Category Archives: soup

Broccoli Cheddar Soup


We try to eat seasonally and locally. That means in the summer it’s a lot of berries and zucchini and in the winters it’s a lot of greens and broccoli. I usually roast our broccoli but I was wanting to switch it up so we didn’t get too tired of it. This broccoli cheddar soup was perfect on a chilly winter day.

Traditionally broccoli cheddar soup has heavy cream and processed cheese like Velveeta. This soup is light and simple and super healthy. It has pureed beans added for thickness and texture without the extra junk. We ate the entire batch with dinner in one night and Alyssa was disappointed when she requested 4ths and it was gone.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

serves 6

2 cups chicken broth (I use homemade.Use reduced sodium if you use store bought)

1.5 cups cooked great northern beans (preferably from dry beans, but if using canned use reduced sodium and rinse well)

4 cups chopped broccoli, fresh or 10 oz bag frozen

4 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated

1/2 onion, diced

1 tsp chopped garlic

salt and pepper to taste

block of parmesan for topping

Bring chicken broth to boil. Add broccoli, onion, and garlic. Cook until onion and broccoli are very tender (about 20 minutes).

Use immersion blender and blend until desired thickness. I like to leave some chunks. Puree beans separately and stir into soup. Add shredded cheddar and heat until beans are warmed and cheese is melted (about 10 more minutes), stirring frequently. Salt and pepper to taste.

If using a blender: blend beans first, then add the majority of the soup (reserving some broccoli if you want some chunks) and puree. Pour it all back into pot, add cheese and let melt.

Top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Nutritional Information:

Calories: 159

Fat: 6 g

Sodium: 320 mg (13%)

Carbohydrates: 15 g

Dietary Fiber: 5 g

Sugars: 2 g

Protein: 11 g


Corn Chowder


We have been getting a ton of fresh corn in our CSA box this summer. We have been eating corn on the cob 3-4 times a week and I love it but I needed to switch it up a little. I made this corn chowder and even though its summer time, it still hit the spot. Alyssa declared she wants to eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the next 160 days. And that was said after the first time I made it that didn’t even have the bacon on top. I decided to add that bit later. She was also very worried Dave was going to take it to work for lunch and not leave enough for her.

Corn Chowder

serves 6

2 Tbs butter

1/2 large onion

6 corn on the cob (or roughly 3 cups frozen or canned corn)

1 cup water

2 Tbs flour

2 cups milk

salt and pepper

3-4 pieces bacon (optional)

Dice onion and place in large pot with butter. Cook over medium until onion is translucent. While that cooking, cut all the corn off the cobs. Add it to the onion with 1 cup of water. Let boil for 20 minutes.

Add milk, salt, and pepper. I would start with 1/4-1/2 tsp salt and go from there depending on your tastes.

Using an immersion blender, blend the soup to desired consistency. I puree it some but still leave lot of chunks.

If adding bacon for garnish, cook bacon until very crispy. Crumble and garnish on top after soup is served in bowls.

Nutritional Information: With addition of bacon in parenthesis

Calories: 150   (167)

Fat: 6 g    (7.2)

Sodium: 192 mg (8%)   (11%)

Carbohydrates: 21.6 g

Dietary Fiber: 2 g

sugar: 6 g

Protein: 5 g    (6.1)

Beef and Barley Vegetable Soup Recipe


Who doesn’t love “set it and forget it” meals? I have been making soups and stews a lot lately and I love how forgiving they are. You can add any vegetable you have on hand and it always turns out delicious, not to mention incredibly healthy.


My only problem with slow cooker meals is that it makes the house smell so good while cooking, I always end up eating dinner at like 4 pm because I can’t wait any longer. For those that work out of the house, I guess you wouldn’t have that problem! This recipe was husband and children approved. A meal is a winner in my book if I can get through an entire meal without saying “eat your dinner” or “come on, take another bite please” to the kids. This meal was eaten without issues then both girls asked for more.


If you are vegetarian just use chicken broth and 1 cup lentils instead of the beef.

Beef and Barley Vegetable soup

makes 6 servings

1 lb lean ground beef*

1 cup barley

1 can tomatoes

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup chopped carrot

1 cup chopped green beans

2 cups chopped celery

3 cups low sodium broth

3 cups water

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tsp Italian seasoning

1 tsp thyme

1/2-3/4 tsp salt**

1/4 tsp pepper

Slow cooker: Brown ground beef in a skillet. Place everything in the slow cooker and cook on low for 4-6 hours…yep, that simple!

You can even throw the ground beef in raw with the rest of the ingredients and just give it a good stir/mash to break it up some. I am lazy and thats what I ususally do.

Stovetop: brown beef in 1 tsp olive oil in large pot. Add rest of ingredients, bring to a boil, then turn to low and let simmer for 1 hour or until vegetables are at desired tenderness.

*You can also use cut up steak (stew meat) if doing it in the slow cooker. I don’t recommend using stew meat if you are only going to simmer on the stove because 1 hour won’t be enough time to make it tender enough. You could use a higher quality cut of steak though if you wanted to use the stovetop method.

**I am not a big salt fan, so I only add a scant 1/2 tsp.


Nutritional Information:

Calories: 292

fat: 6 g

Sodium: (15%)

Carbohydrates: 30 g

dietary fiber: 8 g

sugars: 3.6 g

Protein: 29 g

Healthy Creamy Butternut Squash Soup


It is definitely fall around here and I am so excited. It is by far my favorite season. And this fall something incredibly important is happening in our lives which I will write about more as the time comes closer. This event will pretty much be like Christmas morning times a million. Anyway, I love making winter squash soups in the fall. They are quick, easy, and healthy. I foresee myself making this quite often this fall since I just bought an immersion blender for this purpose alone. I am already in love with my new kitchen gadget. Instead of cleaning an entire blender, I just had to rinse off the attachment real quick. Who doesn’t love something that eliminates dishes? And the fact that my kids loved it, that always makes life easier too.


