Inexpensive, delicious and filled with nutrients, beans are a true superfood. With so many varieties to choose from, including black beans, black eyed peas, Cannellini beans, chickpeas, Navy beans, edamame, fava beans, lima beans and kidney beans, there is a bean for every taste, and all are loaded with healthy nutrients. For this reason, beans make a particularly satisfying ingredient for soup meals.
Benefits of Beans: Hunger Prevention
Beans are loaded with fiber. Just one cup of cooked beans contains almost half the daily recommended amount of the nutrient. Because beans contain a large amount of fiber, they are digested slowly and keep you feeling full for longer. A study published in Nutrition Journal found that when served with white rice, which has a high-sugar content does not contribute to hunger formation. Because of their high-fiber and low-sugar content, beans are great for the waistline.
How to Detox Your Body Naturally
Beans are a great source of antioxidants, phytochemicals that fight against free radicals that damage the body. The USDA evaluated the antioxidant content of over 100 common foods and found that beans are among the best. Red beans, pinto beans and kidney beans were in the top four, and navy beans, black beans and black-eyed peas were in the top 40 for antioxidant capabilities.
Healthy Black Bean Soups
Whip up a hearty and smoky soup with black beans, olive oil, chopped onions, red bell peppers, celery, jalapeno peppers, garlic, cumin, ham hock, bay leaf, cilantro and sour cream. Add two cups of coffee to the mix to give the soup a woodsy, slightly toasty taste (Eating Well). Try a Southwestern version of this healthy soup by simmering black beans with salsa, lime juice, cilantro, chili powder, onions and cumin (Eating Well).
Quick and Easy Black Bean Soup
Adapted from David Lieberman, Food Network
10 slices bacon, finely chopped
2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
6 garlic cloves, pressed
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups canned chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon chili powder
4 (15 1/2-ounce) cans black beans, drained but not rinsed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch cilantro
juice of 1/2 lime
Thinly sliced scallions, for garnish
Sour cream, for garnish
Grated cheddar, for garnish
Put the bacon into a large heavy pot and place it over medium heat. Cook until it starts to give up its fat, about 4 minutes. Stir in the onions and cook, stirring, until they start to turn translucent, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until you can smell it, about 1 minute. Add the broth, tomatoes, ketchup, Worcestershire, and chili powder. Stir in the beans, turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Adjust the heat so the soup is bubbling gently and cook 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, pick off all the thick stems from the cilantro. Wash it and shake dry. Chop the cilantro coarsely and stir it into the soup when it has been simmering 10 minutes. cook until the soup is thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the lime juice. Serve with the garnishes.
Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/dave-lieberman/black-bean-soup-recipe/index.html?oc=linkback
Hearty minestrone is an Italian favorite that is loaded with nutrients. Make your own version with Cannellini beans, olive oil, onions, carrots, celery, garlic, tomatoes, turnips, zucchini, bay leaves, thyme, green beans and pasta. For a hearty vegetarian meal, cook Cannelli beans with kale, carrots, celery, tomatoes and garlic, then top with truffle oil and serve with a thick slice of toasted baguette. Simmer Navy beans with parsley, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves, onion, ham hock, garlic, carrots and pepper. This yummy, healthy soup is ready in just two hours.
Beef and Cannellini Bean Minestrone
Adapted from Giada DeLaurentis, Food Network
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced into 1/4-inch pieces
1 rib celery, trimmed and diced into 1/4-inch pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces lean (8 percent fat) ground beef
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
4 cups low-sodium beef broth
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 dried bay leaf
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, add the oil and heat over medium heat. Stir in the onion, carrot and celery and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Increase the heat to high and add the ground beef and garlic. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook until the beef is browned and cooked through, about 6 to 7 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and mix to combine. Add the broth, tomatoes, beans, and bay leaf. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the liquid has reduced by half, about 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and discard. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with Parmesan.
Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/beef-and-cannellini-bean-minestrone-recipe/index.html?oc=linkback
Natalie Parsons is a professional blogger that provides information for health clubs, fitness, and finding workout routines that work for you. She writes for Fitness 19, a top fitness center in Bakersfield CA including many other locations.