The days are getting shorter, there’s a crispness in the air and the leaves are becoming crunchy and colorful—there’s no denying it, fall is in full swing! Time to dust off those boots, pull out those sweaters and prepare for the cooler weather and stresses that naturally come with transitioning into a new season. Between holiday traveling and jam-packed schedules, it’s important to keep you and your family feeling your best as winter quickly approaches. Here are our top tips to make this your healthiest autumn yet:
Thanksgiving TipsThe holidays are here and we’re ready to heat things up! Creating the ultimate roast is simple when you follow these tried-and-true tricks. Trust us, your guests will thank you!
Always bring your roast to room temperature before cooking.
Season simply with salt and pepper and let its natural flavor shine.
Create a crust by preheating your oven to 500°F and allow your meat to brown, typically 10 minutes, before reducing the heat. Cook as directed.
Here’s Your Simple Step-by-Step for the Perfect Roast
The night before you are going to cook the prime rib, unwrap the roast and let it sit uncovered in the refrigerator. This will dry out the surface, allowing for an even, crisp crust. Three hours before you want to begin cooking, take the roast out of the fridge and place it on a sheet pan at room temperature. Half an hour before you start roasting, preheat your oven to 500°F and season the roast generously with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Now it’s time to do your calculation; simply multiply the weight of your roast by five. That’s your total roasting time, in minutes. For instance, if you have a four-pound roast, 4 × 5 = 20 minutes. An eight-pound roast? 8 × 5 = 40 minutes. Remember that number. When you’re ready to cook, set the roast in a roasting pan with a rack, fat-side-up. If you’re nervous about this crazy technique, you can insert a meat thermometer or a digital-probe thermometer into the deepest part of the meat, being careful not to hit bone. If nothing else, it will provide you with some peace of mind. All right, now put the roast in the oven and roast it for exactly however many minutes you calculated above. When the time’s up, turn off the oven and walk away. Don’t open the oven door for any reason for the next 2 hours. Do not open the oven door, for any reason, for the next 2 hours. In 2 hours, take the prime rib out of the oven, and let rest. If you did use a thermometer, you’ll see that the internal temperature of the meat has reached 130°F—in other words, perfect medium-rare.
This holiday season, spice up your Thanksgiving table. Rich spices and fiery flavors can add a new twist to traditional recipes for turkey, stuffing and other holiday sides.
Centerpiece DishesSpiced Citrus Turkey – In this recipe, fresh citrus, smoky spices and fresh cilantro bring warmth and zest to the traditional turkey rub. Turkey Enchiladas – Made with salsa verde, creamy avocados and fresh herbs, this dish made from leftover turkey is a crowd-pleasing platter.
Sweet BeveragesPumpkin Horchata – Add popular pumpkin flavors to this sweet Southwestern drink made from rice milk and cinnamon.
Seasonal SidesChorizo & Cornbread Stuffing – Sweet and spicy, this stuffing recipe is the perfect match to a smoky Thanksgiving turkey. Cran-Raspberry Jalapeño Sauce – Tart cranberries, sweet raspberries, smoky jalapeños and fresh orange juice make for and delicious dish in this tangy holiday recipe. Cranberry Avocado Salsa – The fresh and surprising pairing of avocado and cranberry in this pico-style salsa is sure to garner the enthusiasm of your holiday guests this season.
Video Description: Farm-Fresh Eats – Cranberry Avocado Salsa
It’s no secret Southerners love good food and giving thanks. Mix it all together for a healthy and fun holiday food craft.
For the Snack MixGobble up a seasonal snack mix from Sprouts bulk bins. Toss together:
- 1 scoop Dark chocolate-covered pretzels
- 2 scoops Apple cinnamon granola
- 3 scoops Cranberry trail mix.
Let’s Talk TurkeyCut heart shapes from craft paper in your school colors. Overlap the hearts a smidgen and secure with tape on the back. Cut 1 1/2-inch rounds from brown paper using a craft punch. Doodle a sweet little turkey mug using a marker. Finish with a holiday saying and attach to the sacks for heart-warming smiles.
