I make a big pot of soup most winter weekends for my family to eat throughout the week. Soups are one of my favorite ways to get kids to eat vegetables mainly because a bowl of soup is a path of less resistance than say, a plate of veggies served in another form. Of course this doesn’t apply to my perfect eater children who always smile appeciately at the nutrient density placed before them. Or not.
This 8-veggie soup is my go-to after sugar-fueled weekends and during those times when our family needs a reset. It’s packed with lots of flavor, and with enough protein from sausage and white beans to make it a meal on its own.
Protein Packed 8 Veggie Soup
makes 8 servings
1/4 cup olive oil
4 organic chicken sausage links
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 pound carrots, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 bulb of fennel (bulb only—discard the stems), diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 28-ounce can chopped tomatoes
3 stems each fresh oregano, fresh thyme and fresh rosemary, tied in a bundle with kitchen twine
1 14.5 ounce can white beans, rinsed and drained
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add sausage meat (discarding the skin) and sauté until meat is browned, breaking up the pieces with a wooden spoon as it cooks.
Add onion, carrot, celery, red pepper and fennel to the pot and cook stirring occasionally until veggies are soft and tender, about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
Pour in chicken stock, tomatoes with their juices and can of white beans. Submerge the herb bundle in the soup. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Use tongs to remove the herb bundle before serving. Season to taste with salt and pepper.