Two Fall Comfort Recipes with Seasonal Ingredients

While this autumn season will likely look different than years past, wholesome meals celebrating fall flavors provide something to look forward to. Along with fall favorites like root vegetables, Brussels sprouts, apples and cranberries, kitchen staples like walnuts also have their own prime season.

Fun fact: Walnuts harvested during autumn from the fertile soils of California supply more than 99 percent of walnuts in the United States and more than half of the world’s walnut trade? Each harvest produces enough walnuts for you to enjoy the tasty and nutrient rich benefits year-round. Pro tip: Storing walnuts in the fridge or freezer maintains freshness longer.

These recipes for Apple Pear Walnut Crisp and Pumpkin Walnut Sage Risotto offer fall flavors, and you can find more recipes to celebrate the season at

Apple Pear Walnut CrispApple Pear Walnut Crisp

Total time: 1 hour, 5 minutes
Servings: 4


Walnut Crisp Topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups California walnuts, divided
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter, chilled and sliced into 1-tablespoon pieces

Apple Pear Filling:

  • 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 D’Anjou pears, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Ice cream (optional)
  • Caramel sauce (optional)


To make walnut crisp topping: In food processor, pulse 1 cup walnuts until finely ground.

In small bowl, combine ground walnuts, flour, brown sugar, oats and cinnamon. Cut butter into mixture until coarse crumb forms.

Coarsely chop remaining walnuts and stir into crumb mixture until incorporated. Set aside.

To make apple pear filling: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In bowl, toss apples, pears, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, salt and lemon juice.

Place fruit mixture in bottom of 10-inch cast-iron pan or baking dish. Sprinkle walnut crisp topping mixture over fruit.

Bake 45 minutes, or until fruit mixture is hot and bubbly and topping is golden brown.

Top with ice cream and caramel sauce, if desired.

Pumpkin Walnut Sage RisottoPumpkin Walnut Sage Risotto

Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6



  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup grated pecorino cheese

Walnut Sage Pesto:

  • 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1 cup California walnuts
  • 1/2 cup fresh sage leaves, plus additional for garnish, if desired
  • 1/2 cup grated pecorino cheese, plus additional for garnish, if desired
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste


To make risotto: In medium pot over medium-low heat, heat vegetable stock.

In large, heavy pot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onion and cook, stirring often, 5 minutes, or until soft.

Add rice and cook, stirring often, 2-3 minutes until rice is translucent except for white center.

Add hot stock 1 cup at a time, stirring frequently. As stock is absorbed, add another cup. Continue until all stock has been incorporated and rice is cooked al dente, about 20 minutes. Stir in pumpkin and cheese.

To make walnut sage pesto: In bowl of food processor, combine garlic and walnuts; pulse until minced. Add 1/2 cup sage leaves, 1/2 cup cheese and olive oil; pulse until coarse pesto forms. Season with salt, to taste.

In final few minutes, add 1/2 cup walnut sage pesto to risotto, stirring until well incorporated. Season with kosher salt and black pepper, to taste. Garnish with remaining pesto, cheese and fresh sage, if desired.