Soup season is comin’ in hot! (Get it? ;)
It doesn’t get much better than a big bowl of delicious hot soup on the stove on a crisp fall day.
One of my favorite things about soup is that it makes a great big healthy one-pot meal that you can make ahead of time or just leave on low heat all day. I like to make it on Sunday for dinner and save some for weekday lunches.
It’s important to note that soup can be really healthy… or really unhealthy. Loading the pot with heavy cream and croutons just isn’t doing your health any favors. It’s simple to make delicious and healthy soups that you’ll crave over and over again. You just need to learn the right methods.
To get your ideas flowing, here is a roundup of my 10 favorite fall soups with extra health benefits. They all happen to be gluten-free and dairy-free, too.
Cauliflower & Leek Soup Recipe
If you’re craving some cozy, warm comfort food that’s delicious but still healthy, then this one’s for you. This soup tastes a lot like “Baked Potato Soup,” but instead of being high-glycemic and loaded with dairy, like most creamy soups, it’s actually low-glycemic (read: more balanced blood sugar/energy/mood) and totally dairy free!
White Bean & Kale Soup Recipe
This soup will warm you up on chilly days. The white beans and potatoes give it a creamy texture that sticks to your ribs, while the kale and veggies keep it light and packed with nutrition. It’s loaded with protein and fiber too to fill you up and keep you trim.
Chicken Poblano Chili Soup Recipe
My Healthy Game Day Chili Recipe has been a blog favorite for a while, and people are always asking me for a chicken chili, too. Like my Game Day Chili, this chicken poblano chili is gluten-free and dairy-free, and can also be made without the chicken if you prefer meat-free eating. It’s perfect for a football party or just a cozy family dinner.
Detoxing Fiesta Soup Recipe
I love tortilla soup, but all the cheese, tortillas and other toppings usually turn it into an unhealthy mess. Enter: my new Detoxing Fiesta Soup! It’s basically tortilla soup minus the cheese and tortillas, but you won’t even miss ’em (trust me!).
Healing Butternut Squash & Carrot Curry Soup Recipe
This soup is so smooth and decadent that it’s hard to believe that it’s vegan—and extremely good for you! Combining abundant fall flavors with the healing properties of yellow curry powder makes this Butternut Squash & Carrot Curry Soup the perfect afternoon meal to boost your immune system and detox your digestion. It’s basically just plants plus healing spices, with a dash of heart-healthy olive oil, so eat up!
Kale & Quinoa Minestrone Soup Recipe
Minestrone-style soup is great because it’s so flexible. Use any kind of dark leafy greens you prefer or that sound good to you that day (collards, chard or kale would all be delicious), or switch out the garbanzos for kidney beans or white beans. This is a great way to turn what you already have in the fridge or pantry into a fantastic meal.
Easy Lentil Soup Recipe
Lentil soup is a nutritional powerhouse. It combines the nutrients, protein, good carbs and fiber in lentils with the antioxidant power of veggies, herbs and spices. Adding a little good fat from the extra-virgin olive oil rounds it out into a perfectly balanced meal. Lentils are especially high in B vitamins and minerals like iron, phosphorus, potassium and zinc. This soup is incredibly easy to make and really inexpensive—even with organic ingredients, you can make a giant pot of this soup that will feed 6–8 people for less than $10.
Easy Vegan French Onion Soup Recipe
French onion soup is hearty and elegant, and also surprisingly easy to make. This is my vegan twist on the dish, the main difference being that I use vegetable stock instead of beef stock. Give it a try—you’ll be surprised at how much it tastes like the original! You can use any kind or combo of onions you have on hand; they all become sweet when cooked down and caramelized (yum!).
Simple Split Pea Vegan Soup Recipe
Vegan split pea soup is the perfect meal on a chilly day; it’s healthy, warm, hearty and delicious. It’s also incredibly inexpensive to make. You can feed an army with it for (usually) less than 10 bucks. Split peas are loaded with protein (10g/cup), fiber (5g/cup) and healthy complex carbs (these are the types of carbs you want!). They’re also a great source of essential minerals, including calcium and iron. The healthy fat in the olive oil rounds out this soup to make it a perfect, complete meal.
Homemade Bone Broth Recipe (AKA Chicken Stock)
Once you learn how to make this homemade chicken stock, you’ll be hooked for life. The nutrition comes in part from the aromatics, but the biggest healers in stock are the minerals, collagen and gelatin that’s extracted from the bones while it simmers. That’s right, the bones are the reason mom’s homemade chicken soup really does help you get over a cold faster (seriously). Adding in some vinegar and/or lemon juice (i.e., something acidic) to your stock helps extract the good stuff from the bones, and if you simmer it long enough, you’re essentially making homemade bone broth.
Happy cooking (and eating)!