We're 100 percent onboard the pumpkin train. 

By Antara Sinha
October 05, 2018
Photo: Jen Causey, Food Styling: Gordon Sawyer and Tina Stamos, Prop Styling: Lydia Pursell

Now that it’s October and we’ve shrugged off those last few balmy summer evenings, it’s  time for the best part of fall: baking season. We’re talking apple crisp, pumpkin pie, sweet potato cobbler—get ready for your home to smell like a glorious, autumnal dream. We dove into the sciencey specifics of it too. Turns out there’s a real reason the majority of those baking recipes start at 350 degrees—and there’s definitely a right and wrong type of sugar you should be using for each baking project you take on. And if you’re looking to get the kids in your life into the kitchen (or just want it for yourself—we won’t judge), this adorable Disney’s princess-themed baking set is the way to go. Don’t have the time for an intensive, from-scratch baking project right now? We’d never turn up our nose at a good, old-fashioned boxed cake mix; you don’t even need stress if you’re out of eggs if you’ve got any of these pantry staples on hand. Long story short: It’s time to stock up on those baking essentials and get cooking.  
Of course, if you hadn’t heard, we commemorated two crucial, very important national holidays this week. October 3 was unofficial Mean Girls day so we celebrated by cooking all things pink, and poring over Mean Girls-inspired cookbook, The Burn Cookbook, by Jonathan Bennett (A.K.A. Aaron Samuels). Thursday was #NationalTacoDay so we carefully researched what the most popular taco-related recipe was in every state—and there were definitely some interesting contenders in the mix.  

Also, all of that fall produce we were holding off on in anticipation of cooler weather? We’re so ready to go all-in now. With butternut squash, pumpkin, nuts, apples, and persimmons hitting peak season, you’re going to want to run to your farmers’ market or supermarket ASAP. Some recipes we’re especially excited about: This stunning Butternut Squash Soup with Chorizo you can make in your Instant Pot (and looks like an autumn sunset in a bowl), these Pumpkin Waffles that we’re anxious to drown in syrup and pats of butter for an epic fall weekend breakfast, and these Instant Pot Pumpkin Spice Candied Walnuts—a recipe we know we’ll have on repeat the whole season.
Just do us a favor: As much as we love turning to canned pumpkin for its convenience and versatility, make sure to try your hand at prepping real-deal fresh, from-the-ground squash and pumpkin in both savory and sweet recipes this season. It’s simpler than you’d think—and that peak-season flavor makes the extra effort so worthwhile.