A Healthy You: Healthy Recipes
It’s definitely cold outside and this is the perfect weather for some soup. I don’t know if you knew this about me, but I LOVE soup!!! I can eat it when it’s 23 degrees or 100 degrees. Many soups contain cream and other unhealthy ingredients. You need to stay away from those options. I found a couple of soup recipes that are delicious and good for you!
Baby Carrot Soup
If you can’t get your hands on baby carrots, regular carrots will be fine. You need about 450g or 1lb carrots.
The soy sauce might seem a little odd here but it really works to bring more than just saltiness to balance out the sweet carrots.
2 brown onions, diced
1 bunch baby carrots, scrubbed, trimmed & chopped
1 14oz can diced tomatoes
pinch dried chili flakes, optional
2-3T soy sauce
Heat 4T olive oil in a large saucepan and cook onion over a medium heat until soft and just starting to brown. Add carrots, tomato, chili and 3 Cups water and bring to the boil.
Simmer until carrots are tender, approx 20 minutes.
Process until smooth with a stick blender or food processor. Add 2T soy and taste. Season with salt, pepper and extra soy if needed.
Easy Crock-Pot Black Bean Soup
**Make sure to plan ahead and allow time for soaking the beans.
- 1 pound dried black beans (about 2 1/2 cups), soaked and rinsed
- 1/2 Tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 carrots, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 Tablespoon ground chili pepper
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- pinch of cinnamon
- ground black pepper, to taste
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups water
- ripe avocado, chopped
1. Soak the beans overnight or 6 to 8 hours prior to cooking. Drain and rinse.
2. In a pot, heat coconut oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.
3. Place cooked mixture into the crock-pot and add all the other ingredients except the avocado. Stir to make sure everything is combined.
4. Cover and cook on high for 6-8 hours, until beans are tender.
5. This step is optional – you can either keep the beans whole or puree them using either a hand blender/traditional blender to your desired texture. Pureeing until pieces of the beans are still visible makes the soup thick but keeps a bit of the texture.
6. Spoon soup into bowls for serving and garnish with avocado.
Disclaimer - I am not a dietician! I cannot recommend what diet is best for you. That is something that you need to work on with your doctor and/or personal trainer. I’m giving you ideas based on what has worked for me. You may notice that I may or may not put the calorie count on the recipe. I don’t count calories, so that is not a factor for me. When eating healthy foods, the calorie count is higher than what you may think. So, some people choose a meal that is lower in calories, but it’s actually less healthy than a meal with all natural ingredients with higher calories. Again, I am posting all recipes that have worked for me and have been approved by my trainer.
Also, don’t automatically turn your nose to a recipe that doesn’t sound good. You may actually enjoy it. AND be open to trying new foods. I have been really good about that. For example, I have never liked sweet potatoes, but I am trying them in new recipes and I am really starting to like them. I’m glad I am introducing them into my diet because there are so many health benefits to eating sweet potatoes. Some include (courtesy of care2.com):
- They are high in vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 helps reduce the chemical homocysteine in our bodies. Homocysteine has been linked with degenerative diseases, including the prevention of heart attacks.
- They contain Vitamin D which is critical for immune system and overall health at this time of year. Both a vitamin and a hormone, vitamin D is primarily made in our bodies as a result of getting adequate sunlight. You may have heard about seasonal affective disorder (or SAD, as it is also called), which is linked to inadequate sunlight and therefore a vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D plays an important role in our energy levels, moods, and helps to build healthy bones, heart, nerves, skin, and teeth, and it supports the thyroid gland.
- Sweet potatoes are a good source of magnesium, which is the relaxation and anti-stress mineral. Magnesium is necessary for healthy artery, blood, bone, heart, muscle, and nerve function, yet experts estimate that approximately 80 percent of the population in North America may be deficient in this important mineral.
Your daily diet should have healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. They’re loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You can incorporate those foods into your main meals or as snacks.
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