soups for welcoming fall.

October 1, 2019
soup season | reading my tea leaves

I think it’s safe to say that I’m officially feeling better. I know this mostly because the thought of making dinner is not sending me into fits of despair punctuated with gagging (sorry). Indeed, in the past week there have been moments when I’ve actually found myself wanting to cook instead of just getting an intense craving for certain foods and then whimpering about it.

One of the first things I made was the vegetarian split pea soup that Heidi Swanson recently shared. It’s the simplest soup and such a blessing for busy weeknights. Though weeknight or no, I’m a fan of anything that can be made in one pot then halved and stashed in the freezer to be thawed out later in the month when the mood for making dinner has waned and the need for a quick dinner is great. I made the soup a bit thick so it would be easier for young kids to spoon without trouble. We loaded our bowls with the recommended toppings and dipped hunks of torn baguette into the hot soup.

In case anyone is needing inspiration, below are some of my favorite soups and stews from my own archive. All of them are vegetarian and some of them are vegan, or else easily made so. They’re quick to make, with very little active cooking time and few ingredients. Better still, they’re cheap, nourishing, and maybe just exactly what you need on this first day of October.

Classic Corn Chowder

White Bean Soup with Tomatoes and Kale

Carrot & Ginger Soup with Carrot Top Pesto

White Bean and Escarole Soup

Veggie Dashi with Ginger and Turmeric

If you have favorites of your own to share, please do! Never enough soup!


For the curious:

Soup pot | Soup bowls | Linen napkins | A potholder to make yourself!

This post includes affiliate links. Reading My Tea Leaves might earn a small commission on the goods purchased through those links.

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  • Reply Trish O October 1, 2019 at 10:05 am

    I am all about soup weather. I am making a pot today of a white bean soup with a southwest spice situation happening. I make it often in the fall and tend to change it up by using veggies not yet used from the CSA order. It is wonderful to stretch it out a few days by serving over roasted spaghetti squash. I also add a grate of cheese that is around.

    Was wondering if your husband still made a loaf of bead each week? I am so attracted to this habit. I seem to not find the time and we are in a bread share CSA thing, so that will work for now. The bread is TOO good. I eat too much. Small things, right…

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 1, 2019 at 10:07 am

      Yum! It’s really too hot to bake bread in our apartment in the summertime, but we’ve been eating sourdough pancakes and James is very eager to start baking again ASAP!

  • Reply Louise October 1, 2019 at 10:07 am

    This looks lovely. Can I ask where your soup bowls are from please?

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 1, 2019 at 10:08 am

      Oh, sure! Will add links above!

  • Reply Rachel October 1, 2019 at 11:07 am

    I love soup. A few weeks ago, I tossed some limp kale, carrots, onion, zucchini, red bell pepper and garlic into a pot to sauté. I added homemade chicken stock, shredded chicken from my freezer, and turmeric. Simmer for 20 minutes and serve. This week, I’m making parsnip, pear and thyme soup. Any food that warms me from the inside out, I’m all about. Yay for soup season!

    • Reply Mo November 20, 2019 at 11:39 am

      Parsnip, pear and thyme soup sounds delicious!

  • Reply Tara Rasmus October 1, 2019 at 11:14 am

    Souuuuup!! The white bean with tomatoes and kale is great. I love a simple lentil soup.

    Also, I make a ton of this soup every winter! I just make it vegetarian (love Ina Garten, but sometimes I feel like she gets a little nutty with adding pancetta to every single dish lol!):

    • Reply Tara Rasmus October 1, 2019 at 3:30 pm

      Also Erin, I had the same exact morning sickness with Jack! Feeling super sick and repulsed by all food, and then at mealtimes NEEDING just ONE specific food. After mealtime, hated food again. Ugh it sucked!

      • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 1, 2019 at 3:52 pm


  • Reply Sophia October 1, 2019 at 11:24 am

    This tomato lentil soup is AMAZING, esp if you add avocado on top.

