Cool weather can mean more comfort foods and fighting to say fit. You might miss summer’s fresh bites; you can eat healthy and stay warm with these fast soup recipes.
For most of us, motivation tends to drop when the temperatures go down. And you don’t want to arrive home in the dark, starving for nourishment and grabbing seasonal go-tos like mac ‘n cheese or deep dish lasagna. Want comfort? Hot soup to the rescue!
You might think you need to spend all day with a pot of bones to get your soup game on. But that’s not necessary to enjoy all the tasty benefits of soup as a fit and healthy meal. With a supply of your favorite stock, and some lean meat at the ready, you can make high-protein muscle-building bowls or low-calorie fat-burning broths.
For weight loss, many people find hot liquids curb high hunger levels, too. These three soups can help you hit your nutritional goals through all winter long.
Chicken and Root Vegetable Soup
High-fiber, filling, and classically comforting. Recipe makes 6 – 8 servings.
- 4 large carrots, cleaned, peeled if needed and sliced
- 4 large stalks celery, cleaned, sliced and chopped leafy tops
- 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 6 cups of low sodium chicken broth or stock
- 2 medium red potatoes, cleaned, peeled if desired, and diced
- 2 small parsnips, cleaned, peeled if needed, and diced
- 1 tsp. dried thyme leaves
- 1 tsp. ground sage
- 1/2 bunch Italian parsley, stems removed and chopped
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, poached and pulled to large chunks
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook carrots, celery onion and garlic on medium heat in olive oil in bottom of large pot, a few minutes, until onion is soft and translucent.
- Add broth or stock, potatoes, parsnips, thyme and sage and bring just to a low boil. Continue to cook soup for about 15 minutes, partially covered, until potatoes and parsnips are al dente.
- Add the fresh parsley and poached chicken, cooking uncovered, for five minutes until meat is heated through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Slow Cooker Leftover Steak Tortilla Soup
Packed with protein and calories to help you build muscle. Recipe serves 4 – 6.
- 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
- 1 cup frozen corn, thawed, or 1 cup quinoa, cooked
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 white onion, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 1 jalapeño pepper, diced and deseeded (keep seeds for more heat)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups low-sodium beef stock
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 ½ teaspoons chili powder
- ¼ teaspoons salt
- ¼ teaspoons black pepper
- 1 pound cooked lean steak such as flank or skirt steak, cubed
- Additional optional toppings: Avocado, Mexican cheese, tortilla strips
- Put all ingredients except for cooked steak together in the slow cooker.
- Cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or low for 7 to 8 hours, stirring occasionally if possible.
- Add cubed steak, stir and let meat warm through for a few minutes.
- Ladle into bowls and top with your favorite optional toppings.
Most Amazing Veggie-Lovers Soup
It’s low-cal (60 per cup!), but huge on flavor and nutrients, too. Recipe is for 8 cups.
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
- 3 carrots peeled and sliced
- 4 cups vegetable broth – low-sodium if you like
- 3 cups V-8 juice – low-sodium if you like
- 28 ounce can of Italian diced tomatoes
- 1 zucchini diced
- 1 yellow squash diced
- 2 cups green beans (fresh or frozen)
- 14 ounces kidney beans drained and rinsed
- 3-4 cups shredded cabbage
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Handful of fresh basil leaves
- In a large non-stick frying pan, steam/sauté garlic, onions, carrots, and mushrooms in two tablespoons of broth for about 5 minutes until liquid cooks away.
- In a large stockpot, combine sautéed garlic and vegetables with all remaining ingredients except basil.
- Cook on high for up to an hour, or until vegetables are fork-tender, then toss in basil and stir to wilt it before serving.