A healthy diet includes nutritious soups that taste good and are good for us. That means not using cream to thicken the soup. You can easily add richness by pureeing the soup with an immersion blender.

Especially in winter, a warm soup is comforting and filling.

When it comes to great-tasting nutrition, broccoli is an all-star food with many health benefits. While low in calories, broccoli is rich in essential vitamins and minerals, in addition to fiber.

Eat Broccoli for a Healthy Diet

Broccoli belongs to a family of vegetables called cruciferous vegetables and its close relatives include Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, and cabbage. Broccoli contains sulforophane, a sulfur-containing compound present in cruciferous vegetables. Researchers are studying the anti-cancer properties of sulforophane and have come to some interesting conclusions, although more research is needed.

One cup of cooked broccoli offers as much vitamin C as an orange, and is a good source of beta-carotene. Broccoli contains vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc too. It also provides fiber and is low in calories.

Nutritional Benefits of Broccoli

The reason I recommend adding broccoli to a healthy diet is that it’s a nutrition powerhouse. Here are some of the benefits:

  • Vitamin K – essential for the functioning of many proteins involved in blood clotting
  • Vitamin C – builds collagen, which forms body tissue and bone, and helps cuts and wounds heal. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and protects the body from damaging free radicals.
  • Fiber – diets high in fiber promote digestive health. A high fiber intake can also help lower cholesterol.
  • Potassium – a mineral and electrolyte that is essential for the function of nerves and heart contraction.
  • Folate – is necessary for the production and maintenance of new cells in the body.

Try this soup for a healthy diet:

Cream of Broccoli Soup Recipe

INGREDIENTS: (makes 4 servings)

  • 4 1/4 cups reduced sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (2/3 cup)
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped (2/3 cup)
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 5 cups broccoli florets (12 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream, plus optional more for garnish
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium sized stock pot, bring chicken broth, onions, carrots, garlic, and celery to a boil. Cover and simmer 5 minutes.
  2. Add broccoli, milk and pepper and cook, covered, 10 more minutes.
  3. Add sour cream and puree soup with an immersion blender.
  4. Adjust black pepper to taste and heat through over medium heat, stir in the cheddar cheese and serve.

NUTRITION: (per 1-1/2 cup serving)

Calories:        150

Fat:                 7g

Carbs:            14g

Fiber:              4g

Protein:          10.5g

Click here for healthy diet broccoli soup recipe.