Soup

Edamame and Potato Soup

By the Gracious Vegan

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This delicious soup may surprise you. Most of us eat edamame only as appetizers in Asian restaurants. Here they co-star with potatoes in a healthy and tasty soup. Some people who say they don’t like dill even like this flavor, so give it a try. It’s super-easy in a pressure cooker, but I provide stovetop directions as well.

Makes 6.5 cups (5 servings)

Add all the ingredients to the Instant Pot. 

  • 1 pound potatoes (any kind), cut into small/medium dice (your choice to peel the potatoes or not)

  • 1 small onion or half a medium/large onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)

  • 1 medium stalk celery, chopped (about 1/3 cup)

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 3 cups vegetable broth

  • 1.5 cups frozen shelled edamame

  • 1.5 teaspoon dried dill (or 2 Tablespoons fresh chopped)

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt (unless your broth is salty, then be careful)

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cook on high pressure (“Manual”) for 5 minutes, with 10-minute quick release. 

Stovetop directions: Increase the water to 3.5 cups. Put everything together in a soup pot or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover the pot, and simmer for 20 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Mash to your liking (I like to keep some of the potato and edamame chunky).

Top with garnishes if desired.

Timing: About 45 minutes with the prep

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed, WFPBNO

Gluten-free


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Massaman Peanut Noodle Soup

By the Gracious Vegan

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There’s hardly a Thai-inspired dish I don’t love. I’d seen a number of recipes for Thai noodle soup online, but most of them contained coconut milk (high in saturated fat), oil, and sugar. I had to figure out how to eliminate those without sacrificing taste and texture. Here is the result—a mouth-watering peanut-infused soup with noodles. It’s creamy and savory, but with hints of lime and curry paste to jazz things up.

Makes 5 servings

Start soaking the cashews and dates for the cashew broth, if needed.

Water-sauté the vegetables (start with 1/4 cup water) for 8 to 10 minutes, until the sweet potato pieces are soft.

  • 1.5 cups diced sweet potatoes (peeling optional)

  • 1 red bell pepper, diced

Cashew broth. Create cashew broth for the soup by blending the following ingredients on high for 30 seconds or longer, until the cashews and dates are dissolved. (If you do not have a high speed blender, soak the cashews first for 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them and soak them for 20 minutes; drain.) Set the broth aside. 

  • 2.5 cups water

  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter 

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews

  • 1/4 cup, well packed, date pieces (pitted) (pre-soak the dates if they are hard) (or 1/4 cup homemade date paste)

Back to the sweet potatoes and red peppers: add the following ingredients to pot, stir them in, and cook for another few minutes.

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger

  • 1 Tablespoon red curry paste (I like Maesri or Thai Kitchen brand)

  • 3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

Increase heat to medium-high, add the following ingredients, stir, and cook, uncovered, for about 5 minutes, until the thickness is to your liking.

  • 2 cups vegetable stock

  • The cashew broth

  • Juice from one lime (about 2 Tablespoons)

  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce 

  • 1 teaspoon Chinese roasted sesame paste, if you have it

Add the following ingredients and cook for 3 minutes.

  • 3 ounces whole grain thin noodles or spaghetti (you can use a package of ramen noodles without the flavor packet, but note that they contain refined flour)

  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

To serve, ladle soup into bowls, and divide the garnishes among the bowls.

  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced

  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts

  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Timing: about 45 minutes

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Gluten-free if gluten-free noodles are used

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Creamy Curry Split Pea Soup 

By the Gracious Vegan

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This comforting soup requires more spices than others, but it’s totally worth it. This tasty, substantial soup can serve as an entrée in its own right.

Freezes well. Instant Pot instructions at bottom. 

Makes 7 servings

Create cashew milk for the soup by blending the cashews and water together on high for 30 seconds or longer, until the cashews are dissolved. (If you do not have a high speed blender, soak the cashews first for 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them and soak them for 20 minutes; drain.) Set aside. 

