Fall Food Challenge Winners

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Fall Food Challenge!  Almost 30 fall recipes were submitted.

Melissa Betke put together an eCookbook of all the recipes, which you can view by clicking here.

We had a random drawing for each week of the challenge, and here are the winners:

  • October 25 – 31 (Winter Squash recipe): Roshelle Amundson
  • November 1 – 7 (Root Vegetable recipe): Barb Tomashek-Ditter
  • November 8 – 14 (Cole Crop recipe): Denise Baeten
  • November 15 – 21 (The Trusty Spud recipe): Crystal Williams
  • November 22 – 28 (Thanksgiving Dish Makeover recipe): Laura Nolan

We also had a final drawing of all the entries, and Teri Ternes was picked.  Each participant will receive a UWGB cutting board, and the above winners will receive a kitchen/cooking item as well!  The participation incentives were paid for with wellness grant funds from the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF).

Thank you to Wellness Committee members Sherry Warren and Melissa Betke for their work on this challenge!

Cauliflower Stuffing and Roasted Vegetables Recipes

Cauliflower Stuffing
from Crystal Williams


  • 1 large head cauliflower cut into small flowerets
  • 2 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, crumbled
  • 1 Tbsp ghee
  • 1 onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 c. celery, sliced
  • 3 cups mushrooms (optional; I used 1/2 this much)
  • 1/4 c. pecans, roughly chopped (toast 5 minutes)
  • 1/2 tsp. dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme salt pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Drizzle cauliflower with avocado oil, season with salt and pepper and roast for 15-20 minutes.
  3. In a large skillet, add the ghee and cook sausage.
  4. Remove from pan with slotted spoon to separate dish.
  5. Add onions to pan and cook for 5-10 minutes until lightly caramelized.
  6. Add celery and cook to soften, then add garlic, cook a minute more. (Add more ghee if needed)
  7. Add herbs, add the sausage and roasted cauliflower to the pan. Toss together to heat through.
  8. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to serving bowl and serve.

Makes 8 servings.

Note from Crystal: I thought it tasted pretty good but it didn’t sing the praises of my daughter making the original recipe. With the leftovers, I made it into soup.


Roasted Vegetables with Acorn Squash
from Sara Chaloupka

  • Variety of vegetables – we used red cabbage, Brussel sprouts, carrots, bell pepper, and acorn squash (peeled)
  • Olive oil
  • Favorite spices and seasonings
  1. Cut up all produce into bite size pieces.
  2. Drizzles spices with oil and seasonings.
  3. Roast in oven.
Note from Sara: I roast vegetables often, but never thought to roast squash until this week. I did not see this ‘Fall Food Challenge’ until today, so unfortunately I did not get a picture of it. I can tell you that it was delicious though!

Savory Butternut Turkey Bacon Soup and Baked Squash Recipes

Savory Butternut Turkey Bacon Soup
from Roshelle Amundson


  • 2 lbs of butternut squash
  • 2 large cloves of garlic- roasted or raw
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 6-8 strips bacon or turkey bacon (vegetarian option to use smoked gouda for bacon-y flavor)
  • 1/3 c Half & Half or milk for reduced cal/fat (I use almond milk)
  • 3-4 c chicken broth (or veggie)
  • Onion-optional
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


  1. Roast whole or halved squash at 375 for 45 to 50 minutes.
  2. The skins will peel right off. (This is all so much easier than trying to cut and cube the gourd to boil it)!
  3. Saute garlic in butter (add onion if elected), add broth and softened, de-seeded squash.
  4. Use immersion blender or mash by hand until pureed consistency; allow to simmer.
  5. Prepare bacon to preference. Slice and add to soup.
  6. Continue to simmer.

** At this ratio the soup has a fluid but thicker consistency like split pea soup; easy to modify with increased squash or broth. Add half-and-half or milk slowly stirring in and allowing to simmer. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve & enjoy!

Note from Roshelle: This recipe can be made vegetarian/vegan/diary-free by swapping out broth selection, cream for almond milk, smoked gouda (bacon flavor) for turkey bacon, etc. as applicable. Using almond milk or skim over cream thins out the soup for those who don’t like a split-pea thick texture and reduces fat. I have served this to many people, including campus potlucks, and it is always a hit–particularly with those whom are craving savory over sweet butternut-based soup. It’s a fall favorite!

