By Dr. Janet Brill
‘Tis the peak of winter season and the need of a warm bowl of “beautiful soup” is high!
How can you make a protein rich, super nutritious, vegetarian soup?
Easy! Add tons of veggies and some quinoa. Quinoa is a whole grain with a high protein content (and a complete protein at that!). In fact, 1 cup of cooked quinoa contains approximately 8 grams of protein, which is more protein than 1 oz of meat or 1 whole egg, and furthermore, quinoa is cholesterol-free unlike animal proteins. To boost your soup’s taste and protein content, be sure to substitute the pasta and rice in grain-based soups with quinoa for a healthier nutrient dense soup, as featured in this week’s recipe, Quinoa Minestrone Soup.
Here is a zero cholesterol recipe of Quinoa Minestrone Soup that helps lower cholesterol and is heart healthy food.
A gluten-free, diary-free vegetarian soup
Yield: 12 cups (1 cup= 1 serving)
In a large pot, add the olive oil, garlic, and onion and cook on medium heat until the onions are translucent. Add the yellow squash, zucchini, celery, carrots, tomatoes, oregano, basil, and black pepper and cook for 10 minutes. Add the kidney beans, navy beans, chopped tomatoes, spinach, and broth and continue to cook soup on medium heat. In a small pot, add the quinoa and water. Cook the quinoa until a boil then reduce heat to a simmer until the quinoa absorbs all the water. Add the quinoa to the soup. Cook soup for another 10 minutes or until ready to serve. Optional: Sprinkle individual servings with parmesan and Asiago cheese.
Nutrition Information Per Serving:
Calorie: 155 kcal, Fat 2 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Carbohydrate: 28 g, Dietary Fiber: 5g, Protein: 8 g, Sodium: 385 mg