I usually cook once or twice a week and eat tons of leftovers. It’s not uncommon to get home from work and the gym at 8:30 and by that time reheating leftovers is just the easiest way to get a decent meal. Leftovers also ensure I have reasonable lunch. I don’t discriminate, I eat soup all year. I’ve been known to make soup for the freezer in August and eat all of it by October, but I especially find a hearty soup to be perfect in the winter. This week I made one of my favorite go-to soups. It’s easy and a great way to pack in a few extra veggies. You can always add more veggies if there are other varieties that you particularly fancy. The recipe below is the general base I use and go from there with additions. Whatever you do, do not eliminate the cabbage!!! I know you skimmed the recipe and wrinkled up your nose at the cabbage but put it in a food processor and it really works well to ‘bulk’ up the soup without adding carbs and calories. I promise it mixes in and it does not taste like eating a bunch of cabbage. In fact, I often put in extra cabbage.
Chicken Vegetable Soup
4 baked chicken breasts, diced (depending on the size of each breast, 4 is a bit too much. If your chicken breasts are particularly large, reduce to 2 or 3)
1 ½ Cups green cabbage, chopped
1 cup okra, sliced (Hint: find this in the frozen section if you do not have access to fresh okra)
1 large onion, chopped
1 large carrot chopped
2 large celery stalks, chopped
2 15oz cans of crushed tomato
2 15oz cans of fat free low sodium chicken broth
Dash of salt
Dash of pepper
Place all ingredients except chicken in pot, simmer for one hour until vegetables are soft, add chicken, heat thoroughly. Makes 4 servings.
Some ideas for variations: If you are serving to those who will turn their nose up at vegetables, add extra carrots. Carrots are sweet and one of the higher calorie vegetables but ultimately better than supper from a sack. If you are trying to really limit the calories, increase the cabbage and celery. This soup also works with peppers or squash.