About Buttermilk Lipstick
Quite Simply the “Bee’s Knees” of Everyday LivingRebecca Gordon is a Southern lifestyle expert specializing in food and entertaining. She designed, directed and launched the lifestyle brand, Buttermilk Lipstick which celebrates everyday living from home-cooked recipes, style round-ups and crafts that tie back to her food background and her passion for Southern football and tailgating. Prior to launching Buttermilk Lipstick, Gordon served as Test Kitchen Director for Southern Living magazine and traveled the South as an on-stage presenter with the Southern Living Cooking School, as a Foods and Entertaining Specialist. Rebecca graduated summa cum laude from Johnson and Wales University in Charleston, South Carolina, specializing in Baking and Pastry Arts. She received her undergraduate degree in Restaurant Management from the University of Alabama and gained extensive experience as a pastry chef for many restaurants throughout the South including Frank Stitt’s Highlands Bar and Grill and Bottega restaurants. When she’s not cooking and entertaining friends, you’ll find her gardening or rearranging furniture around her work-in-progress bungalow and, in the fall, cheering on the Alabama Crimson Tide.
What are your holiday plans this year? We’re keeping things fairly low-key—no fancy dress-up parties to attend, and no traveling. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t celebrating! We’re home for the holidays this year, so we’re doing everything we can to make them special. Click the button below to learn how to make three of Emily’s favorite holiday drinks.
About EmilyEmily lives, loves and cooks at One Lovely Life, where she shares healthy recipes and inspiration for living a happy, full life. When her daughter developed an intolerance to gluten and dairy, her blog shifted to accommodate their new eating style, and these days you’ll find fresh, vibrant, colorful recipes that don’t feel like they’re missing anything. In addition to enjoying healthy meal choices on her blog, you’ll find made-over sweet treats, book recommendations and tips for living a life you love.
Reclaim the winter season as your wellness season with these herbal remedies! Here are a few tips to help strengthen your system for the season as well as fight back when a cold or flu strikes.
Prepare Your Immune SystemThere’s nothing like the sudden arrival of cold symptoms that sends us on a focused mission to boost our immune system. It is all too easy to forget the importance of strengthening the body’s defenses before sickness strikes. While tending to your immune system at any time never hurts, you will thank yourself for doing it sooner rather than later. Echinacea is a great way to start. Studies show it can support your immune function by helping to stimulate white blood cells. Find out more about this immune-strengthening herb!
Support Your Immune SystemUsing adaptogens during the hectic cold and flu season is a great way to help your immune system. Adaptogens are part of a special group of healing plants that help to balance, protect and restore the body. From a member of the pea family, the adaptogen astragalus is taken from the root of the plant. It can boost your immunity as well as potentially buffer the effects of stress—making it a great addition to your holiday health routine!
Not All Bugs Are the SameEver thought you’ve caught your cold for the season, only to be hit with a new one? Different colds lend themselves to different symptoms. Some bugs leave you with a dry, scratchy throat while others leave you with a wet, runny nose. Along with echinacea and astragalus, try out these beneficial herbs to help support the respiratory system:
“Wet” Bugs (Cough with mucus):
- Black cherry bark
“Dry” Bugs (Scratchy, irritated cough):
- Marshmallow root
- Slippery elm
Shop Seasonal Wellness
Turkey BrineBy Southern Bite With Thanksgiving upon us, the quest to produce the most beautiful, perfectly browned, yet still juicy, turkey is back on our minds. If you’re like me, it’s easy to get so caught up in all the other things that go along with the holiday, you often forget to give that turkey the attention is needs. The truth is, one easy step will help make that turkey the showstopping centerpiece it should be! A brine is the perfect way to impart some amazing flavor in your turkey and keep it from drying out too much—which will help if it gets a little overcooked, too. It’s a basic solution of salt and sugar that helps to lock in moisture and add flavor. To add that flavor, I add soy sauce, garlic and fresh herbs. Don’t worry, it doesn’t end up tasting like soy sauce. It just gives it a great umami flavor. You can also add lemon peel, orange peel, peppercorns and other aromatics. Just be cautious not to add anything acidic. There are a few things you should keep in mind, however. Make sure you use a fresh turkey when brining. Often times, frozen turkeys have been frozen in a sodium solution and brining would most likely add too much salt. I also recommend not stuffing a brined bird. The seasonings in the turkey can often leaching into the stuffing and cause it to be too salty. I recommend cooking your stuffing (or dressing) in a separate casserole dish just to be safe. On the same note, it’s best to be cautious when making gravy with the drippings from a brined turkey. It too can become too salty for the same reasons. Be sure to taste your gravy before adding any seasonings if you do use the drippings. Y’all enjoy!
