I am SO excited to share this soup recipe with you! Of course we can feel run down and sluggish in winter but people sometimes forget that spring, and all the change it brings, can require a little detox of its own. Primarily, I like to detox with whole-plant foods. They get me feeling on track and fully vibrant. This time of year I like to start eating more uncooked fruit and veg but I also still crave warm, nourishing dinners - if you are like me, then this soup is for you!
I took a lot of time researching and selecting each and every ingredient in here to make sure I was selecting ingredients that aid in detox, reduced inflammation and increased nutritional diversity. I also wanted to make sure the flavors and textures matched the energy of the season. This soup is light & bright but still creamy (due to a technique I mention below) and comforting.
The recipe does take more time than my usual in-and-out style of cooking but it's worth it. Think of the process of making this soup as a devotion to yourself and the ones you love - or perhaps even the season itself. Take the time to move through this process slowly and make it from scratch (aka soak the beans) - as everyone knows, it makes all the difference when you put love into it. To make it worth your while, this recipe does yield a fairly large amount of soup - so be sure to share some with friends. Everyone I shared it with reported feeling full, nourished and light after eating.
In my posts I love to take the time to fill your brains with a little nutritional factoids and I could go on forever with this one. I think every ingredient plays a role in the healing power of this recipe but here are my key players:
White Beans: Aside from acting as a base and thickener for the soup, white beans are rich protein source (8g per 1/2 cup serving). Full of sustaining fiber. High in vitamins and minerals - magnesium, iron and B vitamins.
Sage: Contains a whole slew of essential nutrients - Aside from amazing flavor benefits, sage is high in vitamin A, folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, and B vitamins, plus healthy amounts of vitamin C, vitamin E, thiamin, and copper!
Dandelion Greens: I could go on and on with this one. Dandelion greens (aka literal weeds) are an awesome affordable spring-time alternative to your usual go-to greens - they are much more tender than kale and are slightly bitter like arugula ... these greens give the soup a dynamic flavor profile but beyond that they are are POWERFUL detoxifier and blood purifier. They are high in fiber and literally ever vitamin and mineral you can imagine.
Lemon: The ultimate alkalizing, detoxifying citrus that gives the soup a really pleasant brightness.
Onions + Garlic: How can you have soup without these two winners! Not to mention, they are both great anti-fungals!
Celery Root AKA Celeriac: Never heard of this veggie?! That's kind of the point - incorporating new and diverse veggies into the soup will not only aid in your exploration of new foods BUT it also really helps your gut microbiome. Celery root (literally the bulb of the celery plant) is actually fairly easy to find in most grocery stores. It's an affordable, low-calorie, slightly-sweet, starchy veg that makes a refreshing alternative to potatoes or parsnips. High in B6, vitamin C and lots of healthy fiber.
As with all my recipes, I totally encourage you to customize! Can't find dandelion greens? Toss in some chard or kale. Don't like sage? Sub rosemary. Let me know if you make this soup and how you feel afterwards!
Makes: 10-12 servings (freezes well) • Prep Time: Overnight + 30 min • Cook Time: 2 hours
- 1 16 oz. bag white/canileni beans, soaked overnight or with the quick soak method of your choice (OR sub 2 16. oz cans cooked white beans for shortened prep)
- 8 cups water
- 2 veggie boulion cubes
- 1/4-1/2 cup dried mushrooms, any kind will do *optional
- 1 small celery root, peeled and diced (or sub parsnips)
- 6 small carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small bunch dandelion greens, finely chopped with tough ends removed (sub kale, chard, spinach, etc)
- 2 small summer squash or zuchinni
- 20-30 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 large bunch sage, finely chopped
- 2 tsp. dried thyme
- 1 tsp. dried rosemary
- 1/2 tsp. red chili flake
- 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- Salt + pepper to taste
Soak your white beans according to the package instructions - overnight or quick soak method. Then, rinse and recover the beans in 8 cups of water and simmer for 1 hour in your largest pot until the beans are soft.
In the meantime, prep all your your veggies. Peel and chop carrots and celery root and set aside with the onion and garlic. Wash and chop summer squash, danellion greens, tomatoes and sage and place in a separate bowl.
Once the beans are tender, add in the boullion, mushrooms, dried spices and root veggies - carrots, celery root, garlic, onion. Simmer until veggies are very tender - apx. 20 minutes.
At this point, transfer 1/4-1/2 of the soup (depending on how creamy you want the base) to a high speed blender and blend on a slow setting until smooth. Alternatively, you could use an immersion blender to puree some of the mixture or simply leave your soup unblended with a less creamy finished product. Add the pureed portion back into the pot and stir to combine. You may need to add more water or broth at this point depending on how thick you like your soup - use caution though, over time the soup will thicken due to the starch in the beans.
Add the rest of the veggies into the pot and cook a few minutes more until they are tender. Finish with a garnish of freshly squeezed lemon and some green onion.
Serve hot. Reheats well - may have to add additional water or broth.