Sunday, October 1, 2023

The Best One Pot Protein Rich Vegan Veg and Bean Soup


Beans and Veggies are Loaded with Plant Protein

There’s nothing more comforting or inviting than a bowl of vegetable bean soup on a chilly night, during any season of the year. 

This recipe is simple, uses pantry stables like canned beans and canned tomatoes, and includes a goodly amount of seasonal veggies to reap health benefits and good taste rewards.

It's a tried and true vegan recipe that I come back to again and again, because it's filling (Whole Food Plant-based/WFPB), simple, protein rich, and simmers on the stove for an hour, while I do other things. 

I select veggies according to what's freshest, in-season, on sale, or growing in my garden.

Look Below for Veggies by Season:

FALL: I add potatoes, parsnip, turnip, red cabbage, peeled broccoli stalks, shallots, and butternut squash to my fall soups as these veggies are in-season and at their peak for high nutrition and flavor.

WINTER: My additional veggies may include Brussels sprouts, parsnip, turnip, peeled broccoli stalks, collard greens, celeriac, Chinese cabbage, sweet potato, butternut squash, and Delicata squash. I use this variety of squash, because it is less work than other squash, as its skin is edible and doesn't have to be peeled off.

SPRING: In spring I choose several veggies including some form of peas like sweet peas, snap peas, or snow peas. I also like to add asparagus, green onions, leeks, mushrooms, chard, and spinach.

SUMMER: In summer I include zucchini and other summer squash like Calabacitas, green beans, red, yellow, or green peppers, leeks, corn, mushrooms, and fresh tomatoes.

The soup may taste slightly different each time I make it, but I laugh for joy and say "this is the best."

The Best One Pot Protein Rich Vegan Veg and Bean Soup

Delicious, easy, comforting, and nutritious. This versatile soup is so colorful and scrumptious you'll be making this recipe fall, winter, spring, and summer.


Ingredients for Veg and Bean Soup
pinto beans, basil and parsley, butternut squash, turnip, chickpeas, Yukon gold potatoes, fire roasted diced tomatoes, dark red kidney beans

1 medium yellow onion peeled
2-3 stalks celery washed
2-3 carrots, scraped but not peeled
4 cloves fresh peeled garlic
2-3 medium sized thin skin potatoes like Yukon gold(scrub and leave skin on) 
3- 15 oz. cans  any kind of beans-rinsed and drained
1 large can (28 oz.) fire roasted diced tomatoes
approximately 4 cups of mixed vegetables from those listed by season
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
1 dried bay leaf
1/2 in. slice fresh ginger grated
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 /2 cup parsley (or dried)
1/2 cup fresh basil (or dried)
4 cups water or one box low sodium veg broth

TIP: Feel free to add as many fresh veggies as you like. If you'd like to use more than 4 cups of veggies, add extra water or veg broth. 

When we eat a variety of produce of various colors, we give our bodies the mix of nutrients it needs for good health. 

What to Do:

1. Assemble all ingredients before starting to cook. Rinse the beans. I used pinto beans, dark red kidney beans, and garbanzo/chick- peas, and then put them to the side.

2. Either hand dice or use a food processor to dice carrots, celery, onion, and garlic. Add grated ginger.

3. In a large Dutch oven or large soup pot, sweat the aromatics. this means to cook celery, onions, carrots, garlic, and ginger in a drop of water or oil over low heat for about 10 minutes, until they soften but don't brown. 

Sweat the Aromatics

This cooking technique allows these starter veggies to soften so their rich flavor and aroma can infuse the soup.

4. Then add 4 cups of mixed veggies  of your choosing, and 4 cups water or veg broth.

5. Bring the pot of soup to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Add all dried seasonings, spices, and herbs except for the can of fire-roasted tomatoes. 

Pour in beans, stir, and cover pot to allow it to simmer on stovetop. Cook for approximately one half hour or until veggies are as soft or crunchy as you like.

Note: Beans and legumes are high in plant-based protein. Garbanzo, pinto, and dark red kidney beans increased the protein count of this soup by 20 grams of protein. 

Beans or legumes like lentils add texture, fiber, protein, taste, and creaminess to the soup, and it's so filling and satisfying this way.

Veggies in this soup contain plant-based protein as well. Following are details about veggies that are excellent sources of plant-based protein.

Celery has .7 grams of protein in each cup, and is an excellent source of Vitamin K.

Carrots have 1 gram of protein in each cup. They are an excellent source of potassium, antioxidants, and Vitamin A.

