Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup

So, pre-vegan, I used to LOVE Panera Bread’s Broccoli Cheddar Bread Bowls…that thick, creamy, cheesy, broccoli goodness…yum.  Well, I found myself craving some the other day and decided to go ahead and take a crack at it.   This soup actually has no cheese…and no faux cheeses…which means no processed foods.  It has the same delicious taste of a traditional broccoli cheddar soup, but produced with all whole foods and plant based ingredients.

In good old Panera tradition, I like to eat mine with bread as my spoon, but feel free to do your own thing.  I hope you enjoy

Alt=”Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup”

Ingredients:

Broth

  • 6 cups vegetable broth  (I use Edward and Sons No-Chicken Broth)
  • 1 medium sweet potato, baked and skinned
  • 1 medium red potato, baked and skinned
  • 1 can great northern beans, 15 oz, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup water
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch

Vegetables

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tablespoon thyme, fresh, chopped
  • ½ cup carrot, matchstick
  • 2 cups red potato, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch cubes
  • 8 cups broccoli, washed and trimmed into bite sized pieces

Directions:

1. To prepare the broth, put 6 cups of your favorite broth in a large pot and heat over medium high heat.

2. Place the baked sweet potato, baked red potato, northern beans, nutritional yeast, and salt in a blender or high powered mixer. Add 2 cups of the broth from the pot and mix on high until the puree is smooth. Add the mixture to the remaining pot of broth and stir well to combine. Add the red pepper flakes and bay leaf. Continue to heat over medium heat, bringing to a boil.

3. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of cold water and the cornstarch and whisk thoroughly. Slowly pour the mixture into the broth and continue to boil on low, stirring occasionally.  This serves to thicken the soup.

4. Heat a medium pot over high heat. Add the olive oil and onions. Sauté for 4-5 minutes until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for another few minutes stirring often. Add the thyme, carrots, and potato and continue to sauté for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and pour the mixture into the pot of broth. Add the broccoli. Reduce the head to medium/low and simmer, covered, until the vegetables are soft. Serve hot.

(Serves 6-8)

Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe Card

Alt=”Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup”

Alt=”Vegan Broccoli Cheddar Soup”

Did you make this recipe?  Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture using #gingerveganista on Instagram and tag @TheGingerVeganista or Twitter and tag @GingerVeganista or Facebook and tag The Ginger Veganista.  Can’t wait to hear from you!

Power Smoothie

Shakes and smoothies can be a great way to load your body up with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.  I tend to make a batch of smoothies and have one for breakfast for the week.  The below recipe makes 6-8 cups and will last the whole week.

I prefer to make my own at home rather than order them somewhere, mostly to save money, but also because you never really know what is in them.  My recipe changes week to week depending on what I have in the house, but I always include both fruits and veggies.  It’s also a good way to get your kids to eat veggies, since all they see is juice.  This one is my favorite.  I hope you enjoy.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1 cup broccoli, approximately 3-4 florets
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, approximately 1 inch portion the root
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 lemon, juice from
  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup mango, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
  • 3-4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup, optional
  • 4 tablespoons protein powder, optional (I use NutriBiotic Raw Organic Rice Protein Vanilla)

Directions:

1. In a high powered blender or Vitamix, add the kale, spinach, broccoli, ginger, carrot, lemon juice, blueberries, mango, and strawberries. Add three cups of water and blend on high until the mixture is smooth. Add more water to create the consistency you like.

2. If you’d like a bit more sweetness, add maple syrup.

3. Another optional addition is protein powder, if you so desire.

(Makes 6 – 8 cups)

Alt=”Power Smoothie”

Kale and spinach are a good sources of vitamin A,vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B6, vitamin E, folate, manganese, riboflavin, iron, fiber, calcium, and potassium.  Broccoli provides excellent vitamin C and vitamin K, as well as several B vitamins.  Carrots are a great source of beta-carotene antioxidants.  Ginger is an anti-inflammatory and contains antioxidant compounds such as gingerols, beta-carotene, capsaicin, caffeic acid, curcumin and salicylate.  Lemons are rich in vitamin C and potassium.  Blueberries are considered a superfood that have proven to benefit the cardiovascular system and help regulate blood sugar as well has contain cancer fighting nutrients.  Mangoes provide vitamin C and alkalizes the body with its richness in tartaric acid and magic acid.  Strawberries are an excellent source of vitamin C and manganese and are a very good source of dietary fiber, iodine, folate, copper, potassium, biotin, phosphorus, magnesium, vitamin B6 and omega-3 fatty acids.  Overall, this smoothie is a great way to start your day and your body will thank you!

You can add protein powder, I typically do.  My favorite is NutriBiotic Raw Organic Rice Protein Vanilla.  I like the subtle vanilla flavor, but I love the fact that it doesn’t leave my shake tasting chalky, like many can.  NutriBiotic also makes a pea protein powder that I have yet to try.

Did you make this recipe?  Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture using #gingerveganista on Instagram and tag @TheGingerVeganista or Twitter and tag @GingerVeganista or Facebook and tag The Ginger Veganista.  Can’t wait to hear from you!