Nan’s Vegan Soup – Hearty and Almost Free!

Nan’s Vegan Soup – Hearty and Almost Free!

This vegan soup is a smart and delicious way to use vegetables in the refrigerator, veggie scraps for broth, and the delicious aqua fava (bean liquid) left from making my Yummy Vegan Instant Pot Garbanzo Beans. Serves 6-8 big bowls.


  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 4 large carrots, bitesize chunks
  • 3 large stalks celery, big dice
  • 3-4 cups starchy veggies, like butternut or kombucha squash, sweet or white potatoes, turnips.                 
  •  3 medium russet potatoes, in bitesize pieces
  • 2 cups butternut squash, in bitesize pieces
  • 4 cups vegetable broth, plus approx..1/4 cup for the dry saute
  • 4 cups aqua fava or vegetable broth
  • 1 16-oz can diced tomatoes, fired roasted if available
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 2 medium zucchini, big dice
  • 1 1/2-2 cups cauliflower leaves diced or florets in bitesize pieces; or other tender vegetable
  • 1 lb-bag frozen edamame, or 1-2 16-oz cans of beans, drained (garbanzo, cannellini, or red kidney)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, use less or omit
  • Salt (if desired) and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • tablespoons lemon juice


Dry saute the onion using a bit of broth to keep the onion from sticking, let bubble and deglaze the pan and cook off, then do it again until the onions are light brown.

Add carrots celery, stir and cook 1-2 minutes more

Add the starchy vegetables, 8 cups total of broth, diced tomatoes, and bay leaves.  Cook until the vegetables are slightly tender. About 15-20 minutes.

Add zucchini, cauliflower leaves and/or florets, edamame or canned beans, bell pepper, herbs, and cook until all is tender. About 10-15 minutes. Add chopped kale, cook 5 minutes more. Add more broth if you prefer a looser soup.

Season to your taste and serve hot. This vegan soup tastes even better the next day. It also freezes well.

Lovely with crunchy bread or delicious whole-grain corn muffins 

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