Spicy Vegetable Soup Recipe

What's more comforting at the end of a long day than a big pot of delicious, healthy, and spicy soup cooked up using a platter of fresh vegetables you spend 15 minutes cleaning, peeling, and chopping? How about a big pot of hearty, healthy, and spicy soup cooked up using primarily frozen veggies and that takes all of 5 minutes of overall hands-on prep work? 

"You need a good tried and true vegetable soup for winter," says chef, food writer, and registered dietician Kristen Carli of Camelback Nutrition & Wellness, adding: "This is my favorite! It is very hearty and comforting." It will be your new favorite go-to vegetable soup whether whipped up in the depths of winter or as a side for a summer BBQ, too, because it's a refreshingly easy dish that pairs well with anything from a hearty chunk of bread and roasted chicken to a hot dog or burger and a side of coleslaw.

And because all of the ingredients are reliably shelf, fridge, or freezer-stable, you can pretty much always be ready to prepare a batch of spicy vegetable soup without a trip to the grocery store. Looking to make this soup even heartier? Just slice in some cooked sausage for a whole meal in a bowl. (That does nix the whole vegetarian friendly angle, of course.)

The health benefits of frozen vegetables

Frozen vegetables often get a bad wrap, with people thinking they lack as much nutritional value as fresh veggies. Although freezing some vegetables can cause some slight reduction in nutrient density, according to Healthline, a lot of the nutrients in frozen veggies are usually preserved. You will still get almost all of the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients offered by your favorite veggies even when said veggies come from a bag in the freezer aisle. (Or when you freeze them yourself.)

Healthline also states the obvious greatest benefit of cooking with frozen vegetables: that they are super convenient and simple to cook. Instead of going to the store or farmers market in search of fresh, in-season produce, simply go to your freezer for the vegetables you need to prepare this healthy soup.

Gather your ingredients for spicy vegetable soup

There's plenty of flexibility when it comes to the vegetables you use here, but if you want to make a reliably delicious and nutritious soup, you'll need 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 yellow onion (diced), 1 teaspoon of minced garlic, 3 yellow potatoes (cubed), an 8-ounce can of tomato sauce, a 15-ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes, 6 cups of vegetable broth, ½ teaspoon of red chili flakes, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, 2 bay leaves, 24 ounces of frozen mixed vegetables, 1 teaspoon of salt, ½ teaspoon of pepper, and optional (but recommended) grated Parmesan cheese for topping.

Don't like things hot and spicy? Not a problem. Carli says, "If you reduced the spice, it would [still] taste delicious. I would omit the red chili flakes and sub diced tomatoes for fire roasted tomatoes. Then, I would add some diced oregano and dried thyme to bring in another depth of flavor."

Cook the onions and garlic

Like a countless number of great recipes out there, this one starts with three ingredients so often found together: olive oil, onion, and garlic. Heat the oil in a large pot or a Dutch oven over medium heat, and once the oil is warm, add the diced onions. Stir and cook until the onion starts to be fragrant, then add the garlic. (Onions cook faster than garlic, and garlic burns faster than onions, so this is always the best order, FYI!) Keep sautéing the onion and garlic until both are fragrant and the onions are translucent.

Add the potatoes, broth, and spices

Once the onions and garlic have cooked enough in the oil, add in the potatoes, tomato sauce, fire roasted tomatoes, vegetable broth, chili flakes, chili powder, bay leaves, salt, and pepper. Then, turn up the heat and bring the soup to a boil, and immediately lower the heat to a simmer. 

Let the pot simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes. Check now and then to make sure too much liquid is not boiling off (exposing ingredients) and add a bit more broth if need be. Feel free to add more spices as well to balance the added broth.

Add the frozen vegetables and finish the soup

Once the soup has simmered for 15 minutes, add the frozen mixed vegetables. Stir well to combine all ingredients, and then simmer the vegetable soup for five more minutes. 

Remove the bay leaves and ladle out servings of the soup into bowls, ideally topping each with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Note the pairing ideas covered above, like a hearty chunk of bread. And if there's soup left in the pot after the meal, Carli says, "This will keep best in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days. It reheats well in the microwave."

Spicy Vegetable Soup Recipe
5 from 31 ratings
What's more comforting at the end of a long day than a big bowl of delicious, healthy, and spicy vegetable soup? Not much. This recipe hits the spot.
Prep Time
5
minutes
Cook Time
40
minutes
Servings
6
Servings
Spicy Vegetable Soup in a bowl
Total time: 45 minutes
Ingredients
  • 24 ounces of frozen mixed vegetables
  • 3 yellow potatoes, cubed
  • 8-ounce can of tomato sauce
  • 15-ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • grated Parmesan cheese for topping
Directions
  1. In a large stock pot, heat olive oil over medium heat and add 1 diced yellow onion, cooking until fragrant. Then, add 1 teaspoon of minced garlic and keep sautéing for about eight minutes total, or until onions grow translucent.
  2. Add 3 cubed potatoes, an 8-ounce can of tomato sauce, a 15-ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes, 6 cups of vegetable broth, ½ teaspoon of red chili flakes, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, 2 bay leaves, 1 teaspoon of salt, and ½ teaspoon of pepper.
  3. Bring to a boil and then lower soup to a simmer. Let simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the frozen mixed vegetables and stir, then simmer for five more minutes.
  5. Remove bay leaves and serve.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 218
Total Fat 3.4 g
Saturated Fat 0.5 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 41.4 g
Dietary Fiber 9.6 g
Total Sugars 5.0 g
Sodium 757.9 mg
Protein 7.4 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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