5 Recipes to Lean Into Fall This September

It's happening (and that's a good thing).

It can be hard to make that transition from summer into fall, but I find that food can ease the process. Rather than dreading colder, darker days, I try instead to look forward to specific foods I haven't eaten in months. All the soups, for instance. Literally all of them. But also the braises, the roasts, and the risottos. And then there are the glorious fall vegetables: leafy greens, winter squashes, sweet potatoes, and brassicas galore!

We've still got some summer to go just yet, and fall isn't just a season. It's a process. We don't have to jump headfirst into spooky season vibes and Thanksgiving preparations for a minute. But I recommend warming up those cool season muscles with some simple fall dishes, from a showstopping (truly) Brussels sprout side to a quick apple pie.

Smashed Brussels Sprouts

<p>The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck</p>

The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Somewhere along the line we all figured out that Brussels sprouts didn't need to be boiled to death, and it was like the sun dawned on a new era. One in which we found ourselves reaching for seconds rather than avoiding the tiny cabbages. This recipe does one better, simmering the sprouts until just tender, smashing them with the bottom of a glass, and roasting them with cheese until crispy. When I say these make a great snack, I'm not just being charitable. You'll want to pop them like potato chips.

Apple Phyllo Pie

<p>The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga</p>

The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

If the start of fall makes you crave apple pie, but you're intimidated by pie crust (who among us...) you might consider this easy pie with a crust made from layered sheets of phyllo. The recipe uses Granny Smith apples, but you can substitute your favorite flavorful apple. Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, and Fuji apples are all great options.

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower

<p>The Spruce / Diana Chistruga</p>

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

In this weeknight-friendly side dish, a simple spice blend is tossed with cauliflower florets before roasting. The warm spices give the cauliflower a rich flavor and beautiful color. Even better, this dish can be served with everything from pork chops to rotisserie chicken to fish, making it a culinary chameleon everyone should keep in their back pocket to beat the weeknight dinner blues.

Avgolemono (Greek Lemon Chicken Soup)

<p>The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga</p>

The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

Made with a richly flavorful homemade chicken broth, egg, and orzo, this classic Greek soup is just the thing for those first cool, rainy fall days. It has an almost creamy texture, but there's no cream, and lemon juice and dill enliven the dish. This is comfort food at its best.

Butternut Squash Risotto

<p>The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga</p>

The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

It's butternut squash season! I'll eat it any which way, but butternut squash risotto is a favorite. It's creamy, comforting, stick-to-your-ribs food. Yes, there's a lot of stirring, but I take it as an opportunity to pour myself a glass of wine, put on a favorite podcast, and sink into the slower rhythms of fall.