Brighten up a cold day with this delicious and comforting vegan lemon rice soup! The healthy ingredients used not only contribute to the soups delicious flavor, but they also have many nutritional benefits, making this a great soup if you are feeling under the weather.
Why not?! I know, I know…chicken noodle soup is the gold standard when it comes to soups to eat with a cold. But who wants to thaw and cook chicken or turkey when they are sick?! Not me! And to be honest, this soup has way more health benefits. I promise, this ginger lemon soup recipe comes out just as flavorful and comforting as your favorite chicken noodle soup. They way that the vegetable broth interacts with the starch of the rice yields broth that almost has that viscous, creamyness that soups like ‘Campbells Chicken Noodle Soup’ are known for.
The Health Benefits Of This Immunity Boosting Soup:
This soup is LOADED with healthy ingredients to give you a nutrient boost that you might need during a cold or flu.
- LEMON JUICE: One lemon has 30.7 mg of vitamin C! That’s a little under half of the daily recommended value! Lemon juice also helps to improve the absorption of iron from plant foods. (3)
- KALE: Kale is a super food that is extremely nutrient rich. One cup has 134% daily value of vitamin C, 684% daily value of vitamin K, 206% daily value of vitamin A (from beta-carotene) and so much more! The antioxidants found in kale have been found to have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-cancer properties. (1) (2)
- GINGER: Ginger has been used traditionally in alternative medicine for thousands of years. Ginger contains ‘gingerols’, phenolic substances that have shown evidence of reducing oxidative stress and free radicals in the body. It is also known to exhibit other biological activities including anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties. (4). It can not only help reduce the risk of disease, but ginger may be effective in fighting respiratory infections. (5)
- ONION: Onions contain a few compounds that have been reported to have a range of health benefits which include anticarcinogenic properties, antithrombotic activity, antiasthmatic and antibiotic effects. (6)
- TURMERIC: Turmeric is an Indian spice that has been used for thousands of years for its flavor and its medicinal properties. The main compound in turmeric is curcumin, which is a strong antioxidant that also possesses substantial anti inflammatory properties. It also has anti-viral and anti-fungal properties! (7)
(1) Kumar S, Pandey AK. Chemistry and biological activities of flavonoids: an overview. ScientificWorldJournal. 2013 Dec 29;2013:162750. doi: 10.1155/2013/162750. PMID: 24470791; PMCID: PMC3891543.
(2) Calderón-Montaño JM, Burgos-Morón E, Pérez-Guerrero C, López-Lázaro M. A review on the dietary flavonoid kaempferol. Mini Rev Med Chem. 2011 Apr;11(4):298-344. doi: 10.2174/138955711795305335. PMID: 21428901
(3) Ballot D, Baynes RD, Bothwell TH, Gillooly M, MacFarlane BJ, MacPhail AP, Lyons G, Derman DP, Bezwoda WR, Torrance JD, et al. The effects of fruit juices and fruits on the absorption of iron from a rice meal. Br J Nutr. 1987 May;57(3):331-43. doi: 10.1079/bjn19870041. PMID: 3593665.
(4) Wang S, Zhang C, Yang G, Yang Y. Biological properties of 6-gingerol: a brief review. Nat Prod Commun. 2014 Jul;9(7):1027-30. PMID: 25230520.
(5) Chang JS, Wang KC, Yeh CF, Shieh DE, Chiang LC. Fresh ginger (Zingiber officinale) has anti-viral activity against human respiratory syncytial virus in human respiratory tract cell lines. J Ethnopharmacol. 2013 Jan 9;145(1):146-51. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2012.10.043. Epub 2012 Nov 1. PMID: 23123794.
(6) Griffiths G, Trueman L, Crowther T, Thomas B, Smith B. Onions–a global benefit to health. Phytother Res. 2002 Nov;16(7):603-15. doi: 10.1002/ptr.1222. PMID: 12410539.
(7) Moghadamtousi, S. Z., Kadir, H. A., Hassandarvish, P., Tajik, H., Abubakar, S., & Zandi, K. (2014). A review on antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal activity of curcumin. BioMed research international, 2014, 186864. https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/186864
When To Serve This Soup:
Don’t get me wrong, you don’t have to be sick to enjoy this vegan lemon rice soup recipe! But it is nice to know how many health benefits your body will be reaping after eating it, is it not?! Despite this being the best soup when sick, it is also a great soup for a cold day because it is so vivascious and warm. It makes a great sick day soup, OR just a regular ‘I’m craving a vegan lemon rice soup’ soup. It also makes for a great gout diet recipe! One cup of chickpeas has 38 mg of purines, and kale has 48 mg of purines per 100 g, both of which are considered to be low amounts of purines. Plus its anti inflammatory properties are very beneficial for the gout or arthritis sufferer. If you do have gout, omit the white rice and opt for a rice or pasta alternative, as white rice is very starchy and not considered a good food for gout sufferers.
Frequently Asked Questions:
|Is this soup vegan?||You bet it is! There are no animal products or ingredients used in the making of this delicious ginger lemon soup!|
|How long can I store the soup?||This soup should be good refrigerated in an air tight container for 3 days.|
|Can I use wild rice?||Totally. I chose white because it is a rice that most people have in their pantries, and it is simple. If you choose to make wild rice, you may need to use more broth for a better ‘broth to solids’ ratio, and you will definitely need to cook it for longer.|
This Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Signature Oval Dutch Oven will definitely fit the 8 cups of broth that this recipe calls for, because it is 6.75 quarts!
Vegan Lemon Rice Soup
- 2 small white or yellow onions, chopped
- 3-4 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 1/2 cups chopped kale, stems removed
- 1 small bunch of thyme (about 15 stems, don't bother removing the leaves from the stems, they will fall off while cooking)
- about 10 sage leaves, chopped
- 1 1/4 cups white rice
- 1 tsp ginger spice, plus 1 tsp of chopped fresh ginger or squeeze ginger if you have it
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- juice of 1 large lemon
- 1 15.5 oz can of chickpeas
- ground black pepper, salt as needed (I did not add any salt)
- 2 tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
- Chop up the onion and carrots. Heat coconut oil in a large dutch oven, and toss in the onion and carrots. Sautee until the onions are begining to become translucent, about 4 minutes.
- Rinse the rice under cold water to get rid of extra starch, then add the rice to the dutch oven. Also add the chopped sage, thyme, turmeric, ginger powder, chopped fresh ginger (if you are using it) and saute for about 60 seconds, stirring occasionally.
- Pour in the 8 cups of vegetable broth. Toss in the rinsed can of chickpeas, and squeeze in the juice of one lemon.
- Bring the broth to a simmer, then reduce to low and cook until the rice is done, which takes about 20-25 minutes (taste test it to make sure). Toss in the kale, stir and remove from the heat. Carefully, using a spoon or fork, remove the thyme stems.
- Garnish with fresh cracked black pepper, and enjoy! This soup can be stored in the fridge in an air tight container for up to 3 days!
- Don’t bother removing the thyme leaves from the stems. Just toss them in the soup, and they will fall off on their own. Just remember to remove the stems when the soup is done!
Did you like this vegan lemon rice soup recipe? If so, go check out my anti-inflammatory smoothie recipe!