Our collection of 31 Recipes to Cook in January, the Winter Edition, is for our readers experiencing a particularly chilly winter in the northern hemisphere and are in need of warming dishes that comfort and nourish. It includes everything from spicy Southeast Asian soups and hearty European stews to comforting meatballs and filling pastas.
This compilation of 31 winter recipes to make in January for our neighbours in the wintery northern hemisphere includes an array of recipes for cosy dishes from right around the world – from Australian meat pies inspired by Cambodian curries to Mexican soups and Irish stews.
If you don’t find some winter cooking inspiration below, also browse our collection of 31 Winter Recipes to Cook in August, which we shared during the southern hemisphere winter last year, which has 31 completely different winter recipes to this lot.
Now before I tell you about our 31 recipes to cook in January, the winter edition, I have a favour to ask. Grantourismo is reader-supported.
If you’ve cooked our recipes and enjoyed them, please consider supporting Grantourismo by supporting our epic Cambodian cuisine history and cookbook on Patreon, which you can do for as little as the price of a coffee. Or you could buy us a coffee and we’ll use our coffee money to buy cooking ingredients for recipe testing.
Another option is to use links on our site to buy travel insurance, rent a car or campervan or motorhome, book accommodation, or book a tour on Klook or Get Your Guide. Or buy something on Amazon, such as these cookbooks for culinary travellers, James Beard award-winning cookbooks, cookbooks by Australian chefs, classic cookbooks for serious cooks, travel books to inspire wanderlust, and gifts for Asian food lovers and picnic lovers. We may earn a small commission but you won’t pay any extra.
Lastly, you could browse our Grantourismo store for gifts for food lovers, including food themed reusable cloth face masks designed with Terence’s images. Now let me tell you all about our best 31 winter recipes to make in January.
31 Recipes to Cook in January, Winter Edition – From Spicy Soups to Warming Stews
Here are our 31 Recipes to Cook in January, the Winter Edition, for our northern hemisphere readers.
Chicken Cacciatore Recipe for a Traditional Italian Chicken Stew
This classic chicken cacciatore recipe makes a traditional Italian chicken stew with a luscious tomato sauce and it tops our list of the winter edition of 31 recipes to cook in January. Called pollo alla cacciatora in Italian, which translates to ‘hunter’s chicken’ – ‘pollo’ is ‘chicken’ and ‘cacciatore’ means ‘hunter’ – it’s a rustic old Italian dish. In Italy, it’s typically eaten alone as a main course with crusty bread to mop up the rich sauce. The recipe also topped the lists of our 10 most popular recipes of December 2022 and after going viral, became one of our 22 most popular recipes of 2022, although it didn’t make that list as we’d published it a few days earlier.
Spiced Pumpkin Soup Recipe with Sour Cream
This spiced pumpkin soup recipe is a combo of the kind of old-fashioned Australian creamy pumpkin soups my Nanna used to make and a Cambodian spiced pumpkin soup of Khmer Royal Cuisine. Rich, comforting and creamy, despite there being no cream, it’s a perfect cold weather soup that can be served as an elegant appetiser or in big bowls for a cosy casual meal, and it’s another of our best 31 recipes to cook in January. You’re going to love this spiced pumpkin soup recipe if you’re a lover of pumpkin soups. It’s so delicious, super affordable, it freezes well, and is easy and straightforward to make despite the longish list of ingredients – which you shouldn’t feel intimidated by, they just add depth of flavour.
Chicken Cacciatore Pasta Recipe for Spaghetti Cacciatore
Save some chicken cacciatore so you can make this easy chicken cacciatore pasta recipe for spaghetti cacciatore – although you don’t need to use spaghetti, you can use any pasta you have in the pantry. Created to use up leftover chicken cacciatore, the hearty chicken pasta is a 1970s retro-classic from the Italian-Australian diaspora that’s completely inauthentic – Italians don’t eat pasta with main course dishes – but deliciously comforting all the same. It’s easily another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January.