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews

  • 1 cup water

Add the following ingredients to a Dutch oven or soup pot, bring to a boil, cook for about an hour, partly covered, until the split peas are very tender. 

  • 5 cups vegetable broth

  • 1.5 cups dry yellow split peas

  • 1 14.5-ounce can diced or petite-diced tomatoes

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste 

  • 1 Tablespoon ground coriander

  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced

  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric

  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala

  • 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes

Add the following and stir for a few minutes until the greens are wilted and the thickness of the soup is to your liking. 

  • The cashew milk

  • 2-3 handfuls of chopped kale or spinach

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • 1.25 teaspoons salt (or to taste)

  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

For the Instant Pot: Put the main list of ingredients in the Instant Pot. 

  • Use 4.5 cups vegetable broth instead of 5 cups

  • Valve in the sealing position

  • “Manual” setting for 15 minutes

  • 10-minute natural release

Add the greens, cashew milk, cilantro, salt, extract, and stir in the Instant Pot

 

Timing: hands-on time: 30 minutes; total time 80 minutes         

Nutrition: whole-food, unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 206 calories, 2g fat, 0g sat. fat, 33g carbs, 857mg sodium, 12mg fiber, 13g protein 

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Leafy Green Lentil Soup

By the Gracious Vegan

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This is the ultimate healthy soup. The lentils add critical substance, while the cumin, coriander, mint, cilantro, and jalapeño contribute incredible flavor. You may be surprised how addictive this soup is. It’s an intense green color as well. 

Makes 9 servings

Put the following ingredients in a large (at least 6-quart) Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer, covered, for about 25 minutes, until the lentils are tender. 

  • 8 cups vegetable broth

  • 2 large onions, chopped

  • 1 cup brown or black (Beluga) lentils *

  • 1 medium potato (russet, red skin, Yukon gold), scrubbed (peeled if desired) and cut into 1/2"-inch dice

  • Sliced stems/ribs from 8 large green or red chard leaves

  • 2 teaspoons cumin 

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

Then stir the following ingredients into the pot. Cover and cook 5 minutes more.

  • 4 scallions, sliced

  • 2 cups chopped broccoli (1 medium or large crown)

  • Chopped leaves from the 8 large green or red chard leaves

Finally, stir in the following ingredients. Return to a simmer, cover and cook until the spinach is tender but still bright green, about 5 minutes more.

  • 10 ounces leaf spinach, any tough stems trimmed, chopped (or whole baby spinach)

  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro (leaves and stems)

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint (or 2 teaspoons dried mint)

  • 1/2 jalapeño pepper, minced (make it a whole one if you like spicy-hot)

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

Stir in lemon juice. Use a stick (immersion) blender to make a smooth soup.

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Taste and add more lemon juice, salt, and/or pepper.

Optional garnishes:

* For a variation, you can use green French lentils (Lentilles du Puy) and keep the soup chunky and unblended. They have thicker skins and need about 15 more minutes cooking time. 

Timing: Hands-on time 40 minutes, total time 60 minutes

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 128 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat. fat, 22g carbs, 799mgsodium, 6mg fiber9gprotein 

Gluten-free

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Turkish Red Lentil Soup 

By the Gracious Vegan

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Turkish red lentil soup is a great soup for your regular rotation. It’s quick, cheap, and filling. It works well any time of year and is perfect for when you’re feeling under the weather. You can keep it simple or dress it up with lots of toppings.

Freezes well. Instant Pot instructions at bottom.

Makes 7 servings

Put all ingredients in a Dutch oven or soup pot, bring to a boil, and simmer, covered, 30 minutes, until the rice is cooked and the lentils have virtually dissolved into a puree.

  • 8 cups vegetable broth

  • 2 cups red lentils

  • 1/4 cup uncooked white rice or 3/4 cup cooked brown rice*

  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 Tablespoons sweet paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon urfa biber or Aleppo pepper or 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped

  • 1 medium tomato, finely diced

  • Add salt to taste. Add a little water if it’s too thick. 