Creamy Butternut Squash Soup

serves 4

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed

1 large green onion, roughly chopped

3/4 cup reduced sodium chicken or vegetable broth

1/4 tsp garlic salt

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup plain greek yogurt

Place all ingredients besides the greek yogurt in a small crockpot and set on high for 5 hours. You could also set it on low and let it go all day while you are at work. We ate it at lunch, so therefore we used high heat.


When squash is tender, add greek yogurt and use immersion blender and puree until desired consistency. I like mine a little chunky so I don’t puree it too smooth.

Top with extra greek yogurt and a sprinkle of nutmeg.


It was mom, preschooler, husband, and baby approved…


Nutritional Information

calories: 126

fat: 1 g

carbs: 27.5 g

dietary fiber: 4 g

protein: 6 g

Loaded Baked Potato Vegetable Soup


I am incapable of wasting food. Part of it is me being frugal and hating to waste money. I also just really like leftovers. All the flavors meld together. When I was in the hospital my mom was here for a week and a half. She is not a leftovers person. So when she left, I had lots of leftovers in my fridge. Works for me. I had chicken parmesan, roasted green beans, pot pie, pizza, and mashed potatoes. I usually eat leftovers in their original state. Meaning I don’t usually turn leftovers into different meals. That’s one of the beauties about leftovers, they are already made. No more cooking or dishes to do. However I think the only leftover I really don’t like is mashed potatoes. They seem to get really dry after the day they are made. I had a bunch in my fridge so I figured I’d use them as a base for a potato soup. I winged it in the kitchen, also using up random vegetables I had bought before going into the hospital that needed to be used. It turned out great! Like really great!


Loaded Baked Potato Vegetable Soup

serves 2-3

1 cup chicken stock

1 cup diced potatoes, skins left on

2 cups chopped kale

4 oz mushrooms, chopped

2/3 cup leftover mashed potatoes (or cauliflower puree)

4-8 pieces of bacon

1/2 tsp chopped garlic

1/4 small onion chopped or 1/2 tsp onion powder

1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese + 2 TB for garnish

1/4 cup plain greek yogurt

Boil chopped potatoes until fork tender. Drain liquid and put potatoes back in pot. Add broth, kale, mushrooms, mashed potatoes, bacon (reserve a TB or two for garnish), garlic, and onion powder. Simmer for 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add cheese and stir. Split soup between two bowls and garnish each with 1 TB cheese, a little bacon, and some greek yogurt.


Yum, this was seriously delicious. For once, I actually wish I had more leftover mashed potatoes. If you don’t have leftover mashed potatoes, just make some real quick. Boil potatoes and roughly mash them with 1 TB of butter and a little milk then continue on with the recipe. This recipe is pretty lenient so if you have 1 cup leftover mashed potatoes, go with it and throw it all in. If you only have 1/2 cup, again, go with it, it will be fine. I almost added 1/2 cup frozen corn but I really needed to use up my kale and mushrooms. So use whatever veggies you have on hand.


The reason I said 4-8 pieces of bacon is because when I use bacon in a recipe, I cut off all the fat before I cook it. So to get the same volume and flavor of bacon I used 8 pieces. Check out that big pile of fat. I know a lot of it cooks away but a lot doesn’t and I am not a fan of eating that much animal fat. But if you choose to cook the bacon in its entirety you will only need 4 pieces. That will provide plenty of volume and flavor.


This is going to be my new go to meal to use up Thanksgiving mashed potatoes. Whenever I heat up Thanksgiving or Christmas leftovers, I give all the potatoes to Dave. I’m not so sure he really likes them leftover either but I don’t think he ever notices I don’t put any on my plate. Just one advantage of being the cook!

And Alyssa insisted I added this picture. She jumps into every picture I take and then asks to see it.



White Turkey Chili with Pumpkin


I love meals that are versatile. The kind where if I go to make them and realize I don’t have a couple of the ingredients, I can make substitutions and have it turn out just as well. Chili is one of those meals. Don’t have kidney beans? Oh well, throw in some northern beans or even black beans. Don’t have ground chicken? Oh well, ground beef, ground turkey, or cubed chicken work just as well. Chicken stock or veggie stock both work. So you get the point. This is my go to chili recipe. Too many tomatoes mess with my stomach and it gives the baby gas too, so we still with tomato free chili mostly. But honestly, I think I like this white chili even better anyway! It has corn and pumpkin for added veggies and its perfect weather right now for a warm bowl of chili. Its been long enough since the overdose of pumpkin in the fall to get it incorporated back into recipes!

White Turkey Chili with Pumpkin:

1 pound ground turkey (or ground beef, ground chicken, or cubed chicken)

1/2 chopped onion

4 cloves minced garlic

1 tsp olive oil

2 cups chicken broth

1 cup pureed pumpkin

1.5 cups cooked northern beans, rinsed and drained if using from a can

1.5 cups cooked kidney beans, rinsed and drained if using from a can

2 cups corn kernels

1 Tbs cumin

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp salt

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (or 1/4 + if you like your chili spicy)

cheddar cheese

plain greek yogurt


Put ground turkey, onion, garlic, and olive oil in large pot. Brown meat until cooked through. Add beans, corn, chicken broth, and seasonings.


Give it all a stir then add pumpkin.


Allow to simmer, again just partly covered like the rice, for about 30 minutes. Serve over brown rice and top with sharp cheddar cheese and a dollop of cold plain greek yogurt.