Onions A medium size onion has about 1.2 grams of protein, and contains many important vitamins and minerals.

Green peas Green peas are at the top of the list of the most protein-filled vegetables. Technically, they’re legumes, but many of us consider them vegetables because of their bright green color and delicate flavor. You might be surprised by their protein content. A cup of green peas contains about 8 grams of protein. Plus, they’re super easy to serve, since you can toss a handful of peas into almost anything for an extra pop of protein.

Spinach To get the most benefits from this leafy green, go ahead and cook it. A cup of cooked spinach contains 5.3 grams of protein. Other benefits include high levels of iron, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin K and calcium.

Collard greens A one-cup serving of this dark leafy green (cooked) contains 5.1 grams of protein.

Red pepper  One cooked red pepper has 1 gram of protein as well as being high in vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants.

Sweet corn Whether you buy it at your local farmers market or grocery store, don’t pass up the sweet corn. A large ear of sweet yellow corn will provide about 4 grams of protein. Cut it off the cob and add to the soup or use frozen corn kernels.

Lima beans One cup of cooked lima beans has 15 grams of protein. Toss lima beans into the soup to raise the protein content. Lima beans and butter beans are in season in the late summer, but you can get them dried and frozen all year.

Asparagus Asparagus is a favorite spring crop in the northern hemisphere, but is available the whole year, thanks to the freezer section at the store. A cup of cooked asparagus contains about 2.1 grams of protein.

Broccoli A cup of cooked broccoli contains about 1.9 grams of protein. Broccoli deserves its reputation as a “superfood” because it’s high in fiber, folates, vitamin C, vitamin K and potassium. Only use the stalks of broccoli in soup, as the florets will get overcooked and taste bitter.

Butternut Squash This golden yellow/orange colored type of winter squash has 1.4 grams of protein in each cup. Butternut squash is low in calories (63 per cup) but high in many nutrients including Vitamin A, Vitamin C, magnesium, and potassium.

Cauliflower provides 1.4 grams of protein per cup, and is also high in fiber, potassium, and antioxidants.

Brussels sprouts A cup of cooked Brussels sprouts contains about 2 grams of protein and lots of vitamin K, calcium, and vitamin C. Put it in soup or try this simple recipe for roasted Brussels sprouts.

Yukon gold potatoes have 3 grams of protein in each cup, and are a good source of calcium and potassium.

I add tomatoes a half hour into cooking time. The high acid content of tomatoes slows down the cooking process, but for top nutrition tomatoes need to cook for at least a half an hour. 

The powerful carotenoid (antioxidant) present in tomatoes called lycopene, is most potent when cooked thoroughly. 

If I'm using fresh herbs I add them about ten minutes before I'm ready to turn off stove. 

Fresh basil and parsley don't need to be cooked long to release their flavor and still retain bright green color.

6. Taste soup and correct seasoning. I love chunky soup, but if you enjoy soup that has a smooth consistency, blend a few times with an immersion blender to break down the starchy vegetables. 

If you don't have an immersion blender you can scoop out a cup or two of soup and pulse it in the food processor. Then add it back into the pot. 

Another way to do it, is to use a potato masher right in the pot, and stir well.

7.Ladle soup into bowls and serve piping hot. 

Protein Rich Vegan Veg and Bean Soup

Serve with crackers or dunk in crusty whole grain bread. To make this one pot meal heartier, mix in a couple of cups of cooked whole grains or seeds like rice, quinoa, millet, or pasta. 

I like to batch cook, and am happy to say this recipe will serve four to five heaping portions (I save some in the refrigerator or freezer) or invite company for dinner.

This homemade protein rich vegan veg and bean soup recipe is so versatile. It can be made year round. 

Just use in-season veggies and keep the base the same: garlic, ginger, onions, carrots, and celery.

Before you go, please comment below.

Just remember to put no links in your comment, as I won't be able to publish it that way. Thanks for understanding.

Do you make homemade soups and what's your favorite kind?

What kind of additional veggies do you think you'd like to use? 

If you make it, please take a picture and send an email to 

I'd love to see your handwork, and may upload your picture to this post with a link back to your blog.

This post has been shared at Oct. Edition Hearth & Soul Link Party!

Friday, September 15, 2023

How to Shine in Fall Fashion Colors

Yellow is a Popular Fall Fashion Color

Fashion designers and marketing experts aim to make clothing that will sell by choosing colors, shapes, textures, and patterns that appeal to our senses, flatter and refresh us, and even make us feel ravishing this fall. 