- 2 gallons water
- 1 cup Salt
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1 head Garlic, sliced crosswise
- 1 cup Soy sauce
- 6 sprigs Fresh thyme
- 4 springs Fresh rosemary
- 1 Turkey
- Make sure the turkey has been well rinsed, with the giblets removed.
- In an extra-large stock pot, combine the water, salt, sugar, garlic, soy sauce and herbs. Stir until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Submerge the turkey in the brine, and refrigerate for 18–24 hours.
- Prior to cooking, remove the turkey from brine and discard the brine. Rinse the turkey well with cool water to remove the excess salt, and pat it dry with paper towels. Cook the turkey as you normally would.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries & PecansBy Southern Bite Brussels sprouts make the perfect side dish to accompany any Thanksgiving feast. This recipe is so simple, it will allow you to create a show-stopper side without a lot of work. It’s so tasty, no one will know how easy it was. Plus, roasting is the perfect way to prevent that bitter taste that Brussels sprouts get when they are over-cooked. The sweet cranberries and balsamic vinegar are the perfect complement. I bet even those in your family who don’t like Brussels sprouts might like these.
- 1 1/2 lbs. Brussels sprouts
- 3 Tbsp. Olive oil
- 1 cup Pecan halves, toasted
- 1/2 cup Dried cranberries
- 1 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
- Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper.
- ash and trim the ends from the Brussels sprouts. Remove any dark outer leaves and slice them in half from top to bottom.
- In a large bowl, combine the trimmed Brussels sprouts with the olive oil and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to coat the sprouts in the oil and arrange on the baking sheet. Roast for 20–30 minutes or until the sprouts are tender, with crispy, dark roasted outer leaves. Remove from the oven. Toss with the pecans and dried cranberries and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately.
About Southern Bite
Supper Made SimpleBlogger and Wall Street Journal best-selling author Stacey Little is committed to getting folks back to the table for dinner. His quick and easy recipes are allowing families to get a home-cooked meal on the table without a lot of hassle or expense. Southern Living Magazine named Stacey one of the top 30 bloggers to be following in 2015. He has appeared on The Today Show and Fox and Friends, and has lent his talents to national brands like Betty Crocker, GE, White Lily, Martha White, Kraft, and Queen Latifah—just to name a few. Today, his easy, delicious recipes and heartfelt stories have brought millions to his blog, SouthernBite.com, since he created it in 2008. Stacey’s cookbook, The Southern Bite Cookbook (Thomas Nelson: March 2014), is available at book retailers across the country and online. Stacey’s deep Southern roots have him firmly planted in central Alabama where he lives with his wife, little boy, two dogs, and his collection of cast iron skillets.
The best part about chilly weather is getting warmed up to seasonal drinks. We’ve teamed up with Traditional Medicinals to bring you cozy fall beverages, without all the added sugar. Snuggle up with a hot cup of rhizome-rich Pumpkin Spice Golden Milk or soothing Peppermint Hot Cocoa tonight!
Pumpkin Spice Golden Milk
Go beyond the typical pumpkin spice drinks
with our creamy, dairy-free twist on this Ayurvedic alternative.Servings: 1 cup Time: 15 minutes
- 1 bag Traditional Medicinals Turmeric with Meadowsweet and Ginger tea
- 1 cup Hot water
- 1/4 cup Hot almond milk
- 1 Tbsp. Maple syrup
- 1/2 Tbsp. Vanilla extract
- 1/8 tsp. Tumeric powder
- 1/8 tsp. Pumpkin spice
- 1 tsp. Coconut oil
- Boil water and steep a cup of Tumeric with Meadowsweet and Ginger tea. It’s best to keep the cup covered with a saucer to extract every bit of plant power.
