15 Warming Foods & Drinks for Winter Solstice

It's all about comfort and coziness (plus a little bit of fire) on the longest, darkest night of the year.

Published December 18, 2023


Celebrating the longest night of the year (and the longed-for return of the light) is even more fun when you do it with friends and family. What you serve for this celebration matters, though. The best winter solstice foods are warm and cozy and fit perfectly with the first day of official winter. These are some of our faves.

Golden Baked Brie


Start your solstice celebration off right with an appetizer that's warm and gooey and sure to please anyone on this chilliest of nights. It's super easy, too.

To make baked brie, line a baking sheet with parchment (it makes it way easier to transfer the melted brie from the pan to your serving plate). Place the brie on top and bake in a 350°F oven for about 10 minutes. Top it with marmalade or honey for a golden hue to symbolize the return of the light.

Winter Solstice Soup


With its golden color and warm, comforting flavor profile, winter solstice soup is a perfect choice for a starter. It can even be your main course if you're having a vegetarian menu.

Making this solstice soup is easy, too, especially if you have a food processor or an immersion blender. Sweet potatoes give it a warm and cheerful color, and herbs and veggies give it lots of flavor.

White Chicken Chili


A bit heartier than soup, white chicken chili makes an awesome main course for the winter solstice. It's easy to mix up ahead of time, and you can serve a crowd without spending a ton of time in the kitchen.

We love how the light color of this chili celebrates the return of daylight, and it's an easy warm-up for people who have been out in the cold and the dark.

Slow Cooker Beef Stew


When people are cold, they get hungry for hearty foods, and there's really nothing heartier than a beef stew. This easy slow cooker beef stew is a great option for a solstice celebration, especially if you need to feed a crowd. If you're having a bonfire, you can bring the slow cooker outside and dish up the hot stew to eat around the fire.

Cheese Fondue


When it comes to food for winter solstice, you really can't beat cheese fondue. Here's why: it actually cooks over a flame and is warm and cozy. Also, cheese.

We really like serving cheese fondue with a variety of dipping options like crusty bread in cubes, chunks of green apples, ham, and steamed broccoli. It always feels like a celebration to eat fondue.

Hearty Pot Roast


Another warming and delicious meal that's perfect for the longest night of the year is a great pot roast. Get a good cut of meat and cook it all day on the stove or in the slow cooker for that hearty, rich taste that's as cozy as sitting around a fire.

Macaroni and Cheese


If you want to go with a comfort food meal that's not quite as meat-focused, we love a really good homemade macaroni and cheese. This is just like what your mom used to make, and there's something about that kind of warming comfort on the longest, darkest night of the year.

Quick Tip

Be sure to toast the cheese on top to give this the characteristic golden-brown color. We like adding breadcrumbs, too.

Baked Potato Bar


Speaking of comfort foods, there's nothing like a baked potato for warming you up when it's cold and dark. If you're serving a crowd for the solstice, you can have a baked potato bar with all the toppings laid out. Include the standards like butter, shredded cheese, and sour cream, but don't forget to add a few extras. We love black olives, green onions, ham, bacon, and hot peppers.

Quick Tip

This is a great option for winter solstice if you're feeding people with special diets or allergies. They can customize their potato, so there's no need to make a separate vegetarian or gluten-free option. Even better, everyone will feel included.

Chicken Pot Pie


You know how celebrating the solstice has kind of a medieval feel to it? Well, so does Once Upon a Chef's chicken pot pie. This classic comfort food is hearty, warm, and perfect for making ahead. That makes it an ideal option for a solstice party or just for serving to your family.

Winter Solstice Cake


When you're ready for dessert, we have the perfect option. Taste of Home's winter solstice cake is a showstopper if we've ever seen one. It starts with a basic pound cake mix, but fire-inspired lemon candy toppers give it the look of shining light. It's gorgeous and easy to make ahead if you're hosting.

Yule Log


Yule is a Pagan holiday that often falls on the winter solstice, so it's a natural source of inspiration for any celebration. While the actual "yule log" was a log that people burned for several days and often saved to start the next year's fire, the yule log cake is an adorable and edible tribute to the festive tradition. The cake is in the shape of a log, and you can decorate it elaborately if you're feeling creative.

Baked Alaska


A flaming dessert is almost a given for a celebration that's all about fire and light. We love baked Alaska, which is ice cream served in a meringue shell that's often flambéed right before serving. It's not the easiest thing to make, but it will absolutely wow anyone who sees (and tastes) it.

Mulled Wine


In addition to food for winter solstice, you need the perfect warming drinks. Mulled wine is a wonderful option because you can keep it warm in a slow cooker and sip on it by the bonfire or in your house. You'll need wine, oranges, sugar, and spices. It's festive and traditional for this long night.

Non-Alcoholic Wassail


Another traditional winter drink is wassail. It's sometimes made with alcohol, but we like making a nonalcoholic wassail that kids can enjoy, too. To make it, you start with cider and add lots of spices and sugar, so it's a hit with anyone who likes a hot drink on a freezing winter night (so basically everyone).

Blue Blazer


Fire is a part of any solstice theme, and a flaming cocktail is a natural choice here. A blue blazer is an old-fashioned drink that dates back to the California gold rush. Think of it as a classic hot toddy — but on fire.

Warm Up With Winter Solstice Foods & Drinks


When you're thinking about foods for winter solstice, keep the dark and cold in mind. Anything that's warming and comforting is a win. Lean in to all the classic comfort foods, plus drinks and dishes that celebrate light and fire. It only gets lighter from here, and that's worth a celebration.

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15 Warming Foods & Drinks for Winter Solstice