Be honest—the last thing you want to eat on a chilly fall day is a salad. Sure, in the summertime, salads are refreshing. They are full of all kinds of summer produce and keep us feeling slim and trim throughout the summer months. But as the colder months come around, it can be difficult to find foods that can help promote and maintain weight loss. Especially when all you're craving is warm comfort foods! But what if we told you that you could have the best of both worlds?
Comfort foods don't have to be loaded with calories! With a few tweaks, they can easily be made into healthier meals that you'll love, without compromising the comfort and flavor you desire during the fall season. The key is to aim for leaner cuts of meat and to boost your favorite comfort meals with lots of nutrients. Hello, vegetables!
From slimming breakfasts to comforting dinners, here are some of our favorite fall recipes to turn to for easier weight loss. And if you're on the hunt for even more easy recipe ideas, check out our list of the 100 Easiest Recipes You Can Make.
Hearty Turkey Chili
Lean out that pot of chili this fall by swapping out fatty ground beef with lean ground turkey!
Get our recipe for Hearty Turkey Chili.
Pumpkin Pad Thai
Who says pumpkin can only go in pie? Reap all the health benefits pumpkin can provide by adding it to this savory pad thai!
Get our recipe for Pumpkin Pad Thai.
There's nothing like a slice of warm banana bread with a steaming cup of coffee on a crisp, fall, weekend morning. Especially if that slice is significantly lower in sugar!
Get our recipe for Banana Bread.
Vanilla-Bourbon French Toast
The vanilla-bourbon flavor combo is perfect for warm, cozy fall vibes, and this particular recipe is great because it keeps the sugar count relatively low compared to your typical French toast recipe.
Get our recipe for Vanilla-Bourbon French Toast.
Homemade Cranberry Orange Granola
Avoid the sugary bag of granola at the store and make your own low-sugar version at home with a fall-favorite flavor—cranberries!
Get our recipe for Homemade Cranberry Orange Granola.
Lemon-Poppy Seed Multigrain Pancakes With Blueberry Compote
Wake up to a healthier stack of pancakes made with multigrain and a homemade blueberry compote.
Get our recipe for Lemon-Poppy Seed Multigrain Pancakes With Blueberry Compote.
Pumpkin Arugula Marinara Flatbread
Spread your favorite fall flavor right onto a flatbread and top with nutrient-dense veggies for an easy appetizer for all—or a delicious lunch for you!
Get our recipe for Pumpkin Arugula Marinara Flatbread.
Butternut Sage Carbonara
Swap out the carb-heavy pasta with butternut squash swirls when making your favorite comforting carbonara this season.
Get our recipe for Butternut Sage Carbonara.
Sheet-Pan Vegan Sausage and Vegetables
Sheet pans make for easy weight loss meals—especially when they are loaded with lean proteins and lots of veggies!
Get our recipe for Sheet-Pan Vegan Sausage and Vegetables.
Smoky Paprika Roast Chicken with Green Beans
Roast up a chicken on the weekend and you'll have a lot of lean protein to work with throughout the rest of the week!
Get our recipe for Smoky Paprika Roast Chicken with Green Beans.
Spicy Pumpkin Parfaits
Pumpkin makes for a great flavor additive to your morning yogurt parfait—especially when it's topped with nuts and seeds!
Get our recipe for Spicy Pumpkin Parfaits.
Slow Cooker Maple Balsamic Chicken and Vegetables
This balsamic chicken vegetable recipe makes cooking look easy thanks to your handy-dandy slow cooker.
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Maple Balsamic Chicken and Vegetables.
Cranberry Orange Scones
Skip the sugary donuts at your local bakery and make your own low-sugar baked goods at home with these cranberry orange scones!
Get our recipe for Cranberry Orange Scones.
Turkey Sweet Potato Breakfast Hash
A hearty breakfast hash made leaner with turkey sausage, lots of veggies, and vitamin-A-boosting sweet potatoes!
Get our recipe for Turkey Sweet Potato Breakfast Hash.
Butternut Squash Soup
Use up this fall-favorite veggie in a creamy (healthier) soup for easy weight loss lunches!
Get our recipe for Butternut Squash Soup.
Portobello Mushroom Pizzas
Craving pizza on a crisp Friday night? This healthier version uses the heads of portobello mushrooms as the "crust" and is topped with all of your favorite pizza fillings.
Get our recipe for Portobello Mushroom Pizzas.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts, in the fall? Groundbreaking. Especially when you try roasting them with all of these delicious flavor combinations!
Get our recipe for Roasted Brussels Sprouts.
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili
Use that leftover can of pumpkin in this clever take on chili this fall right in your slow cooker.
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili.
Slow Cooker Green Chile Pork Soup
Did we mention that your slow cooker is going to be your seasonal best friend? This hearty, healthy soup uses lean pork and spicy green chiles to warm you up.
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Green Chile Pork Soup.
Roasted Autumn Harvest Salad
Roast up some of your favorite fruits and top on a bed of leafy greens for a deliciously sweet take on salad.