- Pour the hot tea into the blender, along with 1/4 cup hot almond milk and the rest of the ingredients.
- Blend until the froth begins to form. Pour into the tea cup.
- Garnish with a cinnamon stick and a dash of pumpkin spice. Enjoy!
Peppermint Hot Cocoa
Delightfully rich hot cocoa, with a dash of peppermint cheer,
crafted perfectly for a post-dinner drink.
Servings: 2 large cups
Time: 15 minutes
- 2 bags Traditional Medicinals Peppermint tea
- 16 oz. Boiling hot water
- 4 oz. Very dark chocolate (anything over 70%), broken up into small pieces
- 1/4 cup Heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp. Raw honey
- Whipped cream, for topping
- Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Turn off the heat and add the tea bags. Cover and steep for 10 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags, squeeze out any excess liquid, and compost the tea bags.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the peppermint tea, 1/4 cup heavy cream and 1 Tbsp. raw honey.
- Stir until the chocolate is dissolved and everything is combined. Do not bring to a boil.
Pour into two mugs, top with whipped cream and enjoy!
Whether you make your own or use a can, it seems you’re almost guaranteed to always have just a little bit left over. And, nobody likes to waste precious pumpkin purée. A little pumpkin goes a long way in making your favorite dishes tastier and more nutritious. Here are some easy recipes that go well beyond pie filling.
Pumpkin SoupThe main ingredients in vegetarian pumpkin soup are pumpkin purée and vegetable broth. Variations are endless, but some of our favorites include the addition of caramelized onions, low-fat milk, cinnamon and nutmeg. Another option is to create a traditional potato soup using canned pumpkin instead; season with cumin and a pinch of curry. Pumpkin soup makes a great first course for a holiday dinner.
Pumpkin HummusPumpkin adds a touch of color and light earthiness to the flavor of hummus. Stir 1/4 cup of pumpkin purée into 1 cup (about 7 oz. container) of your favorite hummus. You can find a variety of brands and flavors in the Deli Department.
Pumpkin ChiliAdding a can of pumpkin to your pot of chili provides a good dose of fiber, vitamins and antioxidants. Whether your favorite chili recipe involves beans, tofu or ground beef, the addition of pumpkin purée gives the chili a nice substance, flavor and texture.
Pumpkin Pasta SauceGive your favorite tomato sauce a little extra body and festive flavor. Simply stir 1 cup of pumpkin purée into 3 cups (about 26 oz.) of your favorite jarred or homemade pasta sauce. You can also sweeten up your favorite lasagna recipe by spreading pumpkin purée between the layers.
Pumpkin Buttercream FrostingCream two sticks of unsalted butter at room temperature, 1/2 cup of pumpkin purée, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Slowly add two pounds of confectioner’s sugar (more or less) until the buttercream is no longer separated by the pumpkin.
Need more pumpkin inspiration? Try these recipes below!
Sometimes pumpkin carving can be a messy, not to mention risky, activity. Rather than skipping out on the Halloween fun, why not try adorning your pumpkin with seeds or adding a splash of color to your festive group of gourds? We’ve rounded up some spook-tacular ways to decorate your pumpkins this season – no knife required!
What you’ll need:
- Small pumpkin, any color
- *Bowl of room temperature water
- Variety of nail polish
- After choosing your colors, pour the nail polish into bowl as close to the water as possible to avoid the polish sinking down to the bottom of the bowl.
- Swirl the nail polish colors together slightly using a toothpick.
- Stick the pumpkin on a fork and dip the top of it into the bowl.
- Slowly remove and set on paper to dry (about 20 minutes).
What you’ll need:
- Pushpins/thumb tacks
- Pumpkin of any size
- Using a pencil, lightly draw your design onto your pumpkin.
- Push in pins along the lines of the design.
- Optional: adorn with a bow.
What you’ll need:
- Assortment of seeds, jewels, or other decorative items
- Craft glue or hot glue gun
- Pumpkin, any size
- Using your decorative items, plan out your design on a flat surface.
- Begin gluing your design onto your pumpkin and let dry.