Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup

We all know that when it comes to accomplishing certain tasks, if you throw a few children in the mix things can tend to get...tricky. For example, walking out the door. What should be a simple thing which requires little to no brain activity can turn into one of the biggest trials of November. One lost shoe, 15 minutes late, someone has a dirty diaper, you just noticed you aren't wearing a bra...and then FUDGE! Where are your keys?

Every parent says FUDGE when they want to swear but can't. Unless your me, then you say shit. Then your baby says shit. That your 6 your old says, "Mom! The baby said shit!"

FUDGE.

Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish
Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish

Let me talk about this morning for example. We've all been so lucky to get that extra hour of sleep this weekend, unless you have children. Because now they wake up at 5:45 instead of 6:45, and you went to bed at 10:45...(technically 11:45, but you figured you would get that extra hour in the morning.) Think.Again.

We just happened to have an extra hour this morning before we had to leave for school! An extra hour never happens, and then your mind starts to wonder about all of the marvelous things you could accomplish if you had time like this EVERY DAY!

You could shower, curl your hair, wear matching clothes, find your kids shoes in time...

cute baby messy kitchen
cute baby messy kitchen
naughty baby
naughty baby

I decided to do a yoga video. I'm trying to embrace Yoga as of lately because of stress. I'm hoping it will calm me, as well as get me toned in all the areas that seem to have just given up.

So I popped in a TWENTY minute yoga video. To some, this seems so insignificant, but to a busy mom, twenty minutes is basically like asking for Milo Ventimiglia from 'This Is Us' to show up at your door unannounced with chocolate. (P.S. why do I want to say his last name all the time?)

5 minutes in, things got dark. The baby was SCREAMING. I have no idea, but I'm pretty sure it was for no reason at all. She climbed all over me yelling in my ear as I tried my best to twist side to side and feel that deep stretch. In between screams I could hear, "Ahhhh. Just breath..."

And then, just like that, with FOUR minutes to spare I hear a cry up stairs, "MMOOOOM! COME WIPE ME!" For real.

"Honey, I can't! I'm "exercising!" Give me 4 minutes!"

"But it's DIARRHEA!!"

Baby screaming. Lady breathing. Kid yelling.

FUDGE.

Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup
Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup

This is why I make soup. Why, you ask? Because soup is something I love, something that comes together SO quickly. I can make a big pot with whatever vegetables I want and can store it in the fridge for a few days of lunch. Then I can store the other half in the freezer for my lunches next week.

Because sometimes as a mom, you don't have time to think about yourself. Sometimes, it's nice to have a meal ready for you in the fridge when you need it. So, hence this soup. It's warm, comforting, and has vegetables in it! Just make sure everyone is wiped and the baby is napping before you sit down to eat...because we all know what happens when moms try to sit down...

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img_2385

Pumpkin Butternut Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 TB. olive oil
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 1/2 c. chopped carrots
  • 3 c. diced butternut squash
  • 1/2 c. milk of choice
  • 1 c. pumpkin puree
  • 12 cups water
  • 6 boullion cubes
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 7-14 oz pasta
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • dash of pumpkin pie spice

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, heat olive oil.
  2. Add onions and garlic. Cook until translucent.
  3. Add carrots and butternut. Continue to toss and cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Add in milk, pumpkin puree, water, and boullion cubes.
  5. Stir and come to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover and let cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Next add in pasta and chicken, along with spices. Cook until pasta is slightly undercooked/al dente. (The pasta will continue to retain water as it sits.)
  6. Serve hot and enjoy!
  7. (The pasta I used was rather large and took about a lot of the soup, that's why I say 7 oz-14 oz, depending on pasta size and shape.)

