I’m always a big fan of recipes that help “clean out the fridge or pantry“, and if they are healthy as well then bonus! We all have some assorted cans, boxed, half bag of frozen mixed vegetables, etc. that have been sitting around since approximately we moved into whatever abode we inhabit. Even the most strict, list-making, meal-planning, leftover-eating of us have odds and ends we need to try to use up before expiration dates. It is especially hard with produce. I have a bad habit of buying everything that’s on sale, I want to cook eventually, sounds healthy… and then I have a fridge packed full of five-day-old veggies beginning to wilt and lose nutrients. Sad face.
That’s why this soup is fantastic! You can mix and match what vegetables you add based on what you have waiting to be used, and choose whatever protein and grain is in the half-empty box in your cupboard. There is of course a few caveats. You need a huge ratio of veggies to other stuff, and a large portion of it must be water. IF you are going for a filling, vegetarian, healthy, low-cal, low-fat soup. Try to choose mostly cruciferous vegetables and/or leafy greens, as those pack the most nutrients and fiber for the least carbs and calories. And limit the beans and the grains to one cup each. If you have a “meat tooth” feel free to throw in some cooked shredded chicken or steak.
1 whole head green cabbage, shredded
1/2 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1/2 bunch kale, chopped
1 cup fresh spinach
1 cup barley
1 cup pinto beans
1 can diced tomatoes
Lots of water (stock or bouillon for extra flavor)
Step 1: Chop all your veggies and add to the crock pot. Add the grain (barley) and protein (beans) as well as diced tomatoes. You can sub fresh chopped tomato or tomato sauce, or get rid of it. I just super love diced tomatoes in all the things.
Step 2: Cook on low for 4-6 hours, until veggies, barley and beans are tender. Add any other seasonings you like. Enjoy for under 100 calories per bowl as often as you are hungry!
*Disclaimer: I do not recommend crash diets like the cabbage soup diet where this is all you eat all day, but I do believe that soup before a full meal will help dampen hunger and make it easier to eat healthy and manage a healthy weight.
Calories94.1 Total Fat1.0 g Saturated Fat0.2 g Polyunsaturated Fat0.4 g Monounsaturated Fat0.2 g Cholesterol0.0 mg Sodium766.7 mg Potassium412.5 mg Total Carbohydrate18.8 g Dietary Fiber5.1 g Sugars1.2 g Protein4.2 g
|Vitamin A||42.4 %|
|Vitamin B-12||0.2 %|
|Vitamin B-6||10.1 %|
|Vitamin C||73.5 %|
|Vitamin D||0.0 %|
|Vitamin E||1.5 %|
|Pantothenic Acid||3.7 %|
|*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.|