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Souped Up: Healthy, Hearty Soup Recipes

  • Bryan McCay

    Meatball Escarole Soup

    Makes: 6 servings

    Prep time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    1/2 pound 93 percent lean ground beef

    6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

    6 tablespoons plain bread crumbs

    1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped

    1/4 teaspoon salt

    1/8 teaspoon black pepper

    2 eggs, lightly beaten

    2 tablespoons olive oil

    2 large onions, finely chopped (about 2 cups)

    2 carrots, peeled and cut into coins

    2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

    8 cups packed shredded escarole, rinsed and drained

    3 cans (14 ounces each) low-sodium chicken broth

    Directions

    1. Combine beef, 4 tablespoons of the Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, parsley, salt, pepper, and eggs in a large bowl. Form into 24 meatballs, using about 1 level tablespoon for each.

    2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add meatballs; cook on each side until nicely browned and transfer to a plate.

    3. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pot with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Cook 10 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Stir in escarole; cook 3 minutes.

    4. Add meatballs and broth. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Serve soup with remaining Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.

    Nutrition facts per serving:
    205 calories, 15g protein, 15g carbohydrate, 10g fat (3g saturated), 4g fiber

    Souper Satisfying

    Soup's not just delicious and easy to make, it's a proven weight-loss aid. "Soups and stews are incredibly filling because of their very high water content," says Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, a FITNESS advisory board member. "That means you get full on fewer calories than if you eat something like, say, a casserole, which has much less water in it." In fact, people who have a bowl before a meal consume 20 percent fewer calories, research shows. Plus, many soups and stews are a mix of whole grains, lean protein, and vegetables, so you're able to get a complete meal (as much as two servings worth of veggies) in just one bowl.

     
  • Bryan McCay

    Cannellini and Cabbage Soup

    Makes: 6 servings

    Prep time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 10 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    3 cups thinly sliced cabbage

    2 carrots, sliced

    6 garlic cloves, minced

    1 teaspoon dried thyme

    1/4 teaspoon black pepper

    2 cans (14 ounces each) low-sodium chicken broth

    1 can (14 1/2 ounces) no-salt-added diced tomatoes

    1 cup water

    1/4 cup tomato paste

    2 cans (15 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

    Directions

    1. In a large pot, heat olive oil over high heat. Add cabbage, carrots, garlic, thyme, and pepper; cook 2 to 3 minutes.

    2. Stir in broth, undrained tomatoes, water, and tomato paste. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 8 minutes, or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.

    3. Mash half the beans with a fork. Add all the beans to the pot. Heat through and serve.

    Nutrition facts per serving:
    164 calories, 11g protein, 30g carbohydrate, 4g fat (1g saturated), 9g fiber

  • Bryan McCay

    White Bean Chili

    Makes: 4 servings

    Prep time: 25 minutes

    Cook time: 30 minutes

    Ingredients

    3/4 pound lean ground turkey

    1/2 cup onion, chopped

    1 garlic clove, minced

    3 1/4 cups water

    1 can (15 ounces) great northern or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

    1 can (4 ounces) diced green chilies

    2 teaspoons instant chicken bouillon granules

    1 teaspoon ground cumin

    1/4 teaspoon black pepper

    2 tablespoons flour

    Directions

    1. In a large saucepan, cook turkey, onion, and garlic until turkey is no longer pink.

    2. Stir in 3 cups of the water, beans, undrained chilies, bouillon, cumin, and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.

    3. In a small bowl, stir together the remaining 1/4 cup water and the flour. When chili is ready, add flour mixture and cook for 1 minute more to thicken. Serve.

    Nutrition facts per serving: 292 calories, 25g protein, 30g carbohydrate, 8g fat (2g saturated), 6g fiber

     
  • Bryan McCay

    Chicken Soup with Lentils and Barley

    Makes: 6 servings

    Prep time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 40 minutes

    Ingredients

    1/2 cup dried brown lentils

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    1 cup sliced leeks

    1/2 cup chopped red or green bell pepper

    1 garlic clove, minced

    5 cups low-sodium chicken broth

    1/2 teaspoon dried basil

    1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

    1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary

    1/4 teaspoon black pepper

    1 1/2 cups cooked chicken (about 1/2 pound), chopped

    1 1/2 cups sliced carrots

    1/2 cup quick-cooking barley

    1 can (16 ounces) no-salt-added diced tomatoes

    Directions

    1. Rinse lentils under cold running water; drain and set aside.

    2. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over high heat; add leeks, bell pepper, and garlic. Cook until tender.

