Post-Thanksgiving, I find myself thinking about the holiday season and the cold winter months, and that leads to planning for pots of soup. What better fuel for getting through the hectic holidays and keeping cold and flu at bay?

One of the brilliant things about a vegetable soup is its versatility.  My first pot of the season will have broth from the Thanksgiving turkey’s carcass.  I could just as easily use store-bought broth, home-made chicken broth, or vegetable broth made from trimmings saved and frozen over the summer.

Although the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot are kind of a “must”, for the rest of the veggies, any combination you have or like will do nicely (I love leeks). Tomatoes can be included or omitted as can diced meat of any kind (a great way to use leftovers). I even add a little cream sometimes.

Easy Homemade Vegetable Soup Recipe

adapted from a recipe by Jolinda Hackett for The Spruce

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 cups any chopped vegetables
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon thyme (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 cups broth
  • 2 cups peeled, diced tomatoes (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large soup or stock pot. Add the chopped onion, minced garlic, the carrots, and the celery. Stir over heat for 3-4 minutes, until onions are soft. Add the rest of the vegetables and heat for just another minute or two.
  2. Add salt, garlic powder, thyme, and oregano, stirring to coat the vegetables well.
  3. Add bay leaf and broth and bring to a simmer.
  4. Add the tomatoes (if using), stir, and allow your soup to simmer until all the vegetables are cooked, about 8-12 minutes.
  5. Adjust seasonings to taste.
  6. Remove the bay leaf and serve your homemade vegetable soup with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese (if you’re not eating vegan), and some crusty bread or crackers. Makes 6 servings.

A pot of soup made on the weekend can help get you through the week in fine form. Don’t forget to check our recipe archive for more scrumptious soup recipes!