Pork Stroganoff Recipe Made with the Chinese Velveting Method
My pork Stroganoff recipe makes an umami-rich, melt-in-the-mouth pork Stroganoff. The silky, tender-soft texture of the pork comes courtesy of the Chinese velveting technique, a method that calls for marinating and pre-cooking the pork before stir-frying it. Braised with mushrooms in a richly spiced sour cream-based sauce, my pork Stroganoff takes inspiration from Shanghai’s East-West Haipai cuisine. It’s another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January. Serve it with shoestring fries or creamy mashed potatoes and a Russian garden salad. More Stroganoff recipes here, including our classic beef Stroganoff recipe.
Tastiest Juiciest Italian Style Meatballs in Tomato Sauce
My recipe for the tastiest, juiciest Italian style meatballs is based on the classic Southern Italian meatballs, which Italians called polpette, made in Sicily and Calabria with ricotta, parmesan and pecorino cheeses, that are fried until brown then simmered in a rich classic Italian tomato sauce. Cook them in your favourite fry-pan or trusty skillet. Serve these meatballs with tomato sauce as the Southern Italian do, at the centre of the table, sprinkled with chopped fresh flat leaf parsley, celery leaves or fragrant basil, with a simple salad of fresh rucola tossed in extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar – or with your favourite pasta. We’ve also got a recipe for spaghetti and meatballs here.
Classic Cottage Pie Recipe for an Irish Farmhouse Favourite
This classic cottage pie recipe makes the traditional Irish comfort food dish synonymous with hearty Irish farmhouse cooking and it’s another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January. While cottage pie is made right across the UK and in Australia and New Zealand, the long history of cottage pie in Irish cooking includes some of the oldest documented cottage pie recipes. Endearingly old fashioned, this Irish comfort food favourite consists of layers of savoury beef mince and vegetables, and cheesy mashed potatoes, which are baked, and served with buttery green peas. Wash it all down with red wine or Guinness.
Russian Meatballs Recipe for Tefteli in a Creamy Tomato Sauce
This Russian meatballs recipe for tefteli makes some of the juiciest meatballs you’ll ever taste. Made with ground beef and minced pork, grated carrot, and cooked rice, these incredibly delicious meatballs are coated in flour, fried until brown to lock in their juices, and simmered in a rich, creamy tomato sauce to finish cooking and soak up even more flavour. It’s one of my favourite Russian family recipes and another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January.
Braised Chicken with Olives and Capers Recipe
This braised chicken with olives and capers recipe quickly became one of our top chicken recipes after we published it late last year and it’s another one of our best 31 recipes to cook in January. We love to serve it with these mini Hassleback potatoes (recipe below) made from baby potatoes or new potatoes. Although it’s a wonderfully comforting dish served with creamy mashed potatoes too. If you want to nibble something first while the chicken is cooking, make my roasted cauliflower recipe. It will make you a Middle Eastern inspired dish of cauliflower florets oven-roasted in a spiced olive oil, piled onto a spread of creamy hummus, and topped with crunchy fried chickpeas, zingy pickled shallots, and fresh mint leaves.
Potato and Bacon Soup Recipe with Crispy Bacon and Crumbly Croutons
My potato and bacon soup recipe makes a comforting bowl of chunky potato and bacon soup topped with crispy bacon, crumbled croutons and crunchy fried shallots. Textured and loaded with umami thanks to the bacon and toppings, it’s a hearty and warming bowl of soup that more closely resembles a stew. It was one of our most popular recipes of September which I probably should have declared ‘Potato Soup Month’, as I shared four potato soup recipes, including this creamy cauliflower cabbage potato soup recipe, a loaded baked potato soup recipe and this rustic chunky potato soup with sautéed cabbage, smoky pork sausage and butter beans, inspired by a white borscht. Grind some fresh black pepper or sprinkle on chilli flakes for added warmth.
Chiang Mai Khao Soi Gai Recipe
Here in Southeast Asia it’s believed that spicy soups should be eaten on hot days as they make you sweat and that perspiration cools your body down, but we reckon there’s nothing better than a rich, spicy soup for a winter dinner as after the spice quickly warms you up. This khao soi gai recipe from Chiang Mai makes a coconut based chicken curry noodle soup soup that travellers to the Northern Thai city would be familiar with, and it’s one of our best winter soup recipes. Thailand’s former Lanna kingdom capital is home to Northern Thai-style Lanna food and khao soi gai is its most famous dish, consisting of a leg or thigh of bone-in chicken (chicken is ‘gai’ in Thai) and egg noodles in a coconut cream-based stock, sprinkled with crunchy noodles.
