Between donning your favorite sweaters and indulging in many beloved holiday-spiced, coffee-based beverages, there are few things more innately satisfying than the arrival of the holiday season. And between the frolicking in the snow and buying great gifts for everyone on your list, you’ll undoubtedly need to find time to nourish yourself. While you could turn to your seasoned takeout menus and delivery apps, the dropping outside temperatures may just inspire you to crank the heat in your own kitchen. That’s right, friends—it’s high time to pull out your pots (instant or otherwise), grab your apron, and check out some of our favorite winter soup recipes.
Luckily, these dishes do not require any sort of extensive culinary experience or epicurean expertise. Rather, if you have just a few ingredients—three, to be exact—you’ll be well on your way to making some protein-packed winter soups in a jiffy. We’ve rounded up just a few of our favorite easy recipes so that you can spend the season gallivanting rather than worrying about how to feed yourself (and your lucky brood).
6 protein-packed winter soup recipes with three ingredients or less
Black Bean Soup
This delicious soup calls for just black beans, chicken broth, and canned tomatoes, all of which are great sources of nutrients. For example, a single cup of cooked black beans contains a whopping 16 grams of plant-based protein. They’re also a solid source of quercetin, an anti-inflammatory compound which can help invigorate your immune system.
Get the recipe: Black Bean Soup
This three-ingredient chili is what you’ve been missing in your winter repertoire. Thanks to the protein-rich ground beef that gives this chili body, you’re in for a real treat that is as delicious as it is nutritious. Animal protein (like beef) contains all nine essential amino acids, meaning it’s a complete protein, which is key to the healthy functioning of your body. Moreover, it’s chock full of a wide range of vitamins and minerals, including B12 (important for your nervous system), B6 (important for your energy), zinc, and iron.
Get the recipe: Chili
You can’t have a chili recipe without a vegan chili recipe too, right? This one is packed with protein—23 grams to be exact—thanks to the pinto beans and vegan “meat” crumbles. The addition of your favorite salsa give this recipe its tell-tale chili flavor. Get ready to crumble up some vegan cheese to really bring this recipe home.
Get the recipe: Vegan Chili
Green Pea Soup
This vegan soup is packed not only with protein (there are eight grams of protein in each cup of green peas alone), but also a veritable litany of health benefits. Lutein and zeaxanthin help with your eye health, and the great amount of fiber in peas helps keep your digestive system in check. Vitamins C and E, plus zinc and catechin, are all powerful antioxidants that fight inflammation with every bite.
Get the recipe: Green Pea Soup
Vegan Zucchini Soup
This creamy zucchini soup requires just three ingredients and is absolutely packed to the brim with both protein and copper, which both help combat low bone density and osteoporosis, thanks to the cashews (which also lend creaminess). Moreover, zucchini boasts significant anti-inflammatory benefits as well as fiber, vitamin A, and potassium.
Get the recipe: Vegan Zucchini Soup
Chicken Tortilla Soup
All you need for this recipe is a can of tomatoes, a can of beans, and a scoop of protein-packed chicken (or turkey) for a great soup. If you’re looking for ways to use up all that leftover Thanksgiving goodness, this is undoubtedly the way to go. The addition of both beans and meat-based protein make this a filling, healthy, and easy meal for the ages.
Get the recipe: Chicken Tortilla Soup