CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The recent snowstorm and cold weather made me hungry for a bowl of hot homemade soup. This week's menu focuses on delicious homemade soups that include fall vegetables such as sweet potatoes and pumpkin. Each of these recipes costs less than $5 per serving.
Add a salad and hot whole-wheat rolls for a complete meal.
Peanutty African Stew
Makes 8 servings. Source: Oregon State University Cooperative Extension Service.
1 cup instant brown rice
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon dehydrated onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon red pepper (optional)
2 cups sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1/2 cup reduced-fat peanut butter (creamy)
1 1/4 cups fat-free milk
3 cups baby spinach leaves (coarsely chopped)
1/4 cup peanuts (roasted)
COMBINE first 9 ingredients in a soup pot. Bring to boil, then turn down to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in peanut butter and milk. Return to gentle simmer and cook uncovered for 5 minutes.
STIR in spinach and cook until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Ladle into soup bowls and top with roasted peanuts.
Nutrition information: 220 calories, 9 grams total fat, 1.5 grams saturated fat, 0 grams trans fat, 0 milligrams cholesterol, 420 grams sodium, 27 grams total carbohydrate, 4 grams dietary fiber, 7 grams sugars, 9 grams protein.
Pumpkin and Bean Soup
Makes 6 servings. Source: Pennsylvania Nutrition Education Program.
1 can white beans
1 onion (small, finely chopped)
1 cup water
1 15-ounce can pumpkin
1 1/2 cups apple juice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg or ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
BLEND white beans, onion and water with a potato masher or blend till smooth.
COMBINE in a large pot, pumpkin, apple juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, black pepper and salt. Add the blended bean mixture to the pot.
COOK over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, until warmed through.
Nutrition information: 140 calories, 0.5 grams total fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 0 grams trans fat, 0 milligrams cholesterol, 110 milligrams sodium, 28 grams total carbohydrate, 7 grams dietary fiber, 9 grams sugars, 7 grams protein.
Chicken Vegetable Soup with Kale
Makes 6 servings. Source: Washington Farmers Market Nutrition Program.
4 teaspoons oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrot
2 teaspoons thyme
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups chicken broth or water
1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes
2 cups cooked chicken, skinned and cubed
1 cup cooked brown rice
4 cups kale
HEAT oil in a medium saucepan.
ADD onion and carrot. Sauté until vegetables are tender, 5 to 8 minutes.
ADD thyme and garlic. Sauté for 1 more minute.
ADD chicken broth, tomatoes, cooked rice, chicken and kale. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
Nutrition information: 145 calories, 3 grams total fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 0 grams trans fat, 0 milligrams cholesterol, 920 milligrams sodium, 22 grams total carbohydrate, 4 grams dietary fiber, 0 grams sugars, 8 grams protein.
Mushroom Barley Soup