Saturday, July 28, 2018

Easiest Homemade Vegetable Soup Formula

I love to cook, but the truth is, now that I have a child I typically can't commit to a recipe that takes more than 30 minutes to make. I'm passionate about making homemade, healthy meals for my family, but it needs to be something that I can reasonably accomplish at the end of a busy day chasing around my daughter.

 Homemade Vegetable Soup is one of my favorite meals to make because it's EASY, HEALTHY, and CHEAP! Plus, it's a great way to introduce kids (or picky adults!) to a lot of different foods or to get them to eat foods that they may otherwise refuse.

This is more of a formula than a recipe because you can use whatever foods your family enjoys and/or the foods you happen to have on hand! If you don't like to measure ingredients, then this is the perfect soup for you!

*Deciding on Your Ingredients*

-Pick a Broth

My absolute favorite way to make broth is adding Better Than Bouillon: Seasoned Vegetable Base paste to boiling water. Simple and so delicious! It also comes in many other flavors as well! Another option is just to buy already made broth from the store, such as: Pacific Foods Vegetable Broth. I prefer that one because it is made of  only vegetables, seasonings, and water.

-Pick a Protein

Often times I will add beans to our soup (pinto, black, cannellini, chickpeas, etc.) if I have them on hand already cooked, but for those times when I don't already have beans prepped and ready to throw it I like to use lentils. The great thing about lentils is they don't need to be soaked (unlike most beans) and they have a relatively low cook time.

-Add Substance

When making a meatless meal it is important to make sure there is enough to it that you won't leave the meal feeling hungry. Protein is a good start, but here are some other options to add to help make the meal more hearty: quinoa, rice (wild rice is a delicious addition), pasta, or potatoes.


There is just about an endless amount of options for this category, but I will include some of our favorites. Broccoli, zucchini, carrots, onions, garlic, peas, green beans, cauliflower, bell peppers, celery, sweet potato, spinach etc. Read ahead to the Steps section to find out important tips when using some of these vegetables!


Another benefit to using the Better Than Bouillon paste is that you really don't need to add any seasoning, but feel free to add your favorites for added flavor. A few options: salt, pepper, garlic powder, italian seasoning, rosemary, etc.


#1- Soften Vegetables: If you decide to use any of the following vegetables, I suggest putting a little butter or oil in the pot and add the vegetables in for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft. I do this right in the big pot I plan to use for the soup, because, well, who needs more dishes to wash! Do this for: onions, raw carrots, garlic, celery, and bell peppers. If using potatoes, bake in the microwave in order to speed up cook time. If using spinach, add at the very end!

#2- Add Broth: Now you'll want to either add in the broth or fill up your pot about 2/3 full with water and add in the Better than Bouillon paste.

#3- Add Protein and Substance: Cook lentils, quinoa, pasta, and rice about 5-10 minutes less than package directions suggest. This will allow you to add in the rest of the ingredients without overcooking the protein and substance ingredients.

#4- Add Vegetables and Seasoning: Simply add in the rest of the vegetables and cook until they have reached your desired tenderness.

#5- Allow Soup to Cool and Serve!

Serve With Any of the Following or On it's Own:
-Bread (if you're feeling ambitious homemade bread is delicious or store bought buns would work well too!
-Baked potatoes (especially if you didn't add potatoes in the soup)

Most Importantly It's Baby Approved!!

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