Classic Hasselback Potatoes Recipe with Baby Potatoes, Spiced Butter and Herbs
This classic Hasselback potatoes recipe for crispy Hasselback potatoes with spiced butter and fresh herbs calls for baby potatoes, also known as new potatoes, which cook faster. Brushed with the spiced butter at fifteen-minute intervals, these mini Hasselback potatoes are crunchy on the outside and soft within, making a potato side dish that’s both elegant and comforting. It’s one of our best recipes with potatoes and another of top 31 winter recipes to cook in January.
Singapore Curry Laksa Recipe
Terence has been making Singapore curry laksa since we first started slurping the spicy coconut curry noodle soup in Sydney in the 1980s, at a massively popular ‘Singapore Curry Laksa’ stall in subterranean food court in Chinatown food court. Big bowls of laksa served as dinner on many a cold winter’s night. While Terence has long been obsessed with recreating that original noodle soup we adored (he has 10 different curry laksa recipes in his recipe manager!) this recipe comes courtesy of legendary Sydney chef, Christine Manfield. Don’t be deterred by the list of 17 ingredients. The final result is well worth the effort of pounding your own curry paste from scratch.
Cambodian Fried Spring Rolls Recipe
This classic Cambodian fried spring rolls recipe makes a crunchy deep-fried egg roll filled with minced pork, dried shrimp, carrot, garlic, and daikon radish or taro, and seasoned with fish sauce, Kampot pepper, sea salt, and palm sugar. While you can buy them everywhere here in Siem Reap, I prefer to make them at home andlove to munch into the crispy fried spring rolls while they’re still piping hot. We also have a Cambodian fried spring roll dipping sauce recipe to go with them.
Spanish Meatballs Recipe for Albondigas
This classic Spanish meatball recipe for albondigas makes juicy Spanish-style meatballs simmered in a rich tomato sauce spiced with smoky paprika and a slight kick of chilli. In Spain, albondigas is a tapa, a small snack plate but this recipe makes around 30 meatballs. We recommend serving up a dish of these juicy morsels with slices of crusty bread to mop up the sauce, as part of a tapas spread. You’ll find more tapas recipes here for chorizo and potato croquettes, Spanish chorizo in red wine for chorizo al vino tinto, and Spanish style garlic shrimp.
Montenegro Riblja Čorba Recipe
We were taught to make this recipe for riblja corba fish soup, another of one of our best winter soup recipes, at Cesarica restaurant in the Old Town of Kotor, Montenegro by chef Rino Janovic, a fisherman and sea captain whose family’s seafaring traditions go back several generations. This fish soup is on many menus but Cesarica’s riblja corba was sublime. Rino’s recipe was handed down through his family for generations. The fish is cooked whole in the pot, then the pieces are removed, deboned, and returned to the soup. In Kotor, where the chef uses a variety of fish to give the soup a really full flavour, his favourites are mullet and sea bass.
Comforting Cambodian Rice Soup Recipe with Pork Meatballs
This comforting Cambodian rice soup recipe with pork meatballs cooked in the congee is another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January. While this rice soup is generally made in Cambodian homes with leftover boiled steamed jasmine rice, you could make it from scratch if you need to by following steps one and two in this Cambodian chicken rice porridge recipe. There are just a couple of ingredients that need a pound and we recommend doing that in a mortar and pestle as it releases the flavours and aromas so wonderfully. Use a quality fish sauce, such as Thailand’s Megachef, although our American readers seem to like the American-Vietnamese brand Red Boat Fish Sauce. You’ll find lots more leftover steamed rice recipes here.
