There’s a nip in the air and there’s no better place than under a quilt, snuggled up with your loved ones or a good book. Suddenly, even as the fire burns in a mellow yet warm blaze, you want to reach out to something warm to keep you feeling all cozy and comfortable. And what better way than a bowl of a heart-warming soup? There are umpteen options and all delectable and wholesome!
How about you try one of these easy soups to keep you healthy, hearty and warm in the coldest months of the year?
Let’s go vegetarian and vegan first. There are a lot of ways to make this Italian soup and this is just one of them. Minestrones are great for lunches or dinners too, if you’re looking for something light. This version has no oil and even the vegetables in this soup are all low in fat and calories, but definitely not low in nutrition.
- Vegetable broth or stock – 4 cups
- Diced tomatoes – 4 cups
- Chopped fresh basil – 1 tbsp
- Oregano, fresh or dried – ½ tsp
- Chopped carrots – 2
- Chopped celery – 2 stalks
- Chopped onions – ½
- Chopped zucchini – 3
- Chopped green beans – 1 cup
- Minced garlic – 3 cloves
- Bay leaf – 1
- Pasta small variety like macaronis or shells – 1 ½ cups
- Pepper – to taste
- Salt – to taste
- First, keep everything handy and arrange near at hand so that you are not rushing about in between the cook.
- Now place the vegetable broth or stock in a large pot and add all the chopped vegetables and the bay leaf.
- On simmer, let the vegetables cook on low heat, which will take about 45 minutes to one hour till the vegetables are tender. Do not forget to stir occasionally.
- Once the vegetables are tender, you could now add the pasta and salt and pepper to taste. Cook on medium-high heat till the pasta gets done. This should take you another 10 to 20 minutes.
- Serve hot with a side of toasted garlic bread…and oh! Do remove the bay leaf before serving.
This Italian minestrone is the soup for the soul. We’re sure you and your family will be wanting for more.
The Classic Chicken Noodle Soup
This winter classic would serve 4 and don’t complain if this becomes a regular request in your household.
- Vegetable or olive oil – 1/4th cup
- Chopped onions – 1 large
- Sliced carrots – 3
- Chopped celery – 3 stalks
- Chicken broth or stock – 8 cups or 2 liters
- Chopped garlic – 3 cloves
- Egg noodles – 8 oz
- Shredded chicken breasts – 4 cups or 500 grams
- Chopped fresh parsley – ½ cup
- Shredded Parmesan cheese – to taste
- Black pepper – to taste
- Salt – to taste
- Heat the oil in a wok on medium heat and first add celery, carrots and onions with 1 tsp each of salt and pepper to taste.
- Now add the garlic till it gets aromatic. Then add the chicken stock or broth.
- Once the vegetables are slightly tender, add the noodles first and cook for about 5-6 minutes. Then add the chicken and cook for another 2 minutes. By this time, the noodles will be cooked through and the chicken will have warmed up.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Now add the chopped parsley, and garnish with shredded parmesan.
- Serve with a side of garlic bread and you are good to go.
Red Lentil and Carrot Soup
This is a heartwarming soup and budget-friendly vegetarian soup. This can be made with things available in the house and yet does not compromise on nutrition and taste. Here’s what you need to make this soup:
- Sliced white onion – 1
- Sliced garlic cloves – 3
- Scrubbed and diced carrots – 2
- Red lentils – 2 cups
- Vegetable stock cube – 1
- Chopped parsley – 2 tbsp
- Oil – 2 tsp
- Boil a liter of water.
- In a wok, heat some oil on medium heat.
- Add onions, fry for 2 minutes and then add the garlic and carrots.
- Pour the water, in which you stir the lentils and the stock cube. Cover the vessel and cook for a medium heat for 15 minutes until the lentils are tender.
- Take off the heat, season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with freshly chopped parsley and serve with a side of cheesy garlic bread.
Creamy Potato and Leek Soup
You can’t go wrong with this. This is a classic. A heartwarming, soul-fulfilling soup that can soothe the chills on a cold wintry day. Make this soup for the entire family that everyone will love. Now, let’s get down to making it.
Cleaning leeks is important as they can be sandy and dirty, and you do not want crunchy sandy stuff in your mouth while you eat your soup.
To clean leeks, the first step is to cut off and discard the root ends and the thick dark green parts. Then cut the leeks in half, lengthwise, and rinse each half under cold water, pulling apart the layers to remove any grit that’s tucked inside. Once clean, you can proceed to chop them.
- Medium leeks – 4 with their dark green stems removed
- Chopped white onions – 1/2
- Peeled and cut potatoes – 2
- Flour – 1 tbsp
- Butter – 1 tbsp
- Chicken or vegetable stock – 4 cups
- Milk – 1/2 cup
- Salt and pepper – to taste
- Coarsely chop the leeks after you washed and cleaned the way it’s mentioned above.
- In a wok, melt butter and add flour on low flame.
- Using a wooden spoon, mix well. This will thicken your soup and give it a wonderful flavor.
- Add chicken stock, leeks, onions, potatoes and bring to a boil.
- Cover and simmer on low for about 20-25 minutes, until potatoes are soft.
- Blend the soup when it is slightly cooler, until smooth. Add the milk and adjust it with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve warm with garlic bread.