Fit to Eat: A New Stock Option

From a simple vegetable broth, you can make low-calorie soups packed with the healthy ingredients we need most.

A steaming bowl of soup is comfort food in the purest sense. More comforting still, it's a worthy meal for anyone aiming to eat a little healthier, especially when the recipe puts vegetables front and center.

"Soups are excellent for weight loss," says Stephanie Middleberg, a registered dietitian in New York City. "Studies show that when we eat soup before or as part of a meal, we eat roughly 20 percent fewer total calories at that meal." Although our bodies usually don't feel sated by liquids such as juices and sodas, soup's one-two punch of liquid plus fiber from vegetables (and the occasional legume) creates a satisfying combo, so we tend to feel full on less. Spooning up a soup that's loaded with produce is also a reliable way to help meet the recommended daily quota of two to three cups of vegetables.

Our vegetable stock, which eliminates excess calories, sodium, and additives, is primed for cooking lighter dishes. It's versatile enough for the entree-worthy soups in the recipes below, as well as many that call for chicken stock. Freeze a double batch and a bowl of good health will never be far off.

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Comments (3)

  • HeidiSmith 8 Apr, 2011

    toss them out 'cause they are mush and the green vegs are grayed by the time the stock is complete. adding new gives it a bright fresh taste. also the meat (if you use any) is dry and not pleasant to eat at all. I have always just saved parings/bones in the freezer for making stocks at a later time. then I am not using the "good" vegs. You can save celery root/stalk, onion peels and root end (watch for mold) as well as carrot parings

  • lindalalonde 8 Apr, 2011

    Only part of my comment appeared. The spring vegetable/chickpea soup link goes nowhere and a site search gives no result. Can someone explain why you throw out the solids from the broth? Especially when you add more veggies, often the same ones, later in the process.

  • lindalalonde 8 Apr, 2011

    The link to the Spring veg

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