Get our recipe for Roasted Autumn Harvest Salad.
Slow Cooker Cuban Tomato Black Bean Soup
This black bean soup beefs up the protein in this soup by adding in a smoked ham hock, making this soup a filling lunch alternative.
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Cuban Tomato Black Bean Soup.
Chai Poached Pears
Looking for a healthier dessert option to serve at your Thanksgiving festivities? These chai poached pears are a classy alternative to your usual sugary pies.
Get our recipe for Chai Poached Pears.
Cinnamon Oatmeal Apple Pancakes
Still have bags of apples after going apple picking? Use some of them up by topping warmed cinnamon apples on top of these oatmeal pancakes for a fun fall twist on a classic breakfast favorite.
Get our recipe for Cinnamon Oatmeal Apple Pancakes.
Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Cupcakes, for weight loss? These cupcakes cut down the sugar and fat by using healthier ingredients without compromising that carrot cake flavor you love!
Get our recipe for Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes.
Apple Cranberry Crisp
Another clever way to use those leftover apples! Bake up this apple cranberry crisp for a healthier fruit-forward dessert to serve to a crowd.
Get our recipe for Apple Cranberry Crisp.
Healthy Baked Ziti
Baked casseroles and slow-cooked meals are the name of the game in the fall, so having a few healthier versions of your favorite comfort foods—like baked ziti!—can certainly help with your weight loss efforts.
Get our recipe for Healthy Baked Ziti.
Green Machine Veggie Casserole
Load up your breakfast with all kinds of greens with this easy, low-carb veggie casserole.
Get our recipe for Green Machine Veggie Casserole.
Low-Carb Lemon Cheesecake with Macadamia Crust
This cheesecake is made with a macadamia crust to cut down on the carb and sugar intake while still giving you all of that cheesecake goodness you love!
Get our recipe for Low-Carb Lemon Cheesecake with Macadamia Crust.
Paleo Pumpkin Smoothie
Whoever said smoothies were only a summer food was seriously mistaken!
Get our recipe for Paleo Pumpkin Smoothie.
Sheet Pan Pork Chops with Vegetables
Sheet pan meals make weight loss a lot easier because they require such minimal effort. Simply throw your meal on a tray, bake, and enjoy!
Get our recipe for Sheet Pan Pork Chops with Vegetables.
Warm Goat Cheese Salad
No one wants to eat a cold salad on a cold winter day, so toast up your goat cheese for a fun twist!
Get our recipe for Warm Goat Cheese Salad.
Slow Cooker Chicken in Red Wine Sauce
Change up your usual Sunday roast by cooking chicken in a homemade red wine sauce right in your slower cooker!
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken in Red Wine Sauce.
Healthier Chicken Pot Pie
Slash those calories with this healthier version of your favorite comforting chicken pot pie.
Get our recipe for Healthier Chicken Pot Pie.
Grilled Chicken Avocado Salad
Miss your summery salads? This grilled chicken avocado salad recipe adds in cranberries for a fall twist while still giving you that fresh, summery vibe.
Get our recipe for Grilled Chicken Avocado Salad.
Hearty Turkey Meatloaf with Tomato Glaze
Change up your usual meatloaf recipe by using leaner ground turkey instead!
Get our recipe for Hearty Turkey Meatloaf with Tomato Glaze.
Best Apple Pie
Yes, even apple pie is considered one of our fall recipes for weight loss! This pie really leans into the apples instead of the carb pie crust and is topped with a heartier, healthier crumble.
Get our recipe for Best Apple Pie.
Butternut Squash Hash
A hearty veggie hash for breakfast—or lunch!—sure does count as one of our favorite fall recipes for weight loss.
Get our recipe for Butternut Squash Hash.
Loaded Chicken Alfredo with Vegetables
You don't have to skip out on your favorite meals in order to lose weight! Instead, load it up with vegetables to fill you up instead of relying on the starchy carbs to keep you full.
Get our recipe for Loaded Chicken Alfredo with Vegetables.
Sunday Roast Chicken
A juicy chicken with roasted veggies on a Sunday evening? Who could say no to that!
Get our recipe for Sunday Roast Chicken.
Simple Roasted Carrots
If you're in need of an easy side to go with any of your favorite mains, these roasted carrots pretty much go with any sheet pan or slow cooker meal!
Get our recipe for Simple Roasted Carrots.
Chicken Parm with Spinach
Skip the bead of pasta and serve this healthier version of chicken parm on a cooked bed of nutrient-dense spinach!
Get our recipe for Chicken Par with Spinach.
Packed with all kinds of protein and veggies, this jambalaya is certainly a filling meal that will warm you up and slim you down.
Get our recipe for Jambalaya.
Baked Sweet Potato Fries
Skip the deep fryer and enjoy your favorite salty snack right at home with our healthier version!
Get our recipe for Baked Sweet Potato Fries.
Sweet Potato Banana Muffins
You don't need loads of added sugars in order to make your weekend muffins taste sweet! Just rely on the naturally sweet foods you love, like sweet potatoes and bananas.
