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Healthy Soup Recipes: Guilt-Free Comfort Food!

Holly Smith

By: Holly Smith, M.D. - Osteopathic Medicine, B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer,

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

healthy soup recipes

Who doesn't love a nice, hot bowl of soup on a chilly day? But without healthy soup recipes, you could be consuming a lot of unnecessary fat and calories!

Colder weather is approaching, and with that comes the cravings for “comfort foods.”

Fall and winter is a great time to whip up a great soup recipe.

However, while these dishes can warm us up during the fall and winter months, these rich foods can be high in fat and calories.

Luckily, there are easy ways to make a healthy soup.

Keep reading for some of our favorite healthy soup recipes!

Don't know what healthy foods to buy at the store? Check out this comprehensive grocery list for weight loss!

Avoid High-Calorie Ingredients

The first step to making healthy soup is avoiding ingredients that are high in fat.

Soups made with cream and cheese tend to be the most unhealthy.

So while broccoli cheese soup may sound nutritious because it includes a vegetable, you are actually adding a lot of unnecessary calories with the heavy creams and cheese in this recipe.

Add Immune-Boosting Nutrients

To make your soup even healthier, you want to include ingredients that are packed with nutrients.

Certain vegetables, herbs, and spices also contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties to help boost your immunity and stave off cold and flu viruses.

These include:

Turmeric

Curcumin, the active ingredient of turmeric, has been shown to have numerous beneficial characteristics, including antiviral, anti‐inflammatory, and antipyretic.

In addition to this, a recent study also found that it could be effective to manage the symptoms of people with COVID‐19.

Garlic

Garlic is a common ingredient used to add flavor to a number of dishes.

On top of seasoning up your soup, garlic also has great health benefits.

Clinical studies demonstrate a prophylactic effect of garlic in the prevention of viral infections by enhancing the immune response.

Onions and Leafy Green Vegetables

Quercetin, which is found in several vegetables, including red onions, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, has been shown to have strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.

A recent study found that quercetin can inhibit the entry of an influenza virus in the early stage of infection.

In addition, animal studies have found that quercetin has anti-inflammatory actions that can reduce lung inflammation produced by viruses that cause the common cold.

So not only will these veggies add flavor and fiber to your soup, but they can also help you stave off those nasty winter viruses!

Our Favorite Healthy Soup Recipes

Turmeric Vegetable Soup

This awesome veggie soup is packed with anti-inflammatory and antioxidants.

You can even add some beans to up the protein and fiber intake.

Ingredients

  • 1 small onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup sliced zucchini
  • 15-ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed (optional)
  • 6 carrots, diced
  • 1/2 cup peeled and diced sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomato
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric

Instructions

  • In a large stockpot, sauté the onion in olive oil until tender.
  • Add the chicken broth, zucchini, carrots, potato, carrots, and tomato.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat, then cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

Chicken Soup

This classic wintertime, cold season soup will warm you up and help enhance your immunity.

A 2000 study found that chicken soup may contain a number of substances with beneficial medicinal activity.

A mild anti-inflammatory effect could be one mechanism by which the soup could result in the relief of symptomatic upper respiratory tract infections.

This recipe includes the main ingredients from the recipe used in the study above.

Ingredients

  • 4 qt water
  • 2 turnips, peeled and quartered
  • 1 rutabaga, peeled and quartered (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery leaves plus 2 stalks celery and their leaves
  • 1 parsley root or celery root
  • 4 parsnips, peeled
  • 3 large onions
  • 1 large chicken, cut-up
  • 6 carrots
  • 6 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Submerge the chicken in the water in a large stockpot and bring to a boil.
  • Skim off any froth.
  • Add the onions, parsnips, parsley root, celery, rutabaga, turnip, carrots, parsley, and salt and pepper.
  • Cover and simmer for 2 1/2 hours.
  • Remove the chicken and the vegetables from the broth.
  • Refrigerate the liquid to separate the fat from the soup.
  • Remove the fat layer and add back the vegetables.
  • Remove the skin and bones from the chicken and cut the meat into bite-size chunks.
  • Refrigerate.
  • Just before serving, reheat the soup.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked, but still firm.
  • Add the cut chicken back to the soup.
  • Add noodles if desired.
  • Cook the noodles and keep separate from the soup so that they remain firm.