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pasta
pasta

The pasta I used was this CUTE pasta I purchased from Trader Joes! Those little pumpkins were the perfect match for this soup. But If you do use this pasta, be careful because it get's rather large. I think next time I might only use 3/4 of the bag. To find the pasta, you can purchase it here: (affiliate link)

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So tell me busy moms/dads/persons, what do you do to find time for YOU? I specifically struggling when it comes to exercise, so let me know when and how you fit it in! Have a great week!!

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup (Vegetarian/Vegan)

*This Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup is my vegetarian version of Chicken Noodle soup with a citrus touch. The lemon is SO perfect and pairs so well with all of the flavors, and gives it such a comforting and light taste! It's perfect to warm your soul on a cold day, with a kick of vitamin C to knock any cold!*  ______________________________________________________________________

My husband LOVES soup! So much that he just gets so tickled when I tell him to hurry home from work because there is a nice warm bowl awaiting his hungry belly!  Not before he makes a pit stop at Taco Bell (true story) because he actually hates soup and every other meal that I declare healthy and delish.

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish
Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish

I think he doesn't love soup because it doesn't satisfy his fast food taste bud. It doesn't come in a cardboard box, greasy paper bag, with a scent of regret.

It may clean your intestines some what the way a meal from any fast food joint may do, but it won't make you re think every life decision you've ever made at 3 in the morning from fast food hallucinations...

I kid....in a way.

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup
Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup

Come fall, or the spirit of fall shall we say, I tend to throw all that's in my fridge in a pot with a cups of broth, grab a sweater and count down for Christmas! It's healthy.  Despite it being 99 degrees all this week, I keep embracing the fact that I am over with summer and I'm ready for leggings!

I guess my delusions of Fall go hand in hand with my husbands acceptance and delusions of Fast Food...

And if that doesn't make us a strong, #GOALS type of couple, then I don't know what will!

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup
Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 TB. olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 large cloves, diced
  • 3 large carrots, sliced semi thin
  • 3 sticks celery, diced
  • 8 cups vegetable broth, or chicken for a non vegan/veg soup
  • 1 can drained and rinsed chickpeas OR one can of white beans for a softer bean
  • 2 cups cooked pasta noodles of choice
  • juice of 2 lemons (Mine weren't super juicy, so start with one and add more lemon juice if desired)
  • 1 TB. dried Italian seasonings
  • 1/4 tsp. tumeric, optional for color
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat a large pot over the stove on medium heat. Add the olive oil, and heat. Add the onions and garlic. Cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the onions are translucent.
  2. Add in the carrots and celery and toss.
  3. Cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.
  4. Next add in the broth and chickpeas, followed by the lemon juice and seasonings.
  5. Once the vegetables have softened, add the cooked pasta. You can add un cooked pasta, but add 2 cups more broth for the pasta to soak.
  6. Serve with lemon slices, fresh parsley, and parmesan cheese on top if desired! Enjoy!

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This soup is SO good! If you love chicken noodle soup, you will love this variation. The lemon is the perfect twist and adds an extra level of comfort! Let's not forget the vitamin C punch that would be perfect for any cold!

Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish
Lemon Chickpea Noodle Soup via The Diva Dish

I'm determined to find a soup that my husband will love, even though the task might be impossible. I'm thinking a beefy baja chalupa soup might be right up his alley....

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup

*This is comfort food at it's finest. Meatball and Spaghetti Soup is the perfect combination of two comfort foods, soup and pasta, mixed into one! It's a quick and easy dish, and it's hearty and filling. Your kids will love slurping up the noodles! And maybe adults too ;)* *******************************************************************************************

Here's the deal. I know reading blogs is a thing of the past. So 2012. 2010? Either way, we are a visualworld. I know that most of you might just scroll past this and not even read what I'm writing, look at a few of the pics, and go right down to the recipe. You will check the ingredients and then, "Hmmm that sounds doable...I'll have to remember that, Oh wait! I have a new Instagram notification!"

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish

So basically, I could really say whatever the flying fargin bastage I want. I could tell you the most embarrassing story about my husband, and no one would know. Except my mom, because I think she still reads my blog? Maybe.

