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Celeriac and Chickpea Soup with Spinach-Miso Purée

This extremely thick, yet very creamy, soup  makes for a filling and delicious lunch.

Ingredients:

For the soup

1 onion, roughly chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 celeriac, peeled and diced roughly
1 can chickpeas
300g white cabbage, chopped roughly
1 can coconut milk
500ml vegetable broth
Pinch white pepper
2 tsp onion salt
2 tsp dried basil

For the purée

50g spinach
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tbsp soy (or other all-plant) milk
1 tbsp white or yellow miso

To garnish

Suitable-for-vegans crispy salad onions, if desired

Directions:

1. Sauté the onion in a large soup pan over a medium-low heat until it starts to soften, but don’t let it take on much colour. Reduce the heat to low and add the garlic for about a minute.
2. Stir in the rest of the ingredients, bring to the boil, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes or until the celeriac is tender.
3. Meanwhile, make the spinach purée by blending all ingredients in a high-speed blender.
4. Rinse the blender, blend the soup in it, return to the pan, and season to taste.
5. Serve the soup topped with some of the spinach-miso purée, and garnish with crispy onions, if desired.

Spanish Chickpea and Spinach Stew

Another easy and cheap recipe. Serve topped, if desired, with some roasted asparagus and croutons. Serves two.

Ingredients

4 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
1 red bell pepper or sweet pointed pepper, small dice
1 can (400g) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp sweet paprika or smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Pinch cayenne pepper
2 cups vegetable broth
200g baby spinach
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions
1. In a non-stick or stainless steel pan over a very low heat, sweat the garlic, adding a couple of drops of water if needed, until fragrant but not coloured.
2. Add the red pepper, chickpeas, vinegar, tomatoes, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, and cayenne and stir for about 30 seconds.
3. Raise the heat to medium low and add the broth. Stir, and then add handfuls of spinach to wilt.
4. Season, and serve.

Jewelled Greens and Beans Salad

A simple, filling, and nutritious salad that’s full of flavour and texture. This would work well with miso-ginger salad dressing or even balsamic vinaigrette.

Ingredients (per serving)

1 cup baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup cooked rice
1/2 cup beans of choice
1 cup steamed broccoli
1 carrot, peeled and cut into strips with the peeler
2 tbsp pomegranate seeds

Directions

Use the spinach as a base, top with the rest of the ingredients, and enjoy.

Speedy Chana Saag

Perfect for novice cooks, this meal is warming, nutritious, and ready in just a matter of minutes. If you wish, you can cook the tomato sauce for longer to reduce it, but it’s delicious as it is.

Ingredients
1 cup vegetable broth
3 cups baby spinach
400g can chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1 cup suitable-for-vegans tomato sauce
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp onion granules
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tbsp curry powder (or more to taste)
1/2 tsp turmeric
Pinch ground ginger

Directions
1. Place all ingredients into a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
2. Heat over a low heat, stirring frequently, until spinach is wilted and curry is heated through.
3. Season to taste with salt, lime juice, and extra spices if desired.

Sweet Spinach, Pea, and Basil Smoothie Bowl

A deliciously healthy smoothie bowl made with ingredients that you can find in your local supermarket. Don’t worry; this doesn’t taste like vegetable soup: the flavours of the fruits are dominant.

Ingredients:

For juicing

1/4 cucumber
1 slice pineapple
1 apple
1 kiwi fruit

For blending

2 frozen bananas
Large handful spinach
Large handful frozen peas
Handful oats
15-20 basil leaves

For decorating (suggestion)

Fresh, dried, or frozen fruit
Nuts and seeds
Coconut flakes
Suitable for vegan muesli or granola

Directions:
1. Juice the pineapple, cucumber, apple, and kiwi.
2. Add to the blender with the bananas, spinach, oats, peas and basil. If the mixture is too thin, add more oats or frozen peas. If too thick to blend, add a little more liquid (all-plant milk would be suitable).
3. Pour into a bowl (or two, depending on desired serving size), and serve decorated according to taste.

Simple Silky Greens Soup

Ideal for novice cooks, this serves 6, and takes under 20 minutes to make.

