10 Recipes Everyone Should Cook in October

updated Mar 4, 2020
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October is a beloved month. It’s finally starting to feel like fall, and the change of seasons calls us home to cook cozy comfort food. Fall produce is hitting peak freshness, too — sweet apples, robust greens, and gorgeous root vegetables, to name just a few. Let’s not forget that October also ends in a joyous romp of baking and leftover Halloween candy.

Here are the 10 recipes you pretty much have to start making when October rolls around (although they’re good in November, too), including the best pumpkin recipes, boo bark, and rich cider stew.

1. 20-Minute Pumpkin Soup

This is the easiest pumpkin soup we know and perfect for using up those cans you’ve bought for baking but only ended up using part of. Toasted pumpkin seeds are the best salty, crunchy topping, and they don’t even need to come from your own jack-o’-lantern.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

2. Orzo with Caramelized Fall Vegetables & Ginger

You know all that kale and squash you just bought at the farmers market? This pasta dish is the best way to cook them! With quick-cooking orzo and warming ginger, it’s a cozy weeknight dinner that your whole family will love.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

3. Slow Cooker Pasta e Fagioli

Here’s what we love about this pasta: It cooks up all day in the slow cooker, so you don’t have to do much. Side benefits: Your house will smell amazing, and it makes enough for leftovers!

4. Golden Beet and Barley Salad with Rainbow Chard

Nutty, chewy barley just tastes like fall. Add some roasted golden beets (or really any beets) and some tangy feta and you have a salad we love for lunch.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

5. Slow Cooker Pork and Cider Stew

Apple cider adds a lot to the fragrant broth of this easy but hearty slow cooker stew. With tender pork shoulder, carrots, and potatoes, it’s just made for dunking bread into. Splurge on a hearty loaf or go all-out and make your own! (May we suggest our favorite no knead loaf?)

Credit: Lauren Volo

6. Maple-Ginger Pork with Caramelized Sweet Potatoes

If October meals have themes, those themes are gorgeous hearty vegetables, caramelized meats, and warm spices. This one-pan wonder has all three.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

7. The Best, Easiest Apple Crisp

When the cooler weather arrives, baking becomes fun again. And even if you don’t love baking, apple crisp can be the one thing you make this fall. The apples and oats are so easy to make it’s almost a crime not to do it! The vanilla ice cream topping is optional, but why would you skip it?

Credit: Joe Lingeman

8. Better-than-Starbucks Pumpkin Bread

This pumpkin bread uses up the whole can of pumpkin and makes the tallest loaf with the most tender-crisp crust and flavorful interior. You might want to heat your oven up now.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

9. Easy Halloween Chocolate Boo Bark

You can make this bark to serve at class parties, office potlucks, or just to use up extra Halloween candy. The secret ingredient in this version is a crisp rice cereal, which keeps it from being overly dense.

Credit: Angela Chung

10. Pumpkin Patch Brownies

How cute are these pumpkin patch brownies? You probably don’t need a reminder of how cozy plain brownies are, but with a sweet frosting and crunchy coconut topping, these are over-the-top delicious!

Get the recipe: Pumpkin Patch Brownies