Vegetable Soup Recipe

Yields: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30-40 minutes

Ingredients:

Aromatics:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

Seasonings:

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 1 tablespoon fresh)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (or 1 tablespoon fresh)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Broth:

  • 6 cups vegetable broth (or low-sodium chicken broth)

Core Vegetables:

  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup chopped green beans
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained

Flexible Additions (Choose 2-3):

  • 1 cup chopped zucchini
  • 1 cup chopped cabbage
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh corn
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh peas
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup cooked lentils

Finishing Touches:

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Instructions

  • Prep the Vegetables: Chop all your vegetables (onions, carrots, celery, potatoes, and any additional options you’re using) into bite-sized pieces.
  • Sauté the Aromatics: Heat the olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds, until fragrant.
  • Season and Simmer: Add the thyme, oregano, bay leaf, salt, and pepper to the pot. Pour in the broth and diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Add Core Vegetables and Additions: Add the potatoes, green beans, and your chosen additional vegetables. Cover and simmer for another 15 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.
  • Finishing Touches: Stir in the lemon juice and fresh parsley. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Remove the bay leaf before serving.

Customization Tips:

  • Swap the broth: Use chicken broth for a richer flavor. You can also use water and bouillon for a lighter version.
  • Make it spicy: Add a pinch of red pepper flakes for heat.
  • Protein boost: Top with cooked, shredded chicken, or cooked sausage for added protein.
  • Hearty variation: Add ½ cup cooked pasta or rice during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Get creative: Experiment with other vegetables like sweet potatoes, butternut squash, mushrooms, or spinach.

Serving and Storage:

  • Serve hot garnished with fresh herbs, a drizzle of olive oil, or a dollop of sour cream or yogurt.
  • Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days in an airtight container. This soup also freezes well for up to 3 months.

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