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish

So for now, mom, and maybe some random person from France, thank you for getting to this point. I know it was painful, and excruciating. Have you ever typed out excruciating? It's excruciating.

I'm sorry there is no clever hilarious story, but I'm going to be honest. This day light savings thing has me screwed up and Real Housewives of Atlanta is on. I am not thinking straight.

Here is the recipe you've all been waiting for....The End.

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup

Ingredients

  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, diced
  • 2 TB. olive oil
  • 3 TB. tomato paste
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 c. marinara sauce (jarred or homemade)
  • 4 c. vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 TB. dried basil
  • 1 1/2 TB. dried parsley
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 12 oz. thin spaghetti, uncooked
  • 18-20 cooked meatballs, I used the following recipe:
  • http://thediva-dish.com/dinner/hubby-meals-simple-turkey-meatballs-over-spaghetti-squash/
  • (Can sub for vegetarian meatballs)
  • Parmesan cheese, for topping

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, add the olive oil.
  2. Then add in the onions and garlic. Stir and cook down the mixture until the onions are translucent.
  3. Next add in your tomato paste. Mix it around for about 30 seconds, then add in your crushed tomatoes, marinara sauce, broth, spices, and spaghetti.
  4. Cover and cook soup until the spaghetti is al dente.
  5. Add in the cooked meatballs, cook for an additional 5-10 minutes on low heat, covered.
  6. Serve with parmesan cheese on top, and enjoy!

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Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish

A little about this soup. It's the perfect combination of 2 comfort foods, soup and spaghetti. It makes a lot of leftovers if you have children who eat like birds, which makes for a perfect mommy/daddy lunch!

Don't forget a side salad to add some veggies to this heavier carb dish, because you also can't forget the garlic bread! If you make your own meatballs, I LOVE this recipe. It's my go-to every time. I made the meatballs while the soup was cooking, and then threw them in at the end! It also has veggies in the meatballs, tomato veggie soup, and if you include a side salad, you are on track! It's the perfect Sunday dinner meal or when you are having guests over. This is a really long paragraph, so hopefully you get my point :).

Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish
Meatball and Spaghetti Soup from The Diva Dish

If you made it this far, go ahead and eat some chocolate. You deserve you unique one of a kind son of a gun! Bonjour! xo

White Bean and Chicken Soup

I know that I only have a few sentences to grab your attention, because let's be honest. Reading blogs is all about visual. Pictures. Pictures. And Pictures. So here goes nothing:

I had a dream that Christian Bale and I were eating soup on the set of Little Women, wearing old fashioned gowns. Not him. Me. I also carried a cute white umbrella over my should while he was wearing his batman suit.

Talk about fantasies right?

Long story short, we were eating this soup.

White Bean and Chicken Soup
White Bean and Chicken Soup

Actually no. None of that happened. But I did watch Little Women this weekend and was reminded why I love find interest in Christian. (First name basis relationship, ya feel me.) I'm also married and love my husband. (Side note.) I beg him every day to grow his hair out longer and talk with a deep batman like voice and rent THE suit. He won't do it.

Why? I don't know. It's football season, so he doesn't really know what's happening around him. Unless I show him a little 'side nursing boob', then pretty much I can get him to do anything I want.

Ahhh, marriage.

White Bean and Chicken Soup
White Bean and Chicken Soup

So about this soup. It's a chilly 70 degrees here in the desert, so of course our winter parkas have made their way back into our lives. I would say this is probably my favorite soup to date, mostly because it has a lot of my favorite, as well as my families favorite ingredients in it.

I guess you could say each ingredient holds a special place in each members heart, therefore creating the perfect family.

Now you really need to try it huh?

You see the white beans are for me, the chicken and the corn are my girls, and the green chilies and spices are my husband.

