Red & Black Bean Vegetable Soup

Hey There!
We’ve had some cold weather lately here in Chicago, and with the cold comes my cravings for warm, hearty soups. 
Today’s post is another one of my “kitchen sink” creations. I guess I love to use up everything in my fridge all at once, right before the weekend comes (when I do my weekly grocery run). What better way to satisfy that OCD kick than by throwing everything in a pot and calling it soup. 
I also think that making soup is such a satisfying thing to do. Not only does it warm the body and the soul (seriously, when was the last time you had a hearty soup and didn’t feel instantly warm and satisfied?), but you feed your body with wonderful nutrients and have tons to eat for days (or freeze!). Did I mention it’s so easy peasy? 
When making a “kitchen sink” soup or meal, I always try to include at least one source of protein, one source of carbohydrate and at least three different types of vegetables. I typically always add broccoli to my soups because, well I love the stuff, and I also think broccoli adds substance and nutrients all at once. 

Today soup included:
1 box vegetable broth + 1 cup water
1 can fire roast tomatoes (water and all)
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 container butternut squash cubes
1 lrg. head of broccoli, chopped into bite sized pieces with a few bigger pieces mixed in
1 cup dried kidney beans (I should have added more honestly)
1 cup dried black beans (same)
2 larges carrots
1 cup nutritional yeast
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup Italian seasoning
Salt + pepper + garlic salt

What I did:
I heated my deep soup pot over medium heat and added my onions. Once they started to cook to a translucent color, I added my garlic.
I stirred frequently because I didn’t use any oil. Next I added my tomatoes and carrots and stirred.
Then, I added my vegetables and stirred to incorporate. Next I added my water and broth.
Finally I added my dried beans and seasonings. I let it simmer for 2 hours, but you can go for less time at a higher stove setting.

What you need to do (the basics):
Cook your garlic and onions. Add your canned tomatoes with the liquid it sits in, and your vegetables vegetables. Next add your liquid of choice  + some water. Finally add your beans and seasoning. Simmer. If you want to add pasta or canned beans, I recommend added those closer to the time you are going to serve your soup. I like my beans to have a bit more texture than not so the less time they are cooking the most “crunch” (if you will) they’ll have. Same goes with pasta, if you over cook your pasta normally it becomes mush. The same goes for pasta in soup because all though you’re not adding it to boiling water, it is still hot liquid that will cook the pasta quickly. To preserve it’s integrity, add it at the very end of the cooking process.

See how easy making soup is? You should really try it, I promise you wont be disappointed.

The best part is how much it makes! You can store it for a week+ in airtight containers, such as canning jars. Or you can freeze the amount you know you wont eat immediately.

Enjoy!
Red & Black Bean Vegetable Soup

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