While some people consider #adulting to be keeping a consistent bedtime (bliss), never daring to become an outfit repeater (overrated), or keeping a consistently organized desk (so satisfying), I define the elusive concept that I’ve spent my twenties chasing by the following: my ability to whip out and whip up all the healthy fall soup recipes of my choosing come September 1st.
Because though I’m writing this in the middle of a muggy, hot, and sticky day at the end of August, I’ve had my sights set on cozy season since last year. And while Lorelai Gilmore and I share an appreciation for the mystical magic of snow, there’s something even more wondrous about the crackling of leaves underfoot, the warm mugs of cider I consume with festive abandon, and of course, the many comforting, autumnal meals that are made all the more special thanks to the inclusion of one of the healthy fall soup recipes below.
So if you’re craving a healthy dose of cozy, look no further than the wholesome deliciousness below. Let soup season begin.
Featured image by Michelle Nash.
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25 Healthy Fall Soup Recipes to Satisfy Your Craving for Coziness
Why We Love It: It felt appropriate to kick things off with one of my all-time favorite healthy fall soup recipes. When September hits, I’m ready to eat all the squash every day—and for every meal. There’s something about the smoky-sweet flavor of this soup that simply epitomizes fall. It’s velvety, thick, and just a bit spicy and warm thanks to the curry powder. Translation: perfect.
Hero Ingredient: I’m never one to skip the opportunity to enjoy a slice or two of toasty bread alongside my soup. The croutons make that necessity all the more fun.
Why We Love It: My mom has a lentil soup recipe that turned even my most veggie-adverse friends into legume lovers. And while that’s the one I turn to time and again, this spin introduces unexpected flavors that I’m happy to spoon up. The ginger and curry powder supply just the right amount of heat while the orange zest cuts it with a little sweetness. It’s hard to believe such a complex flavor can be so easy to create.
Hero Ingredient: Lentils are the ultimate intersection of healthy and satisfying. They pack a ton of plant-based protein (18 grams per cup, to be precise) and as Camille mentions in this recipe, include iron, fiber, magnesium, and calcium.
Why We Love It: The moment I learned I could pack a whole day’s worth of green veggies into a single serving, well, I was floored. This immunity-boosting soup not only makes healthy eating efficient, but it makes it super yummy, too. Broccoli, asparagus, spinach, and plenty of herbs—a whole potful of earthly delights.
Hero Ingredient: The soaked cashews give this soup its crave-worthy creaminess. Betcha can’t have just one bowl.
Why We Love It: While some tortilla soups go heavy on the combo of cheese and sour cream, this one encourages the garnishes while creating enough flavor in the soup itself that you don’t have to go overboard. Camille’s secret to giving this soup major tasty points? Cooking the bone-in chicken (don’t you dare remove the skin!) in the oven before adding it to the soup. It poaches in the broth, giving the entire shebang all the more flavor. Max flavor for minimal effort.
Hero Ingredient: I can’t repeat it enough: that chicken trick blew my mind.
Why We Love It: As proven by the first recipe in this list, I have a thing for squash—butternut in particular. It’s the perfect base for any array of flavors—spicy, sweet, smoky—you name it! In this recipe, Camille plays up its natural sweetness by combining the squash with carrots, orange, and honey, while balancing it all out with a bit of turmeric. Sunshine in a bowl.
Hero Ingredient: I love the sweet and warming spice the ginger brings to each bowl of this soup.
Why We Love It: Whether your sniffles are signifying the start of a cold or you’re just in the mood for something light but satisfying, this easy healthy soup recipe has you covered. With plenty of veggies (onion, carrots, celery, zucchini, and garlic), a lightly-flavored broth, and the comforting combo of chicken and rice, this soup is truly a cure-all for anything that may ail you.
Hero Ingredient: A few sprigs of thyme or oregano is all you need to seal the deal on this simple soup.
Why We Love It: When I think of corn soup, my mind goes to creamy, heavy bowls of my favorite chowders. And while these recipes are definitely delicious, they also leave me in need of a nap by the time my spoon hits the bowl. I love that this plant-based recipe takes a non-dairy approach by subbing in coconut milk for heavy cream or milk, making this soup taste indulgent while still letting the other flavors (supplied by the poblanos, cumin seeds, jalapeño, and more) shine.
Hero Ingredient: While this recipe makes the most of frozen corn (such an easy cooking hack!), you want to be sure to purchase corn you’d enjoy on its own. A soup’s only as good as its star ingredient, after all.