Baked Squash
from Olivia Raasch


  • 1 Acorn Squash
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar


  1. First, fill a pan with an inch of water. (Make sure throughout baking that water remains in the bottom of the pan.)
  2. Then cut the squash in half and clean out the seeds.
  3. Place both halves (cut side down) in the inch of water.
  4. Put the pan in the oven at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until the squash is soft to touch.
  5. Take the squash out, flip over so they look like bowls, and place 1Tbsp butter and 1 Tbsp brown sugar in the center of each half.
  6. Place back in oven and bake for 5 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and enjoy!

Carrot Cake and Butternut Squash Soup Recipes

Carrot Cake with Ginger Cream Cheese Frosting
from Crystal Williams

Cake Ingredients:

  • 2-3/4 c. chopped walnuts (3/4 c. for the cake)
  • 2-1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. ground allspice
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1-1/2 c. sugar
  • ½ c. packed light brown sugar
  • 1-1/4 c. vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ c. smooth applesauce
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 2 c. grated carrots (about 4 medium)

Frosting Ingredients: 

  • 1 4-inch piece ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh orange juice
  • ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 – 8 oz. packages cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3 c. confectioners’ sugar sifted

Serves 8 to 10

Make the cake:

  1. Preheat oven 350 degrees.
  2. Coat two 9-inch round cake pans with cooking spray line the bottoms with parchment paper.
  3. Spread the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until lightly toasted; about 5 minutes. Let cool, then finely chop.
  4. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and salt into a medium bowl.
  5. Beat the granulated sugar, brown sugar and vegetable oil in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium high and add the eggs, one at a time; beat until light and smooth, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low; add the applesauce, orange zest and vanilla and beat until just smooth. Gradually add the flour mixture and beat until just combined. Add the carrots and ¾ cup walnuts and beat until just combined.
  6. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool 10 minutes in the pans, then remove to the rack to cool completely; remove the parchment. (Cakes can be made a day ahead; let cool completely, then wrap in plastic wrap.)

Make the frosting:

  1. Peel the ginger and grate onto a piece a piece of cheesecloth. Wrap in the cheesecloth and squeeze the juice into a small bowl (you should get about 1 tablespoon). Add the orange juice and vanilla.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Beat in the juice mixture. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar. Increase the speed to high and beat until smooth, about 2 more minutes.


  1. Place 1 cake layer on a plate. Spread with 1 cup frosting, then top with the second cake layer. Cover the top and sides with the remaining frosting. Press the remaining walnuts into the sides of the cake.
  2. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.


Butternut Squash Soup with Tortellini
from Jill Siegmund


  • 2 lbs butternut squash
  • 2 14-oz. cans vegetable broth
  • Pinch ground red pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. butter or margarine
  • 1 9-oz. package refrigerated cheese-filled tortellini
  • 1 Tbsp. molasses


  1. Peel squash. Halve lengthwise. Remove seeds and discard. Cut squash into ¾ inch pieces.
  2. In a large saucepan combine ½ cup water, squash, vegetable broth and red pepper. Cook, covered, over medium heat for 20 minutes or until squash is tender.
  3. Transfer one-fourth of the squash mixture to a blender container or food processor bowl. Cover and blend or process until smooth. Repeat with remaining portions, one at a time, until all the mixture is blended. Or blend the whole batch with an immersion blender.
  4. Return blended mixture to the saucepan. Bring just to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Add butter; stir until just melted.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the ravioli according to package directions; drain. Ladle hot soup into bowls. Divide cooked ravioli among the bowls. Drizzle with molasses.

Makes 5 side-dish servings (about 6 ½ cups)

Autumn Veggie Recipes

Maple Roasted Carrots with Harissa Yogurt
from Teri Ternes


  • Carrots
  • Maple Syrup
  • Pistachios
  • Parsley
  • Lemon Zest
  • Spicy Harissa Yogurt Sauce [1C Greek or Arab yogurt, 1T extra virgin olive oil, 1/2 tsp juice of fresh lemon, 2 tsp harissa sauce, 1 clove garlic crushed, sea salt to taste. Blend ingredients, chill.]
  1. Toss carrots in pure maple syrup; roast in the oven.
  2. Top carrots with chopped pistachios, parsley and lemon zest.
  3. Top with Harissa Yogurt sauce.
Note from Teri: During the pandemic I’ve been exploring new healthy recipes. This is another first-time and will be repeated!! The harissa yogurt sauce is great on a variety of foods [broccoli, cauliflower, baked potatoes; good for pretzel/snack dip too!]

