4 Warm and Healthy Recipes for Winter

Cooling temperatures naturally send us in search of warmer, heartier fare, but that doesn’t mean giving up on healthy eating. In fact, a big bowl of soup is the best way to get more vegetables into your diet once the weather turns cold. Here are four healthy and easy recipes for getting your soup on.

Roast Garlic, Leek and Turnip Soup

Roasting enhances the flavour of the vegetables while mellowing out the garlic. Heat oven to 450 F, toss garlic, leeks and turnip with olive oil in a roasting pan or dish and roast for 10 minutes until edges are browned. Add garlic and vegetables to a large pot and add stock, seasoning with thyme and bay leaf. Simmer for 10 minutes and remove bay leaf. Either transfer to a blender or food processor in batches, or use a hand blender right in the pot. If soup is looking too thick, thin it out with more stock. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

½ tbsp olive oil

1 head garlic, peeled cloves

2 leeks, halved, white parts only

1 turnip, peeled, sliced

4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock

1 bay leaf

½  tsp dried thyme

Simple Cauliflower Soup

If you can find the orange-coloured cauliflower you’ll get both a lovely golden soup and extra beta-carotene, but regular cauliflower is fine. Heat olive oil on medium heat in a large pot. Add onion and garlic and cook until softened. Turn up the heat to add stock and cauliflower, and bring everything to a boil. Then simmer for 20 minutes. Using a handheld blender, or a blender or food processor in small batches, blend until smooth. Just before serving, stir in the Parmesan and add salt and pepper to taste. If you want to keep the soup vegan just omit the cheese.

2 tbsp olive oil

1 head cauliflower, chopped

1 small onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock

1/3 cup Parmesan, grated (optional)

Curried Sweet Potato Soup

Sweet potato gets a boost, both in flavour and in antioxidants, from the curry. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat and sauté onion until softened. Add carrot, sweet potato, curry and ginger, and cook, stirring often, for about 3 minutes. Raise the heat and add the stock, bringing to a boil. Lower the temperature to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes. Blend until smooth and add salt to taste.

1 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped

1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cubed

1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated

2 tsp curry powder

4 cups low-sodium vegetable stock 

Butternut Squash

The classic of cold weather soups, this healthy butternut squash soup skips heavy creams, but gets extra flavour from fried sage. Heat oil in a large pot on medium-high heat and add sage leaves. Fry until crispy, less than a minute, and remove leaves to a paper-towel covered plate. Using the sage-infused oil still in the pot, reduce the heat and add the onion, garlic and carrot. Cook until softened, then add squash and stock, raising heat to a boil. Then let the soup simmer for about 25 minutes. Using a hand blender or food processor, blend until smooth and add salt and pepper. Garnish with crumbled fried sage leaves.

2 tbsp olive oil

handful fresh sage

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped

1 medium butternut squash, cubed

5 cups low-sodium vegetable stock

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