Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup

3

There is something incredibly comforting about a piping hot bowl of soup that makes me feel cozy inside; like being snuggled in a cashmere blanket as I slowly slurp broth off the spoon, and feel it travel down my throat to warm up my extremities. A rainy day like today called for such a feeling, and so, this recipe was born.

With many requests for healthy and allergy friendly foods, I decided to create something universal that would fill your stomach without adding inches to it. I make this in the slow cooker, so it tastes like I’ve been standing over the stove all day, when really I’ve been cuddled up by the fireplace with a glass of wine. (That can be our little secret.)

This soup is vegan, gluten-free, fat-free, low in calories and full of flavor.

If you’re watching your salt intake, you can substitute a low-sodium or sodium-free stock, and omit the salt completely. Try adding some garlic powder and lemon juice to brighten the dish.If you want to turn this into a meal, and appeal more to the carnivorous crew, you can add diced lean chicken breast or a chicken or turkey sausage to kick up the protein without adding a ton of fat and calories.Ingredients:

3 cups broccoli

2 cups baby carrots

2 cups cauliflower

1 cup yellow and green romano beans

½ cup cubed butternut squash

1 cup sliced leeks

1 (1 qt) box vegetable stock

1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes

2 teaspoons kosher salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

Olive oil flavored cooking spray

Instructions:

Coat a small pan with cooking spray and sautee leeks over medium-high heat until tender and slightly brown, adding more spray when necessary. Set aside.

Pour broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, romano beans and butternut squash into the slow cooker.

Top with sauteed leeks.

Add vegetable stock.

Finish with diced tomatoes and season with salt and pepper.

Stir to coat vegetables with liquid from stock and tomatoes.

Cook on HIGH for four hours. Soup will begin to boil and vegetables will be tender.

Eat and enjoy helping yourself to many satisfying, worry-free servings!

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