Get our recipe for Sweet Potato Banana Muffins.
Sautéed Apples with Caramel Drizzle
Don't feel like biting into a sugary coated caramel apple? These sauteed apples are slathered in a healthier caramel drizzle to give you that same taste you love without loading you up with added sugars.
Get our recipe for Sautéed Apples with Caramel Drizzle.
Bolognese is a classic dish to make in the colder months, so keep it lean by using ground turkey and a homemade sauce!
Get our recipe for Turkey Bolognese.
Slim down your creamy carbonara by swapping out half of your pasta with zucchini ribbons.
Get our recipe for Zucchini Carbonara.
Apple Sausage Stuffing
How can you say no to a casserole dish bursting with apple sausage stuffing in the fall? You can't, so we made our own healthier version so you can enjoy your favorites at Thanksgiving this year.
Get our recipe for Apple Sausage Stuffing.
Cauliflower Butternut Squash Curry
A spicy curry in the fall sounds like just the kind of fall recipe for weight loss we need!
Get our recipe for Cauliflower Butternut Squash Curry.
90-Minute Roasted Turkey With Orange-Cranberry Relish
Turkey in just 90 minutes? With this recipe, you'll have a healthier Thanksgiving dinner on the table in no time!
Get our recipe for 90-Minute Roasted Turkey With Orange-Cranberry Relish.
Roast Pork Loin Recipe, Porchetta-Style With Lemony White Beans
Not a fan of turkey or chicken? This lean porchetta pork loin is a great alternative if you're looking for something healthier to serve to your guests this season.
Get our recipe for Roast Pork Loin Recipe, Porchetta-Style With Lemony White Beans.
Paleo Chicken Ramen
Skip the starchy takeout version and make your own slimmed-down version of chicken ramen right at home!
Get our recipe for Paleo Chicken Ramen.
Slow Cooker Turkey Cassoulet
Have a lot of turkey leftover from Thanksgiving? Use it up with this hearty, healthy turkey cassoulet—made right in that nifty slow cooker!
Get our recipe for Slow Cooker Turkey Cassoulet.
Maple Cashew Apple Toast
A simple slice of toast on a weekday morning is really all you need thanks to the fiber-rich bread and apple, and the creamy cashew butter full of those healthy fats!
Get our recipe for Maple Cashew Apple Toast.
Cinnamon Roll Overnight Oats
Get that great taste of cinnamon rolls right in your bowl of oats thanks to this crafty overnight oat recipe!
Get our recipe for Cinnamon Roll Overnight Oats.
Cranberry Mustard Mini Tuna Melts
Use up those fall cranberries with these mini tuna melts, made right in your muffin tin.
Get our recipe for Cranberry Mustard Mini Tuna Melts.
Why just make mashed potatoes when you can add mashed pumpkin as well? This healthier version of your favorite gives you a huge boost of nutrients.
Get our recipe for Pumpkin-Potato Mash.
Crispy Pumpkin Ravioli with Pesto
This crispy ravioli recipe is the perfect appetizer to serve at any event you attend this fall!
Get our recipe for Crispy Pumpkin Ravioli with Pesto.
Mixed Greens Salad with Pumpkin Vinaigrette
Yes, pumpkin can even be used as a dressing! Throw together this pumpkin vinaigrette for your favorite fall salads—one of our favorite fall recipes to make for weight loss.
Get our recipe for Mixed Greens Salad with Pumpkin Vinaigrette.
Hearty Italian Sausage Soup
Craving a hearty soup for lunches? Try this Italian sausage soup, which can easily be made into a minestrone if you cut out the pasta and load it up with veggies!
Get our recipe for Hearty Italian Sausage Soup.
Coconut Pumpkin Smoothie Bowl
Pumpkin, pumpkin, and more pumpkin. It's the name of the game in the fall.
Get our recipe for Coconut Pumpkin Smoothie Bowl.
Instant Pot Two-Layered Creamy Pumpkin Yogurt
You can finally use that yogurt feature on your Instant Pot thanks to this flavorful, delicious two-layered creamy pumpkin recipe!
Get our recipe for Instant Pot Two-Layered Creamy Pumpkin Yogurt.
Sweet Potato Toasts
Your favorite root vegetable can easily be a healthier swap for toast at snacktime!
Get our recipe for Sweet Potato Toasts.
Brown Butter Apple Coffee Cake
Browning butter takes a basic cinnamon-frosting topped coffee cake to extraordinary new levels. This is the best thing to do with your apple-picking haul this year hands down.
Get the recipe for Brown Butter Apple Coffee Cake.
Fudgy Pumpkin Brownie Bites
Pumpkin, in brownies? That's right! Pumpkin makes for the perfect addition to these brownie bites at only 50 calories a piece!
Get our recipe for Fudgy Pumpkin Brownie Bites.
Fall is the time for cozy comfort foods, but you don't have to throw away your diet to satisfy your appetite. Mix and match these recipes for a cozy night in.
A previous version of this article was originally published on September 27, 2021.