  • Salt to taste (1.25 teaspoons)

Optional garnishes:

* Some stores, like Trader Joe’s, offer pre-cooked frozen brown rice in the frozen foods aisle. 

 

For the Instant Pot: Put the main list of ingredients in the Instant Pot. 

  • Use 7 cups vegetable broth instead of 8 cups

  • Valve in the sealing position

  • “Manual” setting for 10 minutes

  • 10-minute natural release

  • Stir in the salt 

 

Timing: hands-on time 15 minutes; total time: 50 minutes         

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 221 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat. fat, 39g carbs, 1011 mgsodium, 9mg fiber16gprotein 

Gluten-free

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Gracious Vegan Mulligatawny Soup

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By the Gracious Vegan

This is based on a Madhur Jaffrey recipe, but I’ve adapted it quite a bit, notably eliminating the coconut milk and streamlining the method. It takes some ingredient-hunting and a bit of time, but it’s so worth it. Curry leaves do freeze well, so once you buy a batch at an Asian market, you will have enough for many batches.

Makes 8 cups (about 5 servings)

Combine the stock mixture, spices, and all of these in a Dutch oven or soup pot and bring to a boil. Cover, turn the heat down, and simmer for about 50 minutes, until all the vegetables are tender.

  • 4.5 cups vegetable broth 

  • 2 small potatoes (8 oz. total), peeled and diced

  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced

  • 2 small turnips (8 oz. total), peeled and diced1 medium onion, coarsely chopped

  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped

  • 12 fresh curry leaves or 8 fresh basil leaves

  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped

  • 1 Tablespoon peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne

Separately, add the following ingredients to a small frying pan on medium heat. Stir and roast until they are a shade darker and fragrant. Cool them for 15-20 minutes, then grind them up in a clean coffee grinder. Then add them to the cooking soup.

  • 1/4 teaspoon whole black pepper corns

  • 2 Tablespoons whole coriander seeds

  • 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon whole fennel seeds

Meanwhile, create cashew milk for the soup by blending the water, cashews and chickpea flour together on high for 30 seconds or longer, until the cashews are dissolved. (If you do not have a high speed blender, soak the cashews for 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them and soak them for 20 minutes; drain.) Set aside. 

  • 1.75 cup water

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews

  • 1.5 Tablespoon chickpea flour

Put it all together. Add the following ingredients to the soup once the vegetables are tender. Use a hand blender to puree the mixture.

  • The cashew milk

  • 1.25 teaspoons salt, or to taste

  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

Simmer gently for 2-3 minutes to blend the flavors. Thin out with more stock if needed. 

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed, WFPBNO

Timing: About 1 hour 10 minutes

Gluten-free

 

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Hearty Potato Chowder

By the Gracious Vegan

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This divine chowder is perfect for a fall or winter meal, even part of a holiday dinner. It’s substantial, with hints of thyme, onion, celery, and umami. The corn and carrots add specks of color. This chowder could become your go-to potato soup recipe. 

Makes: 8 servings

Soak cashews in cold water at least 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak 20 minutes. (You can skip this step if you have a high-speed blender.) 

  • 1 cups raw cashews (whole or pieces)

Add the following ingredients to a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

  • 6 medium Yukon gold, red skin, or russet potatoes, peeled (or not, if you prefer) and cut into 1/2” dice (about 6 cups of dice)

  • 5 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4” dice

  • 1 celery stalk, cut into 1/4” inch dice

  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)

While the soup is cooking, complete the cashew cream by draining the cashews and rinsing them under cold water. Then place them in a blender with enough fresh cold water to barely cover them. Blend on high for several minutes until very smooth, so smooth that you can no longer detect any bits of cashews.

After the potatoes are soft, mash some of them in the soup pot with a potato masher and stir to thicken the soup. Add the following ingredients and simmer for 4-5 minutes, stirring often, because the cashew cream can burn on the bottom of the pot.

