The Homemade Mom: Soups and Stews

It’s funny how fast it goes from summer to winter here in the Northeast. So, what better way to keep warm then with a cozy bowl of soup!? I’ve put together 5 new ways of making soups and stews without feeling like you’re drinking a warm smoothie for dinner. They have tons of flavor and you’ll have plenty leftover for lunch or to keep frozen on hand for the next time you want a quick bite to eat.

Download the Recipe and Shopping List PDF here.


Monday: Carrot, Coriander & Ginger Soup

If I could pick one food I’d eat for the rest of my life, it’s soup! I eat it almost every day in some variety. So, when I went looking for a new one, my Mother-in-Law had the answer: Carrot, Coriander & Ginger soup. It’s a very popular soup in England. In a country where they love their hot foods and warm fireplaces, they certainly know how to make a good bowl of this stuff. England has a bad reputation for not having a broad variety of good food options, but that’s certainly not the case if you know where to look. This soup is silky and full of flavor. It won’t disappoint and is begging to have a big loaf of crusty bread dipped in it.

Servings: 4

Time: 30 minutes

Difficulty: easy


1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 onion, chopped

1-inch piece of ginger, peeled & grated

1 medium russet potato

1 lb. carrots, washed and sliced

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon turmeric

2 pints (4 cups) bone broth, vegetable, or chicken stock

freshly grated nutmeg, to taste

salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)


1. Heat the oil in a large pan, and add the onions, potato, carrots, ginger, and garlic. Sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until they are beginning to soften, but not color.

2. Stir in the coriander and turmeric and cook for 1 minute.

3. Add the bone broth/stock and bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until the carrots are really tender.

4. Blend the soup with an immersion blender or transfer to a food processor. Add the nutmeg to taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Add a sprinkle of cilantro, if desired. Enjoy!

Adapted from: and Jamie Oliver originally

Tuesday: Vietnamese Beef & Noodle Soup

Many years ago, Trevor lived in South East Asia and fell in love with the food. He loved the spices, rice, and noodle dishes. When I was planning Soups & Stews week, he begged me to make this. And, I'm so glad he did. This dish has so many layers of flavors. It's so meaty, but light at the same time. And it has spice, but not too spicy. And it's smooth, but also has crunch. I have no doubt saying this is one of the best soups I've ever made.

Servings: 4

Time: 40 minutes prep, 8 hours cooking

Difficulty: medium


1 cinnamon stick

1 medium sweet onion

3 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced & peeled

1 1/2 pounds bone-in beef short ribs

1 cup water

4 cups unsalted beef stock

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons hoisin sauce

2 teaspoons soy sauce

4 ounces vermicelli (rice) noodles

2 cups fresh bean sprouts

1 cup roughly torn fresh basil

1/2 cup roughly torn fresh mint

1 lime, cut into 4 wedges


1. Cook cinnamon in a large skillet over medium until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a 6-quart slow cooker.

2. Cut onion in half; place in skillet, cut side down; add ginger. Cook onion and ginger over medium, undisturbed, until onion is charred on cut side, about 5 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker. Increase heat under skillet to medium-high. Add short ribs; cook until browned on all sides, about 15 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker.

3. Remove skillet from heat; discard drippings. Pour 1 cup water into skillet, scraping to loosen browned bits. Pour through a strainer into slow cooker; discard solids. Stir in beef stock and salt. Cover and cook on low 8 hours.

4. Remove short ribs from slow cooker. Pour broth through a strainer into a bowl; discard solids. Pour broth back into slow cooker. Remove meat from bones of short ribs; shred meat, and return to slow cooker. Stir in hoisin and soy sauces. Turn slow cooker to high; cover to keep hot.

5. Cook noodles according to package directions. Place 1/2 cup cooked noodles in each of 4 bowls. Top each with 1 1/4 cups hot broth and 1/3 cup short rib meat. Sprinkle with bean sprouts, basil, and mint. Serve with lime wedges. Enjoy!

