If you know me well at all, you know that sweet potatoes hold a special place in my heart. I call them a super food, not because they have some magical power that cures all illness or makes weight fall off, but because they are nutrient dense and are grown the majority of the year. You better believe close to half of my future garden will be reserved for these beauties. Sweet potatoes are low in calories (only about 100 calories per medium potato!), a good source of dietary fiber (if you eat the skin, which you should, it’s great), protein, vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and manganese. Yes, they are quite super.
So enough bragging on my favorite veggie, and on to the recipe for today. Because I do love sweet potatoes so much, I put them in everything I possibly can, and usually create recipes around them just so I can eat them every single day. This recipe was sort of an accident, but has now turned into a staple that I will be experimenting with more in the future. It is affordable, delicious, and exploding with nutrients your body craves and needs. Due to my lack of creativity for names, I call it Sweet Potato, Lentil & Beet Soup.
To go along with the nutrients theme, beets are another rockstar vegetable. Beets are full of dietary fiber (to keep the digestion running smoothly), vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, and many antioxidants that may prevent against cancer and heart disease. And if that is not enough, lentils are a good source of protein, iron, phosphorus, copper, dietary fiber, folate and manganese.
So yes, this soup is the bomb. Feel free to adjust the recipe, because I guarantee I will always be adding and substituting based on what veggies and spices I am craving.
Sweet Potato, Lentil & Beet Soup
2 cups vegetable broth (or chicken)
3 cups water
2 sweet potatoes, diced
2 medium sized beets (I used 2 small orange & 1 medium red), diced
2 cups dry lentils (any variety)
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic gloves, chopped
2 cups greens (kale, spinach, collards or chard), chopped
1 tsp salt (more, to taste)
2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp dry thyme leaves
1. In a large pot, bring broth & water to a boil. Add the lentils, sweet potatoes and beets, then return to a boil for about 10 minutes.
2. Reduce heat to medium, add the onion, garlic and spices, stir well, then cover and let cook for about 20-30 minutes, until potatoes and beets are tender.
3. Reduce heat to low, stir in greens, and let cook another 5-10 minutes, until the greens are cooked down. Add more spices, to taste, if needed.
4. Serve with a dollop of plain greek yogurt, a fried egg, cheese, fresh herbs, or anything else your taste buds may desire!
Nutrition Information: Calories 264, Total Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Carbohydrates 45 g, Dietary Fiber 17 g, Sugars 5 g, Protein 15 g