Hearty Gluten-Free Soups

These delicious dishes have no gluten and lots of health benefits.

Soup, that comforting staple of winter, can present challenges for people who are following a gluten-free diet. “Many prepared soups include barley or couscous, or use flour as a thickener,” explains Michelle Pasia, MPH, RDN, Clinical Coordinator at the Kogan Celiac Center at the Barnabas Health Ambulatory Care Center. “Others use bouillon as a base, which can contain gluten as well.”

People on a gluten-free diet should check to be sure that soups they eat are made only with individual herbs and spices, Pasia advises. Spice blends or mixes may contain stabilizers, such as wheat flour or wheat protein.

Often, the best course for people who have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity is a homemade soup that’s packed with nutrition and fiber, like the recipes Pasia has provided here.

VEGETABLE BEAN SOUP WITH TURMERIC

Serves 6. “This vegetable soup uses turmeric, which is great for supporting the immune system,” Pasia says. “You can also add shredded chicken to boost the protein in the recipe.”

Ingredients:

  • 2 15.5-ounce cans white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 15.5-ounce can red kidney beans
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth or vegetable stock
  • 1 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 cups diced zucchini
  • 3 cups chopped kale
  • 2 teaspoons turmeric powder

Directions:

  1. Mash 1 can of white beans with a blender or a fork and set aside.
  2. Add oil to a large stock pot and sauté onion, carrots, celery and garlic until fragrant, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add both cans of white beans, kidney beans, broth, diced tomatoes, bay leaf and dried basil and cook for 40 minutes.
  4. Add zucchini and kale and cook another 10 minutes. Stir in turmeric.
  5. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Note: This recipe can also be made in a slow cooker. Put all ingredients except zucchini and kale in slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours. Add zucchini and kale and cook on high for another 10 minutes.

BLACK BEAN AND SWEET POTATO SOUP

Serves 6. “Gluten-free diets may be lacking in fiber, but the sweet potatoes and beans in this soup can fill that gap,” Pasia says.

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 15.5-ounce cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 14.5-ounce can petite-cut tomatoes, no added salt

Directions:

  1. In a stockpot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, pepper and garlic and cook for 5 minutes.
  2. Add sweet potato, chili powder, cumin and paprika; cook another 2 minutes.
  3. Add broth, beans and tomatoes and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

The Kogan Celiac Center at the Barnabas Health Ambulatory Care Center at 200 South Orange Avenue in Livingston provides education and support. For more information, call 973.322.7272 or visit www.rwjbh.org/acc.