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Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

I found something in grocery store that stopped me dead in my tracks.

It seemed quite mundane at the time. I glanced over at this simple box of alphabet pasta. The pasta box was lying there among hundreds of other kinds of pasta and Asian noodles. There were so many types of pasta to choose from but this one was different.  I felt moved and sentimental and then it happened...I day dreamed of a day very very VERY long ago....

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

I was sitting in the middle of the living room floor with my son teaching him his ABC's.  I used to draw the letters of the alphabet on flash cards and place them in a circle on the floor.  My son, maybe around 3 years at the time, would drive his choo choo train around and around the center of the circle rug.

I would say a letter of the alphabet and then my son would identify the letter of the alphabet and drive his little choo choo train up to the letter and put it in the train as fast as he could. Of course, all of this happened with all the very cool boy car noises such as the pretend screeching sounds around the corners and full spit spraying raspberry sounds as he took off with the train.

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

Then I was abruptly awakened from my day-dream as some lady rammed into the back of my Achilles tendon with her grocery cart at full turbo speed. Back to reality and what should I make with the gluten-free alphabet pasta?

The new school year is upon us and it is a great time for reflection and for looking into the future. It is the time of the year when everyone has a fresh new start for a great year of learning, getting projects done and most of all getting into a healthy eating routine. After all we have brand new pencils, books, calendars and crayons why not a new healthy snack routine to boot.

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

My boys like after school snacks but sometimes their snacks are more like meals. I am sure I have told you about the time when my eldest teenager came home from school and helped himself to the entire family roast in the crock pot and said, "Sorry mom, I needed a little snack." He left only a small scrap of meat and a lonely carrot behind.

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

My boys need hearty, healthy and filling snacks when they come home from school. A great snack or even a quick light dinner is soup. What could be better to start the new school year then a Zippy Veggie ABC Soup. Nourish their minds and their souls with this fun alphabet soup.

Give them some oyster crackers and let them dunk away or sprinkle on a little parmesan cheese for a little extra zip. Little kids love finding the letters, older kids love spelling words, teenagers like it because it is hearty and tasty and moms like it because it is healthy for them. Working moms also love this one because it is a crock pot friendly recipe.

Come follow along to learn how to make this yummy Zippy Veggie ABC Soup in a flash....

Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

Serves 4 adults or 1 hungry teenager

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 cup carrot, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped (I used chinese cabbage as I was out of the usual celery)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
  • 1 mild green chili finely chopped (optional my boys like it zippy)
  • 1 cup boneless skinless chicken cut up into small cubes (optional)
  • 4 cups vegetarian broth ( or chicken broth)
  • 1  can of lentils rinsed
  • 1 (398 ml) can tomatoes, cut up or puree as my boys do not like chunks of tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian herb seasoning (oregano, basil, thyme)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 1 packet of sweet n low or teaspoon or agave syrup or other sugar alternative (helps mellow the taste of tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cup mixed frozen veggies (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup dry alphabet pasta (gluten free is great if you can find that)
  • grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Step 1: In a medium to large saucepan place olive oil and when temperature is medium add onions, carrots, celery, mild green chilies, garlic and ginger and gently saute until aromatic and slightly softened.

Step 2: If you want to add chicken you add it now and cook gently until no longer pink.

Step 3: Add vegetarian broth, lentils, tomatoes, italian herb seasoning, bay leaf, cayenne pepper, sugar alternative, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Turn soup down to a simmer allow to simmer for about 30 minutes.

(If you are doing this in a crock pot, you can put all of the ingredients in the slow cooker except pasta and frozen veggies and cook over slow heat while you are at work and when you come home turn it on high and add alphabet pasta and frozen veggies and cook for about 7-8 minutes or per the instructions on your pasta)

Step 4: Add your alphabet pasta and frozen veggies and cook for about 7-8 minutes until the pasta is tender.

Step 5: Serve this yummy Zippy Veggie ABC Soup with a little grated parmesan cheese on top and some oyster crackers to dunk. Leftover Zippy Veggie ABC Soup is great in school lunches, just do a quick heat in the morning and pop into their thermos before they head off to school.

