Let’s be honest: we all get bored with our food sometimes. If we could eat whatever we wanted without gaining a single pound, seeing a spike in our cholesterol level, or having to actually make the food ourselves, then that would be a different story. But that’s not the case. We’re limited by time, money, and the number of notches in our belts.
Eating healthy can seem repetitive at times. Eating vegetarian and healthy can be even worse. I get into these periodic ruts where I eat the same three or four meals for a couple of weeks until, eventually, I cannot take anymore. It comes down to two options: think of something new and delicious to make, or die.
Alright, that’s a little extreme, but isn’t that what it feels like sometimes? Luckily, I was able to brush some dust off the ol’ idea light bulb and come up with something good: Kale and Bean Soup.
This is one of those dishes that, no matter how many times I go over the stats in my head, I can’t believe it’s so good for me. It just tastes too delicious! Eating the whole, heaping bowlful feels wrong. Something so low calorie shouldn’t be so flavorful and filling. But it is.
One huge, hearty serving of soup is a meager 160 calories. Heck. yes. That means you can slurp the entire thing down without an ounce of guilt. It also has a good amount of protein from the beans, plus tons of nutrition from the kale. All this makes for one nutritious and delicious soup.
Don’t think that just because this soup is healthy means that it’s lacking in the flavor department. Quite the contrary. This soup is so loaded with flavor that the first spoonful alone will start a party in your taste buds. Between the garlic, parsley, veggie stock, onions, and red pepper flakes, there is bountiful flavor to be found. This is one mean bowl o’ soup.
So grab a spoon and start shoveling this soup down; for once, you can do so without regret. It tastes so good while being so good for you, creating a happy balance between your tummy and your conscience. If only all food was this way!
A Few Tips Before You Get Cooking:
- Switch out the beans I use for any beans of your choice.
- Add a sprinkle of grated Parmesan for some cheesy goodness.
- Try spinach instead if you don’t like kale.
- Shallots would be a wonderful substitute to the onions.
- Use fresh garlic and parsley, or don’t bother at all. Fresh herbs are so far superior to dried.
- This soup comes together fast. You can either eat it right away or let it simmer over low heat until you’re ready for it.
- You can easily scale this down to one serving if you’re cooking for yourself (divide everything by 4).
Kale and Bean Soup
By The Smart Cookie Cook
Yield: 4 servings
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 4 cups fresh kale, chopped
- 1 cup cannelleni beans
- 1 cup chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
- kosher salt, to taste
- red pepper flakes, to taste
- In a large pot, let the vegetable stock, garlic, onions, and kale simmer over medium-low heat for five minutes. Add the beans, parsley, salt and red pepper flakes. Simmer for another 10 minutes until kale is completely wilted and soup is hot.
- Serve immediately or keep covered over low-heat until ready to serve.