In fact, research shows that specific colors have vibrational properties that speed up, balance, or calm down thinking and behavior.

As consumers, we sort through the offerings and do our best to choose those garments that will last for years, and have a positive influence on our mood, behaviors, and even impact our sense of well-being. To learn about sustainable fashion see "10 Simple Steps to Being More Sustainable." 

Just be mindful that color preferences work at the cellular level and bypass reason. What's right for one person may not be right for someone else.

Read "Secrets to Selecting Top Fashion Colors to Flatter You" for ideas about how to coordinate your attire to your complexion and skin undertone.

Wear Colors to flatter complexion and skin undertone

How to Shine in Fall Fashion Colors


I'm a big believer in repairing, redesigning, and upcycling clothes that are already in my closet. Before each season begins I look through my clothing and try on pieces I am considering using during the coming months. 

I question "does the garment look attractive as is or can it be altered, paired with something I haven't thought of before, or layered underneath or above something else? Can I accessorize it a colorful pair of shoes, belt, shawl, or handbag?"

I weed out those items that are beyond repair or look unsightly on me. Then, before I change my mind and stick the clothes back in my closet, I donate them and/or hold a clothing exchange event with friends.

Any time I buy or thrift something new, I maintain the one piece in and one piece out rule.

Then I observe which colors catch my eye during the day, and what feelings they evoke. 

You can do this too. Sort through your closet and wardrobe. Then check out what the online and local clothing stores are showing. 

See what others wear and evaluate which clothing colors relax and calm you. Try to become more mindful of specific color combinations and ways they make you feel.


Feel unsettled, down in the dumps, or invisible? An excellent color to wear is RED. It’s the color of the root chakra, the energetic base of all the ascending chakras. Read "Root Chakra Tips to Support, Stabilize, and Sustain You" to discover what I mean.

Red clothing and forward bend yoga pose

Doing grounding yoga poses like forward bend in RED attire helps us feel centered, energized, focused on our strengths, and helps us get on with our day. 

Pantone, Inc., the world-renowned authority on color, color systems, and color communication technology has named Viva Magenta 18-1750, Color of the Year. This deep red shade is rooted in nature and expresses earth energy and strength.

Another way to practice connecting to earth red/energy is to recite affirmations. Use those that are meaningful to you.

 I feel invigorated and empowered whenever I visualize the root chakra.


My health is excellent and I am fortunate to be well-balanced, fit, prosperous, and strong.


My spirit is grounded deep in the earth. I reserve time to balance and nurture mind, body, and spirit in the great outdoors often.

GREEN provides healing energy for most physical and emotional illness. Hues of green create balance, harmony, personal development, self-acceptance, self-compassion, and rejuvenation. When we wear or envision GREEN it helps lift anxiety, self-pity, confusion, and renews our spirits.

Relax, Renew, Refresh with Green Energy

GREEN symbolizes nature and is a soothing, refreshing color to don, especially for those who are hyperactive or have a racing mind.

Look for a deep, rich GREEN hue called Pine Needle. This hue adds a touch of nature to your fall wardrobe, exuding a sense of grounding and stability. Incorporate Pine Needle into your outfits with a scarf, sweater, or trousers for a sophisticated, outdoorsy look.

Another GREEN you'll see everywhere comes from Pantone, and it's fashioned after the color of the vegetable, Kohlrabi, a medium light shade of green similar to Pistachio.

BLUE hues are calming, relaxing, and soothes fears. Blue is favored by more people than any other. This color represents release and renewal, free flow, inspiration, and relaxation.

One example of a muted BLUE tone popular this fall is Lacecap Hydrangea. This icy blue offers a color punch without being over the top. It’s also a color that can work for all four seasons, depending on what you pair it with. 

For fall, balance this floral-inspired blue with deeper shades like gem-tones, caramel brown, mustard yellow, or even fiery red.


BLUE hues can be bright and attract attention. One example of a powerful blue hue is Cobalt Blue.

Turquoise is a wonderful hue of BLUE to select, if you need some help bringing your health and wellness to the forefront. It's sometimes called our master healer. Turquoise energy can enhance the immune system. Wear a turquoise necklace or earrings, turquoise tee, or jacket.

GREEN-BLUE colors including aqua, aquamarine, and teal are easy on the eyes. These shades reflect the colors in water and sky, and wearing a teal sweatshirt creates a sense of tranquility and ease.

Teal is a blue-green color that's easy on the eyes

Many people find bright YELLOW and golden yellow invigorate, help their power of concentration, and create a sunny outlook.

