Six Tips To Make Delicious, Healthy Soups and a 20 Minute Vegan Cream Of Spinach Soup

We are in the thick of “bug-in-a-rug” soup season! For me, soup is the ultimate comfort food. It nourishes body and soul. Soup also levels the playing field in the kitchen. Soup can be as simple as “chop, simmer, and devour.”

Vegetarian soups make a quick healthy meal, and are a great way to utilize left over vegetables. Soups also freeze really well for last minute meals later, and are relatively inexpensive.

I wanted to share some of my top tips for making quick easy show stopping vegan soups every time!

1. Use good quality vegetable stock / broth.

Not all stocks are created equal. If I don’t make my own veggie stock, I use Massel vegetable stock, which is superior in quality and flavor. Massel stocks are vegan, gluten free, lactose free, kosher, and free of MSG. I prefer Massel stock cubes so I can control the strength. As a general rule, I use 1 stock cube for every 2 cups of filtered water.

2. Create a simple flavor base at the beginning and season to taste at the end.

I start almost all soups with a base of chopped onion or leeks, raw or roasted garlic, olive oil, Celtic sea salt, and fresh or dried herbs. This gives the pot a nice flavor boost that blends with any vegetables that are added. I only add a small amount of salt at the beginning, and season to taste once the flavors have had a chance to infuse.

3. Use zucchini and yellow squash to create body and texture.

Soft watery vegetables like zucchinis and yellow squash add gorgeous body and texture without overpowering the flavor. After I saute the onion and garlic, I add in 1-2 chopped zucchinis and 1-2 chopped yellow squash.

Vegan Cream Of Cauliflower Soup

Vegan Cream Of Cauliflower Soup

4. Cream dairy-free vegan soups with raw nuts, coconut or gluten free oats.

Raw nuts add a creamy delicacy to soups. I blend in ¼ cup of raw cashews, raw almonds, blanched almonds, or raw macadamias once I have cooked my soups. This tiny amount not only creates an amazing velvety soup, it also rounds out flavors. For nut-free soups, add in a tiny amount of coconut milk, soy milk, or ¼ cup gluten free rolled oats while the pot is simmering.

A note about texture: Use a high speed blender like a Vitamix. This creates a fluffy, airy, creaminess. If you don’t have a high speed blender, the consistency will be more rustic.

5. Give soups a lift with some freshly squeezed lemon juice.

If I want to liven up soups, a squeeze of lemon juice often does the trick. This won’t be appropriate for every soup blend, but most can tolerate a little lemon juice. It is the magic soup elixir!

6. Serve soups with balls of cooked grain as a substitute for bread.

I don’t eat a lot of bread. I prefer to serve my soups topped with a “grain ball” – a scoop of cooked grain like quinoa, millet, buckwheat, amaranth or brown rice. When garnished with some chopped fresh herbs, this makes for a beautiful presentation and helps to make the meal more substantial.

Try these delicious quick easy vegan soup ideas:

You’ll love this recipe for one of my easiest, most delicious vegan soups. If you are looking for a sensational soup, this one is a stunner!

Vegan Cream Of Spinach Soup

Vegan Cream Of Spinach Soup

Vegan Cream Of Spinach Soup

2 cups raw organic fresh spinach
1 cup organic zucchini (about 1 zucchini)
1 cup chopped red onions (about 1 medium onion)
1/4 cup scallions/green onions – (about 6)
1/4 cup flat leaf parsley (a handful)
1/4 cup celery (1 large stalk)
4 cups strong vegetable broth
1 whole roasted garlic bulb or chopped raw garlic to make even quicker
1/4 – 1/2 cup raw cashews (use raw almonds or blanched almonds to make more alkaline)
dash of fresh lemon juice to taste
Celtic sea salt to taste

  1. Place the garlic whole in the oven on about 400 for about 30 minutes until soft and roasted.
  2. In a saucepan saute onions and scallions with a pinch of celtic sea salt to bring out the sweetness until translucent.
  3. Add in spinach, celery, zucchini and parsley and cook for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add in stock and squeeze in roasted garlic pulp and bring to the boil.
  5. Simmer for about 20 minutes until the veggies are cooked through.
  6. Allow to cool slightly and then puree in the blender (I like to use my Vitamix) with the cashews and return to the stove to warm and serve.
  7. Serve sprinkled with parsley and a grain ball. YUM!
What’s your favorite healthy soup blend?