  • Kernels from 2 ears of corn (or 1.5 cups frozen corn)

  • Cashew cream from 1 cup cashews

  • 1 Tablespoon Braggs Liquid Aminos, if you have it; or 2 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1.5 teaspoons salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

Remove the thyme twigs. Garnish each bowl, if desired, with chives and diced tomato.

  • 2 tablespoons minced chives (optional)

  • 1/2 cup diced tomato (optional)

Timing: hands-on time 45 minutes, total time 50 minutes          

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed, WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 223 calories, 9g fat, 2g sat. fat, 33g carbs, 127 mgsodium, 4mg fiber6gprotein 

Gluten-free

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Easy Vegan Lentil Soup

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By the Gracious Vegan

To paraphrase airline pilots, “I know you have a choice in lentil soup recipes…” Yes, there are a lot of them out there. The difference here is the healthiness (whole-food, no processed ingredients if you use date paste) and the seasonings—the little bit of sweetness and acidity added at the end make all the difference. Worth a try.

In a Dutch oven, combine the following ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, cover, and let simmer for 1 hour. (Instant Pot – 10 minutes high pressure, natural release 10 minutes)

  • 1.5 cups brown lentils

  • 6 cups water (5 cups if using Instant Pot)

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 2 celery stalks, diced

  • 2 carrots, diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

Add the following ingredients, stir in, and taste for seasonings

  • 1.5 teaspoons salt

  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar or 1 Tablespoon date paste

  • 2 teaspoons red vinegar

Timing: About 90 minutes on the stovetop; about 30 minutes with the Instant Pot

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed (WFPBNO) if you use date paste instead of brown sugar

Gluten-free30

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Curried Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup

By The Gracious Vegan

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Substituting creamed cashews, water, and coconut extract for coconut milk really saves on saturated fat. A quarter-cup of coconut milk has 11 grams of saturated fat, as much as a Burger King Whopper. In this soup, the sweet potatoes, lentils, spices, vegetables, and coconut milk substitutes make for irresistible texture and taste. No sacrifice here.

Makes: 10 servings

Create cashew milk for the soup by blending the cashews and water together on high for 30 seconds or longer, until the cashews are dissolved. (If you do not have a high speed blender, soak the cashews for 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them and soak them for 20 minutes; drain.) Set aside. 

  • 1/4 cup raw cashews

  • 1.5 cups water

Combine the following ingredients in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the lentils are done and the sweet potatoes are tender, about 45 minutes. 

  • 8 cups vegetable stock

  • 1 large (red or yellow) onion, minced

  • 6 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 Tablespoons minced ginger root

  • 16-18 ounces sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2” dice (about 4 cups)

  • 2 cups dried brown or red lentils

  • 1 medium or large red pepper, diced

  • 1.5 Tablespoons curry powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon (or more) crushed red pepper flakes

Once the soup is cooked, stir in the following ingredients and cook gently for a few minutes until desired thickness is achieved.

  • The 1.5 cups of cashew milk

  • Juice of one lime (about 2 Tablespoons)

  • 1/4 cup (packed) cilantro, finely chopped

  • 3-4 Tablespoons tamari or soy sauce

  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

Salt will likely not be needed because of the soy sauce, but add in salt if desired. 

Timing: Hands-on time 30 minutes; Total time 70 minutes  

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 197 calories, 1g fat, 0g sat. fat, 35g carbs, 639mg sodium, 8mg fiber, 12g protein 

Gluten-free

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Curried Zucchini Soup

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By the Gracious Vegan

Zucchini and curry play well together. This easy soup is thickened with beans and rice. No oil and whole-food ingredients mean this soup is super-healthy and low-calorie, though it doesn’t taste like it. 

Makes: 6 servings

In a Dutch oven or other large pan, cook the following ingredients in water (start with 1/4 cup and keep adding as needed), until onion is soft and transparent and zucchini cubes are soft, 5-10 minutes. 