Adapted from:

Wednesday: Chorizo & Chickpea Soup

I timed myself – this actually took me 14 minutes start to finish from taking the food out of the fridge & cabinets all the way to first bite. It’s so full-flavored, you’ll be utterly surprised at how quickly all the flavors come together. I bought a spicy chorizo and it made the soup taste even better. Even my (almost) 3 year old loved it! She ate her whole bowl and asked for seconds. That NEVER happens!

Servings: 4

Time: 15 minutes

Difficulty: easy


1 15-oz can diced petite tomatoes + 1 can water

1/2 pound (8-oz) loosely packed spicy chorizo (no casing)

1/3 Savoy cabbage, chopped

1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1/2 chicken bouillon cube

1 cup chicken broth, stock or bone broth)


1. In a medium sized pot, add the tomatoes, followed by a can of water. While the tomatoes are heating, chop the chorizo into chunky pieces and shred the cabbage.

2. Add the chorizo and cabbage into the pan with the chickpeas. Then, crumble in the stock cube and broth. Stir well, cover and leave to bubble over a high heat for 5 mins or until the cabbage is just tender. Ladle into bowls and eat with crusty bread. Enjoy!

Adapted from:

Thursday: Sweet Potato & Lentil Soup

Here's an surprising combination of flavors in one easy and quick soup. Its creaminess comes from the sweet potatoes with an unexpected twist from the apple and celery. And, the lentils add a much-needed protein-punch to this otherwise simple vegetarian dish. In just one pot, you can feed a mini-army of a family.

Servings: 6

Time: 25 minutes

Difficulty: easy


2 teaspoons curry powder

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 onions, chopped

1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 stalk of celery, chopped

2-3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and grated

4 cups vegetable stock

1/2 cup red (or green*) lentils


1. Put the curry powder into a large saucepan, then toast over a medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the olive oil, stirring as the spice sizzles in the pan. Add in the onions, apple, garlic, and celery, season, then gently cook for 5 minutes, stirring every so often.

2. Meanwhile, peel, then grate the sweet potatoes. Add them into the pan with the stock, lentils, and seasoning, then simmer, covered, for 20 mins. Blend until smooth using an immersion blender. Check the seasoning and serve. Enjoy!

Adapted from:

*Note: Green lentils will make the color of the soup look greener. Red lentils will keep the soup looking more like the sweet potatoes.

Friday: Turkey Chili

Chili is one of those dishes that everyone has ‘an amazing recipe’ for. I won’t lie, this is mine. It has the perfect ratio of meat to beans and veg with just the right amount of spice. It has just enough liquid to be soaked up by rice or bread, so it’s not too soupy. And it’s truly the best comfort food for any autumn night.

Servings: 6

Time: 35 minutes

Difficulty: easy


1 tablespoon olive oil

2 pounds ground turkey

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 large red pepper, cored, deveined and coarsely chopped

1 cup celery, chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, cored, deveined and finely chopped

2 bay leaves

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon chili lime powder (if you can’t find this at Trader Joe’s, just use regular chili powder)

2 teaspoons ground cumin

3 cups canned diced tomatoes (2 15-oz cans)

2 cups chicken broth

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 15-ounce cans of red kidney beans, drained & rinsed


1. Heat the oil over high heat in a large heavy pot and add the turkey meat. Cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

2. Add the onions, garlic, red pepper, celery, jalapeno pepper, oregano, bay leaves, chili powders and cumin. Stir to blend well. Cook for 5 minutes.

3. Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.

4. Add the drained beans and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes longer. Serve in bowls with rice, cheddar cheese, and/or sour cream and lime wedges, if desired. Enjoy!

Adapted from:

Happy Cooking! Have an idea for a theme week you'd like to see? Email Julie at

Julie is a stay-at-home mom of two girls and with a passion for all things food. She loves growing, cooking, and, of course, eating food! She started meal planning years ago to stay organized and eliminate food (and money!) waste and started sharing it on her own blog, Season Generously.

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