Awareness and popularity of plant-based nutrition is continuing to grow, as we discover more about which all-important vitamins and nutrients are in the vegetables that we eat. As you know, I'm all about making sure your meals are nutritious and healthy, but that doesn't mean they can't be tasty! The truth is, soup was wholesome and hearty long before any food trends came along!
Autumn and winter are very much vegetable seasons, because what's better for warming us up than a nutritious bowl of hearty soup? It's a great way to make sure you're supplementing your diet with nutrients, and with all sorts of squashes and wholesome vegetables in season, now is the perfect time to explore. So grab a bowl and let's go!
Broccoli and cheddar Broccoli is one of the world's greatest superfoods and packed with vitamin C, along with lots of other nutrients like Vitamin K, fibre and potassium. It's a good source of antioxidants too, which are great for keeping your heart healthy and reducing stress. With the extra calcium boost from cheddar, this is one soup that's tasty as well as healthy!
Cauliflower and kale Cauliflower is a great source of vitamin C, fibre and antioxidants. And, while kale's not the tastiest thing on its own, it's one of the most nutrient-rich foods in the world, adding vitamins A, K and B6 as well as calcium to this super soup.
Chicken and kale Of course, you don't have to restrict yourself just to vegetables! Chicken soup is a classic and it's a great source of protein too. If you throw some kale into this one as well, you'll get a vitamin-rich superfood boost that's extra tasty.
Butternut squash and lentil Squashes are a seasonal vegetable right now and a great source of vitamins B6 and C, as well as potassium. And, because lentils contain potassium too, you'll be doubling the hit, as well as getting plenty of protein and iron.
Pumpkin and red onion Halloween may have been and gone, but the pumpkins are still here! They're a great source of fibre, cholesterol-free, and just one cup of them makes up a massive 87 per cent of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin A.
Leek and spinach Leek is a truly traditional soup vegetable, full of vitamins C and B6, iron and antioxidants. When you combine it with spinach, you're getting even more iron, some extra vitamin A and potassium as well!
A healthy, helping handful
Though they don't feature in all the soups above, lentils are always a great addition to most recipes. Throwing a handful or two in your soup-maker (a convenient, time-saving investment if you're serious about soup) or pan is always a good idea. Not only do they help thicken your soup, but they're a great source of goodness, offering extra iron, protein, fibre and potassium. And, like other pulses, they're good for gut health too.
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