YELLOW also works to heal digestive track issues and infuse more joy into life.

Try to take your emotional and physical temperature at various times during the day. See whether you become tense, especially when you face a challenge, doubt your abilities, are sad, anxious, or have low energy. 

Wear yellow socks, a yellow slicker, or carry a yellow backpack. Pause to take in this yellow energy or visualize a yellow flower or sunlight streaming through the windows in your home or office workspace to enliven you.

ORANGE helps unblock emotions. If you need support as you grieve a relationship or feel another loss, wear orange. Put on an orange tee, scarf, or boots when depressed, and see whether orange can draw more joy and lightness into daily living. Red ORANGE is one of the most popular fall 2023 colors.

Do you own articles of clothing that are bright orange, terracotta, pumpkin, rust or other shade of orange? Those who wear colors in the orange family are usually people with a friendly attitude and lively demeanor.

A little bit of orange goes a long way. Wearing too much orange at one time may make you feel confused, disoriented, and claustrophobic. It can worsen nausea or dizziness.

Since ancient times, PURPLE has been associated with the color of the clergy, nobles, and the rich. Those who are attracted to purple may have an artistic or dramatic flair. 

Purple is favored by people with an artistic flair

Some wear purple clothing, because they intuitively sense it clears confusion and calms hyperactivity. 

Others wear it to connect with their higher wisdom, speed up natural healing energy in the body, or supply inspiration for transformation.

There are many hues of PURPLE, and this fall burgundy, plum, lilac, mauve, and violet are showing up often.


Clothing can be comfortable, beautiful, fun to wear, as well as provide warmth and protection.

Instead of owning a closet full of so-so clothes you "just feel okay in," decide on a capsule wardrobe of three outfits you feel great in. 

If you need to update an outfit, fill in with a high-quality piece like a blouse or sweater in a color you love.

Research sustainable fashion and find and support those businesses that use textiles that are manufactured, constructed, and marketed in a responsible, conscious way that accounts for their environmental and socioeconomic impact. 

Look for clothing that's made with organic and natural fibers, biodegradable materials, uses natural dyes, little or no-waste pattern making, employs ethical labor practices, and are handmade/artisan crafted. 

Spend time shopping vintage, perusing thrift stores, searching though hidden family heirlooms, or sorting through that old foot locker in the attic.

To shine from the inside, wear clothing that is comfy, attractive, made well, ignites pleasure, and delights your senses!

What's your favorite color and do you wear clothes made of that color often?

Do you use certain colors to create an effect and which ones are they?

Did you learn anything new about colors today and how do you think that can help you?

Before you go consider this. The world of color is fascinating. You can be more fascinating too. Which color or colors makes you feel great? Why not wear your favorite colors more often?

Please leave a comment in the space provided below, but put no links in your comment as it won't be published that way.

If you like what you see, share the love. Please check out my Pinterest site and Facebook Page and become a follower.

This post has been shared at Oct. Edition Hearth & Soul Link Party!

This post has been shared at InLinkz 279 Senior Salon Pit Stop

This post has been shared at Funtastic Friday #454

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Amazing Garlic Facts and Recipe for Garlicky Sautéed Spinach


Garlic is an Amazing Food Enhancer
garlic bulbs

Few plants have had as major a culinary impact as garlic; it has a distinctive flavor, pungent aroma, and is a pillar of cuisines from around the world. 

Many cultures use garlic for medicinal purposes, and have been doing so for thousands of years.

The edible parts of this plant are its bulb (grows underground), and the green leaves or scapes that grow above ground. 

Each segment of a garlic bulb is called a clove, and there can be anywhere from 4-20 cloves encased in its papery exterior. One clove of garlic has approximately 4 calories.

Garlic is an Amazing Food Enhancer

Garlic is a part of the allium (onion) family, and related to chives, green onions, onions, leeks, and shallots.

Garlic is a savory seasoning, favored in recipes for soup, salad dressing, pasta, pizza, tacos, casseroles, or anything else in between. 

Garlic’s unique flavor stands out, and can add depth and richness to almost all non-sweet foods.

Test each bulb to feel for hardness before buying. Firm bulbs are a go, soft garlic means it's past its prime. 

Fresh garlic does not give off a smell when intact. The scent is released when cut or bitten. 

Once you are home, store whole bulbs of garlic in a cool dark, dry place, but not the refrigerator. People often choose to keep fresh garlic in the pantry, in an uncovered dish or cup.

