Seattle's Child

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kid-friendly soup recipes

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3 hearty, healthy, kid-friendly soup recipes for winter dinners

Each of these soups could be a meal all on its own.

Kid-friendly soup recipes: When the cold drizzle never seems to end and the skies are gray, whip up a comforting winter soup for your family. These soups are rich in veggies, packed with protein and low in fat; each is hearty enough to be a meal on its own, or you can add a small salad or French bread to round it off. The best part is that each recipe makes enough for eight – two meals for a family of four – and all freeze and reheat well.

 

Chicken, Veggie & Tortellini Soup

Here’s a fun, filling replacement for traditional chicken noodle soup. Kids will love the tortellini, and parents will enjoy the extra veggies, savory broth and flavorful Parmesan cheese.

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped (2 cups)
5 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 large carrots, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
10 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch chunks
9 ounces fresh cheese tortellini (1 small package)
1/2 cup thinly shredded fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon dried parsley
Sea salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Instructions
Warm the olive oil in an eight quart stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrots and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about eight minutes. Add cut up chicken and continue cooking and stirring for two minutes. Add the broth and tortellini and bring to a gentle boil. Add the basil, parsley, salt and pepper, and turn down to a simmer. Cook until the tortellini and chicken are cooked through, approximately four minutes longer.

Tip: Serve hot and top with grated Parmesan cheese. For soup with a rotisserie flavor, use a grocery deli roasted chicken instead of raw chicken breasts. Remove the skin from the chicken, remove meat from the bones and cut into bite size pieces. Use two to two-and-a half cups of rotisserie chicken. Add the chicken to the pot at the same time as the tortellini.

 

Italian Sausage & Lentil Soup

This is a truly filling, savory treat for everyone. The cooked lentils give the soup a creamy consistency and the Italian sausage fills the soup with flavor.

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped (2 cups)
5 celery stalks, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1 pound Italian sausage, out of its casing
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups dried, whole lentils (16 ounce bag)
10 cups low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth
2 bay leaves
Sea salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

Instructions
Warm olive oil in an eight quart stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion and gently sauté in the oil until softened. Add the diced celery, carrots and minced garlic and allow them to soften, stirring frequently, for about five minutes. Break the sausage into pieces and add to the pot, stirring with the vegetables for five minutes, until it fully browns. Next, add the chicken broth, followed by salt, pepper and the bay leaves. Mix well in the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for about an hour and a half.

Tip: Serve hot and top with grated parmesan. Serve with warmed French bread for dipping.

 

Spicy Turkey Chili

This hearty, healthy, colorful version of a family favorite uses bell peppers, garlic and jalapeños to pack the chili with flavor, while the ground turkey keeps it low in fat, making for a truly kid-friendly soup recipe.

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped (2 cups)
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 jalapeños, finely minced
1 pound ground lean turkey
1 large can crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)
2 tablespoons chili powder
3 cups low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth
2 cans red kidney beans, fully drained
3 cans pinto beans, fully drained

Instructions
Warm the olive oil in an eight quart stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring often. When the onions are heated through and lightly browned, add the jalapeño, bell pepper and the garlic. Cook together until softened, approximately five minutes. Add the turkey and break into small pieces with a spatula. Brown until the meat cooked through. Add beans, crushed tomatoes, and chicken broth. Mix thoroughly and add in the chili powder, salt and the pepper. Bring to a boil and stir well. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about an hour and a half, stirring occasionally.

Tip: For a less spicy version, use only one jalapeño or eliminate entirely, and reduce chili powder from two tablespoons to one tablespoon. You can substitute ground beef, buffalo or chicken for the ground turkey. Serve the chili hot, and top with grated cheddar cheese, low fat sour cream, or chopped chives.

Quick Reheating Instructions: If you freeze the leftover soup in a quart size container, you can defrost in the microwave for 10 minutes, then empty contents into a saucepan and warm over low-medium heat, stirring frequently. If the soup is too thick, add ½ cup of chicken broth to it as you heat.

More kid-friendly soup recipes:

PCC’s Tiger Mountain turkey chili is hearty, kid-friendly

 

Originally published in 2009