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 12 ounces zucchini, cubed (about 3/4”)

Add the following ingredients, bring the soup to a boil, then turn down, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. 

  • 5 cups vegetable stock

  • 1.5 - 2 cups cooked white beans (any kind) or black-eyed peas (if using a can of beans, drain and rinse them)

  • 1/4 cup uncooked white rice (or 1 cup cooked brown rice)*

  • 1 Tablespoon curry powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)

Once the soup is cooked, use a hand (immersion) blender to puree soup in pan.

* Pre-cooked brown rice is available in the frozen section of some stores, like Trader Joe’s.

Timing: Hands-on time: 15 minutes; total time: 40 minutes

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 152 calories, 1g fat, 0g sat. fat, 25g carbs, 820mg sodium, 4mg fiber11g protein 

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Golden Green Split Pea Soup

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By the Gracious Vegan

This is one of those comforting soups that helps you relax. It's not trying to impress -- it just tastes good and wholesome, and that's enough. The combination of green and yellow split peas gives it a golden-green glow, and the vegetables provide welcome chunkiness and variety.

Makes 9 cups (6 servings)

In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, water-sauté the following ingredients until the onion is soft and transparent, 5-8 minutes. (Start with ¼ cup water and add more if you need it.)

  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  • 1 medium carrot, chopped

  • 1 celery rib, chopped

Add the following ingredients to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the peas are very soft, about 1 hour.

  • 1 medium potato, peeled and diced (1/2”)

  • 1 cup dried green split peas

  • 1 cup dried yellow split peas

  • 7 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 bay leaf

  • ½ Tablespoon salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

The soup will thicken as it sits after cooking. Stir in additional water as needed. 

Timing: 20 minutes hands-on time; 80 minutes total

Nutrition: 100% whole-food, unprocessed; WFPBNO

Per serving: 274 calories; 1g fat; 0g sat. fat; 49g carbs; 1091mg sodium; 18g fiber; 19g protein

Gluten-free

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Creamy Mushroom Soup

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By the Gracious Vegan

If you don’t have porcini mushroom powder, use ½ ounce dried porcinis (soak them in boiling water, then chop them and add to the soup, along with the soaking liquid). With several different mushroom varieties used here, the flavor is beguiling, while the cashews take care of the creamy texture.

Makes 6 servings

Soak cashews in cold water at least 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak 20 minutes. (You can skip this step if you have a high-speed blender.) 

  • 1 ¼ cups raw cashews

Water-sauté the following in a soup pot or Dutch oven until the onion and celery are soft, 5 minutes or more.

  • ½ medium-large onion, chopped

  • 1 celery stalk, chopped

  • ¼ cup (packed) flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Add the following to the pot. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat, and let it simmer 15-20 minutes, until the mushrooms are cooked through and tender.

  • ½ pound cremini or white button mushrooms, sliced

  • 1 pound assorted mushrooms such as shiitakes, Portobellos, oysters, maitakes, chanterelles, or morels, and sliced

  • 1.5 – 2 Tablespoons porcini mushroom powder

  • 2.5 cups water

  • ½ Tablespoon salt, plus more to taste

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

Use an immersion blender to puree the mushrooms to your desired level of chunkiness or smoothness. 

Separately, drain the water from the cashews (if you soaked them) and blend them in a blender with 1 ½ cups fresh water until absolutely smooth. 

Add the cashew cream to the soup, and stir it in. Blend the soup more, if desired. Season to taste with additional salt and vinegar or Braggs, starting with 1 teaspoon and tasting to see if you want more.

  • 1-2 teaspoons golden balsamic or sherry vinegar (or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos)

Garnish with additional minced parsley if desired.

 

Timing: Hands-on time 30 minutes, total time 45 minutes

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving: 175 calories, 11g fat, 2g sat. fat, 16g carbs, 18mg sodium, 9g fiber6g protein

Gluten-free

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Puree of Asparagus Soup

By the Gracious Vegan

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A little rice goes a long way… It’s the secret to why this soup is so creamy. The texture is silky smooth, making the soup perfect for an elegant dinner party, or for whenever you want to feel elegant.