When garlic cloves are peeled, the surface needs to look much closer to white than yellow. Discoloration is a sign of decay.
Leave garlic bulb intact for as long as possible. 

If you peel the whole head, garlic's lifespan decreases more rapidly, and health benefits decrease as well. Detach and peel only the amount of cloves you need for the recipe. 

Scientists have discovered most of garlic’s health benefits are due to the compound allicin, and the formation of sulfur compounds when garlic is chopped, minced, crushed, grated, and chewed. 

Allicin in fresh garlic is an unstable compound, one that is only briefly present in fresh garlic after it’s been separated from the bulb and prepared.

Research indicates garlic compounds have a range of health benefits, and eating freshly prepared raw garlic at least two times a week, has significant disease prevention properties.

Now on to ...

Amazing Recipe for Vegan Garlicky Sautéed Spinach

Bpwl of Spinach for Garlicky Sautéed Spinach
a few handfuls of fresh raw spinach

Quick, easy, and one of the most delicious vegetable side dish you’ll ever make!


1 pound fresh organic spinach or 1 lb. pack of organic baby spinach (rinsed and picked over to remove wilted or yellowing leaves) or combination of dark green leafy veggies such as spinach, baby kale, baby beet greens, baby romaine lettuce, etc.  

3 fresh garlic cloves peeled and minced

Optional seasonings of choice: red pepper flakes, salt, fresh ground black pepper, fresh chopped basil, or other seasoning mix

Optional liquids: water, vegetable broth, olive oil, and lemon juice 

What to do:

1. Mince 3 peeled cloves of garlic and put aside.

2. Place a large sauté pan on stove top, and warm pan to medium heat. Add two or three handfuls of spinach and cover. Let spinach soften for one minute. 

You will probably not need to add a liquid to the pan, because the steam produced from cooking the spinach will serve as a sauté liquid. 

After the first round of spinach softens in about one minute, stir in seasonings of choice. I used ½ teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon of fresh chopped basil. 

Add a few more handfuls of spinach. If you want this dish to be very moist, you may add a drop or two of oil or veg broth at this point. Cover and continue cooking. 

Repeat until all the spinach is cooked. 

Tip: Spinach becomes mushy, when overcooked. Check it often as it cooks. Its color should remain bright green and spinach leaves should be just slightly wilted. Cook time will take between 5-6 minutes.

Garlicky Sautéed Spinach

Sautéed Garlicky Spinach, Red Pepper Flakes, and Basil

3. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the spinach into a serving bowl or platter, as spinach releases a lot of excess water as it cooks.

4. Combine cooked spinach with raw minced garlic, a full-bodied seasoning that has many health benefits. 

Optional: Sprinkle on a fresh chopped herb for garnish, and/or 2 teaspoons of fresh squeezed lemon juice to elevate the flavor.

This spinach recipe serves 4 people as a side.
One delicious way to serve garlicky sautéed spinach is to feature it with a veggie burger and baked sweet potato fries.

If you prefer, serve spinach with brown basmati rice and tofu, in a tasty garlicky veggie bowl.

An additional serving idea is to mix garlicky spinach with a can of rinsed, drained pinto beans or sliced tempeh bacon

For a hearty midweek or weekend meal, serve garlicky spinach with lentils on a bed of quinoa or whole grain pasta as an entrée.

As part of a nutritious diet, spinach and garlic can help support immune function, aid the digestive system, and may offer protection from certain forms of cancer.

Garlic is a simple yet amazing ingredient. 🧄 

Combine it with sautéed spinach, and it's a dish that adds low-cal nutrition (106 calories in a whole pound of spinach). Cook spinach properly, and enjoy a fat free veggie dish that tastes sublime. 

This post was written and shared for educational and entertainment purposes only, and is not intended as nutritional or health advice.

Please check with the pros, if you seek advice. 

Don't forget to share the love by commenting before you leave.

I read and appreciate every comment, but will not publish those that contain links. Thanks for understanding. 

Did you learn something new about garlic or spinach, or discover new prep or recipe ideas? Please explain in the comments section below. 

Do you think you'll add more of these foods now that you know they are quick, easy, and tasty to prepare? Please let me know.

Thanks so much for the visit, and please come back again.

This post has been shared at Oct. Edition Hearth & Soul Link Party!

This post has been shared at Funtastic Friday #454

This post has been shared at 275-Senior-Salon-Pit-Stop

This post has been shared at Senior Salon Pit Stop 274

This post has been shared at August Ideas on Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop