It’s nearly the end of January, it’s cold, Christmas is over, and winter is starting to feel old, real old.
If you’re a New Years’ resolution kinda person, specifically one of the many people with resolutions such as “Lose weight” or “Eat healthier”, you might be feeling tired of typical healthy January meals.
The problem with New Years resolutions (actually there’s a number of problems, but we won’t get into that now) is that healthy eating and losing weight tend to go hand in hand with things like salads and smoothies. But salads and smoothies don’t go particularly well with the dead of winter, ya know?
Petition to move New Years to June? Salads and smoothies go really well with June!
Until then, let’s talk about foods that DO go well with the middle of winter. Foods like warming soups, hearty veggie bowls, pastas, and casseroles. Now we’re talking!
So in the spirit of some proper “January” food, a.k.a. healthy yet hearty warming dishes that come together easily and quickly, a creamy vegetable-filled soup is just perfect.
This creamy vegan broccoli soup is exactly what we all need right now. Flavourful, creamy, packed with veggies, and the perfect accompaniment to a whole grain sandwich, a salad, or maybe just a big ol’ crusty bun or piece of bread with a healthy dose of vegan butter.
Recently, I had a chance encounter with the best cream of broccoli soup I’d ever had. See, I have an unfortunate tendency to walk away from my cooking to do silly things like, check my Instagram, paint my nails, mix myself a drink, whatever. A few weeks ago, while sautéeing the broccoli + mirepoix for yet another batch of cream of broccoli soup, I left my saucepan to its own devices and accidentally browned a good thick layer of the vegetables. If you’ve read many soup recipes you’ll know it usually says to sweat the vegetables and will specifically state “do not brown.” Wooops! Alas, the caramel-ly notes from the browned veggies added some serious umami to my usual broccoli soup recipe.
That bit of fate inspired me to try topping this soup with some well-browned and seasoned broccoli florets. They’re kinda like croutons, but they taste even better, and they’re vegetables, so they get BIG January points! I also like to top my soup with a drizzle of olive oil + cracked pepper. So pretty! *heart eyes emoji*. Vegan cheese shreds are another delicious, yet totally optional, topping for this soup.
Today’s recipe features a new to me ingredient, macadamia nut milk! Food Bloggers of Canada hooked me up with a sweet sponsored recipe gig with Suncoast Gold Macadamia Delight. I was actually nervous to even try this milk because I had such high hopes for it. I love love love macadamia nuts. They’re fancy, creamy, nutty and so damn delicious. I wanted, no, needed Suncoast Gold’s macadamia milk to be amazing. Thankfully, it was exactly that. So nutty, with a sweet aroma, (yet there are 0g of sugar per cup of unsweetened macadamia milk? That must be the magic of macadamias, am I right?) and oh so rich.
Macadamia nuts contain a variety of micronutrients, including B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus, plus small amounts of iron, zinc, and copper. Suncoast Gold’s Macadamia milks are also vegan, gluten free & 100% GMO free. It’s available in both Unsweetened and Original.
This recipe is made using the unsweetened variety of Suncoast Gold’s Macadamia Delight. Since I was using such a new and awesome plant milk, I knew I had to do you guys a solid and try the original in coffee before I wrote this post. See, you never know how plant milks are going to react in coffee. Is it going to taste acidic? Is it going to separate into a mess of coagulated plant proteins? Who knows! I sampled the original mac milk in my afternoon coffee and absolutely loved it! And I’m downright particular about which plant milks are allowed anywhere near my coffee. For whatever reason, whether it’s placebo effect or whatever, I’ve found that blends of different plant milks work best in coffee and tea, so I added a splash of vanilla soy milk to my coffee too. I used a ratio of about 3:1 mac milk to vanilla soy. It had a distinct coffee creamer vibe to it and the creamy nuttiness was shining right through my cup. Think hazelnut creamer, but macadamia nut-like instead of hazelnut-like. It’s truly delightful stuff!
You’ll find Suncoast Gold Macadamia Delight in the “natural” section of your grocery store, along with the other shelf-stable plant milks.
This post is sponsored by Suncoast Gold. I Love Vegan is a big fan of their deliciously creamy, rich and nutty macadamia milks. Learn more about the awesome benefits of Suncoast Gold Macadamia Delight on their website: macmilk.com.au
Creamy Vegan Broccoli Soup
Yield 3 servings
Easy, creamy, hearty and healthy vegan broccoli soup with browned broccoli "croutons". Makes 3 - 1 cup servings.
Creamy Vegan Broccoli Soup
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (any neutral oil or vegan margarine will do)
- 2 1/2 cups broccoli, chopped
- 1/3 cup carrots, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup celery, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 1/4-1 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 cup Suncoast Gold Unsweetened Macadamia Delight (or other unsweetened plant milk)
- 1/4 cup coconut milk
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
Browned Broccoli "Croutons"
- 2/3 cup broccoli florets
- 2 tsp olive oil
- salt, to taste
Creamy Vegan Broccoli Soup
- In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the broccoli, carrot, celery, onion, and garlic. Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt. Sauté until onion is translucent and just tender.
- Sprinkle vegetables with 3 tbsp flour. Stir and cook for at least 1 minute. Whisk in the vegetable broth. The soup should thicken as you stir. Whisk in the unsweetened macadamia milk, the coconut milk, and the nutritional yeast. Simmer over medium-low for at least 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Purée the soup to your liking. If you prefer a chunkier soup, lightly blend on a slow speed. I prefer to blend 1/2 to 2/3 of the soup until smooth and mix it with the remaining chunkier soup.
Browned Broccoli Croutons
- In a small, separate saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the broccoli florets and sprinkle with salt. Sauté until just nearly tender. Turn the heat up to high and continue to cook, stirring sporadically, until the broccoli has a nice brown/black edge on at least 1 side. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, top with browned broccoli florets, vegan cheese shreds (optional), and cracked black pepper. Serve with bread or buns, crackers, or sandwiches. Enjoy!