These Are The Comfort Foods Lidia Bastianich Can't Get Enough Of

When the weather gets colder, foodies begin reaching for their cookbooks and flipping to one section in particular: soup. (Just do an internet search of the phrase "soup season," and you'll see what we mean.) Celebrity chef and television personality Lidia Bastianich is no exception. Bastianich has authored 16 cookbooks, she can turn a can of tuna into a supper superstar, and she's racked up an impressive 50 years in the business, but when it comes to comfort food favorites, Bastianich is just like the rest of us. As she tells EatingWell, "For us, we make a lot of soups. Or pasta with cabbage with sausage."

As Bastianich notes, cabbage is a great way to incorporate extra veggies into your household's diet during colder months when many types of produce are out of season or tougher to find. "Cabbage is a fall or winter vegetable," she tells the outlet, "and if you just prepare it in the pan with oil, onions, and crumbled sausages, it makes a great dressing for pasta." (Cabbage stays in season until November or even December in some states.)

Bastianich is all about soup, pasta, and cheesy warming dishes

At the end of the day, Bastianich's favorite comfort foods are more about their coziness factor than their seasonal utility (and we couldn't agree more). As she told EatingWell, her other go-tos are "baked pasta with cheese ... gnocchi, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and cheesy baked chicken wings."

The past few years have been something of an unofficial comfort food renaissance. 2020 saw the birth of the "comfort economy" in which consumers nationwide returned en masse to hygge fashion, interior design, and (of course) food — and for the most part, the trend has stuck around. In a 2020 poll of 2,000 Americans by Farm Rich and OnePoll, 69% of foodies said that they planned to keep enjoying their favorite comfort foods in the same quantities after the pandemic ended. Even more notably, 90% of foodies said they've been searching for cooking inspiration more on the internet since the start of the pandemic, and social media platforms like TikTok have made cooking more accessible for first-time home cooks. 

Enter comfort food: a return to hearth and home, eating feel-good nostalgic sit-down meals with loved ones around the table. Bastianich even just released the cookbook "Lidia's From Our Family Table to Yours," filled with accessible comfort food classics that her family makes again and again.