Every week we try to have at least 1 veggie only meal. Not just a bunch of vegetables on a plate – that’s just boring & maybe even lazy (unless of course it’s a side dish for Friday night wings). We want fun (kids like fun food), delicious & (hopefully) easy food. But it can be hard coming up with different dishes every week. Honestly, most of the time I don’t; we find some things that we really love (usually something stuffed) & eat them over & over until we get tired of it. Then I try to come up with something new.
One thing that’s pretty easy is soup. For most recipes you can just leave out the meat. I say most because for some (meatball & chicken anything for example), the meat makes the soup – it would be pointless to leave it out.
The absolute easiest vegetarian option – bean soups! Lentil soup is 1 of my family’s faves but here’s 1 that we have only had out in restaurants until now.
It’s Greek style bean soup & it’s loaded with veg, protein, & flavor.
1 cup garbanzo beans
1 cup navy beans
1/2 cup black eyed peas
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T tomato paste (or 1/4 cup smashed diced tomatoes)
oregano (fresh or dried)
salt & pepper
Soak the beans as you normally would (quick soak or overnight soak) then rinse as usual.
In a large pot, add enough olive to coat the bottom. Saute the carrots, celery, onions, & garlic until slightly tender – 2-3 minutes.
Add the tomato paste (or smashed tomatoes). Cook another minute or 2. Season with salt & pepper. Taste it!
Add the soaked & drained navy & garbanzo beans. DO NOT add the black eyed peas yet.
Simmer for about 20 minutes or until the beans begin to soften. Then add the black eyed peas & continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the beans are all fork tender but NOT mushy.
Taste it again. Add about a teaspoon each of paprika, turmeric & oregano, and salt & pepper to taste.
Drizzle with a little more olive oil (no more than a tablespoon for the whole pot) & serve it up!
- Black eyed peas aren’t traditionally a Greek thing, I just like the flavor. You can leave them out without substituting another ingredient.
- Black eyed peas cook faster than navy & garbanzo beans. If you add them at the same time, the texture will be mushy. Mushy ≠ delicious.
- The tomato paste is meant to help thicken the soup, so I would NOT suggest using tomato sauce or the juice from canned diced tomatoes. If that’s all you have, then mix it with a little corn starch first.
- Turmeric is not needed – it doesn’t affect the flavor much but is great for color & nutrition. And it’s 1 of my new faves! “I put that ish on everything!”
This is another one of those recipes that’s good for cleansing or going vegetarian. It’s good for you & like most soups, stews, & casseroles, it’s even better the next day. It’s also freezable.
Give it a try. Have it with some crusty bread & olive tapenade (or just olives) if you like. If you do, let me know how it goes.