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Saving Time With Char: Soup’s On- Florentine Style

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Does your freezer ever get a little busy?  You know, it just becomes packed with just one too many bags of frozen artichoke hearts?  On Saturday, I opened the freezer door, and it was bulging.  I had to do something to remedy the situation of the overstuffed freezer.

And so, the Saturday Soup Recipe was invented. I call this Florentine Style, because it has tomatoes and spinach in it.

I didn’t have my stopwatch on, but I am guessing that it took about four minutes to put this soup together.  It might be a cousin to one of Jeff Novick’s dishes.  But, here’s what I did to make a soup that the entire family loved!  Did I just say that?  Yes, they loved it!


One 20 ounce can of San Marzano tomatoes (chopped) (if you can’t find low sodium, rinse them with water)

1 bag of each, frozen rice and beans, cauliflower, and spinach

20 ounces of water

What to Do

  1. Set your Crockpot® to high;
  2. Open all bags and tomatoes and pour into your Crockpot®;
  3. Stir and cover;
  4. Cook for 2-3 hours;
  5. Let cool and season with your favorite spices (I used garlic power, chili powder);
  6. Garnish with chopped cilantro.
  7. Serve

This dish makes about 2 quarts of soup.  It will be a thicker soup.  So flavorful and delicious.  You can serve it with a hearty salad, and some Engine 2 Crackers.  Perfect meal!

Making it More Versatile

After you’ve made the soup, divide the soup in half.

Season one, say, with oregano, garlic, basil, and chili flakes.  Garnish with flat parsley.

And for the other, give it a Mexican flair with garlic, ground cumin, chili flakes.  Garnish with cilantro.

You’ll have one pot, and two meals.

In the End

I always like variety.  And I like the fact that it took me five minutes to create a fabulous plant-strong dinner, with enough left over for lunch and snack.  And, I really made two meals.

Does it get any easier than this?  Do not think so.  The good thing about this is that it is a HUGE departure from the conventional soups that are on the market.  You know, the ones loaded with salt, fat and sugar.

I am always looking to see how others save time in the kitchen, but still add flavor and nutrients to what they make.  Tell me what your fav go-to easy meal?

But really, I think I may have won the Olympics for Plant-Strong Soup Making!

“Lettuce Hear from You!”


About the author

Char Nolan
Char Nolan is a blog contributor and Engine 2 Extra Coach. She's been plant-strong for almost five years. From Philadelphia, she works in the plant-based whole foods arena, and is also the "vegan features writer," for the "Town Dish." She's lost a great deal of weight from being plant-strong, practices yoga, and is always dabbling in her kitchen to create new, plant-strong recipes. Armed with a degree in public health, Char also holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from e-Cornell.

6 Responses to “Saving Time With Char: Soup’s On- Florentine Style”

  1. Lynnette says:

    Great idea Char! It is definitely SOUP weather. I borrowed an idea from another E2X’er for a quick soup-> use frozen shredded hashbrowns and packaged grated carrots in soup. I like to add a can or box of tomatoes and red lentils are nice because they cook so quickly. Spices & extra veggies as desired.

  2. listenup says:

    People think eating vegan is hard, but in fact, it’s easy…this proves it! I can always make a meal from my pantry, or fridge..I love it!

  3. Cathy says:

    Mmmmm! This is just what I needed today! I was looking for some inspiration and a quick meal!

  4. Jean Hayes says:

    This looks luscious! Thanks for the recipe!

  5. PJ says:

    1 bag of each, frozen rice and beans, cauliflower, and spinach… Char frozen rice & beans..is there a brand??? size of 3 bags of ingredients?? Thanks… Might try this this weekend!!

  6. […] Saving Time With Char: Soup’s On- Florentine Style […]

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    The Engine 2 blog will feature tips, plant-strong success stories, how to make plant-strong work, answer your questions and feature special guest experts. Our goal is to provide you with the tools to help you become and stay plant-strong. Please be sure to jump in the conversation by leaving comments on each post!
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