How To Build A Nourishing Soup

There's no denying it. In Canada, Fall is coming to an end. As we welcome mountains of snow and cold weather, I can't help but dig right into soup. During the colder months, I make soup on a regular basis. There's nothing like a warm bowl of soup on a cold day. Not only is it simple, but it's a wonderful way of getting rid of old vegetables. YAY for reducing food waste! However, if you are going to make soup your meal (as I often do), you'll want to include certain foods to make it filling and nourishing. Here are my tips on building a delicious, nourishing soup.

1. Protein

Include one, or several sources of protein. 

  • Beans, chickpeas or lentils (my personal favourite!)
  • Poultry (leftover chicken or turkey)
  • Meat (beef, pork, lamb)
  • Milk/soy beverage (in a cream soup)

Protein is important for so many bodily functions, from muscles contraction to immune response. Protein is also a source of energy and will help keep you feeling full.

2. Grains and starches

Like in a classic chicken noodle soup, you'll want to include a grain or starch to your soup.

  • Pasta/Noodles
  • Barley
  • Rice
  • Potato
  • Quinoa
  • Corn

Grains and starches are important because they are a good source of energy, fibre, vitamins and minerals. The fibre is great for digestive health as well as for blood sugar control. Choose whole grains if possible!

3. Lots of vegetables!

Don't forget to load your soup with vegetables. It's no secret that vegetables are filled with nutrients. This is a great opportunity to use those not-so-fresh veggies that have been sitting in your fridge.

  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage
  • Tomato
  • Zucchini 
  • Squash (pumpkin, butternut, etc)
  • Greens (spinach, kale, swiss chard, etc)


This might be the most important part. There is no use having a meal if it isn't delicious and satisfying. 

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Herbs (basil, rosemary, thyme, mint, etc.)
  • Spices (cumin, turmeric, paprika, ginger, etc.)
  • Bay leaves (remove before serving)

So there you have it! A delectable, wholesome soup! Make sure to make a big quantity to have plenty of leftovers. I've always found homemade soup better as leftovers because the flavours really have time to sink in. 



What are your favourite soup recipes?