Three Bean Vegan Soup

3 Bean Vegan Soup

Don’t you just love a warm bowl of soup on a cold day? We experienced some morning weather in the teens early this week and I head straight to the store  with soup on my mind. I love a hearty soup that give you a variety of flavors and textures. This soup is easy to make, quickly if you are in a hurry, without sacrificing flavor.

In addition to a few other ingredients, this picture captures all the items in the soup!  3 Bean Soup Ingredients

Although I call it ‘Three Bean’ soup because of the cannellini, kidney and garbanzo beans there are so many other great things in this soup to add to your nutrition – barley, spinach, baby kale, chard – how about that for a bowl full of goodness!  This is the season for the extra Vitamin C you will get from your greens along with iron and folate; the beans  along with barley give you protein, fiber and antioxidants.

Try it whether the temps dip or not.  Warm your soul.

Feed the wellness in you!


3 Bean Vegan Soup

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour

Serving Size: 6-8


  • 1/2 c pearled barley
  • 9 cups of vegetable stock (Better than Bouillon is preferred)
  • 1 - 5 oz bag of Fresh Express Baby Kale Mix
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Chick Peas
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Cannellini Beans
  • 1 - 15 oz can of Kidney Beans
  • 1 - 14.5 oz can Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 - 14.5 oz can Diced Tomatoes with Green Peppers, Celery and Onions
  • 3 links of Light Life Chorizo chopped
  • 1 tbl onion powder
  • 1 tbl garlic powder
  • 1 tbl smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Put all ingredients except for baby kale mix in large pot.
  2. If you're in a hurry bring ingredients to boil then simmer for 30 minutes, adding baby kale mix last 5 minutes until wilted.
  3. If you're not in a hurry, let this cook on low heat for 1.5 hours adding baby kale mix in the last 5 minutes until wilted. This is even better if you prepare in a crock pot.

Foot Loose and Fancy-Free

I have no recipe this week!  Last week I was on vacation and school started on Monday for my dynamic duo so it’s a little hectic.  There’s not a lot of creativity going on in the kitchen. However, I thought it would be valuable to share some of the meals I had while on vacation. I know many of us struggle on vacation to stick to healthy dining options. You have to be disciplined and vacation is supposed to be fun, foot loose and fancy-free, right?  (I’m married so foot loose and fancy-free in this sense means one does as they please as it pertains to food;-)  Well 5 lbs later when you get home you feel the ‘weight’ in many ways – there’s guilt, it’s hard to get back on track, and you realize that number on the scale is not incorrect and you’ve got to do something about it.  When I am away from my regular routine I choose restaurants that have menus that can cater to a healthy diet.  Let me also state that I’m not knocking ANYONE for enjoying food the way they want to.  Since a healthy lifestyle should be a lifetime commitment, this is just my way of demonstrating how I’ve been able to enjoy myself with my vegetarian lifestyle while on vacation.  Here are just a few of the dishes I had and thoroughly enjoyed.

Huevos Rancheros – I used the omelet station at our hotel to order scrambled egg whites and omelets, but I also had this delicious dish. I ordered it with egg whites, light on the cheese and no sour cream. huevos rancheros.jpg

Veggie burger with side salad – I don’t eat just any veggie burger; I always ask if they are house made and what the ingredients are.  This burger was made from beets, black beans, brown rice and other grains. It was great and very tasty.  I am a sucker for hand cut fries so I don’t deny myself certain pleasures in life but the fries that accompanied this were frozen so why bother.  I’d rather have an extra glass of wine instead.

veggie burger.jpg

Harvest Saladthis was a yummy blend of beets, grapefruit, white asparagus, farro, goat cheese, mixed greens, kale, and white balsamic dressing on the side.  One day I asked to add avocado because it was on the menu in another dish.  If the ingredient is found elsewhere and it’s something you want, just ask for it! harvest salad.jpg

Pasta – Pasta is always flexible and versatile if looking for a healthy food option.  Restaurant portions tend to be large so just half it, stick with a tomato based sauces and use cheese in moderation. We dined at two different Italian restaurants and at both I asked for a pasta with a tomato sauce and whatever green vegetables they had.  The first restaurant kept it fairly basic yet delicious with a Penne Arriabbata and spinach; the second restaurant gave me fresh cavatelli with chard and spinach in a tomato sauce.  (not pictured) Perfetto!

penne ariabbata with spinach.jpg

Asian Food – There are always great vegetarian options at Asian restaurants and where we were vacationing had several Thai and Japanese restaurants that had something for everyone in my family.