  • Reply Megan October 1, 2019 at 11:46 am

    Silly question for anyone listening, what’s the best way to store leftover soup in the freezer, then favorite method for defrosting / re-heating? My parents taught me many things but unfortunately most around leftovers involve single use plastic bags and microwaves.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 1, 2019 at 12:03 pm

      I usually use a glass Pyrex, with a bit of headroom to allow for expansion when freezing. A quick run of the glass container under hot water loosens the soup and then I just plunk it into a sauce pan to slowly reheat (sometimes reconstituting with a bit of extra water)!

      • Reply Megan October 1, 2019 at 5:43 pm

        Thank you!!

  • Reply Jenn October 1, 2019 at 7:49 pm

    I have to ask , do your kids eat the soups you listed above? My three year old doesn’t have a n expansive palette yet and I am curious to know about your little ones. We have a garden at our house and she has a garden at her preschool. Both gardens she helps tends and harvest the veggies and herbs. Any tips? tricks?

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 2, 2019 at 9:04 am

      Most of the time, yes! No real tips or tricks and I don’t have any foolproof solutions, but I generally follow the philosophy that it’s the parents’ job to simply provide the healthy food. My kids don’t love, or even eat, everything we put down in front of them, but they do eat when they’re hungry. If sometimes they pick the broccoli out from pasta (the case for us last night), so be it. It was there! Eventually they’ll give it a try.

    • Reply Sam October 2, 2019 at 1:08 pm

      I think this varies a lot by kid. I tried to follow the philosophy of parent provides/kid decides but it didn’t make my 3 year old an open-minded eater. She’s been picky since literally her first bite of food, and for example, just won’t eat pasta if it’s mixed with something she doesn’t care for. She’ll only eat veggies she harvests herself, like yours. I’ve tried at various stages to just let her skip a meal but she wakes up at 3am screaming about being hungry and I’m just not up for that! So I cave and give her stuff she likes, along with bits of new things from our meals. My husband and I eat soup all winter and she eats the bread :-/

      • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 2, 2019 at 1:16 pm

        For sure! Pretty sure there’s not a single thing in parenting that doesn’t vary kid to kid/parent to parent.

        • Reply Christie October 4, 2019 at 10:15 am

          We have always had the rule that they don’t have to like it, but they do have to taste it. If they taste and don’t like, then that’s their choice. But all of my children have had the experience of going to bed hungry when they refused to eat what we provided. Going to bed hungry will not kill them. I’m not a short order cook, so if they choose not to eat it, they know they aren’t getting anything else. Our secret is we never feed our kids snacks. They are starving by the time they come to the table. I also don’t cook crappy food. It tastes delicious, which they usually find out when they taste. It might not work for you and your family, but we have three VERY different personalities and food likes/dislikes, and all three of them have adapted.

  • Reply Brittany Harris October 1, 2019 at 8:36 pm

    Erin, I hope you continue to feel better each day! I made your white bean/kale/tomato soup last Sunday and my husband and I have been enjoying it all week for work lunches. It goes great with crumpled cotija cheese on top! Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 2, 2019 at 8:59 am

      So glad!

  • Reply Susan Tossman Blue October 2, 2019 at 2:26 am

    One of our favorite soups is the Butternut Squash Soup you blogged about a handful of years ago. I make it frequently throughout the year. It’s super easy and really delicious. So — thank you so much for the recipe!

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 2, 2019 at 8:59 am

      Ah! Yes! I love that one too! Forgot I even blogged about it!

  • Reply Julie October 2, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Heidi Swanson’s Red Lentil Soup with Lemon is unbelievably delicious and amaaaaazing. It has become a staple for everyone to who whom I’ve sent the recipe. My four-year-old can’t get enough of it, either:
    I’m ambivalent about fall in general, but excited about soup!

  • Reply Bettina October 3, 2019 at 3:52 am

    One of my favourites (which I cook in a big pot in October and then freeze in several smaller containers) is this one:
    You can also add some kind of meat, if you want, but it is not necessary.

  • Reply kim m October 3, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    Thanks for the referral to the 101 Cookbooks site! Look forward to exploring and trying out some recipes

  • Reply Nipa October 21, 2019 at 11:59 am

    One of our family favorites is a simple lentil and rice soup. I’ve been making it for so long that I can’t remember where it came from! It may have been Heidi Swanson as her blog is the very first one I ever subscribed to. Enjoying yours too! Nipa @fashionipa

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