Makes: 6 cups

Wash the asparagus. No need to snap off the hard ends.

  • 2 pounds asparagus

Garnishes. Cut the tops off 12 of the stalks to use as garnishes at the end. Either microwave these tops for 2-3 minutes with a little water, then cool quickly with cold water, or cook in water on the stove for about 3 minutes, then cool quickly with cold water. 

Broth. Cut the bottom third from each stalk and combine them with leek tops, broth, and bay leaf in a soup pot or Dutch oven. Simmer for 15 minutes. Strain, discard the solids, and save the broth.

  • The bottom third of each asparagus stalk

  • The green tops (no need to chop or slice them) of 2 large leeks, which have been sliced lengthwise and rinsed

  • 4 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 bay leaf

The soup. Return empty pot to the stove. Water-sauté with ¼ cup water the white parts of the leeks until they are transparent, about 5 minutes.

  • White parts of the 2 leeks, thinly sliced

Add the next ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

  • 1 cup of the broth

  • 3 tablespoons uncooked white rice or 3/4 cup cooked brown rice

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, more as needed

Add next ingredients and simmer, covered, over low heat, until asparagus is completely tender, 7 to 10 minutes.

  • The remaining broth

  • The remaining asparagus, cut into 1-2” pieces

Purée the soup with an immersion blender to desired texture. Season with these.

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice, more as desired

Serve with the asparagus tops as garnish.

Timing: Hands-on time 30 minutes, Total time 55 minutes

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving (based on 4 servings): 104 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat. fat, 22g carbs, 14mg sodium, 6g fiber, 6g protein

Gluten-free

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Curried Butternut Squash Soup

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I recommend a serrated peeler for getting the tough skin off the butternut squash. Or buy pre-peeled and cubed squash at the store. The alluring taste of this soup will make your guests think you worked all day on it. The cashews and coconut extract make the soup taste like it was made with coconut milk, but you save a lot of saturated fat by avoiding coconut milk. 

Makes 8 cups

Soak the cashews and dates in cold water at least 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak 20 minutes. (You can skip this step if you have a high-speed blender.)

  • 1/3 cup raw cashews

  • 1 or 2 dates

Drain and rinse the cashews and dates (if you soaked them) and combine with fresh water in the blender. Blend until the cashews are dissolved. Set aside. 

  • 1.75 cups water

In a Dutch oven or other large pan, combine the following ingredients, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then decrease the heat to low and cover and simmer until the squash is tender, about 20-25 minutes. 

  • 1½ pounds butternut squash, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 5 cups)

  • 4 cups broth

  • 1½ cups diced yellow onion

  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh ginger

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 2 teaspoons turmeric

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

Decrease the heat to low and stir in the cashew and date mixture. Cover and simmer about 5 minutes until desired thickness is reached. 

  • The cashew and date mixture

Remove the cinnamon stick. Stir these in. Remove from heat.

  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice

  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

  • 1 teaspoon salt

Use an immersion blender to create a very smooth soup, adding additional broth or water for a thinner consistency if you like. Or you can use a regular blender after the soup has cooled a bit. Cook over low heat just until heated through. 

Ideas for garnishes

  • Fresh chopped parsley, finely chopped red pepper, toasted bread slices or cubes, toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds, additional full-fat coconut milk for drizzle

Timing: Hands-on time 30 minutes, total time 45 minutes

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Nutritional information per serving (based on 5 servings): 117 calories, 4g fat, 1g sat. fat, 21g carbs, 471mg sodium, 4g fiber3g protein

Gluten-free

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Creamy Broccoli Soup

The Gracious Vegan

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Broccoli cheese soup is popular in restaurants for at least two reasons. Number one, it’s tasty. But it also lets you feel virtuous about eating your vegetables. This plant-based version uses nutritional yeast to get that cheesy flavor. Filling, delicious, and healthy, this soup hits the bulls-eye.