Korean Japchae Recipe for Stir Fried Glass Noodles
This classic Korean japchae recipe makes a delicious Korean noodle dish of stir fried glass noodles with mixed vegetables. Called dangmyeon in Korean, the sweet potato starch noodles are doused in sesame oil, soy sauce and sesame seeds, then combined with stir-fried carrot sticks, onion, mushrooms, and spinach. An old Korean specialty long before it was popular Korean restaurant fare and a takeout favourite, japchae was a centuries-old Korean royal dish served at palace banquets. The original japchae consisted of thinly sliced mixed vegetables with a special sauce – hence the name: ‘jap’ means mixed and ‘chae’ is vegetables. This recipe makes a vegetarian japchae, but you can add strips of beef, something like rib eye, marinated in soy sauce, garlic and sesame oil.
Cambodian Samlor Korko Recipe for a Hearty Stew-Like Soup
Our Cambodian samlor korko recipe makes a hearty, healthy, unpretentious, stew-like soup. Packed with vegetables, samlor korko is beloved by all Cambodians, especially the older generation. ‘Samlor korko’ translates to Cambodian ‘stirring soup’ or ‘stirring pot soup’. Samlor means both ‘soup’ and ‘stew’, while ‘korko’ refers to the ‘stirring’ of the soup. Here in Cambodia, samlor korko is an ‘anything goes’ kind of dish. Seasonal local vegetables are always used, which means the mix of vegetables varies from season to season, so don’t stress if you can’t get something on the ingredients list below and substitute it with what you can get. Otherwise, perhaps take a look at this recipe for a sour beef soup with morning glory or this pork, pineapple and coconut milk stew.
Mexican Sopa de Tortilla Recipe
This spicy Mexican sopa de tortilla or tortilla soup recipe is undoubtedly one of our best winter soup recipes. Terence began cooking up this wonderful warming Mexican soup after our first trip to Mexico City in the Nineties. He tweaked it a little after a class with the lovely Marilau at her excellent cooking school in beautiful San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where we spent two weeks on the grand tour of the world that launched Grantourismo. Terence combined a few tips from Marilau’s recipe with his old recipe – we actually prefer a spicier tortilla soup to Marilau, so Terence added additional Ancho chiles to his recipe. If you don’t like spicy food, you could leave those out. Although there are few better things than chillies to warm you up on a cold winter’s night.
Best Burmese Fried Chicken Recipe
This Burmese fried chicken recipe makes the gently spiced fried chicken drumsticks, which are a popular street food snack in Myanmar and they’re also deliciously addictive. In Myanmar, these finger-licking fried chicken pieces are sold at roadside stalls to take away or eat at plastic tables set up around the stall. We dip them into homemade sweet chilli sauce. If this doesn’t warm you up on a chilly evening then nothing will.
Fish Pot Pie Recipe for Mini Mashed Potato and Salmon Pot Pies
Even better than a pie with pastry is the pot pie – a pie without pastry baked in a small pot or ramekin. This classic British fish pot pie recipe makes mini mashed potato and creamy salmon pot pies baked in individual ramekins and it’s one of our best salmon recipes. Delicious as they are, these adorable salmon pot pies are also very versatile. You could replace the salmon with a white fish, combine types of fish, add prawns or mussels or both, and add spices such as nutmeg. These little salmon pot pies may look simple but beneath the crispy cheesy lid are layers of buttery mashed potatoes infused with fresh fragrant herbs that sandwich a layer of chunky salmon pieces simmered in a rich creamy sauce.
Ukrainian Cabbage Dumplings Recipe
My grandparents were born during the Russian Empire in the land we now know as Ukraine and while my grandfather identified as Russian, my Odessa-born grandmother identified as Ukrainian. Her repertoire included both Russian dishes and Ukrainian dishes and sometimes a fusion of the two. This cabbage dumplings recipe makes a cabbage-filled of the mashed potato-filled Ukrainian varenyky. For a family feast of the kind we shared regularly, make a batch of my baboushka’s Russian pelmeni, a big pot of her borscht soup, some kotleti, stuffed cabbage rolls, a classic garden salad, and perhaps some piroshki.
Crispy Salmon Fillet with Irish Colcannon Recipe
This salmon fillet with colcannon recipe has been a favourite since we first tasted the dish at restaurant Banc in Sydney. The crispy skinned salmon fillet was cooked to perfection, the colcannon (an Irish mash potato) was creamy and rich, and while the red wine sauce seemed an unusual choice, its acidity worked well with a mouthful of the other ingredients. Terence has been making this dish for many years now and it turns out perfect every time.