Ingredients
1 leek, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 head broccoli, in florets
2 courgettes (zucchini), roughly chopped
200g frozen green beans (French beans)
200g frozen garden peas
150g spinach, roughly chopped
1.5 litres vegetable stock
2 tsp curry powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
Black pepper, to taste

Directions
1. Heat a large stock pot over a medium low heat, and sauté the leeks for about 3 minutes until starting to soften. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds more.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients except for the pepper.
3. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
4. Blend in batches, return to the pot, and season with black pepper (and, if you like, some crispy fried onions and all-plant (e.g. soya, coconut, almond) plain yogurt).

“But I Can’t Cook” Lentil Bolognese

About 10 minutes to put together. Cheap as chips. If you can open cans and jars and set a kitchen timer, you can make this. Serves 2.

Ingredients

150g dried spaghetti
1 x 400g can green or brown lentils
1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp salt (1 tsp for the spaghetti water; 1 tsp for the sauce)
1 tsp maple syrup
A few handfuls of baby spinach

Directions

1. Boil a kettle full of water. Transfer it to a large saucepan over a medium-high heat and sprinkle in one of the tsp of salt. Add the spaghetti, and set the kitchen timer to the time advised on the packet.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients to a smaller saucepan. Simmer on low until the spaghetti is cooked.
3. When the spaghetti is cooked, drain.
4. Add the sauce to the spaghetti. Taste, and promise never to tell yourself that you can’t cook again.

Tomato, Spinach, and Bean Soup

This speedy, budget soup is chunky and nutritious. It serves 8 and is ready in under 15 minutes.

Ingredients

1 onion, medium dice
5 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups vegetable stock
3 cans chopped tomatoes
3 tbsp tomato purée
1 tsp suitable-for-vegans sugar or maple syrup
1 tbsp vinegar of choice (balsamic is preferable, but apple cider, white wine, red wine, etc. will also work)
2 large handfuls spinach, chopped
1 x 400g can beans of choice
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 generous bunch basil
More freshly ground black pepper, to serve

Method

1. Sauté the onion over a medium low heat in a large soup pot until lightly coloured (2-3 minutes). Add the garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add 1/4 cup of the stock and stir to deglaze the pot.
2. Add the rest of the stock, tomatoes, purée, sweetener, vinegar (if using), spinach, beans, and the 1/2 tsp black pepper.
3. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes.
4. Add the chopped basil and season with black pepper to taste.

Coconut Spinach and Chickpeas with Couscous

A dinner that takes just 10 minutes to prepare is a sheer delight, especially when it is healthy, minimally processed, and beautifully fragrant with coconut and spices.

Ingredients:
200g couscous (the photograph shows giant wholewheat couscous)
200g baby spinach
50g kale, destemmed and torn into bite-sized pieces
150g baby button mushrooms
1 x 400g can chickpeas, drained
1 bell pepper, medium dice
1 can coconut milk (well shaken to combine)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp ginger
pinch chilli flakes
salt and pepper
8 cherry tomatoes, quartered

Directions:
1. Cook the couscous according to the packet directions.
2. Meanwhile, in a large frying pan over a medium heat, wilt the spinach. You may have to add it in batches. A splash of hot water will help speed things up.
3. Add the kale, mushrooms, chickpeas, and peppers. Stir to combine.
4. Add the coconut milk and spices. Cook until the mushrooms shrink a little. Season to taste. Add the cherry tomatoes and warm through.

Loaded Minestrone

A real treat for those who love their vegetables, this soup is packed with all kinds of delicious textures and flavours. If you can’t find the packaged quick-cook minestrone mix, feel free to add your own mix of whole grains, pasta, and split peas or lentils, or just small pasta shapes, adjusting the cooking time accordingly. Serves 8.

Ingredients

1 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
2 carrots, medium dice
250g green beans, chopped
250g mushrooms, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
500g passata
400g can chopped tomatoes
400g can cannellini beans, or any beans of choice
250g quick-cook minestrone mix
1.5 l vegetable stock
1tsp each dried oregano, dried basil, dried thyme, dried parsley
Fresh parsley to serve (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Large handful of spinach per serving

Method

1. In a large, preheated soup pot over a medium-low heat, add the onion, celery and carrots, and sauté 3 minutes, adding a little water if the vegetables start to stick. Add the mushrooms and green beans, and sauté for 3 minutes more. Add the garlic for another 30 seconds.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients apart from the salt and pepper, fresh parsley, and spinach. Bring to the boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. To serve, place a large handful of spinach into the bottom of each bowl and top with the soup. Garnish with fresh parsley, lots of freshly ground black pepper, and a bit of salt if required.