What’s better on a cold winter day than a warm bowl of soup? Soup can be nutritious, easy to prepare and inexpensive. It can be prepared with minimal clean-up, only needs one pot, and the …
What’s better on a cold winter day than a warm bowl of soup? Soup can be nutritious, easy to prepare and inexpensive. It can be prepared with minimal clean-up, only needs one pot, and the combination of ingredients is unlimited. Here are tips for making soup delicious and nutritious.
Soup for every season. As appetizers, side dishes or main dishes, soups help celebrate the bounty of any season. Soups can be thick and hearty, smooth and creamy or savory. They are versatile to fit any taste or occasion.
Be sodium savvy. To keep soups tasty and healthy, use low-sodium broth or stock. You can experiment with herbs and spices in place of salt. The most effective replacements are savory flavors such as black pepper, garlic powder, cumin, basil, ginger, coriander and onion. Use minced or powdered garlic and onion rather than garlic or onion salt.
Make healthier choices with Nutrition Facts Labels. When buying canned soups, use the Nutrition Facts Label to help choose ones with lower sodium levels. Foods with 140 milligrams (mg) of sodium or less per serving can be labeled as low-sodium foods. Claims such as “low in sodium” or “very low in sodium” on the front of the food label can help identify foods that contain less salt.
Choose healthier substitutions. Soup can be a healthy, inexpensive meal. Choose healthy substitutes like reduced-fat shredded cheese, low-fat sour cream and non-fat plain yogurt. Substitute a whole-grain product for a refined product such as using whole-wheat noodles, barley or brown rice in soups and stews.
Cook once, eat twice. Homemade soups can be made ahead of time and in large quantities. Eat refrigerated soup within three to four days or freeze it. Don’t let soup set out at room temperature more than two hours. To speed cooling, store in shallow containers. When serving a second time, bring to a boil.
The following recipe is a delicious choice for a cold winter night and is really easy to put together.
Hearty Black Bean Soup
2 cans (15 oz. each) black beans (rinsed and drained)
1 can (14.5 oz.) stewed tomatoes
1 can (14.5 oz.) Rotel tomatoes
1 can (14.5 oz.) chicken broth
1 can (11 oz.) Mexicorn (drained)
1 can (4 oz.) chopped green chilies
4-6 green onions, sliced thin
3 Tablespoons chili powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Combine all ingredients in large slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 4-6 hours. Serve with cornbread, cheesy garlic bread or seasoned spicy crackers.