Acorn Squash with Pecan Crumble
from Tori Grant-Welhouse

  • 1 Acorn squash
  • 2 T. butter
  • 2 T. pure maple syrup
  • Sea salt
  • 1/2 c. chopped pecans
  • 1/4 c. coconut flakes
  • 1/4 c. dried cranberries
  1. Halve the acorn squash lengthways. Then scoop out and discard seeds and string. Melt butter.
  2. When melted, mix with maple syrup.
  3. Place squash in a casserole dish lined with tinfoil.
  4. Brush each half with 1 T. of the maple syrup butter, allowing it to puddle in the center of each half.
  5. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  6. Bake squash at 425 degrees for an hour.
  7. While squash is baking, make the crumble by toasting pecans and coconut in a skillet on the stove (5-10 minutes on high, ensuring to constantly stir).
  8. Once toasted, add cranberries and remaining maple syrup butter.
  9. Remove squash from oven and spoon the crumble evenly into each squash. Return the pecan-filled halves to the oven for 10 minutes.
  10. Serve warm.
Note from Tori: I was inspired by the challenge to create the recipe.

Fall Recipes

Thank you for sending in your fall recipes as part of the Fall Food Challenge!  We’ve received 12 recipes so far!  Please send in your recipes using cole crops (ex. cabbage, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, broccoli) for next week.  Here are two of the fall recipes you can try out:

Stuffed Squash
from Kathleen Jurecki


  • 2 whole carnival or acorn squash cut in half
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 1/2 cups baby bella mushrooms chopped
  • 1 cup honey crisp apples peeled + chopped in small pieces
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary chopped finely
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, gruyere or mozzarella all work great!)


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment + spray with olive oil to prevent squash from sticking.
  3. Slice squash in half, scoop out seeds and place flat on sheet sprayed with olive oil.
  4. Bake the squash for 20 minutes, until it is tender when pierced with a fork.
  5. While the squash cooks – heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Sauté turkey in olive oil for 10-15 minutes until brown.
  6. While the turkey is cooking, chop mushrooms, apples + herbs.
  7. Add in chopped mushrooms, apples, chicken stock, and spices to the pan with the cooked turkey. Sauté for an additional 5 min.
  8. When the squash is done, remove from the oven + scoop out most of the cooked center, leaving a little bit of filling in the acorn squash.
  9. Add the squash filling to the turkey/mushroom/apple mixture in the pan+ stir until completely mixed in.
  10. Scoop the turkey/squash mixture back into the squash + top with cheese of choice.
  11. Bake at 450 for 5-10 minutes until cheese melts. Optional: broil for 2-3 minutes so the cheese gets crispy.

Note from Kathleen: Base recipe is from www.thecleaneatingcouple.com and I often modify based on ingredients I have at the time. The stuffed squash pictured above also has frozen mixed veggies and pinto beans in the filling.

Autumn Squash Soup
from Laura Nolan


  • 1 small yellow onion, diced (about 3/4 cup)
  • 2 lbs chopped butternut squash (about 6 heaping)
  • 3-4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2 apples seeded and cut up
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • Dash of nutmeg
  • Dash all spice
  • Dash ginger
  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar, more to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • Heavy cream
  • Optional Pumpkin seeds to top


  1. Put all ingredients together in either cooking blender (my favorite choice), electric pressure cooker – 10 minutes on high pressure and let natural release, or cook for 4-6 hours in crockpot.
  2. Once all ingredients are soft and finished cooking, pour into blender to purée or use immersion blender to purée.
  3. Mix in cream if desired and top with seeds.
  4. Skip cream for paleo and vegan. Sub swerve brown sugar and remove apples for keto.

Note from Laura: This is a copycat recipe from Panera. I changed out apples for apple juice to add more fiber and less sugar.