Quick-soak cashews. Pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak while you make the rest of the soup. They should soak for about 20 minutes. (You can skip this step if you have a high-speed blender.)

  • ¾ cup raw cashews, pieces or halves

Water-sauté the onion and garlic in a soup pot or Dutch oven until the onion is transparent, around 5 minutes.

  • 1 small onion, diced

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

Add the next ingredients. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower heat to a simmer. Cook about 10 minutes until the carrots are tender.

  • 4 cups chopped broccoli – stems and florets

  • 3 cups vegetable broth

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped (about ½ cup)

  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric

  • ½ teaspoon salt

Now, make the cashew cream by draining the cashews and placing them in a blender with these ingredients.

  • 2 cups vegetable broth

  • 3 Tablespoons yellow or white miso

  • 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes

Blend on high for 30 seconds to 5 minutes until very smooth, so smooth that you can no longer detect any bits of cashews—they’ve dissolved.

If your blender is large enough, add the vegetables and broth into the blender with the cashew mixture and puree the soup until only small chunks of broccoli and carrots are visible. Cook the soup on low heat, partially covered, for about 5 minutes, until thickened, stirring occasionally so that it doesn’t burn on the bottom.

Timing: About 35 minutes

Nutrition: whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Gluten-free

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Easy Creamy Tomato Soup

By the Gracious Vegan

Creamy Tomato Soup in Thermos.JPG

Goodbye, Campbell’s! This recipe is no copycat. It soars beyond the canned brands. The cashews give it creaminess without overwhelming the tomatoes. Once you’ve made this, you’ll never want to go back.

Quick-soak the cashews. Pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak while you make the rest of the soup.

  • ½ cup raw cashews (whole or pieces)

Separately, water-sauté these ingredients (start with 1/4 cup water) in a Dutch oven until soft, 5 minutes or more.

  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

  • ½ onion, chopped

  • 1.5 teaspoon dried basil, oregano or Italian seasoning

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt and large pinch of pepper

Add the next ingredients to the pot, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and boil gently, covered, for 10 minutes or until tomatoes are very soft. Remove from heat.

  • 1 can (28 oz.) crushed or whole tomatoes

  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) tomato paste

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar or sugar (optional)

Now drain the cashews and rinse under cold water. Place them in a blender with water.

  • 2 cups cold water

Blend on high for 30 seconds to 5 minutes until very smooth, so smooth that you can no longer detect any bits of cashews—they’ve dissolved.

If your blender is big enough for you to add the tomato mixture into the cashew mixture, do that and blend on low-medium until you achieve your desired smoothness. If your blender isn’t big enough, use an immersion blender to smooth out the tomato mixture, then stir in the blended cashews.

Check seasoning and serve.

Timing: Total time around 25 minutes (about 20 minutes hands-on time)

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Gluten-free

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Fast and Easy Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Fast and Easy Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup.JPG

Someone told me recently about how good the Trader Joe's Organic Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup was. This person was a vegan, so I bought the soup without reading the ingredients. After trying it and liking it, I read the carton and saw there was milk in it. So I got out my blender and my cashews and experimented a few times. This result is super easy and tastes amazing! You can also add things to it -- cooked kale or other vegetables, also grated tempeh or other protein. It's a wonderful base for a creative lunch. 

Makes about 5 cups (4 servings) (7-8 cups with add-ins)

Soak cashews in cold water at least 2 hours, or pour boiling water over them, cover, and let them soak 20 minutes. Drain the cashews and rinse under cold water. (You can skip this step if you have a high-speed blender.)

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews (whole or pieces)

Place them in a blender with water. Blend for 30 second to several minutes, depending on your blender, until the cashews are completely dissolved.