Tess Masters, AKA “The Blender Girl”  writes a quirky blog called Healthy Blender Recipes, sharing super quick and easy allergy friendly vegetarian, vegan, and raw recipes using a blender, mixer or food processor. All of her healthy recipes are gluten free, and utilise whole foods and natural flavourings and sweeteners. Many of the recipes are also dairy free, egg free, nut free, and soy free. You can search for recipes for specific diets or food allergies by using the handy clickable icons on her website.

Follow Tess on Twitter and Facebook.

13 Responses to Six Tips To Make Delicious, Healthy Soups and a 20 Minute Vegan Cream Of Spinach Soup

  • Nancy says:

    How do make the grain balls?? I have quinoa.

    [Reply]

    Tess Masters @theblendergirl Reply:

    @Nancy, Hey Nancy, just allow your grain to cool and then use an ice cream scoop. I like to toss the grains with some herbs for an even better presentation. Day old grains that have been kept in the fridge work even better as they hold together!

    [Reply]

  • Kathryn says:

    Love all the tips and especially this recipe.

    [Reply]

    Tess Masters @theblendergirl Reply:

    @Kathryn, Thanks Kathryn. This is one of my favourite recipes because it is quick and easy, but still bursting with flavour. Enjoy :)

    [Reply]

  • Ricki says:

    Great tips! I love soups in winter and will have lots of opportunity to use these–thanks so much! :)

    [Reply]

    Tess Masters @theblendergirl Reply:

    @Ricki, Thanks Ricki. You ROCK!

    [Reply]

  • Erin says:

    We are celiac, husband is allergic to dairy and soy and I’m allergic to coconut and cashews (as well as most tropical fruit).

    What would you recommend to use (other than raw nuts which are cost restrictive for us and an allergen for others) for this recipe?

    I find that there is a great dependence on Coconut as the miracle ingredient nowadays, but it isn’t the answer for all dairy free problems. There must be another alternative available out there.

    Can you offer some suggestions?

    [Reply]

    Maggie Savage Reply:

    @Erin,

    I would take a look at some of the ingredients that you’re using in your own kitchen.

    When making a creamy vegan soup, one typically looks for ingredients that would lend a creamier texture to the recipe (thus cashews, cauliflower, coconut meat). Tess also listed gluten-free oats, perhaps you could try those. I like to use white beans as well.

    Thanks for stopping by the Balanced Platter.
    Maggie

    [Reply]

    Erin Reply:

    @Maggie Savage,

    Unfortunately oats and buckwheat don’t work for us either :( – but white beans would work!

    Thank you!

    Erin

    [Reply]

    Tess Masters @theblendergirl Reply:

    @Erin, Thanks for responding Maggie :) Erin, I have also used soaked cooked rice and blended it into this soup too. White beans are great. If you are not allergic to almonds, then they work really well too.

  • Maggie Savage says:

    @Erin,

    You’re welcome!

    [Reply]

  • Kibby says:

    Hi Tess! Love this article. I have been using lesson #6 for my soups and has taken them to a whole new level. Texture and nourishing! Try this cream of spinach soup if you haven’t – from personal experience – it is DIVINE! All her soups really! Every single one I’ve tried – has been a winner! I’ll be making some this weekend – it’s supposed to be chilly and rainy here in GA. Hot, nourishing soups comfort me during the cold weather. Bring on more of the great articles! Love ya!

    [Reply]

    Tess Masters @theblendergirl Reply:

    @Kibby, Thanks Kibby. You are so supportive and I really appreciate you trying so many of my recipes. I am so glad you came and checked out TBP. These women are amazing – so many great ideas and recipes!

    [Reply]

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