Vegetarian Vegetable Soup
The inspiration for my vegetarian vegetable soup.
A New Healthy Homemade Vegetable Soup to Love
One of my favorite foods growing up was my Grandma's, and therefore my Mom's, homemade vegetable soup. It's still dear to my heart and taste buds. This soup involved roast (beef) in the recipe, which I very much enjoyed. I never thought any other vegetable soup should even exist beyond this beloved soup. In fact, I'm a bit of a soup snob in that I don't like canned soups, and I also don't prefer those frozen mixed vegetable medleys dumped in my soup.
About 6 years ago I was going through a hard core health phase and eating largely vegetables, when I ran across a vegetarian vegetable soup recipe in the book, "The Obvious Diet." This inspired me to try a different type of vegetable soup, and over the course of several attempts, I created my own adaption of vegetable soup that I enjoy. This soup is full of vegetables and therefore extremely healthy with minimal calories. Plus its flavorful, warm and filling, leaving you fully satisfied.
The main differences in this vegetable soup and the one I grew up on was the lack of beef broth and the addition of bell peppers, zucchini, onion, garlic, and basil. I wasn't sure I'd like any of those vegetables in my veggie soup. I still love my family recipe for vegetable soup, but this one has definitely been added to the list of favorites. In fact, we partake of this soup more often since it requires no meat, which is better for the waistline and the pocketbook.
Even if it feels out of the ordinary for what you anticipate for a vegetable soup, I encourage you to give it a try. I felt the same way at first, but found it to be delicious. Several of my family members have tasted it and then asked for the recipe. So consider yourself like family.
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 of an onion, chopped
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 red or yellow bell peppers, chopped
- 5-6 carrots, sliced
- 6 medium potatoes, diced
- 2 stalks of celery, chopped
- 2 cups fresh green beans, snapped
- 28-32 oz vegetable or chicken broth, (I use a No-Chicken broth)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp dry basil and parsley, (or fresh chopped to taste)
- 1 zucchini, chopped
- 28oz canned tomatoes
This is the No-Chicken Broth I buy at my local grocery store. I like the taste used to make this broth verses the regular vegetable broth which has a stronger taste to it.
- Heat olive oil in large deep pot on medium-low heat. Add chopped onion and minced garlic cloves, sauteing until soft. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
- While onion and garlic saute, chop 2 bell peppers and slice carrots. Add the peppers and carrots to the onion-garlic mix and saute at least 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Note: I often do not have the peppers and carrots ready before the onion and garlic are done cooking, so I turn the heat down to low and add the vegetables as I go.
- While peppers and carrots cook, dice potatoes and chop celery. Add 28-32oz of broth to the sauteed vegetables and begin cooking potatoes and celery in it along with the sauteed vegetables. Wash and snap fresh green beans, adding them to the pot as you go to cook. Add salt, pepper, parsley, and basil. Cook until potatoes and green beans are almost tender.
- Add 1 zucchini chopped and 28oz of canned tomatoes with its juices. Cook another 5-10 minutes, until zucchini is slightly tender and soup is heated through.
Final thoughts and tips.
- You could chop everything beforehand, but I prefer to chop as I go. I like letting each step cook, while I work. I feel like I'm saving time. Don't fret if you're still chopping potatoes when you're carrots are done sauteing. Just keep the burner on low and add vegetables as you can. (And if you can get someone to chop with you, all the better!)
- Even if the broth doesn't seem to fully cover the vegetables, I would give it time for the vegetables to let out their own juices and to shrink down. Adding water makes it taste watered down. When you add the tomatoes later, the more juices will be added.
- Don't be afraid to add a favorite vegetable that may be missing in this soup. Try it. The worst that could happen is you decide NOT to put it in next time.
- I used to use canned green beans, in which case I added them in at the same time as the zucchini since they really require no cooking. Fresh green beans, while less convenient taste much better.
- If you have leftovers and need more juice (as vegetables seem to soak it up), add more broth. Tomato juice or water are also what I would call "second-choice" options.
- Soup always tastes just as good or better the next day. Create with leftovers in mind.
Vegetarian Veggie Soup
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