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Heart-Warming, Homemade Winter Dishes

12/07/2015 04:48AM ● Published by Family Features

During this hectic season, between shuttling the kids from activity to activity and trying to enjoy the holiday spirit, it can be difficult to get a wholesome, homemade meal on your family table, day in and day out. But the solution for simple, delicious dishes is a lot closer than you think: the canned foods in your pantry.

With a well-stocked pantry full of ingredients like canned tomatoes, kidney beans and pumpkin, preparing a nutritious, creative meal that your family will love is easy. Because cans seal in foods’ nutrition, freshness and flavor, they are one of the best ways to get food from its source to your table. Canned foods not only mean less preparation, but they also ensure that you have quality ingredients on-hand year-round – especially during the winter months.

As temperatures fall and your to-do list grows, don’t let your packed schedule compromise sharing a heart-warming, homemade meal with your family. Simply reach in your pantry – your “Cantry” – and unlock the goodness of canned foods that can help you make meals, such as Vegetarian Three Bean Chili or Pumpkin Mac and Cheese, in no time.  

For more nutritious and flavorful recipes, visit

Pumpkin Mac and Cheese


  • 8 ounces rotini or medium shell pasta
  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 can (12 ounces) Nestle Carnation Evaporated Fat Free Milk
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup Libby’s 100% Pure Pumpkin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups shredded Swiss or Gruyere cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Cook pasta as package directs. Drain. Set aside.
  2. Heat oven to 375 F. Grease 1-1/2 quart baking dish. In 4-quart saucepan over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons butter. Stir in flour; cook 1 minute. Gradually stir in evaporated milk and milk, cook until mixture is thickened and smooth. Stir in pumpkin, salt, pepper and nutmeg.
  3. Remove from heat; whisk in Swiss and cheddar cheese until smooth. Stir in cooked pasta; toss to mix well. Spoon into baking dish.
  4. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter; stir in bread crumbs to coat well. Sprinkle on top of casserole. Bake 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and mixture is golden.

Vegetarian Three Bean Chili


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large green pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 can (28 ounces) Red Gold Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 can (16 ounces) Red Gold Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 can (15.5 ounces) Goya Pinto Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15.5 ounces) Bush’s White Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15.5 ounces) Progresso Red Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (4 ounces) Old El Paso Chopped Green Chilies, drained
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle Tabasco pepper sauce
  • chopped parsley (optional)
  • shredded cheddar cheese (optional)


  1. In large saucepan over medium heat, in hot oil, cook onion, pepper and garlic until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chili powder and cumin, cook 1 minute.
  2. Add crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, pinto beans, white beans, red beans, green chilies, salt and Tabasco sauce. Over high heat, bring to boil; reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 15 minutes to blend flavors, stirring occasionally. If desired, sprinkle with parsley and cheddar.

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