Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Core Plan

Serves 4-6

Chicken Pot Pie is an American favorite but 1) making it from scratch is a pain in the neck AND it still isn’t healthy and 2) the store bought, pre-made pies are one of the worst processed foods you can eat.  This is a healthy alternative that is simple and tastes great.  To save some time in preparation, cook the chicken and chop the onions, carrots, and celery ahead of time.

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4 Tablespoons organic butter
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 medium carrots, sliced (just wash and keep the peel- it’s healthy)
3 celery stalks, diced
1-1/4 cups organic red potatoes, unpeeled, diced (optional)
1/4 cup arrowroot powder
4 cups organic, free-range chicken stock
1-1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon white pepper (do not substitute black pepper)
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg (freshly ground is preferable)
2 cups cooked chicken, chopped or torn
1/2 cup GMO-free, organic corn
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup coconut milk or heavy cream

Grain-Free Dumplings

1 cup almond flour
¼ tsp thyme
¼ tsp baking powder
1 organic egg
salt/pepper to taste
Start by cooking the chicken on the stove in coconut oil.  You can cut it into chunks before cooking or cut it up afterward.  Set aside.

Cook vegetables and potatoes (if using) with butter in a soup pot over medium heat until softened, about 5-10 minutes.  Whisk in arrowroot powder and cook for another 2-3 minutes.  Stir in broth, poultry seasoning, white pepper, salt and nutmeg. Increase heat to medium-high and simmer until thickened, about 10 more minutes or until veggies and potatoes are softened.

Mix up batter for dumplings and drop by teaspoonfuls (you may want to form them a bit with your fingers) and cook for another 5 minutes or so.

Add cooked chicken, corn and peas and cook until heated through.   Remove from heat.  Carefully stir in parsley and coconut milk or cream.

NOTE:  If storing for later, remove the dumplings and add back in while reheating.  Leaving them in the soup may cause them to fall apart.

Crockpot Grass-Fed Beef Broth

Grass-fed beef broth has long been touted for it’s amazing health benefits.  Broth is wonderful for healing from illness, contains essential vitamins and minerals, promotes digestion and helps heal your gut, inhibits infection, is anti-inflammatory, and promotes healthy bones.  Although this doesn’t make a huge batch of beef broth, the advantage is that the cooking time is shorter and the wonderful smell won’t keep you awake at night.  Roasting the bones before putting them in the crockpot helps intensify the flavor.

beef broth1 lb grass fed beef bones
3-4 organic carrots, roughly chopped
3-4 celery ribs, with leaves, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
½ head garlic, peeled and smashed
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 quarts filtered water
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place beef bones on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for about an hour.  Put the vegetables in the bottom of the crockpot and put bones on top and add water.  Set the crockpot to high and bring to a boil (about 4 or so hours).  Lower the crockpot to low and cook for an additional 12-48 hours)
Strain the mixture (you can do a second strainer like mesh or cheesecloth if you want the broth even clearer).  Transfer to mason jars.
Let cool before storing in the refrigerator or freezer.

Tofu-less Miso Soup

Serves 4-6

Advanced & Core Plan

Although the Maximized Living Nutrition Plans recommend staying away from conventional soy products, miso is a fermented form of soy that fits into the plans as a very healthful form of soy.  Notice, I do leave out tofu which is not fermented and not recommended.

Miso dates back over 2,500 years and is a staple in Asian cuisine.  It is known to stimulate digestion and energize the body.  It is full of enzymes and beneficial microorganisms that will support your gut health.  It also contains all essential amino acids making it a complete protein.  Be sure to buy organic, non-pasteurized miso paste.

miso soup8 cups filtered water
½ cup chopped mushrooms of choice, sliced thin
½ cup organic miso paste (red or white)
1 sheet nori (dried seaweed), cut into rectangles
sea salt to taste

¾ cup chopped green onions for garnish if desired

Place water in a large pot and bring to a low simmer, add mushrooms and nori squares.  Make a paste with the miso by adding a little hot water in a small bowl and mixing until smooth and then add to the pot.  Simmer for 7-10 minutes but do not let it boil (you want to keep the good bacteria in tact).

Super Veg Minestrone Soup

Advanced & Core Plan
Serves 3-4
2 teaspoons coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion
2 teaspoons fresh oregano, chopped or 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 medium organic yellow squash, chopped
2 medium organic zucchini, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped (Core Plan)
6  organic Roma tomatoes, chopped OR 2 cans organic crushed tomatoes (no need to blend) + 2 chopped whole tomatoes
40 oz. organic, free range chicken broth, divided
1 can Great Northern beans, rinsed & drained
1  6 oz. bag of fresh baby spinach or 5-6 leaves kale, stems removed and chopped
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 oz. (1 cup) grated asiago or parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add onion to pan and sauté  until softened, stirring frequently.  Add oregano, garlic, sea salt, and pepper and heat through.    Stir in squash, zucchini, and carrot sauté about 5 more minutes or until vegetables are tender.  While the vegetables are cooking, place all but one cup of the chopped Roma tomatoes and a small amount of the broth in a blender and blend to a smooth consistency.   Add the tomato mixture along with the remaining chopped tomatoes, beans, and the remaining broth.  If using kale, add it here.  Bring to a boil. reduce heat; simmer about 20 minutes.

Remove from heat. If using spinach, stir it in here along with additional sea salt and pepper if desired.  Top with grated cheese.

Roasted Tomato Soup

Core or Advanced Plan

Serves 2-4

1 lb ripe plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped yellow onions
2 garlic cloves, minced
dash crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
1/4 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
4 cups chicken stock or water

OPTIONAL:  add a dollop of pesto (check ingredients), toppings:  basil leaves, pine nuts, parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Toss together the tomatoes, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread the tomatoes in 1 layer on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.

In an stockpot over medium heat, sautee the onions and garlic with a pat or two of butter,  and red pepper flakes until the onions start to brown. Add the tomatoes (including any liquid on the baking pan) basil, thyme, and chicken stock. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 30-40 minutes. Put into a colander and press through discarding the large remaining basil leaves and tomato skins. Add more salt if necessary and check for consistency.  If you like a thinner soup, add more water or stock . Add pesto if desired, Serve hot or cold.

Gazpacho

Advanced Plan & Core Plan

Serves 4-6

gazpacho4 chopped plum tomatoes
2 cups tomato juice
1 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 chopped organic red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 small jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 medium garlic clove, pressed or minced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lime, juiced
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For garnish: chopped avocado, chopped cucumber, and/or fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

Place the tomatoes, tomato juice into a large bowl. Add the cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno, garlic, olive oil, lime juice, balsamic vinegar,  cumin, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Transfer 1 1/2 cups of the mixture to a blender or food processor and puree for 15 to 20 seconds on high speed. Return the pureed mixture to the bowl and stir to combine. Cover and chill for 2 hours and up to overnight. Serve with any of the garnishes if desired.

NOTE:  This is also great served as an appetizer in small glasses or bowls.