It’s a rainy fall afternoon. I am working, sipping hot tea and thinking, “A nice hot bowl of soup would be great for dinner tonight”.  Sadly, I did not plan for that when I went to the grocery store to stock up for the week.

Soups On!
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image by thebittenword

As the cooler weather approaches our eating habits do change. In the warmer months we tend to gravitate to salads, food from the grill, easy sandwiches or anything that doesn’t require turning on the oven. As fall sets in and winter approaches, my body wants steaming soup or chili or warm comforting casseroles.

Soup can be your friend or your foe. If you’re craving a warm cup of soup here are some does and dont’s to stay on the healthy food path.


  • Choose broth based soups.
  • Make your own when you can. Canned soups tend to be high in sodium.
  • If your favorite veggies are out of season fresh, try frozen. The nutritional value of frozen vegetables is comparable to fresh.
  • Add protein with beans or lean cuts of chicken or turkey.
  • Make a large batch and freeze in single serve containers for a quick lunch.
  • Try a meatless chili for change of pace. Load up on beans and vegetables like butternut squash or corn.


  • Choose cream based soups.  If making your own, pureed vegetables or lentils can add a creamy texture without the extra calories.
  • Add lots of crackers or layers of cheese.  If you need extra flavor, try a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
  • Get too much of a good thing. A whole can of commercial soup is often multiple portions.

Next week soup will be on the menu for sure.

One of my husband’s favorite recipes comes from La Dolce Vegan!: Vegan Livin’ Made Easy

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. Go to page 117 and check out Vanessa’s Lentil-Quinoa Stew. What’s your favorite healthy cold weather comfort food?

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