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11/11/2013 09:52 am ET Updated Mar 11, 2015

6 Essential Fall Dishes Everyone Should Know How To Make

By Lynn Andriani

Turn fall's bounty into ridiculously good dinners and treats with these apple -- and pumpkin -- -centric recipes.

  • 1 German Winter Stew
    Thinkstock
    Pork shoulder is juicy and savory, economical and pairs wonderfully with autumn (and winter) flavors. One of the tastiest -- and easiest -- ways to cook it is in this hearty German stew, which combines the meat with two types of apples (Granny Smith and Red Delicious), green and red cabbage and egg noodles. It's truly a no-brainer meal: After some quick prep work, you can let the dish simmer for a few hours, and then it's ready to eat. Get the recipe: German Winter Stew
  • 2 The New Way To Eat Sweet Potatoes
    Ditte Isager
    This lighter alternative to a typical tailgating dish uses sweet potatoes -- the ubiquitous cold-weather vegetable -- in an uncommon way: as taco filling. You sauté the diced sweet potatoes in olive oil, and then pop them into the oven for 15 minutes so they're soft on the inside and just lightly crispy on the outside. Piled into tortillas with black beans, pepper and cheese, they're an autumnal take on a much-loved meal. Get the recipe: Roasted Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos
  • 3 The Doughnut You Thought You Could Only Find At Farm Stands
    Thinkstock
    Before we tried it, we thought making our own apple-cider doughnuts sounded complicated and not worth the effort when the farmers' market sells such good ones. After one go, though, we are hooked, thanks to Wilton's doughnut pan and Stonewall Kitchen's mix. The process is supereasy (just add a few pantry ingredients) and mess-free (the doughnuts are baked, not fried) -- and the results are outrageously tasty.
  • 4 The Party Sweet They'll Clamor For
    Ben Fink
    It's hard to beat a big pan of spiced pumpkin bars glazed with cream cheese frosting for autumn potlucks, football-watching parties and bake sales. This spin on the annual classic is more healthful than most; the recipe uses applesauce instead of oil, Splenda instead of sugar and oat flour instead of white flour -- and the bars still taste deliciously moist. Get the recipe: Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 5 The Butternut Squash You'll Be Making With (Almost) Every Meal
    Tina Rupp
    Ina Garten's maple-roasted, pancetta-studded butternut squash is a breeze to make and incredibly versatile, too. You spread the cubed squash on a baking sheet with garlic, oil, syrup, salt and pepper; bake for about 20 minutes; then sprinkle pancetta and sage leaves over everything and slide it back into the oven for 20 to 30 more minutes. The sweet and savory side goes especially well with pork tenderloin or roasted chicken. Get the recipe: Maple-Roasted Butternut Squash
  • 6 The Speediest Way To Make Your Home Smell Like Fall
    Thinkstock
    Oprah's former personal chef Art Smith says this warm, spiced cider is always one of the most-requested beverages at his restaurants. It's as simple as combining orange and lemon zest, a mix of spices and a quart of apple cider in a saucepan and simmering them until you just can't resist the cinnamony scent any longer. Get the recipe: Mulled Apple Cider

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BEFORE YOU GO
10 Totally Unexpected Ways to Cook with Pumpkin
PHOTO GALLERY
10 Totally Unexpected Ways to Cook with Pumpkin

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