With sweater weather creeping up on us what better time to start planning your fall menu. Anything that tastes warm and cozy makes the list. That especially includes soup. We found not only the easiest but THE best vegetarian soup to add to your arsenal. A big reason to love it is that you can make it with literally anything you have in the house. The parameters are huge and the directions are short. Let us know what you combined to make the best vegetarian soup at home in the comments.
The Best Vegetarian Soup (Serves 4+)
(Choose your own adventure)
- Hearty Veg (Any solo or in combo, optional) | 2 cups total
– Sweet potatoes (any kind)
– Winter squash
- Basic Veg (Any solo or in combo) | 1–2 cups total
– Mushrooms (any kind)
– Bell pepper (any kind)
- Aromatics (Any solo or in combo) | ½–1 cup total
– Chopped leeks (white/light green part only)
– Onion (any kind)
- Common Seasoning (Choose one)
– 1 tablespoon Chili Powder
– 1 tablespoon Montreal Steak Seasoning
– 1 tablespoon Everything Bagel Seasoning
– 1 tablespoon Poultry Seasoning
– 1 tablespoon Garam Masala
– 1 tablespoon Berbere
– 2 teaspoons ground cumin + 1 teaspoon turmeric
– 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
– 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
– Any seasoning packet for tacos, fajitas, curry
– 1+ tablespoons of any tasty herb/spice blend—dust it off, use it!
- Liquid (Any solo or in combo) | 4–6 cups total
– stock (any kind)
– tomatoes in a can
– coconut milk
- Garnish (Any solo or in combo, optional)
– Handful of fresh herbs
– Celery leaves
– Fennel fronds
– Chopped carrot greens
– Handful spinach or kale
– Squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice
– Drizzle of olive oil
– Drizzle of cream
– Pinch sea salt
– Fresh-cracked black pepper
- If using, add Hearty Veg to a soup pot heated to medium with a large drizzle of oil. Add a pinch of salt and stir often until they’re firm, but you could pierce them with a fork. 7–10 minutes for small bits, and 12–15 minutes for larger pieces of veg. TIPS: the more uniform the pieces are cut the more evenly they’ll cook, and the smaller the pieces, the faster they’ll cook.
- Now, add Basic Veg and Aromatics to the pot. Add a pinch of salt and stir often until they start to “sweat” and become softened and caramelized a bit. 5–7 minutes. Towards the end of cooking, at the 5- or 6-minute mark, stir in some chopped garlic if you like (1–4 cloves). Cook for 1 minute.
- Make a little clearing in the bottom center of the pot and add a small drizzle of oil. Add your Common Seasoning of choice and stir it in the little clearing for about 30 seconds (this helps the flavor develop), then stir it into all the veggies for 1 minute until everything is smelling fragrant. TIPS: Always start with less seasoning and add more as you cook. Taste the soup before and after each addition and adjust.
- Pour Liquid into the pot and stir. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer. At this point, taste the soup. If you used stock and it had salt in the mix you may need to add less salt to taste than if you used a low-sodium stock. So, start by adding ½ teaspoon of salt, stir and taste. Keep adding another ½ teaspoon until the flavors of all the other ingredients pop forward. You don’t want to taste the salt really, you just want an intensity of all the flavors in harmony. TIPS: the less liquid (and the more ingredients), the more “stew—y” your creation. Adjust liquid to suit your tastes. If using tomatoes in a can or coconut milk, make a 50/50 blend with water or stock to total 4–6 cups.
- Flavor booster tip: add even more depth with a tablespoon of miso or soy sauce added to the soup. Maybe a squeeze of Sriracha, a pinch of cayenne, or a few drops of Liquid Smoke if you have some…
- Enjoy as is, or add more body to the soup by blending 1 cup of the soup, then adding the purée back into the pot. OR blend it all. Cook’s choice.
- If you like, Garnish. Now eat Best Vegetarian Soup you’ll ever have!
NOTE: Change up your leftovers and Add texture to your soup by stirring cooked rice, grains, or legumes into your soup. Add noodles too—just simmer dry noodles in your soup until they’re softened, but not mushy. 7–10 minutes. Freeze any leftovers for future meals! Freezer tip: don’t fill the container to the top with soup—leave 1″ of room for the liquid to safely expand.
via Yum University
Recovering fashion blogger and Founder of NYC-based creative consultancy, Hashtag Lifestyle.