The colder weather will soon be upon us and many of us are turning to thoughts of those hearty meals that we only make this time of year. From soups and stews, to incredible main dishes, desserts and hot drinks, this is our guide to the top five winter warmers that you can make at home and enjoy today.

  1.   Spicy Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup

Figure 1 Recipe and Image Courtesy of AllRecipes


1 1/2 pounds orange-fleshed sweet potatoes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 (2 inch) piece fresh ginger root, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon red curry paste
1 (15 ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
3 cups vegetable broth
3 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Place the sweet potatoes directly on the rack and bake them about 45 minutes until tender enough to easily pierce with a fork. Remove from the oven and cool.

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Adding the onion and ginger; cook and stir until tender, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the curry paste and heat for 1 minute, then whisk in the coconut milk and vegetable broth.

Bring this mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for another 5 minutes.

Skin the sweet potatoes and cut into bite size pieces. Add to the soup and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in lemon juice and season with salt. Ladle into bowls and garnish with a drizzle of sesame oil and a little bit of cilantro.

A hearty meal that the entire family will enjoy!

  1. A Scotsman’s Shepherd Pie

Figure 2 Recipe and Image Courtesy of


5 cups mashed, boiled potatoes
1/2 cup sour cream
2 ounces cream cheese
2 tablespoons butter, softened, divided
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1-pound ground lamb
1 pinch salt and ground black pepper to taste
1 (16 ounce) can stewed tomatoes with juice, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 small carrot, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup peas
1 cup Irish stout
1 cube beef bouillon
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
3/4 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons smoked paprika


Add potatoes, sour cream, cream cheese, 1 tablespoon butter, egg yolk, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper to large bowl. Stir to mix well.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil. Add ground lamb and cook until browned. Drain excess grease and season with salt and pepper.

Combine tomatoes with juice, onion and carrot with ground lamb. Stir well and simmer for 10 minutes. Add peas and cook an additional 2-3 minutes.

In a saucepan, heat beer adding beef bouillon and cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.

In a sauté pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter and add flour whisking immediately until a paste if formed. Stir in beer and Worcestershire and cook until smooth and slightly thickened. Stir this into lamb mixture and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Pour lamb mixture into a greased 9×12-inch baking dish. Spoon mashed potatoes over lamb mixture and top with Cheddar cheese, parsley and paprika.

Broil 4 to 5 minutes in oven until crust is browned and cheese is melted. Cool before serving.


Figure 3 Recipe and Image Courtesy of


A drink for the adults. Perfect for those cold evenings sitting fireside with family and friends.

  1. Warm Bourbon Cider

Figure 3 Recipe and Image Courtesy of


1 gal. fresh apple cider
5 tsp. ground cinnamon
2½ tsp. ground nutmeg
2½ tsp. ground ginger
3 c. bourbon


Add apple cider, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger to a stock pot and heat until hot, but not boiling.

Remove from heat and add bourbon.

Stir to distribute spices and serve.

  1. Nutella Hot Chocolate

Figure 4 Recipe Courtesy of


4 cups low fat milk
2 tablespoons Nutella
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons natural sweetener of choice/raw sugar


In a heavy saucepan, heat milk on medium-high heat just until steam begins to form. Do not boil.

Whisk in Nutella, cocoa powder and sugar. Stir until dissolved and smooth.

Simmer slowly while stirring until desired temperature is reached.

Serve with your desired toppings:

  • Marshmallows
  • Crushed hazelnuts
  • Chocolate chips
  • Extra Nutella

An easy dessert that uses seasonal ingredients to create a taste and smell that will fill your home.

5.Maple-Walnut Apple Cobbler

Figure 5 Recipe and Image Courtesy of

A simple skillet cobbler filled with harvest flavor.


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup cold butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
5 Braeburn apples (2 1/4 to 2 1/2 pounds total), peeled, cored, and cut into 3/4-inch pieces (5 cups)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine 1 cup flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.

Add 1/4 cup butter and cut into mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Add 1/3 cup of the walnuts, milk and maple syrup.

Mix gently until a dough forms.

In a 9- or 10-inch cast-iron skillet, heat 2 tablespoons butter and the brown sugar over medium-high heat.

Stirring constantly, cook until butter is melted and sugar begins to melt.

Add apples and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon flour and the cinnamon.

Cook until apples are coated, stirring frequently.

Remove from heat and stir in remaining walnuts.

Drop dough mixture in mounds over the apple mixture and bake 30-35 minutes until top is browned.

Serve while hot.

Enjoy! xx