09/28/2014 08:16 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

10 Cozy Recipes for Cool Fall Days

1. Hot Buttered Cider With Rum


This warm fall cocktail combines spiked apple cider with hot buttered rum and autumn spices. It's the ideal drink for a crowd because it sits on the stove in a big pot for everyone to help themselves (making your house smell amazing), and you can make most of it ahead of time. GET THE RECIPE

2. Super Simple Butternut Squash Soup


This has got to be the easiest butternut squash soup recipe ever. You start with pre-cut squash from the supermarket, then you basically throw everything in a pot, simmer it, purée it and you're done. Just because it's easy doesn't mean it's not delicious. I promise you that it's everything you expect a classic butternut squash soup to be: silky, slightly sweet and full of flavor. GET THE RECIPE

3. Spiced Pumpkin Bread


This pumpkin bread is an old family recipe, and it has always been my mother's signature dessert. I still remember wrapping the loaves in foil as a child and carting them to every neighborhood potluck, school event and holiday party. It's easy -- just a bit of mixing and stirring, pop it in the oven, and, in about an hour, you'll have a house smelling of sweet autumn spices and two scrumptious, pumpkiny loaves. GET THE RECIPE

4. Creamy Butternut Squash Polenta


I first tried this wonderful side dish at my dear friend Dana Kaminsky's house for a holiday dinner. She served it with Onion-Braised Brisket and roasted vegetables, among other things, and it was truly a meal to remember. I've since made it many times and can attest that it's delicious with any sauce-laden roast or stew, and also with my easy New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp recipe. GET THE RECIPE

5. Savory Sausage & Cheddar Bread Pudding


Bread pudding is usually sweet, but it can be made savory too. This version, brimming with sweet pork sausage and sharp cheddar, is deeply flavored with a crisp, golden crust and tender, creamy interior. It's perfect for entertaining because it can be made ahead of time and feeds a crowd. GET THE RECIPE

6. Apple Spice Muffins


These muffins are made partially with whole wheat flour, which gives them a wonderfully wholesome flavor and texture. They're also chockfull of apples, scented with warm autumn spices and finished with an irresistible crunchy brown sugar topping. You need to bake them. GET THE RECIPE

7. Autumn Carrot & Sweet Potato Soup


Made with carrots, sweet potatoes, apples and honey, this savory soup with a hint of sweetness and spice is one of my favorites for fall. The secret ingredient is curry powder, which doesn't give the soup an Indian flavor like you might think, but instead lends a subtle hint of autumn spice. GET THE RECIPE

8. Apple Pecan Crisp


Imagine warm baked apples bubbling away in their own syrupy juices, topped with a streusel-like mix of toasted pecans, old-fashioned rolled oats, sweet butter and brown sugar...Served warm out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, it's the ultimate fall dessert. GET THE RECIPE

9. Easy Slow Baked Boneless BBQ Short Ribs


When you're craving comfort food, you can't beat meltingly tender short ribs slow-cooked in a sweet and tangy barbecue sauce. And here's the best part: only 15 minutes of prep work and the oven does the rest. Unlike many roast or stew recipes, it's not necessary to sear the meat first. You just slather it with sauce, put it in the oven, and let deliciousness ensue. GET THE RECIPE

10. Glazed Oatmeal-Maple Scones with Pecans & Currants


These comforting breakfast treats are like a cross between scones and oatmeal cookies: buttery and tender on the inside, crisp and craggy on the outside, and chockfull of oats, pecans and currants. The recipe is the first I tried from Joanne Chang's wonderful cookbook, Flour: Spectacular Recipes from Boston's Bakery & Cafe, and it was love at first bite. GET THE RECIPE