Soup is great, but one can't live on soup alone! Try these healthy meals you can eat every day!

Lentil Soup

This soup provides an excellent source of fiber, potassium, folate, and other B-vitamins.

This is a great way to pack in nutrition without packing on the pounds.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 pound lentils, picked and rinsed
  • 1 cup peeled and chopped tomatoes
  • 2 quarts chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground coriander

Instructions

  • Place the olive oil into a large 6-quart Dutch oven or a large stockpot and set over medium heat.
  • Once hot, add the onion, carrot, celery, and salt and sweat until the onions are translucent, approximately 6 to 7 minutes.
  • Add the lentils, tomatoes, broth, coriander, and cumin.
  • Increase the heat to high and bring just to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook at a low simmer until the lentils are tender, approximately 35 to 40 minutes.
  • Using a stick blender, puree to your preferred consistency.
  • Serve immediately.

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Healthy Bean Soup

This bean soup is a great way to pack in protein and fiber.

Plus, the herbs and seasonings contain anti-inflammatory properties to help keep the flu at bay.

This soup tastes so good you would never guess it’s healthy.

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks cut into half-inch pieces
  • 1 carrot cut into half-inch pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1 (11 1/2-ounce) can tomato juice
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • Dash of salt to taste
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 2 (15 1/2-ounce) cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch thick rounds
  • 2 yellow squash, cut into 1/2-inch thick rounds

Instructions

  • Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat.
  • Add the onions, celery, carrot, and garlic, and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 15 minutes.
  • Add the coriander, cumin, oregano, and crushed red pepper, and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the tomatoes with their juices, tomato juice, tomato paste, and salt.
  • Add the chicken broth and beans.
  • Stir in the broccoli, zucchini, and yellow squash.
  • Bring to a simmer over high heat.
  • Decrease the heat to medium.
  • Simmer, uncovered, until the lentils are tender and the mixture thickens slightly, stirring often, about 20 minutes.
  • Season the stew to taste with more salt, if desired.

Learn how to get healthier and STAY healthy!

Stay Warm This Winter With Healthy Soup Recipes

Even in the healthiest people, the cold winter months can lead to decreased physical activity and the desire to eat high-calorie comfort foods.

But don’t let winter be an excuse to fall off the fitness wagon.

With these delicious, immune-boosting healthy soup recipes you can keep the calorie count low while still enjoying all the warmth and flavor of your favorite foods.

It’s the perfect recipe for all the Fit Mothers out there!

Holly Smith
Holly Smith

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

Holly is an osteopathic physician, runner, triathlete, and fitness and nutrition enthusiast.

She is board certified in nephrology and internal medicine, has a bachelors degree in dietetics and is a certified personal trainer with NASM-PES certification.

Holly has completed four full ironmans, twelve marathons, countless half ironmans, olympic distance triathlons, half marathons and numerous other road races.

Holly joined the Fit Father Project in May 2019 as a regular writer, contributing articles on health, wellness, exercise, and nutrition.

She has also recently qualified for the 2020 World Championships for Ironman 70.3, in New Zealand!

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If you’re a busy mom who wants to finally lose weight, get healthy, and actually keep the pounds off for good, this is the simple program you’ll love sticking to…

Our Fit Mother 30X Program (FM30X) is the answer you’ve been looking for. Inside FM30X, you’ll receive:

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  • The metabolism-boosting Fit Mother 30X Workout (under 90 min/week) to kickstart your metabolism for fast fat burning.
  • VIP email coaching where we’ll personally walk you through the program.
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*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on healthy soup recipes.

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