The Best Hearty Soup For Cold Winter Nights

Hearty Soup For Cold Winter Nights

It's cold outside, and my winter coma has settled in. Right now, my perfect night involves being wrapped in my blanket with a warm beverage, as the temperature drops outside. This perfect winter image is incomplete without a cozy dinner. What is cozier than a hearty soup? This recipe is easy, quick, and packed with flavor and nutrition.

Nothing is more flexible than a soup recipe. You can practically substitute ingredients with anything you like, or whatever is left in your fridge. The main ingredients that are a must have, in my opinion, are onions, tomatoes, and pasta sauce. The pasta sauce is like my little trick to add in all the flavors without the hassle. Other than that, you can adjust this recipe to fit your taste; adding celery, substituting potato for sweet potato or carrot, whatever you like. A bonus of this recipe is that you only need one pot. So less cleaning, more eating!


 Processed with VSCO with c1 preset                                 Processed with VSCO with c1 preset

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Onion, Chopped
  • 1 Canned Diced Tomato
  • 1/2 Cup of Chopped White Mushrooms
  • 1 Potato
  • 1 Cup of Spinach
  • 2 Cups of Chicken Broth
  • 5 Tbsp of Pasta Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup of Pasta
  • Olive Oil, Salt, Black Pepper, Paprika and Thyme

Directions:

  1. Take out your biggest pot, put on medium-high heat, and spray with olive oil. 
  2. Toss in chopped onion, add in just a pinch of salt. Stir-fry for about 2 minutes, or until the onion starts to soften a little bit. 
  3. Add in diced tomato, mushroom and potato, and stir them for another 2 minutes.
  4. Add in pasta sauce and chicken stock. Make sure that the liquid is enough to cook pasta in. You can add water if needed. Turn the stove to high heat, and wait for the water to boil.
  5. Once the water is boiling, add in your choice of pasta, and turn the heat down for a little bit. Add in your seasoning to taste, I used salt, pepper, paprika and thyme. Leave the lid open, and wait for the pasta to cook through. Depending on what kind of pasta you are using, it may take 8 - 15 minutes. 
  6. Once the pasta is done, turn the heat down, add in the spinach. And it is ready to serve!

To make life a bit easier on your weekdays, you can make a big pot of this in advance. Just leave out the pasta and spinach, because I can't imagine how the pasta would be after soaking in soup for 3 days. Just add more water or stock when you heat the soup up and continue on to step 5 and 6.

I love this recipe because it's so easy and delicious. The aroma of onion and olive oil is a pairing made in heaven. The soup is thick from the starch of potato and pasta and that pinch of paprika can really warm you up on a cold winter night. 

-Siyao Lyu


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