    3. Stir in chicken broth, basil, oregano, rosemary, black pepper, and lentils. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

    4. Stir in chicken, carrots, and barley. Simmer, covered, about 20 minutes more, or until carrots are tender. Stir in undrained tomatoes; heat thoroughly and serve.

    Nutrition facts per serving:
    265 calories, 21g protein, 32g carbohydrate, 6g fat (2g saturated), 9g fiber

  • Bryan McCay

    Curried Vegetable Stew with Couscous

    Makes: 4 servings

    Prep time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 tablespoon ground cumin

    1 teaspoon ground coriander

    1 teaspoon curry powder

    1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    3/4 teaspoon salt

    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

    1 1/4 cup water

    3 tablespoons olive oil

    1/2 cup chopped onion

    1 tablespoon chopped garlic

    1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

    1 head cauliflower, cut into florets

    2 zucchini, diced

    1 cup green beans, cut into 1/2-inch diagonal pieces

    1 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed

    1 cup diced fresh tomatoes

    Cooked couscous

    Directions

    1. Stir spices, salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons of the water together in a small bowl until smooth. Set aside.

    2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, cilantro, and spice mixture. Cook, stirring, 1 minute, or until onion begins to soften.

    3. Add cauliflower, zucchini, and green beans; cook 2 minutes. Add 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water; bring to a boil. Simmer, covered, for 5 minutes, or until vegetables are just tender.

    4. Stir in chickpeas and tomatoes; simmer 5 minutes more. Serve with couscous, if desired.

    Nutrition facts per serving (without couscous): 205 calories, 7g protein, 21g carbohydrate, 12g fat (1.5g saturated), 6g fiber

     
  • Bryan McCay

    Creole Chicken Stew

    Makes: 4 servings

    Prep time: 20 minutes

    Cook time: 15 minutes

    Ingredients

    1 tablespoon olive oil

    1 green bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch squares

    1 onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)

    1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks

    1/2 teaspoon salt

    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

    2 slices turkey bacon, chopped (optional)

    2 teaspoons minced garlic

    1/4 cup white wine

    1 can (15 ounces) no-salt-added whole tomatoes in puree, chopped

    2/3 cup water

    1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

    1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

    1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

    1/2 teaspoon bottled hot pepper sauce

    1/2 pound fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

    Cooked rice

    Directions

    1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add bell pepper and onion; cook, stirring, 4 minutes, or until tender. Transfer to a bowl.

    2. Add chicken to skillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned. Add bacon, if using, and garlic; cook until browned.

    3. Pour in wine; cook 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes, bell pepper mixture, water, oregano, cumin, thyme, and hot sauce; bring to a boil.

    4. Add green beans; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Serve over rice, if desired.

    Nutrition facts per serving: 337 calories, 38g protein, 15g carbohydrate, 12g fat (3g saturated), 5g fiber

  • Bryan McCay

    Chunky Beef Stew

    Makes: 5 servings

    Prep time: 25 minutes

    Cook time: 25 minutes

    Ingredients

    Nonstick cooking spray

    3/4 pound boneless beef sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch cubes

    3/4 pound tiny new potatoes, halved

    1 package (9 ounces) frozen cut green beans (2 cups)

    4 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces

    1 onion, cut into thin wedges

    1 can (14 ounces) low-sodium beef broth

    1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

    1 1/2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning

    1/4 teaspoon black pepper

    3 cans (8 ounces each) no-salt-added tomato sauce

    Directions

    1. Over medium-high heat, lightly coat a 4-quart pot with cooking spray; add beef. Cook 4 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove beef from pot using a slotted spoon and set aside.

    2. Add potatoes, green beans, carrots, onion, broth, Worcestershire sauce, Italian seasoning, and pepper to the pot. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

    3. Add tomato sauce to pot. Return to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Add beef; heat thoroughly and serve.

    Nutrition facts per serving: 240 calories, 20g protein, 33g carbohydrate, 3g fat (1g saturated), 6g fiber

    Originally published in FITNESS magazine, October 2009.

     
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