Hot soup for winter weather
There is nothing like a hot bowl of soup when the snow is blowing outside. Making your own healthy soups can be a great way to save time and money.
Eating a steaming bowl of homemade soup can be a great way to warm up on a cold winter day. It can warm up your house and make it smell delicious, while providing a low-cost meal with plenty of leftovers for later in the week.
Soup can be hearty, healthy and filling without being fattening. It’s a great way to use up leftovers or food you might have in your cupboards. Soup is a dish open to experimenting and improvising. It’s easy to increase, decrease or substitute, as your family’s tastes dictate. A hearty soup made with veggies, meat, poultry, fish or dried beans can be the main dish for your meal. Add some whole grain crackers or bread on the side, and maybe some fruit for dessert and your meal is ready and well balanced.
Michigan State University Extension suggests some ways soup can help save money:
- Use leftover meat, chicken or bones to make the soup broth.
- When you have a couple spoonfuls of leftover vegetables, store them and their juice in a container in the freezer. Add them when you make soup.
- To make a larger quantity of soup and increase whole grains, add quinoa, brown rice or whole wheat pasta.
- Carrots, potatoes and cabbage are good in just about any soup recipe and they are usually available at a good price throughout the year.
Time saving tips:
- Soak and cook an entire bag of dried beans at one time and freeze in one to two cup servings; or use canned beans instead.
- Prepare a large batch of soup and freeze (in freezer bags or containers) for a quick meal when you are in a hurry.
- Instead of making the broth from meat pieces, bones and vegetables, begin with canned broth or water and bouillon cubes.
To increase nutrition in soup:
- Use lots of vegetables – it doesn’t matter if they are fresh, frozen or canned.
- Remove fat from the meat before beginning, or cool the broth or soup in the refrigerator and remove the fat from the top.
- Add minimal amounts of oil, margarine or salt.
- Use small, portioned amounts of cheese.
Soup is a hearty winter meal that can satisfy anyone. Make your own homemade soup based on the meats, vegetables and other ingredients your family already enjoys to endure a warm and healthy winter meal.
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