Summertime had us hunting for restaurants with the best outdoor seating options, but fall brings shorter days and chillier evenings—perfect for keeping cozy indoors with a delicious homemade meal. With a new selection of seasonal vegetables available—and the excuse to make all the fall-ready recipes we’ve been dreaming about—our grocery lists are bursting with ingredients and ideas. Once your pantry is stocked with the following fall essentials, you’ll be ready to tackle whatever culinary inspiration comes your way!
Quinoa: Though we eat quinoa year-round, it’s an especially great base for fall-inspired sides, plus a hearty addition to all kinds of soups!
Canned pumpkin: The pumpkin spice latte craze has likely tipped you off to the nearly universal popularity of this seasonal squash. Pumpkins make great additions to savory dishes and desserts. Both the flesh and seeds are packed with beneficial nutrients, so feel free to eat up! Keep a few cans on hand for whatever pumpkin-flavored cravings may strike!
Chicken broth: We love summer, but a steamy bowl of soup isn’t always justifiable in such sweltering weather. Now that it’s finally fall, stock up on chicken broth for use in soups, hearty sauces and other hot dishes that require a tasty liquid base.
Applesauce: Applesauce can be used in quick breads and cookies (often as a substitute for oil!). We also suggest making a big homemade batch and stocking your fridge full of it this fall!
Almond butter: The ideal companion to a crisp fall apple—and also a great ingredient to include in cookies, atop oatmeal or on a piece of toast (hello, hearty breakfast!).
Oatmeal: Swap your smoothie for a comforting bowl of oatmeal in the morning (try making it in the slow cooker or soaking it overnight!). We’re also huge fans of oatmeal cookies this time of year—the perfect snack to munch on while sipping a coffee or chai latte!
Mulling spices: Autumn just isn’t complete without a few servings of spiced cider or wine! Serve your guests some yummy hot beverages after dinner—or indulge on your own while you settle in to watch some new fall TV shows.
Tea: Tea is delicious (and very healthy!) all year long, but nothing welcomes fall quite like the switch from bottled iced tea to a mug of hot tea made in your favorite kettle. Choose a chai blend for an especially autumn-esque experience, and add immunity-boosting flavorings like cinnamon or honey to your brew when cold season approaches!
Illustration: Kate Wong of Striped Cat Studio