for those looking to up their fall recipe game. I’ve found there are many healthy fall recipes you can make that are easy, flavorful, and sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.
During the fall, you’re probably in the market to find some recipes that incorporate some of the most popular autumnal flavors, like pumpkin, cinnamon, and sage (just to name a few!). The good news is there are many ways to incorporate these fall flavors into your dinners without compromising on health benefits. If you’ve been craving some healthy and delicious fall recipes, see our favorites below.
When the weather gets chilly, what do most people crave? Something warm, like chili. This sweet potato and black bean chili recipe from EatingWell has a bit of a kick, and the added spices make it savory without adding unnecessary calories.
1 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium-large sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. chili powder
4 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground chipotle chile
¼ tsp. salt
2 ½ c. water
2 15-oz. cans black beans, rinsed
1 14-oz. can diced tomatoes
4 tsp. lime juice
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
Head over to EatingWell.com for instructions on how to prepare Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili.
Let’s face it — there’s nothing better than mac and cheese on a cold day, but unfortunately, it’s not the healthiest option. Country Living’s recipe added cauliflower to sneak in some vegetables and take away some of the guilt from eating this indulgent dish.
3 tbsp. olive oil, divided, plus more for baking dish
1 lb. cavatappi or other short pasta
1 medium-sized head cauliflower (about 2 lbs.), cored and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 oz. extra-sharp white cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 c.)
2 oz. Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/2 c.)
1/4 tsp. mustard powder
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 1/2 c. panko breadcrumbs
1/2 c. fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
For complete Cauliflower Mac ‘n’ Cheese prep instructions, visit CountryLiving.com.
Having company over and don’t know what to cook? Try this roasted chicken recipe from Country Living — it’s perfect for fall, whether you have company or not. Not only is this recipe healthy (including ingredients like spinach, tomatoes, and garlic), it also tastes delicious because of the fall-inspired components, like fennel and coriander.
2 medium fennel bulbs, cored and cut into thin wedges
1 head garlic, cloves separated and peeled
3 tbsp. olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp. fennel seeds, crushed
1 tbsp. coriander seeds, crushed
1 tbsp. lemon zest, plus 3 tbsp, juice
1 (3 1/2- to 4-lb.) chicken, backbone removed and flattened
1 pt. grape tomatoes
1 c. pitted olives (kalamata, Castelvetrano, or a combination)
8 oz. sourdough bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
3 c. baby kale or spinach
Head over to CountryLiving.com for full instructions on how to prepare Roasted Chicken with Fennel and Tomatoes.
Soup season is upon us, and butternut squash is one of our favorites. Try this savory and creamy vegetarian butternut squash soup recipe from Love and Lemons, which is flavorful and filled with antioxidants. Not only is this recipe healthy and easy to make, but it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser (and can be made in bulk and reheated as tasty leftovers).
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
½ tsp. sea salt
1 (3-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tbsp. chopped fresh sage
½ tbsp. minced fresh rosemary
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
3 to 4 c. vegetable broth
Freshly ground black pepper
Visit LoveandLemons.com for instructions on how to make this easy Butternut Squash Soup.
Calling all pasta lovers! While pasta isn’t always the healthiest option, it’s (unfortunately) almost always the most delicious. This healthier take on pasta from EatingWell is sure to satisfy that carb craving (while also getting veggies on to your plate). This tasty dish is loaded with flavorful and healthy ingredients, and only takes about 20 minutes to make.
1 (9 oz.) package fresh spinach pasta
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
4 oz. diced pancetta
1 (16 oz.) package frozen baby lima beans, thawed
1 c. sliced shallots
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp. dried rosemary
4 c. baby spinach
3 tbsp. lemon juice
¾ c. grated pecorino cheese, divided
For complete Spinach, Lima Bean, and Crispy Pancetta Pasta instructions, visit EatingWell.com.
About the author
Maddie is a writer and lover of all things wellness and lifestyle. She’s been featured on doctoroz.com, The TODAY Show Digital, PureWow, The Knot, and now Playbook! When she’s not working on a story, you can find her searching for a perfectly constructed charcuterie board, laying in the sun, or at a yoga class (mostly to work off the charcuterie board).