When the weather turns cold and people are driven indoors, it’s time to break out the cozy comfort foods that warm consumers in body and spirit. Soups, broths, and stews fall into this category, but they can be considered to be a bit dull by some diners. How can you take these fall foods next level?
Chicken Bone Broth
It’s hard to imagine a more versatile staple than bone broth. Easy to make using a whole chicken or merely the carcass, this broth is filled with nutrients.
It’s great for anyone with a sore throat to sip hot, but it can also serve as a base for a wide range of soups, stews, and other fall recipes, from cornbread stuffing to dairy-free mashed potatoes to pasta sauce. Some people even add it to smoothies for extra protein.
There are so many varieties of squash and an equally broad number of ways to cook them, from roasting and sautéing to pureeing them into soups. Butternut squash soup has become a seasonal fave, and it’s easy to take in new directions by adding unique spices and ingredients.
Coconut curry, tomato, carrot, chipotle, and miso butternut squash soup are all interesting options that may appeal to various groups of consumers.
Roasted acorn squash can also be a great soup base, as can zucchini. While this soft-skinned variety is technically a summer squash, it can easily transition into fall, especially if you make a cream of zucchini recipe with hearty additions like Yukon gold potatoes.
Noodle soups are nothing new, but it’s hard to deny the appeal of pairing popular pasta dishes with a soup base. Deconstructing lasagna by throwing the ingredients in a pot with chicken broth is an easy and time-saving way to provide the same flavor. Or you could pair tortellini with turkey meatballs or chicken and spinach. Chicken noodle might be the best-known pasta soup, but there are plenty of options to explore.
Chicken Pozole Verde
Classic chicken soup is a cold-weather fave, but it can get a bit boring, and its reputation as a staple of flu season can’t go unmentioned. Luckily, you can take it to another level with this twist on the classic Mexican pozole.
The base of tomatillos, cilantro, and mild green peppers like poblanos add a kick without going overboard on the heat, but customization with hotter peppers like jalapeños is easy. Chicken stock, shredded chicken, and hominy deliver the comfort appeal that diners seek when the weather turns cold, and toppings can round out the dish.
Ingredients like shredded lettuce, scallions, radishes, avocado, cilantro, sour cream, lime juice, and corn chips add complex flavors and textures. For something a bit more exciting, try adding chimichurri sauce to the mix.
Some people put chili in its own category, but it has all the hallmarks of a stew, and it’s a great addition to any fall menu. The beautiful thing about this hearty dish is that it’s so incredibly versatile. You can tailor it to any audience, with meat or vegetarian options, spicy or mild permutations, and even a white or green spin on the classic tomato-based dish.
Take meat chili up a notch by skipping beef in favor of game meat like elk or bison. If you’re making a vegetarian chili, beans are par for the course, but you could add grains like barley or quinoa for an interesting texture and a more filling recipe.
Take Fall Cuisine to the Next Level
Broths, soups, and stews are a great choice for fall menus, especially when you put your own spin on classics and drive culinary innovation. When you track trending flavor profiles and ingredients, you might even become a trendsetter yourself.
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