Healthy Food

Winter’s Best Vegetable Soup

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Get ready….. get set….. go! Soup season is here and have I got something delicious in store for you. This is Winter’s best vegetable soup recipe and it will fill the house with a warm cozy feeling of protection from the cold outdoors.

That’s Amore!

Here in Italy, we call this soup Zuppa con Orzo, Farro e Legumi. Everything sounds so exotic in Italian, doesn’t it? Barley, Spelt and Legume Soup is one of my absolute favorites! Orzo is barley, farro is spelt and the obvious legumi is legumes. I love barley. It can be used in so many different types of dishes. It is a filling type of food that reduces hunger and keeps you satisfied. Eating barley as part of a meal balanced with colorful vegetables is great.

Barley is also high in protein and other nutrients like potassium and magnesium. It’s low in fat, will fill you with energy and give you a good amount of fiber. It’s a perfect addition to many soups. 

Next in the soup, we have spelt, spelt is a type of wheat, known for it’s quality of being easy to digest. Also high in potassium and fiber, spelt also adds a good amount of iron to your daily needs. Finally, we have legumes. 

Mix It Up A Bit

For soups, I love a mix such as black eyed peas, split peas and fava beans. I also add a variety of red and green lentils. Did you know that there are different kinds of green lentils? They are name according to their size. The large ones are called Laird lentils. The small ones that you see most Often are Eston lentils, There are a few varieties of the mid-size ones.

There is so much to know about these incredible food staples that have been cultivated for millenia. We live in an amazing world.

mason ball jars filled with beans and legumes on a kitchen counter

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A Well-Stocked Pantry Makes It Easy

Now let’s get to the soup! I love to keep my pantry stocked with mason jars filled with a variety of cereal grains and legumes. That way, I always have something on hand as a side dish or a soup, There are also many pre-mixed packages of cereal grains and legumes that you can find in most supermarkets.

Whether you choose to make your own mix, or use one that is packaged, the magic quantity to remember is 1/4 cup (55 grams) per person. It may seem like a small amount, but many cereal grains more than double in size once they are cooked. Plus, we’ll be adding some colorful and delicious fresh vegetables as well.

It’s All in the Family

Now, we’ve all noticed that fresh vegetables can greatly differ in taste, one from the other.  For this reason, the amount of seasonings you add will depend on the vegetable and on your family’s personal taste. 

Speaking of family, my mother always told me that soup is better the second day. For that reason (and many more), don’t hesitate to make some extra. Soups stored in an air-tight container will keep well in the refridgerator for a few days, although they likely will get devoured sooner. That way, your lunch for the next day will already be made.

Or, you’ll have something nice and warm to offer an unexpected guest or someone with sudden hunger pangs. Here’s some helpful kitchen tips: I often freeze soups into individual servings, which makes it easier to heat up the exact amount you need. And, by storing portions in ziploc freezer bags, they can be laid flat, taking up less of your precious freezer space. You’ll be able to have Winter’s best vegetable soup any time you like.

From Meal Planning to Gift Ideas

A mug of soup is a great healthy idea to replace unhealthy snacks. There are so many good reasons to make soups part of your Winter meal plans. They even make great gifts. Put all the dry ingedients together in a mason jar. Write the cooking instructions on a little tag. You can tie the tag around the jar with some raffia, yarn or a ribbon. This is sure to bring some joy to a friend or neighbor. 

Winter’s Best Vegetable Soup

5 from 30 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 244
Stay warm and healthy with this delicious soup that is sure to become one of your favorites!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Barley, Spelt, Legumes such as red and green lentils, black-eyed peas, split peas, fava beans
  • 2 or 3 Carrots
  • 1 Onion
  • 2 or 3 ribs Celery
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Black Pepper (to taste)
  • 1 TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Instructions 

  • Measure out your dry cereal grains 1/4 cup per person
  • Rinse very well until the water runs clear.
  • Place grains and legumes in a pot and fill with enough water to be 2 inches above the grains.
  • Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer.
  • Peel and cut carrots, onion and celery.
  • Add the fresh vegetables to the soup.
  • Season to taste with salt, black pepper and extra virgin olive oil.
  • Cook for approximately 30 minutes.

