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Delicious Anti-Inflammatory Vegetable Soup

Sharon Muse

Lately, we've been hearing a lot about inflammation. So, what actually is inflammation and why are we hearing so much about it? Let us explain a little bit. There are two different kinds of inflammation responses in the body, acute and chronic. Acute inflammation is the kind when you get a cut and it becomes red and swollen. Our bodies send white blood cells to protect the area - this is a natural and healthy response from our body.

What we are talking about is chronic inflammation. This happens when your immune system is permanently turned on and your body releases a flood of chemicals that can actually be dangerous. This can be caused by a number of reasons such as environmental toxins, excess weight, poor diet, stress, lack of exercise, excessive use of alcohol, smoking and more. Research shows that chronic inflammation is linked to many diseases such as cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer's, depression and more. Learn more about chronic inflammation here.

The good news is that we can do a lot to help ourselves in terms of chronic inflammation. What we eat plays a big role. Certain foods are actually considered anti-inflammatory like Swiss Chard, Broccoli, Beets, Celery and two ingredients that we have included in this soup: Turmeric and Bone Broth.

Turmeric's primary compound is curcumin, which is an active anti-inflammatory component. Research shows that curcumin can be more potent than aspirin or ibuprofen. Bone Broth contains minerals that your body can easily absorb. These minerals contain chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine which help reduce inflammation, arthritis and joint pain. 

This recipe is very flexible and you can add in even more anti-inflammatory ingredients like celery and swiss chard - make it your own and know that this soup not only tastes good, it is good for you!

Ingredients:

1 head of cauliflower, riced in a food processor or purchase a 1# bag of already riced cauliflower

1.5 T ground Turmeric

1.5 T curry

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. paprika

1/4 - 1/2 tsp. Himalayan sea salt

3-4 T olive oil

1/2 - 1 cup diced sweet onion

large handful of chopped kale (stems removed)

2 cups diced carrots

4 cups chicken bone broth (if vegan or vegetarian, use vegetable broth)

1/2 - 1 cup vegetable broth 

2 cups coconut milk (the drinking version works better than the canned) or unsweetened almond milk

1/2 red pepper flakes (optional)

additional salt & pepper to taste

Instructions:

1.)  In a large stockpot, drizzle olive oil and place on medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until they are translucent. Then add garlic and sauté another 30 seconds. 

2.) In a small bowl mix the spices together (from Turmeric through sea salt). In a large bowl toss spice mixture over riced cauliflower and toss to combine. 

3.) Add cauliflower mixed with spices to the stock pot and sauté for a few minutes until the cauliflower is a little tender (if you need more olive oil here then add about 1-2 teaspoons). Add diced carrots, kale, both the bones broth and vegetable broth and milk. If using, add the crushed red pepper flakes.

4.) Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 20 minutes. Be careful to not stay at a boil too long so you don't burn the milk. This is a great time to taste to make sure the carrots are cooked and the spices are the way you like. Once you have everything to your liking, enjoy this anti-inflammatory soup!