Pad See-ew Noodles is a Thai dish pictured below.  If you’ve never had this before it is a flat rice noodle served with broccoli, a sweet brown sauce and your choice of protein.  It is delicious.

pad see-ew

 At a Japanese restaurant I had Buddha’s Delight which is sautéed vegetables with garlic brown sauce with the protein of your choice.   It is pictured below served with tofu (lightly fried) over brown rice.


 Are you hungry now?  I am!  Going to the kitchen now that I’m inspired by recalling all these wonderful dishes!

Feed the wellness in you!

Warm Farro and Edamame Salad

warm farro and edamame.jpg

A few weeks ago I went to dinner with a girlfriend to a very popular French restaurant in town.  Needless to say, a French restaurant has very limited vegetarian options but what little this restaurant has, they do it very well.  I had their Warm Farro Salad which in addition to farro it featured butternut squash, a little cauliflower, olives, and a few kale chips all on just a handful of radicchio leaves.  It was very good and left me quite satisfied.

As I often do, I left the restaurant wanting to replicate the dish at home in my own way.  I’ve featured Farro and all of the other ingredients in this dish in various recipes on this blog and knew that the combination of them would work well.  However, my goal is to always do something different, creative, and healthy and not replicate a dish exactly how someone else may prepare it.  What came to mind was adding edamame. I absolutely love edamame (aka soybeans).   It is considered a complete protein because it has all nine essential amino acids, in addition to a host of other vitamins and minerals.   I try to keep them on hand but they spoil fairly quickly, within 2-3 days.  They make a great snack in between meals.

The flavors I derived from the dish at the restaurant were a combination of pesto, a little red wine and/or balsamic vinegar for acidity, and fresh herbs.  There are so many ‘stars’ in this dish in addition to the farro and edamame it seems a little unfair to highlight just those two, but perhaps that’s the element of surprise.  I roasted my cauliflower which adds a certain smoked flavor; then there’s the sweetness of the butternut squash along with all the other ingredients make this a nice warm topping for a bed of greens.  Instead of a few kale chips sprinkled throughout, I used fresh, slightly roasted kale chips as the bed instead of salad greens.  After having it this way, the next night it worked well as just a side dish without the kale chips.  Whatever you decide, you won’t be disappointed.

Feed the wellness in you!

Warm Farro and Edamame Salad

Yield: 4-6


  • 1 cup farro
  • 1 cup edamame, cooked
  • 1 cup chopped butternut squash (1/4 in pieces)
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tbl pesto
  • 1 cup pitted greek olives (I used a combination), chopped
  • 1.5 cups roasted cauliflower
  • 2 cups kale
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil


  1. Kale Chips - Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Wash, dry and remove stems from kale. Break leaves into bit size pieces. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place the kale on the parchment paper, drizzle with olive oil and sea salt. Bake for 10 minutes. Put aside
  2. Roasted Cauliflower - Similar to the kale chips, wash, dry and break into bite sized pieces. Place in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. The edges of the cauliflower should be slightly charred. It should not be soft but a fork should easily go thru each piece. Put aside
  3. Cook the Farro according to its directions in the vegetable stock. Do not drain.
  4. Sautee the chopped butternut squash in 1-2 tbl of olive oil for 10-15 minutes. They should be tender but not too soft. Mix in with the cooked farro.
  5. Add your edamame, pesto, butternut squash, cauliflower, red wine and balsamic vinegar. Mix well.
  6. Place some kale chips on your plate or deep bowl.
  7. Add the warm farro mixture on top and serve.