In the world of quick, healthy, and comforting meals, a cheesy vegan broccoli soup stands out for its simplicity, nutritional value, and, of course, its delightful taste.
This dish is a perfect example of how plant-based ingredients can come together to create a meal that’s not only satisfying but also packed with vitamins, minerals, and flavors.
Why Vegan Broccoli Soup?
Adopting a vegan diet has been linked to numerous health benefits, including lower risks of heart disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers. Vegan meals can also be beneficial for the environment, reducing one’s carbon footprint and promoting sustainable food practices.
Broccoli, the star ingredient, is a powerhouse of nutrients. It’s high in vitamins C and K, fiber, potassium, and antioxidants. Combined with other plant-based ingredients, it creates a meal that is as nourishing as delicious.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 cups broccoli florets
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup cashews, soaked overnight
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons mustard
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Optional: Red pepper flakes for a spicy kick
- Prepare the Ingredients: Begin by soaking the cashews overnight. This softens them and makes them easier to blend into a creamy texture. Chop the onion, mince the garlic, and cut the broccoli into florets.
- Sauté the Vegetables: Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add the chopped onion and garlic, sautéing until the onion is translucent and aromatic.
- Add Broccoli and Broth: Add the broccoli florets to the pot and cook for a few minutes. Then, pour in the vegetable broth. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer until the broccoli is tender.
- Blend the Cashews: Drain the soaked cashews and blend them with one cup of water until smooth. This creates a creamy base that will give the soup its ‘cheesy’ texture and rich flavor.
- Combine and Blend: Add the cashew mixture to the pot once the broccoli is tender. Stir in the nutritional yeast and mustard, which add a cheesy flavor and depth to the soup. Use an immersion blender to blend the soup directly in the pot, or transfer it to a blender and blend until smooth.
- Season and Serve: Season the soup with salt and pepper to taste. If you prefer a kick, add some red pepper flakes. Serve hot, garnished with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast or vegan cheese shavings.
This cheesy vegan broccoli soup is not just tasty but also incredibly nutritious. Broccoli provides vitamin C, which boosts the immune system, and vitamin K, essential for bone health. The cashews add healthy fats and a creamy texture without the need for dairy. Nutritional yeast, a popular vegan ingredient, is an excellent source of B vitamins and adds a cheesy flavor.
Customization and Serving Suggestions
This soup is versatile and can be adapted to suit various taste preferences and dietary needs. For a more textured soup, reserve some of the sautéed broccoli to add in after blending. You can also incorporate other vegetables, such as carrots or spinach, for added nutrition and flavor.
Serve this soup as a standalone meal or pair it with a crusty piece of bread or a light salad for a more filling meal. It’s perfect for meal prepping as it stores well in the fridge and can be reheated for a quick and healthy meal on busy days.
Cheesy vegan broccoli soup is a perfect example of how simple ingredients can be transformed into a delicious and nutritious meal. It’s easy to make, versatile, and ideal for anyone looking to incorporate more plant-based meals into their diet. Whether you’re a long-time vegan or just exploring meatless options, this soup is sure to satisfy.