by Brian Dugan, Dietetic Intern [Minneapolis VA Health Care System]
No food signifies spring more to me than fresh green asparagus. When I first see it at the farmer’s market, I have visions of grilling it or chopping it up and adding it to an egg white omelette. But my favorite way to utilize asparagus by far is to make a silky, bright green soup.
My simple asparagus soup recipe is delicious, vibrant, and cost-effective, as well as full of health benefits. Asparagus is a low-calorie food loaded with nutrients such as fiber and antioxidants. A diet rich in vegetables can improve gastrointestinal health, as well as decrease your cardiovascular disease risk and overall risk of colon cancer.
Creamy Asparagus Soup
- 1 lb. asparagus, woody stems (bottom 1/2 to 1”) removed and discarded, cut into 1” pieces
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 large onion, small diced
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
- 1 medium Yukon gold potato, peeled and cut into 1/2” pieces
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 4 oz. heavy cream, crème fraiche, or milk
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp. chives or your favorite herb, finely sliced
- Fill a medium pot with water, add a pinch of salt, and bring it to a boil.
- When the water boils, add in asparagus and cook until just tender. Remove and cool.
- In a separate pot, add olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Add in onions and garlic and cook until translucent.
- Add in potato and vegetable broth, bring up to a simmer, and cook until potatoes are soft.
- In batches, puree soup base mixture with asparagus in a blender or food processor.
- Incorporate salt, black pepper, and heavy cream into puree process.
- Garnish with finely sliced fresh herbs.
- For a greener soup, add in 1 cup of spinach during the blending process.
- If you are making the soup for a future occasion or have leftovers, cool in a ice water bath to preserve color and flavor. The asparagus soup should hold for 2-3 days.
Per Serving: 180 calories; 8 g total fat; 1.5 g saturated fat; 10 g protein, 20 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 670 mg sodium