Squash Recipes

Thank you for sending in your squash recipes as part of the Fall Food Challenge!  Keep ’em coming and send in your recipes using root veggies for next week!  Here are two of the squash recipes you can try out:

Apple Squash Bake
from Barb Tomashek-Ditter

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 2-3 apples
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp softened butter
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Cinnamon to taste
  1. Cut squash into 1/2″ slices and put into baking dish.
  2. Cut apples into pieces and mix with squash.
  3. In a bowl, mix sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, and butter.
  4. Sprinkle over the top of squash and apples.
  5. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 1 hour.
Note: Sometimes I add fresh or frozen cranberries.

Butternut Squash Soup

from Denise Baeten



  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and roughly chopped
  • 1 white onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 medium (3-4 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 spring fresh sage
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup canned (unsweetened) coconut milk
Roasted Winter Squash Seeds:
  • 1 cup winter squash seeds
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp Lawry’s season salt



  1. Add all ingredients EXCEPT coconut milk to slow cooker and combine.
  2. Cook for 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high or until the squash is tender and mashes with a fork.
  3. Remove and discard sage.
  4. Stir in coconut milk.
  5. Transfer soup in 2 batches to a blender and puree until smooth (being careful not to fill the blender too full with the hot liquid).
  6. Serve warm with roasted seeds on top.
Roasted Squash Seeds:
  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. After removing the seeds from the squash, rinse with water, and remove any strings or bits of squash. Pat dry, and place in bowl.
  4. Stir the olive oil, and salt into the seeds until evenly coated.
  5. Spread out in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and cool on the baking sheet before serving.

Fall Food Challenge

Get a prize by participating in the UWGB Wellness Committee Fall Food Challenge!  

For the next five weeks, the Wellness committee challenges you to try some seasonal favorites. Here’s how to participate: Each week a seasonal ingredient will be featured, with Week 5 being a little different. Try a new recipe or make your own with the week’s highlighted ingredient. Submit the recipe and a picture of the finished product and get a prize!

Week 1 (Oct. 25-31): Winter Squash. Whether it be acorn, butternut, hubbard, delicata, or one of the many other winter squash varieties, winter squash brings fall flavors to the table. Unlike summer squash such as zucchini, winter squash are hard when ripe, store well through the colder months, and helped bring fresh vegetables to the table long before refrigeration was common. Good for stuffing, roasting (try removing the seeds, washing, and roasting those), stir-frying, or blending into creamy autumn soups, the category of winter squash can’t be beat for comfort with a hint of sweetness.

Week 2 (Nov. 1-7): Root vegetables. As the ground begins to freeze and harden, many gardeners and farmers prepare to dig up root vegetables, which often reach their flavor peak when frost first appears. Parsnips, kohlrabi, carrots, turnips, beets, and even a second or third planting of radishes are plentiful this time of year, meaning they are also less expensive than imported vegetables that come from other climates.

Week 3 (Nov. 8-14): Cole crops. Cole crops consist of vegetables such as Brussels sprout, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, mustard, broccoli, and turnips. “Cole” refers to anything from the Brassicaceae family, and as you can see there is crossover with other categories. These descendants of wild cabbage come in a variety of forms, and we eat parts that grow above and below ground depending on the plant. Do not get too worried about whether your recipe features a root vegetable or something that is also considered a Cole crop. Just eat your veggies, please!

Week 4 (Nov. 15-21): The Trusty Spud. Whether it be sweet potatoes or a standard cultivar, this starchy tuber is a mainstay of many midwestern dinner plates and a trusted friend in the root cellar. Indigenous to the Americas, the potato is one of the world’s main food crops, up there with corn, wheat, and rice. The orange-fleshed sweet potato is from a different plant family than the standard masher or baker, and while often called a yam, it is not truly from that family of plants either. Both are filling and can be prepared in a multitude of ways and in almost all cultures.

Week 5 (Nov. 22-28): Thanksgiving Dish Makeover! Want to cut back a few calories or fat grams from one dish so you can splurge on another without feeling guilty? We are asking you to makeover a dish to cut back on some calories, plump up the fiber, or in some way give it a health makeover. Submit your original recipe, the makeover, and a picture, along with any comments from family or friends who didn’t notice the difference or who appreciate your efforts.

For every entry, your name will be put in a weekly drawing. All entries will also be placed into a final drawing for kitchen and cooking gear! Please submit your recipes by Friday, December 4th. Submit entries at: https://uwgreenbay.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4NGL18xYPD6tyct

Lastly, all recipes will be made available through a digital cookbook so you can try lots of new recipes this fall and winter!