Why We Love It: While this list of healthy fall soup recipes includes others that lean on the classic chicken noodle combo, this one gets a unique spin thanks to the addition of turmeric that infuses the broth with its golden glow. Of course, by now most of us know that any recipe that uses turmeric comes with plenty of immune-boosting benefits, and this soup is no different—it’s the ultimate superfood.
Hero Ingredient: This recipe makes the most of rotisserie chicken, every busy cook’s secret weapon for getting dinner on the table before midnight. It’s the best bang-for-your-buck ingredient that’s delivers plenty of protein and satisfying flavor.
Why We Love It: When the temps drop and I start to (happily, enthusiastically) pile on the layers, I know it’s time to start making this black bean soup on repeat. It’s a one-pot wonder, utilizing the convenience of canned black beans to help you make dinner happen with ease. If you’ve ever found yourself at 5:30 on a Tuesday evening without a clue of what to make for dinner, this will always be the answer (because I bet you have everything you’ll need in the pantry already).
Hero Ingredient: Chili powder is the secret to giving this soup a wonderfully Tex-Mex feel.
Why We Love It: Butternut squash makes an appearance again! This time, instead of the typically creamy take, it’s cubed and mixed together with plenty more veg—okra, baby bok choy, and mushrooms—plus all my favorite Asian-inspired flavors. It’s weekend fall comfort food at its finest.
Hero Ingredient: While the final touch of thinly-sliced red chili pepper or jalapeño is technically optional, in my heat-loving book, it’s a necessity.
Why We Love It: There are few things I love more in this life than roasted cauliflower (my best friends and family can attest to this fact). When roasted, cauliflower gets this gorgeous, caramelized bite with a crackly/crunchy exterior and creamy middle. And when blitzed into soup form? This is idyllic dining, y’all.
Hero Ingredient: The brilliance of cumin and coriander—light, sweet, and with an edge of earthy spice—infuses this soup with all the flavor it could ever need.
Why We Love It: One of the beautiful things about soup is that its basic formula allows you to combine a bunch of disparate parts into one perfectly-flavored masterpiece. Case in point, this soup-stew hybrid. As its name suggests, the recipe pairs chickpeas with cabbage, lentils, and kale—but trust me, it’s so much more. Sautéing the veggies in the spices until fragrant builds this soup’s depth of flavor, making each bite its own, unique spoonful of perfection.
Hero Ingredient: The liquid smoke, while optional, mimics the unbeatable flavor of actually cooking with wood smoke. Go out of your way to secure some for your pantry—you won’t regret it.
Why We Love It: There’s something so wonderfully ephemeral and hard-to-pin-down about lemongrass. It’s citrusy, floral, and possesses the softest, almost perfume-like brilliance. If you can’t tell, I’m a bit obsessed with the long, grassy stocks and stems, and they’re the showstopper of this simpler-than-it-seems soup. There’s nothing but goodness in this recipe—both your stomach and taste buds will approve.
Hero Ingredient: While I could write ode upon ode to the beauty of lemongrass, in this recipe, it’s the dried shiitakes that truly blow me away. They give your broth a wonderful umami flavor that’s rich and oh-so-satisfying.
Why We Love It: Lazy, yes. Delicious? Also yes. I’m here for any and all one-pot soups, but this recipe completely redefines my love affair with the streamlined, minimal clean-up method. The medley of aromatics that are sautéd in coconut oil builds the base of this wonderfully cozy soup. Lemongrass, chili peppers, minced ginger, shiitake mushrooms and more are all coated in green curry paste and coconut milk. This is (healthy) fall comfort cooking at its finest.
Hero Ingredient: A few tablespoons of coconut aminos give your soup just the right amount of saltiness.
Why We Love It: Creamy tortellini isn’t just fun to say over and over again in your head, it’s also the driver of one of the most delicious healthy fall soup recipes to make this list. If you’re in the mood for something Italian and warming—not to mention healthy and hearty—this soup has to be your go-to. It’s easy, makes amazing leftovers, and packs in enough veggies to help you overlook the heavy cream and parm.
Hero Ingredient: But… I’d like to highlight the beauty that is the combo of heavy cream and parm nonetheless.
