This is a great dairy-free (and cholesterol-free, too) soup in its own right, but a drizzle of Asian-spiced maple syrup adds a wonderfully unexpected kick and dramatic red flourish. The recipe comes from The Birchwood Cafe Cookbook (University of Minnesota Press, $29.95).
Bulgur wheat lends meaty texture, fiber and protein to soups and stews, where it can cook in the broth. In our sweet and savory chili, we match the grain with salsa verde, peppers and edamame—a weeknight meal that makes it oh-so-easy to be green.
Cathy Schneider of DeKalb, Illinois, shared her family-favorite recipe for a chicken soup that has just enough twists to keep it interesting: sweet potato, green beans, brown rice and fresh-tasting dill. (If you prefer less dill flavor, just reduce the amount. The soup will still be delicious.)
Shhh! Don't tell anyone, but this hearty supper soup takes just an hour to make. The secret? Deli-roasted chicken and precooked sausage. Pair with breadsticks or a crusty baguette for a perfect winter meal that will fill your house with good smells.
Many vegetarian chilies eat more like soups, but ours is built to satisfy a meat-lover. Bulgur wheat and mushrooms combine to mimic the texture and flavor of ground beef; chili powder, smoked paprika and chocolate stout lend deep, authentic flavor without a long simmer.
Susan Corley of New Albany, Ohio, shared her version of the classic Italian soup in New Albany Cooking with Friends, a cooking club project that took regional honors in the 2007 Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards. Susan often slow-cooks a pot of the soup for family meals during the holidays.
Nina Swan-Kohler of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, loves easy-to-make dishes that travel well to football games or other events. Tex-Mex Cheesy Chicken Chowder is one of her favorite recipes. "It uses a variety of convenience foods that are stirred together in one big pot, and brings out the great flavor of all the ingredients," Nina says. More of her recipes are in her cookbook, Tailgates to Touchdowns, Fabulous Football Food.
Butternut squash, chicken broth, coconut milk, brown sugar and seasonings combine for a creamy, rich soup. For added flavor, top with Thai Gremolata, a mix of fresh basil or cilantro, chopped peanuts and finely shredded lemon peel.
Bacon is versatile and dependable, amping up most dishes. Our cheesy potato soup just seems to call for salty-smoky crumbled bacon. So we stirred some in and sprinkled the rest on top. If you like seasoned bacon, try pepper-rubbed bacon in the soup.
Tuck this chili into your slow cooker in the morning so you can come home to a warm winter dinner. Omit the meat if you'd prefer a hearty meatless main dish. If you like, add chopped avocado or shredded cheese as toppers before serving.
What do you feed a finicky eater? Midwest Living® Senior Food Editor Diana McMillen puts friends and family in charge of their meal destiny. Each person gets a bowl of meatballs in broth, and chooses from assorted toppers to finish their soup just the way they like it.
Florentine-style dishes have one thing in common: heart-healthy spinach. In this case, the leafy greens combine with chunks of ham in a chowderlike soup. For best results, remove spinach stems before cooking.
Once a year, Sandy Mafera's women's club gathers for its annual cooking school. The Auburn, Indiana, group comes armed with recipes that fit that year's theme. Italian Sausage Soup was a winner the year their theme was "Elegant and Easy Comfort Food Goes Uptown." The rich and spicy soup is loaded with vegetables and ricelike orzo pasta, plus browned Italian sausage.
Maple syrup adds sweetness to Gingered Pumpkin Soup (left), which makes a creamy side dish or appetizer. Pumpkin Corn Chowder is a thick soup that blends corn, pumpkin and chunks of sweet potato. Chopped smoked ham tops our Season's Eatings Pumpkin Soup.
This pale orange, chowderlike soup gets a sprinkle of goat-cheese croutons in a recipe from Oakleys Bistro in Indianapolis. You'll get a healthy helping of veggies in this meal: eggplant, zucchini, summer squash, leeks, sweet peppers and tomatoes.
Test after test, our staff raved about this flavorful seafood soup. It has cream but no flour, so it tastes rich without being as heavy as most cream soups—perfect for those first days of spring, when you crave lighter fare, but the weather's still chilly.
This family-friendly soup takes advantage of a couple of convenience products to come together in minutes. (New to broccolini? Available in large supermarkets, it's a cross between broccoli and Chinese kale. It has longer, thinner stalks than broccoli and a more delicate texture. If you can't find it, use regular broccoli.)
Prep time is just 10 minutes for this slow-cooker soup; combine canned Italian-style stewed tomatoes, frozen green beans, water, a can of onion soup and turkey sausage. Add coleslaw mix and refrigerated cheese-filled tortellini 15 minutes before serving.