Italian Peasant Soup

I love making extravagant meals as much as the next person but every once in awhile something simple, warm and delicious is all I crave. I created this recipe to be the least amount of work with the most amount of flavor using staples I always keep stocked. I use diced tomatoes with basil and oregano instead of adding my own herbs in order to keep it simple and consistent. You are welcome to used plain diced tomatoes and add your own fresh or dried herbs. This soup comes together really easily and feels warm and comforting after a long day. Serve with a green salad and some crusty bread.

Italian Peasant Soup

2 tbsp olive oil
One medium onion, diced
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 celery rib, diced
1/2 tsp salt
1 14.5oz can diced tomatoes with basil and oregano
1/2 can tomato paste
4 cups vegetable stock
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 cup green beans or peas
1/4-1/2 tsp salt & 15 cranks fresh pepper
1 tsp Red pepper flakes

1) Warm olive oil in a large soup pot.
2) Add onions, garlic, celery and salt. Saute until fragrant and translucent.
3) Add tomatoes, tomato paste and vegetable stock. Bring to a light boil.
4) Add potatoes then reduce heat to medium and cook for 20-25 minutes.
5) Add the green beans or peas and simmer until potatoes are tender.
6) Add the rest of the spices according to taste. Serve hot.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 35-40 minutes
Servings: 3-4 bowls




Marinara Sauce

I’m a big believer in making everything from scratch as often as possible. I also believe emergency food can save your day, which is why I always keep jar marinara in my cupboard but I always, ALWAYS prefer to make my own if the time is available. I’ve been making fresh marinara so much lately I have almost completely lost my taste for anything out of a jar. This recipe is simple, delicious and can be prepared quickly, leaving you time to toss a salad, boil pasta, or prepare anything else for your dinner. By the time all that is ready you will have piping hot homemade marinara awaiting you. This recipe can easily be halved but I prefer making a large pot of it to avoid having to dig into my emergency food stash later in the week.

Marinara Sauce
1/4 cup Italian extra virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion, diced
1/2 bulb of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of red wine
2 28 oz cans crushed tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1 tbsp salt
1/4 cup fresh or 1 tbsp dried basil
1/4-1 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

1. Warm olive oil in a large dutch oven at medium high heat. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add garlic and stir for 2 minutes.
2. Add wine and let cook for 3-5 minutes.
3. Add crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to a light boil and then simmer.
4. Cook for a minimum of 30-45 minutes. Toward the end of cooking add salt, basil and red pepper flakes, if using.
5. Serve over pasta, polenta, pizza or use as a dipping sauce.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes to 1 hour
Serves 8-10




Spicy Tomato Cilantro Soup

So many of my recipes are born out of an abundance of ingredients I have to use before they go bad and/or leftovers that need to be combined to make a new meal. I happened to have an open container of tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, some leftover brown rice and a craving for soup and thus this creation was born. This particular combination was so warming and delicious, I plan to make it all winter long as it was simple, quick and satisfying.

Spicy Tomato Cilantro Soup

3 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion
4 cloves of garlic
2 celery sticks including the leaves
2 carrots
1 large can of crushed tomatoes
1/2 small can of tomato paste
1 1/2 tsp of evaporated cane juice
2 cups of rice milk (or dairy-free milk of choice)
large pinch of paprika
large pinch of cayenne
fresh pepper and sea salt
2 cups of cooked brown rice (optional)
a bunch of chopped cilantro

Warm olive oil in a soup pot and add the onions, garlic, celery and carrots. Saute on medium heat with a bit of salt until fragrant and softened. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and sugar and cook partially covered for at least 10 minutes or until flavors are combined. Using an immersion blender, puree soup contents until smooth. Add rice milk, lower heat and cook for 5-10 minutes. Add dried spices and rice, if using. Cook until warmed through. Add cilantro and serve.

Servings:  5-6 large bowls
Prep and Cooking Time: 30-45 minutes




Curried Chick Peas and Tomatoes

It will soon become apparent that I am obsessed with chick peas. I eat them as often as possible in soups, salads, hummus, cooked dishes or simply by themselves. This dish beautifully pairs fragrant indian spices with tomatoes and chick peas. The list of spices is extensive, though I consider them all staples in my kitchen. I generally serve this dish over coconut jasmine rice but it would be delicious over any cooked grain of your choice.

Curried Chick Peas and Tomatoes

2 tbsp of grapeseed oil (or other neutral flavored oil)
1 med onion, chopped
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 inch piece fresh ginger, minced or 1/2 tsp dried ground ginger
1 14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies
1 14 oz can coconut milk
1 60z can tomato paste
3 1/2 cups cooked chick peas or 2 cans drained and rinsed
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp turmeric
juice of half a lime (about 2 tsps)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. Warm oil in a large saute pan or wok
2. Add onions and cook until translucent
3. Add fresh garlic and fresh ginger (if using) and stir for about 2 minutes
4. Add fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies and cook for 3-5 minutes
5. Add coconut milk and tomato paste and bring to a light boil
6. Stir in chick peas and all the dried spices (including salt and pepper) and cook together for 20-30 minutes on medium low heat
7. Remove from heat and add fresh lime juice and cilantro
8. Serve over rice


  • If you don’t like a heavy tomato taste, cut the fire roasted tomatoes and tomato paste by half
  • If you prefer a non-spicy version use fire roasted tomatoes (or plain diced) without green chilies and omit the cayenne

Total Prep and Cook Time: 45 minutes to 1 hour
Servings: 5-6 if served over rice