Have a great day,

BAM

LESS THAN 30 MINUTE DINNERS

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Zippy Veggie ABC Soup

By HWC Magazine  , ,

September 1, 2012

  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yields: 4 Adults or 1 Hungry Teenager

Ingredients

onion -

Carrot -

celery -

garlic -

ginger -

chilis -

chicken -

ABC pasta -

vegetarian broth -

tomatoes canned -

Italian herb seasoning -

frozen mixed vegetables -

parmesan cheese -

00:00
  • how timely. i was also wondering what ever happened to the alphabet soup that we used to have as kids so i went scouring around the supermarket looking for alphabet pasta. just saw campbell’s alphabet soup in can so i had to settle for that. i wish we had that here so i can try your fab recipe. is that in hk?

    • Yes believe it or not I found these alphabet noodles on a shelf in City Super in HK. A happy accident! Feel free to change the noodles into any small noodles you like. Many mini shells or stars or macaroni… Take Care, BAM

  • This is so great!! I used to love alphabet soup when I was a kid. It is so funny to hear how much your boys eat – I am surprised you can keep the house stocked with food?

    • Ohh Dawn it is so stressful being able to keep food in the house! I know everyone finds this humorous but really I sometimes it is just plain exhausting making enough for an army every day. Everyone in the local park n shop grocery knows me by my first name. Speaking of that, I have to get going the boys are starting to forage in the kitchen asking for a “substantial breakfast” so I have to run. Take care, BAM

  • Alphabet soup must be making a comeback, BAM. I saw a bag of them at a market a few weeks ago for the first time in literally decades. This soup must have tons of flavor. Ginger, onions, chilis, cayenne and garlic make for a tasty broth. Though it may be a snack for your boys, it would make a great winter meal for me.

    • Alphabet soup is retro all the way and I love it. However you are right this soup base is really zippy and great for us adults too. Just switch up the pasta to some of your small Italian favorites and you are good to go. Some of your homemade pasta in here would be awesome. Zippy Veggie ABC soup is a great warming soup and my body craves it when I am feeling a bit under the weather. Have a super weekend. BAM

  • Ouch my friend, definitely not the way to wake up from a delightful day dream! Hope it’s feeling better now!
    This ABC soup looks so cute and delicious, a great way to have fun with food 🙂

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    • I am all good now. Thanks for checking on me my dear friend. Keep up the studying CCU and I promise I will try to post something with chocolate again in the near future. Take care, BAM

  • Fun, fun, fun !! I remember alphabeti spaghetti as a kid, but this looks a whole lot tastier !

    • I think it is rather nostalgic soup that brings a smile to anyone face young or old. Have a super weekend!

  • Looks good! Definitely healthier than the alphabetti I have for snacks – would this freeze well do you think?

    • This soup freezes very well. A great idea to make a little extra for those busy work days or days you just do not feel like cooking. Zippy Veggie ABC Soup along side of a salad or a sandwich and you are good to go. Take Care, BAM

  • There are definitely dishes that take us back in time. Loved to read your thoughts. I’ve never tried soup with parmesan cheese (which I love), but that’s on my to do list now: sounds de*li*cious. 🙂

    • Thank you Alex. Grated parmesan cheese really adds another dimension of flavor and richness to this soup. Have you ever made baked parmesan crisps? I think these would be wonderful dipped into the soup. Have a super weekend. Take care, BAM

  • Your post brings back fond childhood memories, looking for the alphabets in the bowl of alphabet soup. Next time I go grocery shopping should look for alpahbet pasta.

    • ABC soup is so retro and I love it. I think it is something that brings all generations together. Take care, BAM

  • Mich Piece of Cake

    Oh dear, I hope your leg didn’t hurt too much! Your soup looks great, my kids would love the alphabet pasta and zest from the tomatoes!!

    • Thank you and I hope your weekend is going grand. I find this soup is a great way to sneak in all kinds of healthy vegetables and because the broth is so flavorful my boys love it. Take care, BAM

  • So much better than the stuff that comes out of the can! This is a great after school “snack.”

    • Indeed. Cambells’ soups are good in a pinch but this tastes so much better and is so much better for you. Take Care, BAM

  • I’m starting to make hearty soups again too! Definite sign that summer is leaving us, fall arriving. This looks great – I love the combo of vegetables and pasta in a soup. Filling and really tasty. Thanks for this.

    • Fall is my favorite time of the year. I really miss the change of seasons with the color changes and the fresh cool smell of autumn in the air. What a perfect way to celebrate the seasonal changes by using up a bounty of fresh veggies from the garden and a having little fun for the kids. Now if we could just get college football channels here in HK we would be good to go! Take care,BAM

  • What a great name for this tasty soup!

