This high-fiber, protein-rich soup is beyond flavorful, creamy, and offers fun textures of meat, chickpeas, and tender vegetables. It is equally filling, comforting, and healthy!
Saturday was CRAZY busy – Shea’s first swim meet and Piper had a soccer game, followed by Santa and a babysitter while Mark and I went down to South Bend to see Notre Dame host Penn State in a convincing, fun win! The highlight of the weekend, for me, was seeing Shea’s swim meet. I felt she would do well in her backstroke, however she placed last in her heat. When freestyle came along, I was a bit nervous, but SHE WON! She was soooo excited! She yelled up to the bleachers, “MOM, I WON!” I’m so proud of her!
Meanwhile, Mark took Piper to her soccer game because the day required us to divided and conquer, and he said that Piper is killing it on the soccer field and her team is undefeated. So proud of my girls! They went on to provide Santa their (rather long) lists of wishes this Christmas and that was awfully cute. I hope we have another few years of Christmas magic because man is it fun.
Today, Sunday, was a total waste. I napped most of the afternoon, trying to shake a chill, and a few hours later, it was time to head to my hockey game. There went Sunday, womp womp. Perhaps I needed a little recharge before the week ahead…let’s go with that!
ROLL CALL FOR THIS RECIPE
- Tis the season for SOUP. This is the one and only soup I’ve made this season and I have no idea why. I’ve got a recipe on the menu this week because man, when it’s frosty outside, there is truly nothing better than a steamy bowl of soup. That said, I’ll eat soup year-round, absolutely!
- I’m a sucker for an all-in-one meal. One pot and you’ve got your protein and all else mixed together into a bowl of perfection!
KEY INGREDIENTS AND SUBSTITUTIONS
- Italian sausage: full of flavor, a turkey variety is a bit leaner without sacrificing flavor. Take a paring knife right down the center of each link, length-wise, and the meat falls right out!
- Garlic and Italian seasoning – add more, add less, you do you! Even a splash of white wine while you’re sautéing the veggies would be a fun, flavorful addition!
- Chickpeas aren’t actually a favorite of mine, but I do love them in this soup. That said, cannellini or Great Northern beans would go great in this one!
- Did you know that quinoa is a complete protein meaning it has all 9 essential amino acids? Considering all 9 are commonly found only in meat, quinoa is pretty darn impressive from a nutrition-perspective! Foods that contain all the essential amino acids are considered “complete” proteins. So, the Italian sausage is truly just an added bonus in the protein department 😉
- Offering over 8 grams of fiber per serving, this fiber-rich meal is both wholesome and filling!
- To make this vegetarian, simply leave out the Italian sausage and decrease the broth by 1-2 cups, if desired.
- If you want more veggies, roasted red peppers would be a fun addition!
- Store in the fridge for up to 5 days in an air-tight container.
- The quinoa will continue to thicken and absorb liquid; add additional broth or milk to thin during rewarming. Or, enjoy as a thicker, stew-like consistency!
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 20 oz sweet Italian turkey sausage links, casings removed
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 carrots, peeled and diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 64 oz (8 cups) low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 (15 oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
- 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
- 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 1/4 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 oz freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for topping
- Heat olive oil in a stock pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the sausage and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon into a crumble as it cooks. Cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
- Add the onions, carrots, and celery; stir and cook for 6-7 minutes or until softened.
- Add garlic and black pepper; stir and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the broth, chickpeas, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper. and quinoa; stir and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 20-25 minutes.
- Stir in the spinach and milk; cook 5 minutes. Serve with grated Parmesan.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 7 Serving Size: 2 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 432Total Fat: 15.1gCholesterol: 52mgSodium: 923mgCarbohydrates: 47.0gFiber: 8.3gSugar: 13.6gProtein: 26.6g
Weekly Menu: December 11th – 15th
- Sunday: leftovers
- Monday: Creamy Roasted Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup with bread
- Tuesday: some type of salad with goat cheese and pomegranates with Miso-Sesame Glazed Brussels Sprouts
- Wednesday: live cooked lobster with mashed potatoes, green beans, and crusty bread
- Thursday: Blackened Fish Tacos with Cilantro Slaw and Sriracha Mayo and