Best Fall Recipes

by Jessica Zen
Stripes Europe

From pumpkin spice everything to apple pie, fall is one of the greatest times to indulge in some serious seasonal food. With temperatures cooling down, utilize the oven or turn on the stove top and consider creating some of these crowd favorites.

Dinner Ideas

Autumn Minestrone Soup


2 medium carrots, diced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups vegetable broth
2 1/2 cups 3/4-inch diced yukon gold potatoes
2 1/2 cups 3/4-inch diced butternut squash
1 medium zucchini, ends trimmed, sliced into half-moons or quarters
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 1/2 tsp finely minced fresh rosemary or oregano (or 1 tsp dried)
2 1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme (or 1 tsp dried)
2 bay leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup dry ditalini pasta (optional)
2 cups packed chopped kale, thick ribs removed
1 14.5 oz can red or white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
Shredded parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)


Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and carrots and sauté for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Stir in the vegetable broth, potatoes, squash, zucchini, tomatoes, rosemary, thyme and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and stir in pasta if using. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and simmer until veggies are nearly tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in kale and kidney beans and cook until kale is tender, about 5 minutes longer. Remove bay leaves and serve warm with parmesan cheese.

Creamy Butternut Squash Alfredo Pasta


4 strips of applewood bacon
2 tbsp butter
1 cup diced red onion
1 garlic clove
3 cups butternut squash cubes
1 cup low sodium chicken stock
1 1/2 tbsp diced fresh sage
1 1/2 tbsp diced fresh thyme
1 cup 2% milk
Salt to taste
2 lb. gluten free pasta (I used quinoa pasta)


In a large skillet, add the butter and red onion. Sauté until slightly soft, about 1-2 minutes.
Next add in the garlic, sauté for 30 seconds, stir and add the butternut squash, chicken stock, sage and thyme. Stir and cover. Cook until the butternut squash is fork tender, about 8-10 minutes. When the squash is tender, add the squash to a food processor along with the milk and salt to taste. Puree until smooth. In the meantime, heat a small skillet to medium high heat, add the diced bacon to the pan and sauté until the bacon is crispy, about 4-5 minutes. When the bacon is done, place it on a paper towel lined plate to let the grease drain. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add gluten free pasta and cook according to directions, (6-8 minutes) do not overcook. Drain pasta and add butternut squash sauce to the pasta, gently toss together and top with crispy bacon.

Dessert Ideas

Apple Crisp Cookie Cups


Apple Pie Filling-
6 cups Granny Smith apples (4-5 apples) peeled and chopped
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch ground nutmeg
pinch salt
2 cups water
Oatmeal Cookie Cups-
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups rolled oats
Sugar Glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp water


Apple Pie Filling-
Toss apples and lemon juice in a medium bowl and set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine sugars, cornstarch and spices. Pour in water. Cook over medium heat until boiling. Cook for 2 minutes. Add apples, bring back to a boil. Simmer until tender (10-15 mins). Cool completely.
Oatmeal Cookie Cups-
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars on med-high until pale and fluffy (approx. 3 minutes). Add eggs one at a time, fully incorporating after each addition, and beat on high for 1 minute. Add vanilla. Turn mixer to low and add flour mixture, mix until combined. Add oats and mix until just combined. Spray two regular sized muffin tins with cooking spray. Using a large cookie scoop (3 tbsp) to scoop dough into muffin tins, press down and push up the sides to create cups. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake cookie cups for approx. 15 minutes or until browned and mostly set. Remove from oven and (if needed) immediately use a small jar or container to press firmly down in the center to create a well. Cool in pans for 15 minutes, then place on wire rack to cool completely. Using a tablespoon, fill each cookie cup with apple pie filling. Drizzle with sugar glaze if desired.

Apple Fries with Caramel Cream Dip


For the Apples-
4 - 5 tart apples
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup sugar
Wondra flour
Vegetable oil
Cinnamon and sugar to taste
For the Dip-
8 oz cream cheese
8 oz Cool Whip or 1 cup whipping cream with 1/2 cup sugar
1 cup caramel sauce


In a fry pan or deep fryer, heat vegetable oil for frying. Mix together the buttermilk and sugar in a medium size bowl. Peel and slice apples and add them to the buttermilk mixture as you go to prevent browning.In a shallow dish, put a layer of wonder flour. Pull the apples out of the buttermilk mix, one at a time and lightly coat all sides in the flour. When oil is nice and hot, gently place coated apples into the oil so they are not touching. When the bottom side begins to turn golden, flip over and brown the second side. Quickly remove to a tray lined with paper towels to soak up excess grease and cool. Sprinkle immediately with cinnamon and sugar while  hot. For the dip mix together the the cream cheese and cool whip until completely blended, then stir in the caramel sauce. Place into a bowl for dipping and drizzle a little extra caramel sauce over the top.

Cream Cheese Filled Pumpkin Bread


Cream Cheese Filling-
1 8 ounce package of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9-by-5 inch loaf pan with nonstick spray.

For the cream cheese middle-

In a medium bowl using an electric mixer combine the cream cheese, sugar, flour, egg and the vanilla and beat until smooth. Set aside.
For the bread-

In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and the pumpkin pie spice. Set aside. In a large bowl using an electric mixer beat together the vegetable oil, sugar, eggs and the pumpkin puree until well combined. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture a little at a time, stir until just evenly combined. Pour 1 1/2 cups of the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Spoon the cream cheese mixture over the top of this layer and spread evenly, then add the remaining batter. Bake for 65 to 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. For softer edges cover with foil the last 15 minutes of baking. Cool in pan for 15 minutes before removing, then place on a wire rack and cool completely before slicing.

Harvest Caramel Corn


10 cups of popped popcorn
1 cup butter (sweet cream salted)
1 cup light brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda
Mini or regular Rolos
Harvest Blend M&M candy


Make popcorn, salt and set aside. Melt 1 cup of butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add 1 cup of brown sugar and stir until thoroughly mixed. Stirring continuously, bring the butter and sugar mixture up to a boil. When it reaches a boil allow it to cook for 5 minutes without stirring. Add the 2 tsp of vanilla at the 4-minute mark and stir to mix. Continue to boil for one addition minute and then add the 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. Drizzle 3/4 of the caramel mixture over the popcorn. Use a spoon to gently fold the popcorn with the mixture until the kernels are all covered. Save 1/4 of the mixture to the side. Pour the popcorn out onto a cookie sheet covered with aluminum foil or a Silpat liner. Drizzle the remaining caramel mixture over the caramel corn and immediately sprinkle the M&M candy and the Mini Rollo’s on the areas with the drizzled caramel mixture. Let the popcorn cool and serve.

Just a few bites of any of these fall recipes and your family is sure to be hooked! From extra easy to a little bit more involved, these recipes can be whipped up by anyone with a desire to eat something delicious. Hit the grocery store today and stock up on ingredients to get cooking. 

Subscribe to our Stripes Europe newsletter and receive amazing travel stories, great event info, helpful PCS tips, interesting lifestyle articles and more directly in your inbox!

Follow us on social media!

Facebook: Stars and Stripes Europe
Pinterest: Stars and Stripes Europe
Instagram: @StarsandStripeseurope

Related Content

Recommended Content