When we say summertime, you probably don’t think of healthy soup recipes. But if you thought that soup was off limits in the summertime you are sorely mistaken. Soup can be incredibly refreshing, regardless of the temperatures outside, and it can be good for you too. According to health expert and author, Sheila Kealey, “most soups could be considered nutrient-dense foods, because they are typically low in calories but rich in vitamins, minerals, and other substances with potential health benefits, with limited solid fats, sugars, or processed starches.”
Furthermore, “research shows that diets emphasizing nutrient-dense foods might help prevent disease, and help people meet their nutrient needs without excessive calories.” We’re not exactly giving you permission to indulge in a bowl of corn chowder every day, but there are tons of summer-friendly healthy soups that are refreshing, delicious, and packed with health benefits. Here are 5 healthy soup recipes fresh enough to enjoy this summer season.
1. Quick Summer Tomato Soup
This pureed mix of tomatoes, onion, garlic, red pepper, carrots and celery is everything you would want in a tomato soup, plus it is quick and easy to make as long as you have a blender on hand. And the best part is you can serve it hot or cold, depending on the weather and your mood—it’s equally delicious no matter how you eat it. Plus, tomatoes just so happen to in season this time of year, and their fresh, off-the-vine flavor is outstanding.
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2. Gazpacho Andaluz
You might call this dish summer in a bowl, since it is a refreshing way to enjoy some of the freshest summer veggies in one spoonful. This, one of our favorite healthy soups, is not heavy, but rather a thin puree that is satisfying and good for you.
3. Garden Soup with Toasted Cheese Croutons
Bring your garden to life with this soup that makes the most of all the freshest veggies and herbs growing in your garden. Or if you don’t have a green thumb (guilty), you can work with whatever looks the best at your local market. The recipe calls for everything from carrots to peas and fennel, but feel free to add other summer favorites to this colorful summer soup. And don’t skip the cheese croutons—you won’t be sorry.
4. Chilled Spring Pea Soup
This is one of the yummiest healthy soup recipes we have. We used to think of pea soup as a perfect comforting dish for winter, but this recipe has proved us wrong. The combination of pureed sweet peas, favas, pea shoots, snap peas and snow peas is perfect (though you can adjust based on what is available to you), and when you top it off with a garlic cream and some crispy bacon you’ve got our new favorite summer soup.
5. Spring Minestrone Soup
Minestrone soup is usually a hearty dish that warms you up from the inside out, perfect for a cold winter day. But that does not mean this dish cannot be enjoyed in warmer seasons. On the contrary, this soup is meant to be adapted depending on what vegetables are in season, or what veggies you prefer to eat. Using ingredients like fresh asparagus, artichokes and green onions creates a version of this dish that is tasty without feeling too heavy.