October 27, 2023

Mix and match vegetarian soups

Some one asked me how to make a soup.  Every soup I make is different as I mix and match ingredients to make my soup, depending what needs using up in the fridge and what I have in the cupboards.  They usually follow the same formula, though.  I add something from each category.  Here are some ideas to get you started to make mix and match vegetarian soups.  I usually cook them in a slow cooker, nowadays, but used to cook them on a hob.



Chose one or two from the following

Garlic, onion, shallots, leek, spring onions or celery


Add as many as you want from the following

Tomatoes (tinned or fresh), carrots, butternut squash, sweet potato, potato, parsnips, cauliflower, peppers, pumpkin


Vegetable stock (either from a cube or home made from vegetable peelings)

Extra nutrients

Add as many as you want from the following

peas, beans, broccoli, Swiss chard, spinach

Bulk (I don’t always add this category in summer)

Add one of the following

Rice, barley, pasta, lentils, chick peas, quinoa, split peas

Herbs and spices

Add at least one from the following

Mixed herbs, paprika, ginger, cayenne pepper, oregano, garlic powder, basil, coriander, thyme, chilli powder, tarragon, curry powder, pepper (and salt)


Add these only if they go with the ingredients that you have

tomato puree, coconut milk, fruit


Choose at least one from the following

yoghurt, chives, parsley, flavoured oil, nuts, paprika, cream, croutons, cheese, grated coconut


Do you make mix and match vegetarian soups?  What is your favourite soup that you make? Mine is a chunky chilli soup.





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  1. Corrina November 2, 2023 at 3:30 pm - Reply

    I love your mix and match recipes, they are so adaptable – Thankyou! I enjoy making a homemade Tomato soup with my own tomatoes (although you can use tinned Tomatoes if no fresh are available), tastes so much better than the canned varieties. I also ‘made up’ a recipe for Spicy Parsnip, which is all the usual things – onion, parsnips, stock, butter, S&P and add some smoked paprika and curry powder – yum!

    • ToniG November 9, 2023 at 8:01 pm - Reply

      Thanks for sharing. I love making tomato soup as well, but I often make it spicy. Sorry for the late reply. Life has been a bit hectic. I just love the fact that what ever bits you have in your cupboard or fridge it is always possible to make a tasty soup which is full of nutrition too and doesn’t have the sugar that is in canned soup.

  2. Alison November 20, 2023 at 4:26 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much, this has inspired me to be more creative with leftovers and ingredients I wouldn’t have thought of, and given me more confidence to not stick to a recipe all the time.
    I’ve also found I can use the microwave to make soup much more than I expected, which should save electricity compared with doing it all on the hob.
    We have soup and bread every Friday when we are all tired and need something easy – much cheaper than a takeaway – and we always watch a murder mystery like Poirot!

    • ToniG November 21, 2023 at 1:26 pm - Reply

      It took time for me to build confidence and to know which spices and vegetables went well together. I have never made soup in the microwave, is it as tasty? I have steamed vegetables which is a quick way to cook them, especially carrots. They tend to take longer than other vegetables and so I steam them in the microwave and then add them to the rest of the ingredients in the soup. Thanks for commenting

  3. Alison November 24, 2023 at 4:52 pm - Reply

    Hi Toni, I still fry the onions or garlic etc but I do the carrots, lentils etc in the microwave until they’re done, and then add stock and microwave the final result before blending. So it’s similar to when you steam and then add to the other ingredients. It is a bit “trial and error” but my husband says it is an improvement (maybe I was overcooking things before). I have also done potatoes successfully in the microwave, for mashing, and rice; it was Jamie Oliver’s programme that got me thinking about using it more.

    • ToniG December 1, 2023 at 3:42 am - Reply

      Hi, sorry for the late reply. I have been ill. The microwave is a very cheap way of cooking, and quick, I do and I do not think that I use it to it’s potential. I tend to use my slow cooker most of the time now. I think that all cooking is trial and error and it is about what works for us as individuals. Thanks for sharing

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