15 Warming Snow Day Meals That Are Already in Your Pantry

March 13, 2017

As communities across the Northeast, upper Midwest, and Mid-Atlantic brace for snow, we're thinking that staying inside on Tuesday (and maybe Wednesday, too!) is looking like a better and better idea.

Instead of venturing out, we'll be firmly rooted to our couches, with a book in hand and a meal simmering on the stove. The only problem with this, of course, is the groceries: Without access to roads and stores, our boeuf bourguignon will be boeuf-less and our kale gratin both kale- and cheese-less. Saddest gratin ever.

Photo by Bobbi Lin

Fortunately, it doesn't take more than a well-stocked pantry to create a warming winter meal. A bag of rice, beans, or quinoa, paired with the other odds n' ends you likely have in your refrigerator and pantry can make for a more-than-satisfying snow day meal. You may need to make some swaps—like trading Parmesan for breadcrumbs—but a few trades are a small price to pay for staying in.

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Here's how to make a delicious meal during any winter storm—without leaving your house:

If You Have Beans:

If You Have Pasta:

If You Have Rice or Risotto Rice:

If You Have Canned Tomatoes:

If You Have Quinoa:

If You Have Polenta:

What do you cook when your snowed in? Tell us in the comments below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Windischgirl
  • scubasteve
  • Catherine M. Jordan
    Catherine M. Jordan
  • aargersi
  • Katie Montney
    Katie Montney
I eat everything.


Windischgirl March 13, 2017
I'm sensing a bit of a time warp...this article is dated today, yet contains a comment I made last year...?
Cue the "Twilight Zone" music...
scubasteve March 13, 2017
What do you cook when "you're" snowed in, I think you mean...
Windischgirl January 23, 2016
I've already started! Escaped work a little early and baked three kinds of tarts...I'll post my recipes tomorrow. Soaking 2 lb chickpeas just to stock my freezer, just fed the starters for two batches of bread. Also on tap: Italian Wedding Soup, roast leg of lamb (haven't decided the flavor profile yet), several batches of Madeleines to tuck into some care packages, and maybe banana bread...or granola for breakfasts this week. I also have a taste for polenta...maybe as a side to that lamb?
Catherine M. January 22, 2016
Tonight - NYT Cooking Black Bean and Chorizo casserole - home made chorizo in the freezer made that easy. Tomorrow we will be celebrating Burns Night - minus the 10 people we invited - haggis and mashed potatoes.
aargersi January 22, 2016
Who knows? Texas and all :-) but I am going DownTown Jr Brown on some citrus this weekend!!!!
Katie M. January 21, 2016
it's obvious- chili!