When the mercury drops, the wind howls, and the snow begins to fall,
there’s nothing quite like a cozy meal to warm the mind, body, and soul.
In Chinese medicine, warming foods are said to keep the body’s energy balanced if one is cold from things such as poor digestion, fatigue, and/or…cool weather. Winter is known as a yin time of year (a season of looking inward, slowing down, and resting) and warm foods balance this yin by providing yang energy.
However, sometimes winter comfort meals can be laden with refined carbohydrates and added sugars while lacking nutrient-dense foods.
But they don’t have to!
Here are warming winter meal ideas to inspire cozy cooking filled with nutrients!
For some, nothing is better than a steaming bowl of soup on a cold winter’s day or night. Just sipping it seems to fill the body with calm and coziness!
For a simple chicken soup:
- sauté (1) small onion, (1-2) medium carrots, and (1-2) stalks of celery until tender
- add (3-4) minced garlic cloves and sauté for one minute
- add (2) cups chopped rotisserie chicken
- add 4 cups chicken stock
- bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste
For easy vegetable beef soup:
- sauté (1) small onion, (1-2) medium carrot, (1-2) stalks of celery and (1/4) cup each chopped vegetable such as green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, potatoes, greens, and peas (or your own favorites/what’s on hand) in a soup pot until slightly tender
- add (2-3) minced garlic cloves and sauté for one minute
- add (1) pound of cooked grass-fed ground beef to the soup pot
- add (4) cups vegetable, chicken, or beef stock
- add (1-2) cups of low sodium tomato juice (depending on how brothy you want the soup)
- let simmer for at least 30 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste
- Add herbs and spices such as turmeric, rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, and/or bay leaves for added flavor and nutrition.
There’s just something about a one-pot meal that is comforting when it’s cold out!
Some recipes to check out are:
Yes, snacks can be warming, too!
Consider such delights as:
Warm Whole Wheat Pita with Roasted Garlic Hummus
Baked Sweet Potato (try Japanese sweet potato for a sweeter taste)
Freshly Popped Popcorn with added toppings such as nutritional yeast, garlic powder, turmeric, or cinnamon
These are just a few ideas to inspire your winter cozy cooking for balanced qi (energy). What will you make to keep you and your family warm this season?
If you are in need of naturopathic support this winter, please call us at (303) 688-6698 or click here to schedule a free 15 minute phone consultation to talk with Dr. Graves. Whether acupuncture, plant medicine, counseling, massage, or other naturopathic needs, we are here for you.
The CNMA office provides naturopathic care, acupuncture, testing, massage, and holistic counseling to those in Castle Rock, Castle Pines, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Centennial, Parker, Larkspur, Monument, Colorado Springs, and the greater Denver metro area. For those outside of these areas, virtual appointments are available.