Notes

Tip: You can always add, but you can’t take away. When adding seasonings, keep in mind that the soup flavor will get stronger as it cooks, so less is more. Toward the end of cook time, adjust seasonings if necessary.
Calories: 244kcal
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keyword: barley, carrots, celery, healthy, legumes, onions, root vegetables, side dishes, soup, soup recipes, spelt, Winter

Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 244kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 99mg | Potassium: 622mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 12963IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 2mg

What foods conjure up those memories from when you were younger? What’s your favorite kind of soup? I look forward to reading your comments below about this Winter’s Best Vegetable Soup!

48 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I really enjoyed reading the article. And the soup looks delicious! Really warm for the winter. recommended

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Noa, I’m so glad you enjoyed the article, thank you! You will absolutely love this soup. Keep me posted!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Alberto, Thank you so much! Your feedback means a lot to me and I am so glad you are enjoying them.

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Franca! I am so excited for you to try it. Have a wonderful holiday and send me soup pictures!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello there, Rochi! You are such an inspiration. I am so glad you are loving the recipes. xo

      • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

        Yes indeed, Rochel! This is one of my favorite go-to’s during the Winter.

  2. 5 stars
    Every single one of your recipes are literally award winning!!!
    I remember sitting in GAM GAM and marveling over the delicacies that you came up with, one finer than the next. This soup is on tonight’s dinner menu, no doubt and will send you pics to prove it ;)) Loved reading through this article too. You never fail to amaze me❤❤❤

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Leah! You are a superstar chef, so I am so excited to read your beautiful feedback. And, I can not wait to see you back at GAM GAM and cook up a storm for you! Yes, send me pictures! xo

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Jacob! Thank you very much. We are waiting for you and your family to come back as soon as possible!

  3. Stéphanie Reply

    5 stars
    What could be better than a wonderful soup on a winter evening?
    Thank you for this recipe !

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Stéphanie! Thank you very much for your kind words. Enjoy!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello there, Shulamis! You have no idea how happy this makes me. I love sharing them and let me know what else you would like to see on the blog!

  4. 5 stars
    I actually made this soup for my kids last night.
    Definitely 5 stars from me!!
    Keep these fab recipes coming

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Shaina, I’m so excited that you made the soup and that your kids loved it!

  5. 5 stars
    So glad I came across your blog.
    Throughly enjoying all of the recipes and articles that you’ve shared.
    Thank you!!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Deena! What an exciting message. Thank you so much for your amazing feedback. I am so happy you are enjoying the recipes and articles and I look forward to sharing more with you. xo

  6. Chani gershovitz Reply

    5 stars
    Best soup ever. Unbelievable everyone loved it from youngest to oldest

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Chani, that’s the best news! It’s so important to me that everyone around the table enjoys. Thank you for letting me know!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Esther, I’m so glad you think so! Let me know what other recipes you would like to see on the blog.

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      That’s so great to hear, Pessy! This is indeed one of my favorites.

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello there, Nami. It is my pleasure. I’m so glad you enjoyed the soup and the gift ideas too!

  7. Tova Hinda Siegel Reply

    5 stars
    Love seeing you here. Your blog is wonderful and I can’t wait for Venezia to be up and running again so we can visit once more!!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Oh thank you so much, Tova Hinda! That really warms my heart. Enjoy the blog, and I will do my best to keep writing valuable posts.

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Tzirel, thank you very much. Wishing you and yours a healthy Winter!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello Sara, thank you so much, I am so glad you think so. Wishing all of you a healthy Winter!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hi Tova, I’m so happy you and your family enjoyed the soup. It’s such an easy way to warm everyone up with some great nutrition!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      Hello there Simone, Thank you so much…..send pics!

    • rebbetzinunplugged Reply

      That’s so great to hear, Ruthie! I’m glad you enjoyed it. Let me know if there are other things you would like me to write about.

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