  • 2 cups cold water

Put the remaining ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth

  • 6 ounces tomato paste

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1 cup roasted red peppers (from a jar, rinsed)

  • 2 teaspoons onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)

  • ½ teaspoon oregano

  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder

  • Freshly ground black pepper

Put soup in a Dutch oven, bring to a boil, lower and simmer for about 5 minutes until thickened.

Optional to add:

  • Fresh (10 oz.) or frozen spinach (1 package) or 4 cups chopped kale (loosely packed) from 3 very large leaves. Cook in Dutch oven, covered, with 1/4 cup water for 7 minutes (or about 4 minutes in a microwave with a little water)

  • 1 can of chickpeas or, if you have more time, try 8 ounces tempeh, grated, boiled uncovered in 3/4 cup water, 1-2 Tablespoons soy sauce until water and soy sauce are absorbed, about 5 minutes.

Timing: 25 minutes total (if you need to soak the cashews) (10 minutes active)

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Per serving (without add-ins): 133 calories; 7g fat; 1g sat. fat; 16g carbs; 1244mg sodium; 3g fiber; 4g protein

Gluten-free

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Creamy White Bean Soup

By Kim Campbell from the PlantPure Kitchen

Link to Creamy White Bean Soup recipe

GV comments: When I first saw this recipe, I thought only that it looked healthy. But then I made it. The spicing, especially the smoked paprika, creates a flavor with a difference. I admit that my first thought was, "Hey, this tastes like Campbell's Bean with Bacon soup from when I was a kid!" (We called it "Bean'acon soup.") But this is way better. It's all whole-food, unprocessed ingredients and it can be frozen. A real keeper. 

Timing: About an hour

Nutrition: Whole-food unprocessed; WFPBNO

Gluten-free

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Gracious Vegan Sopa de Fideo

By the Gracious Vegan

Photo by Dale Cruse on flickr

Photo by Dale Cruse on flickr

This soup is based on a non-vegan recipe found by my friend Teresa, found on Hispanic Kitchen's site. The soup is basically a comforting noodle soup, but the chile, cumin, and smoked paprika make this stand out against blander versions of noodle soup. I haven't had a cold since I went vegan, but if I ever do again, I'm going to make this soup. My hard-to-please husband also liked this soup a lot. 

Makes about 6 cups (4 servings)

Take your peas and carrots out of the freezer and let them defrost slightly while you prep your ingredients.

  • 3/4 cup frozen peas and carrots

In a Dutch oven or other large soup pan, heat olive oil to medium hot. Add the fideo and cook until the pasta starts to toast in some spots. Turn as needed.

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 ounces fideo pasta

After a few minutes, add the onions, garlic and serrano, stir well and cook for 2 minutes.

  • 1/2 cup onion white or red, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 serrano or jalapeno chile

Add the remaining ingredients. Only add 2½ cups of broth to start, and reserve the other ½ cup.

  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons vegan bouillon powder (or two cubes)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Ground pepper
  • 3 cups water 

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook until most of the broth is reduced.

If you need to, you can add the remaining ½ cup of broth at this time. Add the peas and carrots, cover, and continue cooking for another 3 to 5 minutes. Serve. If you want this more like a risotto, remove from heat and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes; the broth will be absorbed as the pasta sits. 

Timing: About 30 minutes

Nutrition: The two processed ingredients are the 2 teaspoons oil and the fideo. 

Per serving : 150 calories; 3g fat; 0g sat. fat; 25g carbs; 757mg sodium; 5g fiber; 7g protein

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Basic Green Soup

By Anna Thomas on The Splendid Table

Link to Basic Green Soup recipe

GV comments: This is a fabulous soup. It's flavorings are subtle and intriguing. The bright green color makes you want to try it -- it has to be healthy (and it is) -- and the tastes delivers on that promise. One source of the deep flavor is caramelized onions. After making it several times with the called-for amount of oil, I decreased to only one tablespoon and it worked perfectly. Low calories, evocative flavor? I'm in. 

Timing: almost an hour

Nutrition: Mostly whole-food

Gluten-free

 

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