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  • Hui Hui Lee, RD/LD

It is cold outside, let’s have some warm food


Brr… It is too cold outside for me (although it is approximately in the 50s outside, which might be considered warm to some people). I missed all of you last month due to some personal issues, sorry about that, hope you guys did not miss me too much! (just kidding) I am thinking since the weather is going to be freezing cold for the next few months, how about we talk a little bit more about the food to keep us warm this winter? A general rule of thumb about the type of food that helps to warm ourselves during winter: 1) try warm to hot temperatures food/drinks,   2) incorporate warm spices to food/drinks (like anise, black pepper, ginger, cumin, coriander, and cinnamon). Also, to stay away from preventable illnesses during this winter, we also need to be more proactive in mindful eating (MODERATION is the KEY), and focus on a well-rounded diet. Many of you may now be seeking examples of food best to eat during cold weather.


I found some mouthwatering recipes that work well in late fall and winter. Some of them are unique, you may find odd choices, but I encourage you to try them (if you find some free time to do some cooking).

Leftover Turkey Lo Mein: This is an EXTREMELY easy stir-fried noodle recipe, yet delicious! We used leftover turkey as the protein option, as I thought some of you might have made too much turkey during holiday meals, and now have to deal with leftover turkey. This lo mein recipe might be a new recipe for you to try. I topped my leftover turkey lo mein with some chopped green onion and crispy chili oil/sauce (it can be purchased at Walmart located at the international aisle, which is the Lao Gan Ma brand). The recipe is inspired from The Woks of Life.



Wild Rice Pilaf: This is a hearty, savory side dish, which the nutty flavored wild rice pairs with a mix of veggie, sweet dried cranberries, and some toasted pecans. This wild rice pilaf dish packs so many flavors that it is perfect for the holiday feast! I highly recommend this recipe! The recipe is adapted from Feasting at Home.



Pumpkin Pasta: I know, I know. I know what your current facial expression is when you see this. It took me a while to finally convince myself to be a more adventurous eater when it comes to some unique recipes, just like this pumpkin pasta/fettuccine. I have to admit this pumpkin pasta takes some time to get our taste buds to understand the flavor, I will say people who love pumpkin will love this dish! People like me, not really a huge fan of pumpkin, do not dislike it either, the more I bite into the dish, I kinda like it. I always support the idea of eating food when they are in season, so this pumpkin pasta is really perfect for fall and winter food. Do give it a try, who knows it may be your new favorite dish in the future. The recipe is inspired by Feasting at Home.



Baked Penne Pasta: This is a fail-proof, no-boiled version recipe, super easy yet EXTREMELY DELICIOUS pasta. The baked pasta is also incorporated into some spinach and mushrooms. People like me who really do not care much about pasta, found myself cleaning my plate. When trying the recipe, I replaced half the amount of mushrooms with ground turkey. Also, the original recipe is called for Ziti pasta, because I only had penne pasta available at the time, so I went with what I had. If you are interested, please refer to the recipe to Feasting at Home



Instant Pot Chicken and Spinach Ramen: Are you craving for something cozy, like homemade ramen? Try this instant pot chicken and spinach ramen! This takes no effort to make this cozy meal. This ramen is so good and so filling. The recipe is adapted from Half-baked Harvest.




Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies: This is not the ordinary molasses cookie recipe you would get from the store. According to Sylvia, “Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside with deliciously crispy edges. Infused with fragrant chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to another level!” These cookies are by far the best holiday cookies I’ve tried! Highly recommend it! The recipe is adapted from Feasting at home.



*Most of the ingredients used for the cooking are contributed by the DRH food and nutrition department.

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