No matter where you travel in the U.S., each region is famous for their soups and stews. In the South, peanut soup, she-crab soup and Louisiana’s gumbo are just a few examples. The Southwest loves their traditional Chile, while Florida and the Gulf Coast are celebrated for their tasty bean and seafood specialties. On the West Coast, there are a nutritious gazpachos and chilled soups.
In case you were wondering what the difference between stew and soup is…Stewing means to simmer seasoned meats (beef, chicken or fish) slowly in thickened broths or liquids, which usually include a variety of vegetables. This drawn out process brings out the flavor of meats and is best for cuts which are tough. Soups are not as thick and contain more liquid. They might be served either cold or warm. Soups are also divided into groups such as clear soups or thick soups.
Studies have shown that having a bowl of soup before a meal helps control hunger; you eat less and therefore lose weight. Researcher Richard Mattes from Purdue University conducted a study in which participants were fed 300-calorie servings of various soups before eating their lunches (they could eat as much lunch as they wanted). Mattes found that the study participants tended to take in fewer total daily calories on days when they had the soup, suggesting that eating low-calorie soups (the broth- and tomato-based ones) before meals may reduce hunger and increase feelings of fullness. But enough with all the scientific stuff! I know you’re ready for some recipes so here they are!
Hearty Beef Stew- This recipe is lower in fat and calories than the traditional beef stew.
- 1 pound beef chuck, cut into 1 1/2″ cubes
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion sliced
- 2 celery stocks – sliced in chunks
- 13 baby carrots – cut in half
- 1 14oz can spinach – very well drained
- 1/8 tsp pepper
- 1 Tbsp parsley
- 1/8 tsp coriander
- 1/4 tsp garlic
- 1/8 tsp ground marjoram
The remaining recipe and nutrition information can be found here: http://www.weightlossrecipesonline.com/2011/02/slow-cooked-beef-stew.html
Vegetable Soup- This quick and easy recipe is so satisfying and filling!
- 1 large can of chicken broth (14 oz)
- I large can (11.5 oz) tomato vegetable juice cocktail
- I cup water
- I large peeled diced potato
- 2 sliced carrots
- 2 diced celery stalks
- 1 (14.4 oz) can diced tomatoes
- 1 cup fresh chopped green beans
- 1 cup fresh corn kernels
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Creole seasoning to taste
Sounds good so far? The recipe instructions can be found here: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/quick-and-easy-vegetable-soup/
Caldo de Pollo or Chicken Soup-No discussion on soups or stews to lose should go without this amazingly tasty recipe!
- Two whole chicken breasts with bone in
- Two medium diced garlic cloves
- ½ tsp garlic
- 2 small plum tomatoes
- ½ small Spanish onion
- 1/4th medium shredded cabbage
- 2-3 sticks carrots
- Salt to taste
- Serrano or green Chiles to taste
To get you simmering, go here for directions: http://thw.net-at-hand.com/soups-and-stews:25823
In closing, soups and stews easily store in your refrigerator, are ideal for snacking and are a healthy way to curb your appetite. Although you can’t sprinkle SENSA in your soup, you may be able to get away with sprinkling on a very chunky stew like the Beef Stew recipe above. Good luck on your journey!
In Good Health,
Lisa DeFazio, MS,RD
Media Nutrition Expert, Dietitian & Host