The 20 best easy comfort food recipes

Start your day with Nigel Slater’s savoury croissants or Ravneet Gill’s brilliant blueberry pancakes. For lunch or dinner? Nigella Lawson’s easy cheesy chilli, Yotam Ottolenghi’s perfect baked potatoes, or Nathan Outlaw’s toad in the hole. Your midweek treat: Uyen Luu’s noodles or Amy and Emily Chung’s cheap and cheering family dal. Finish with Olia Hercules’s baked apples or Lopè Ariyo’s cobbler. A recipe list that almost reads like a lullaby.

Nigella Lawson’s chicken barley recipe (pictured above)

A thick, creamy pottage that’s a cross between a stew and a slightly soupy, sticky risotto

Nigel Slater’s recipe for baked croissants with ham and cheese

Nigel Slater’s recipe for baked croissants with ham and cheese.
Nigel Slater’s recipe for baked croissants with ham and cheese. Photograph: Jonathan Lovekin/The Observer

Croissants cooked in the style of pain perdu, stuffed with dark curls of speck and pools of melted fontina

Trine Hahnemann’s favourite winter stew recipe – labskovs

This is classic Scandinavian comfort food, a mash cooked with meat and lots of flavour, served with chives and pickled beetroot

Straight-up macaroni cheese recipe by Laura Goodman

For a classic macaroni cheese, you need to stand over a large pot of bechamel and personally load it with cheddar

Nathan Outlaw’s toad in the hole recipe

Full of childhood memories, toad in the hole is simple and warming – just don’t take it out of the oven too soon

Yotam Ottolenghi’s jacket potatoes with egg and tonnato sauce

This brings together two of the most simple and comforting dishes: a baked potato and a soft-boiled egg

Dal – pe hin recipe by Amy Chung and Emily Chung

This dal – ideal for a midweek meal – is such easy-to-make comfort food: nutritious, filling and cheap

Pumpkin and cardamon soup recipe by Yasmin Khan

Enriched with coconut milk and the headiness of cardamom, this soup soothes and comforts beyond measure

Nigel Slater’s potato, camembert and dill recipe

Nigel Slater’s potato, camembert and dill recipe.
Nigel Slater’s potato, camembert and dill recipe. Photograph: Jonathan Lovekin/The Observer

A cold-weather dish, heavy with starch, cream and cheese that takes its inspiration from tartiflette

Rukmini Iyer’s cherry tomato, leek and artichoke bake with feta recipe

Think of this as a cross between a frittata, a toad in the hole and a delicious giant savoury pancake

Savoy cabbage, roasted cauliflower and cashew chilli noodles – mì xào chay recipe by Uyen Luu

There is something so moreish and savoury about butter and fish sauce, which turns this midweek dinner into a real treat

Cheddar on toast with sweet leeks recipe by Emily Scott

There is something so good about leeks and cheese together. Nothing else is really needed

Multigrain porridge with kale, hazelnuts and smoked fish recipe by Claire Ptak

Start the day with a savoury porridge that’s nourishing and great for wintertime. Add an egg for extra protein

Nigella Lawson’s cheesy chilli recipe

Chorizo sausages combine with mince and mozzarella to make a quick Tex-Mex-inspired bowl of chilli

Ravneet Gill’s recipe for blueberry pancakes

Perfect for a weekend breakfast, these pancakes can be made thick or thin, depending on who you’re feeding

Peanut and sweet potato stew recipe by Melissa Thompson

With influences from west Africa and Jamaica, this aromatic vegetarian stew can be ready in less than half an hour

Fish pie with a rosti topping recipe by Rosie Sykes

There’s no need to mash potato or make a white sauce with this crunchy-topped fish pie

Baked apples with ricotta and raisins recipe by Olia Hercules

Bake these apples until the skins burst, the flesh is fluffy and the ricotta is caramelised on top

Plantain cobbler recipe by Lopè Ariyo

Like a cross between a cake and a scone, this plantain pudding is drenched in a tropical syrup

School-skive semolina cake recipe by Nisha Katona

A cake that’s elegant while remaining warming, nutty and completely comforting. Add gold leaf to give it a lift