Why We Love It: I have fond memories of huddling around the kitchen table with my family, still chilled from soccer practice, tucking into a bowl of split pea soup. There’s really nothing better to warm you up after a cold-and-crisp, fall day. And because this plant-based version steers clear of any animal products, everyone, regardless of dietary restrictions, can enjoy, too.
Hero Ingredient: This blend of spices is unbeatable. Make this soup, and I guarantee you’ll agree.
Why We Love It: Potato soup, while one of my favorites, has been known to weigh down diners with its copious amounts of cream. Thankfully, cashews made their way into the plant-based cooking scene, and our vegan soups have been beautifully creamy ever since. Combine their luscious mouthfeel with a bit of nutritional yeast, and you’ll have a cheesy soup that’s just as good as the real, dairy-laden deal.
Hero Ingredient: Nutritional yeast is my secret weapon—it’s the star ingredient you didn’t know your pantry needed. That is, until now of course.
Why We Love It: Silky and smooth is right—this recipe is the ultimate, super-luxe soup. Cashews, again, win points thanks to the creamy mouthfeel they offer in this recipe while just a touch of maple syrup, cinnamon, and nutmeg give it all the fall feels. I can confirm right now: this one will be on repeat in my home come fall—no question about it.
Hero Ingredient: There’s no competition: the spicy croutons are the champ.
Why We Love It: Potatoes and leeks are a pair as old as time. In my book, it’s a combo as classic as PB&J. Leeks’ delicate sweetness flavors the potatoes’ wonderful, creamy bite. In this recipe, changing things up and making it vegan is as simple as subbing in coconut milk. It doesn’t get much easier than that.
Hero Ingredient: Again: give it up for the leeks.
Why We Love It: A show-stopper of a soup that only calls for 10 ingredients?! Sign me up. Admittedly, I used to think that lemon seemed like an odd flavor to incorporate into soups—it seemed more suited for pasta or my favorite dessert. But, in soups such as this, lemon blends a nice bite into each creamy, satisfying spoonful. It’s what dinner dreams are made of.
Hero Ingredient: Baby spinach—because I’ll take any shortcut for getting in my greens.
Why We Love It: When quinoa’s involved, you know it has to be healthy—and when plenty of additional flavors are thrown in to crowd the pot, you know it has to be good. Quinoa, as it’s known to do, soaks up plenty of the broth, getting nice and fluffy and adding protein plus a hearty texture. If you’ve been tempted to think that soup can’t serve as a meal, make this one—it’s been known to prove people wrong.
Why We Love It: Anything Tieghan of Half Baked Harvest touches turns to gold, and the same goes for her spin on the classic broccoli cheddar soup. Her secret ingredient? This soup isn’t just broccoli y’all—there’s actually a small head of cauliflower thrown in as well to give it a rich creaminess (plus plenty of fiber). Hey, I’m always here for a hybrid.
Hero Ingredient: A half-cup of coconut milk makes this soup all the creamier, while still maintaining its plant-based status (just opt for plant-based butter and cheddar cheese which, thankfully, aren’t too hard to find).
Why We Love It: I love my vegetable soups THICK—and this one delivers. After all, when the majority of your evening meal is veggies, you want it to keep you full, right? Alongside an array of veggies are pearl barley and cannellini beans, the perfect delicious solutions for a well-rounded meal.
Hero Ingredient: One bite of soft, creamy potatoes, and I’m sold.
Why We Love It: Carrot soups never cease to amaze me with their bright, sunshine-like hue. How can a bowl of this soup not make you happy? Devour first with your eyes, then proceed to clean your bowl. Don’t worry—this recipe makes enough for seconds. The other beautiful thing about this soup? It can be served either hot or cold, making it the perfect summer-to-fall soup that your dinner rotation needs.
Hero Ingredient: I’m tempted to say carrots, of course, but in the spirit of surprise, I’m going to go rogue here—a garnish of pepitas give this soup an addicting crunch.
Why We Love It: Just the name evokes virtuous, healthy thoughts. I mean, if it’s filled with vegetables, it has to be good for you, right? While that’s often true, “delicious” isn’t usually a thought that follows—but believe me, this soup covers both (all) bases. In addition to being gluten-free, dairy-free, and low-carb (not to mention vegan!), it’s herbs, spices, and yes, abundance of veggies, make it soothing and homey. Everyone will be up for a bowlful.
Hero Ingredient: Canned tomatoes deliver all the umami, and when you’re opting for a light pick for dinner, layering on flavor should be a top priority.
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