    • Thank you. I hope you are having a super weekend. Take Care, BAM

  • This post brings a lot of memory, I used to spell my name always when I had this as a child. My daughter did that as well when she was younger 🙂

    • I did the same thing. This is a soup that will always be a family favorite. Take care, BAM

  • Oh my, I haven’t seen alphabet pasta forever – I should look out for it next time I am out shopping. It certainly sounds like your boys could easily eat you out of house and home Bam!
    🙂 Mandy

    • Mandy can I send the boys your way for awhile. I need a breather. LOL

      • Let me just stock up quickly first – don’t think I have enough in the house to keep them going for 24 hours. 😉

        • LOL… I was just kidding of course. However, I might take you up on it. Take Care, BAM

  • There are so many back to school posts.. it has made me so sentimental and nostalgic today. I laughed when I read your slow cooker story, though, bless his heart!! Just a wee bit hungry, eh? *sigh.. I love this idea for a snack and I know my teenagers will too!! xx

    • The start of another school year really does make you realize how short of time we really have with our kids, so we have to make every moment count. Have a great week Barbara! BAM

  • Kathleen Richardson

    Sweet memories, BAM. Sweet soup! Love it that your boy ate almost the entire roast. The others didn’t gang up and take him down for that?

    Keep writing…

    • Kathleen there were some exchange of words for that whole situation…. Lessons learned never leave food unmonitored! Have a great day. BAM

      • Or, BAM, you could say ‘never leave a boy unmonitored’. For instance, in the past week, my 5-year old grandson has hidden (causing an entire neighborhood and 4-5 troopers to go on a boy-hunt!) and was seen by a neighbor, on another occasion, fiddling around with a lighter and a piece of paper! The 9-year old on the other hand will eat anything that’s not nailed down. Sound familiar?

        • Boys will be boy! Glad it all turned out all right in the end for you. Take care, BAM

  • Each September, when school starts, I ant to buy some school supplies and make and alphabet soup! Your’s looks so healthy and delicious! 🙂

    • Everyone love new school supplies! Love the new colored pencils and fresh new binders and organizational tools. I think as moms we most love that our kids are finally back to a schedule and we all love that. Have a great week. Take care, BAM

  • Ouch! That really hurts when you get a trolley rammed into the back of your foot. I’ve had that happen to me so many times I’m thinking of wearing steel boots to the supermarket. Love the alphabet pasta – my Alfie would love that xx

    • Good thinking not just steel toed but steel heeled boots! I hope your Alfie has an awesome start to the year! Take care, BAM

  • What a wonderful way to teach your kids the alphabet! I have not seen alphabet pasta for ages 🙂

  • You made me smile Bam because I am teaching my 3 year old boy the alphabet but we do it with wooden puzzle pieces 🙂
    that soup sound wonderful and we are finally heading towards cooler weather

    • How sweet! Oh how I miss those days! I would much rather be teaching my kids their ABC’s instead of figuring out physics and trigonometry! Take care, BAM

  • Ahhh alphabet soup! Brings back all my childhood memories! I used to buy a packet and made souvenirs for friends by using the letters to spell my friends’ names. The soup looks absolutely delicious! 😀

    • Thanks Jasline. Memories of alphabet soup brings back the warm fuzzy memories for most everyone. Oh how we all miss the carefree days of being little again, playing hopscotch, and running through the sprinkler without a worry in the world. Take care, BAM

  • Hi Bam, miss this ABC soup, children grow up so stop cooking this soup. LOL
    Yours look delicious, bring back my memories. Thanks for sharing.

    Have a nice week ahead.

    • Hello Amelia. We are still young at heart, so glad I could bring back a fond memory or two. Wow how times flies….Have a super week. BAM

  • I so remember alphabet soup. But I remember eating it faster than I could make a word out of it LOL. This post brought back so many great memories 🙂

    • My mom used to serve Zippy Veggie ABC soup in huge coffee mugs with oyster crackers along for dipping. I like passing those sweet memories on to my boys. Take care, BAM

  • LOL I love the grocery store daydream. I love this recipe, nostalgic and full of veggies!

  • Awwww, my mom used to make me alphabet soup when i was little! 🙂

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