Comfort Food Classics

Whether it's built into our brains or something we've created all on our own, comfort food cravings grow stronger and stronger as the daylight and temperature outside decrease.

While there are plenty of naturally warming foods, winter weather makes us crave all things cheesy, gooey, warm, and hearty, which makes comfort food the perfect choice for this week's SWAT (Sharing With A Theme).

Click here to see Comfort Food Classics (Slideshow)

We put the Culinary Content Network to the test to come up with a few of their favorite comfort food recipes, and here are some of the highlights:

  • Christine Carlisle of Chew Nibble Nosh pops everything she needs for her Cajun beans and rice in the slow cooker in the morning to come home to the perfect, budget-friendly comfort food.
  • Lauri Yates of Foxes Love Lemons brings us a Mexican pasta bake. It's cheesy and gooey, and everything you want in a winter casserole to help you forget that it's going to be gross outside for the next few months.
  • This week's winner comes from Becky Winkler of A Calculated WhiskAdd sweet potatoes and kale to three-meat chili for a well-rounded, one-bowl meal.

All of the recipes featured can be made at home for about $20 or less, excluding the cost of small amounts of basic ingredients such as butter, oil, flour, sugar, salt, pepper, and other dried herbs and spices.

Pasta Bolognese

(Credit: Ana Voloshyna/Divine Cuisine)

A classic Italian comfort food for any night of the week. Bolognese sauce can be as simple or as complex as you like, depending on what you have around to toss in. Click here to see the recipe. 

Beef Pot Pie@TDMRecipeEditor

(Credit: Kathy Penney/Penney Lane Kitchen)

User store-bought puff pastry to top this twist on the traditional pot pie for a cozy weeknight meal. Click here to see the recipe.

Julie Ruggirello is the Recipe Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter .