Quick, Easy, And Tasty Soups

I am a soup person year-round but I know some people prefer soups in the fall and winter. Even though it doesn't feel like fall here in north Texas with our 40 straight days of triple-digit temperatures, I know many of you will soon be having cool weather. In honor of your cooler weather and what we hope we will see eventually, this article is all about soup. Whether you like it to be brothy, creamy, or thick (stew), we are sure to have a recipe here to please you.

Roasted Chicken Soup

  • 2 cups roasted chicken, shredded or diced (rotisserie chicken is fine)
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 1/8 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 3/4 cup curly noodles

Heat the oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until they begin to brown, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the onions are tender and caramelized, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.

In a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the broth, pepper, carrots, and celery to a boil. Stir the noodles and chicken into the broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook for about 10 minutes until the pasta is tender. Stir in the onions; soup is ready to serve.

Quick and Easy Cream of Spinach Soup

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • Dash ground nutmeg
  • 4 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and water squeezed out

In a large saucepan melt the butter; add the chopped onion. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until the onion is tender. Stir in the flour, mixing well to avoid lumps. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Gradually blend in the milk while stirring. Continue to cook, stirring, for about a minute or two until thickened. Stir in the spinach and remove from the heat.

Meatball Vegetable Stew

  • 4 cups water
  • 2 medium russet potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into 3/4-inch slices
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 T. beef bouillon granules
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into 3/4-inch slices
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1/4 tsp. browning sauce, optional

In a large Dutch oven, bring the water to a boil. Add the russet potatoes, carrots, onion, bouillon, bay leaf, thyme, basil, salt and pepper. Return to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

While the above simmers, combine the ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, and Worcestershire sauce. Shape into 1-inch balls. Add meatballs to the Dutch oven along with the sweet potatoes and zucchini. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for another 15 minutes or until veggies are tender.

Discard the bay leaf. Stir in the peas. Combine the flour and cold water; stir into the stew along with the browning sauce, if using. Bring to a boil and cook and stir for a couple of minutes until thickened.

  • Yields: 6 servings

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