Irish Beef and Guinness Stew Recipe with Cheese Dumplings
This traditional Irish beef and Guinness stew recipe with cheese dumplings delivers a hearty beef stew made with Ireland’s beloved stout beer, with meat so tender you can pull it apart with a spoon and fork. It also includes a recipe within a recipe for savoury cheddar cheese dumplings that cook with the stew. Though you could serve it with mashed potatoes or greens if you prefer. If you enjoy this, also try our best Irish stew recipe, which makes an incredibly rich and deeply flavoured traditional Irish stew, arguably the national dish of Ireland.
Irish Beef and Guinness Mini Meat Pies Made in Ramekins
Our Irish beef and Guinness pie recipe with mashed potatoes will make you four addictive mini meat pies made in ramekins. This recipe was created to use up leftover Irish stew and mashed potato leftovers – or leftover colcannon if you prefer – and is a fantastic recipe to plan on making when you next cook Irish food. Don’t forget to pierce a small hole in the pie lid and brush on the egg wash. Set the timer for 30 minutes, though we found that while our little pies were ready at 30 minutes, they needed a few more minutes to brown nicely on top.
German Potato Salad Recipe for a Warm Potato Salad
This German potato salad recipe makes a warm potato salad – also called a hot German potato salad – with a dressing of fried celery, scallions or spring onions, and bacon. Time things right and you can deliver it hot to the table in winter or autumn, making it another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January. It’s fantastic with chicken schnitzel or meatballs, roast chicken, sausages, or any barbecued meats.
Pepper Steak Pie Recipe
This pepper steak pie recipe makes a Cambodian beef lok lak meat pie that is inspired by one of Cambodia’s most popular street food-style dishes, served at local eateries around the country. Typically eaten for lunch, but also acceptable for dinner or breakfast, when a fried egg on top of the stir-fried beef is compulsory, lok lak is one of those dishes that is as popular with foreigners as locals. Use Cambodia’s excellent Kampot Pepper if you have some. This is another of our best winter recipe ideas.
Russian Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe with Chicken Meatballs
This Russian chicken noodle soup recipe with chicken meatballs makes my take on one of my Russian family recipes, my Russian grandmother’s chicken noodle soup – with a few tweaks. It’s an old-fashioned chicken noodle soup, but it comes together quickly, in just 30 minutes or so. The chicken meatballs cook in the soup and there is no stock to make, the flavour coming from the meatballs and subtle use of spice. This is the soup my baboushka made when she didn’t have big pots of borscht or shchi simmering on the stove and it’s easily another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January.
Southern Thai Chicken and Rice Recipe
This Southern Thai chicken and rice recipe for khao mok gai makes braised chicken cooked in a spicy curry-like gravy and served with turmeric rice and crispy fried shallots. A Thai Muslim specialty, it’s often called a Thai biryani or Thai style biryani. Like a biryani the chicken can be cooked with the rice or separately. Either way, it’s wonderful and warming.
Spicy Pork Mince Pie Recipe
Our spicy pork mince pie recipe made with Cambodian prahok k’tis is a marriage of Australian and Cambodian food made in heaven – an iconic Australian meat pie filled with Cambodia’s deliciously spicy dip of minced pork, coconut cream, pea eggplants, prahok (fermented fish paste), and yellow kroeung (a kroeung is a Cambodian herb and spice paste). This is another of our top 31 winter recipes to cook in January and if you love curried meat pies, you are going to love our spicy minced pork pie.
Warm Potato Salad Recipe with Anchovies, Capers and Chives
Our easy warm potato salad recipe with anchovies, capers, chives and celery leaves makes a Mediterranean style potato salad with a zingy dressing of lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and sherry vinegar. It’s a fantastic winter side to chicken schnitzel or fried chicken and while wonderful served warm, it also tastes delicious chilled, making it a great year-round salad.
Please do let us know if you make any of our 31 winter recipes to cook in January, as we’d love to know how they turn out for you.