Easy soup recipes

Ready for some easy soup recipes to warm you up in the winter or refresh you in the summer?

A homemade soup is a real treat and is really simple to make. After you have tried the real thing, tinned soup just won't cut it any longer.

All kinds of meat and vegetables can be used in making soup, but did you know you can also use fruit? A variety of grains and pasta can also be included, to help fill you up.

Soup can be served as a light starter, or a hearty main course.

Nutritious and tasty, who could ask for more?

What equipment will you need for these easy soup recipes?

Let's start with the kitchen equipment that will be useful for making delicious homemade soup.

  • a vegetable peeler or small sharp knife
  • a chopping board and a larger knife for chopping up the vegetables.
  • a large heavy-based saucepan with a well fitting lid, or a stock pot
  • a colander for straining
  • wooden spoons
  • a food mill, food processor or blender (optional)
  • a ladle for serving

A few quick points to mention regarding the list above.

Ideally, a home kitchen should have two chopping or cutting boards. One for vegetables and one for meat. A professional kitchen would have even more!

Because soups and stocks can take a while to cook, a heavy-based pan will help prevent burning and ensure the soup is cooked evenly, as the heat is distributed throughout the base. Good quality heavy-based saucepans include those with a copper base, or enamel covered cast iron.

For smooth, pureed soups you may get away with a food mill, but a blender does a better job although it costs a bit more. Of course you will be able to use it for much more than just these easy soup recipes.


For a good soup you need a good stock

A victorian kitchen would always have a stock pot on the range, into which all the vegetable trimmings and bones would be chucked.

Nowadays, we are not always at home to watch over a constantly simmering pan, but that doesn't mean we can't also make our own stock to use in soups and other dishes.

It is well worth gathering your trimmings together, along with a chicken carcass or two and popping them in the freezer for a weekend when you will be at home, and can get the stock pot on. Save the green bits of leeks, mushroom stalks, unused onion halves, the ends of carrots, celery leaves, chicken giblets and lamb bones, all of which can go into the pot for a tasty homemade chicken stock.

Fish scraps, such as the heads, skin and bones can also be saved to make a tasty fish stock.

Make a good quantity of stock and freeze in plastic food containers for use throughout the weeks to follow. You could even freeze small amounts in a ice cube tray. Once frozen, these cubes are easy to remove and pop into a pan.


Types of easy soup recipes

Raw soups

Not all soups need long, slow cooking, in fact some don't need cooking at all! What could be easier?

Try a raw tomato soup or the Spanish Gazpacho on the same page, which are both served cold.

Vegetable soups

Some of the simplest soups to make are from vegetables. You can leave the vegetables in chunks for a hearty meal, or puree and add cream for something smoother.

They can be served hot or cold and are often prettily colored. They don't take long to cook and can be kept in the fridge if you don't eat it all at once. 

Many countries have their own traditional vegetable soup recipes such as the Russian Borsch (or Bortsch) made from beetroot (or beets), French Onion soup or Italian Minestrone (which can include pasta and beans).

Spicy soups

In the Far East, where a soup is part of every meal, soups are often hot and spicy.

A dash of curry powder will lift a soup, especially one made with delicately flavored vegetables such as zucchini, as in this Curried Zucchini soup. Pulses, such as lentils, are often included in a spicy soup recipe.

Broths and consommés

A broth is basically the liquid in which vegetables, fish or meat have been simmered. A more complex version of this is know as a consommé, from which any impurities have been skimmed off the top whilst cooking, producing a totally clear liquid.

Puréed or creamed soups

Some of the most delicious, easy soup recipes are pureed in a food processor and cream is added. Real favorites in our house are...

Whichever you choose you might find that tinned soup is just a poor imitation afterwards!



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