White Bean and Chicken Soup
White Bean and Chicken Soup

I made Ambitious Kitchens Pumpkin Honey Cornbread Muffins to go along side, with a little honey butter, and BAM.

Perfect Sunday dinner.

All that's missing was Christian...

White Bean and Chicken Soup
White Bean and Chicken Soup

White Bean and Chicken Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 TB. EVOO
  • 1/2 onion
  • 2 TB. chopped garlic
  • 3 TB. butter
  • 3 TB. flour
  • 1 c. milk mixed with 4 c. chicken broth
  • 2 cans cannelini beans, drain and rinse
  • 1 can navy beans, drain and rinse
  • 2 c. shredded chicken
  • 1 can diced green chilies
  • 1 c. frozen corn
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil. Add the onions are cook on medium heat, while staring frequently. After a few minutes add the garlic.
  2. Cook until the onions are translucent, and then add the butter and melt it while continually mixing with a whisk.
  3. Next whisk in the flour. Whisk for about 1 minute, then mix in the milk and chicken broth.
  4. Then add in the chicken, chilies, corn, and seasonings.
  5. Let the soup cook for about 10-15 minutes on medium low heat.
  6. Eat immediately and enjoy!
  7. (Optional: You can whisk in a little greek yogurt to each serving to add creaminess. Make sure the soup isn't super hot, or else the yogurt will separate.You might have to adjust the seasonings.)

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White Bean and Chicken Soup
White Bean and Chicken Soup

Now, aren't you glad you read that story? :)

Crockpot Tempeh Veggie Chili

In a perfect world, every man would love their veggies.

They would request green smoothies in the morning, kale chips in their lunches, and tofu stir fry for dinner.

But alas...

I am LOL.

Today, on our way home from an outing, (this was AFTER dinner), my husband asked if we could stop at McDonalds.

To get the new McRib.

The McDump...Or whatever.

One man has not been excited about the McRib coming back, as my husband was. I'm talking, literally salivating.

Despite my intentions to shove veggies down his throat, he has a place in his heart for fast foods...(which in turn are hurting his heart, it's really quite ironic.) I figure I am not the only wifey out there, pleading with their spouses to come clean and switch green, begging them to say goodbye to the scary man dressed in a yellow jumpsuit with bright red hair.

But we don't live in a perfect world, we live in reality.

Reality says that men(and most people in the world) love fast food, and the thought of coming home to a tasty healthy tofu stir fry really doesn't get the average person's taste buds dancing.

But if there is something that I have learned with the hubby, it's that the more 'obvious' it is that the meal is healthy, the less likely he is going to touch it. For example, in no way shape or form would the hubby be excited about a salad topped with tofu.

Buuuuttt, this is a GiNoRmOuS But my friends, if I threw on some sick wit' it salad dressing, yummy crunchy coated nuts, some flavored veggies, a little touch of goat cheese, and a slice of warm buttered bread...

Well then he is more likely to dig in.

Fast forward to Halloween.

Every year my family makes chili and cornbread. This year was no different, except I was going full on vegetarian chili.

My hubby was super nervous when I told him I was making chili for him and a few family members as well...In fact, I am pretty sure he told me, "Make sure it's not a Healthy chili ok?"

I did as I always do, and ignored his suggestions by packing that chili full of veggies, and some crumbled tempeh to give it that hearty meat texture that everyone loves to have in chili.

What did everyone think?

Let's just say their taste buds were salivating enough to eat more than one...even two helpings...

Especially when they could load their chili with cheese, avocados, bread, or chips!!

Crockpot Tempeh Veggie Chili

*This was done in a crockpot, but I assume could be done on the stove*

Ingredients:

1 medium sweet onion finely diced

5-6 large cloves garlic finely diced

1 C. butternut squash cubed

2 yellow bell peppers diced

2 pkg. Tempeh Bacon chopped/diced

3 TB. Sucanat

2 cans garbanzo beans(drained and rinsed)

1 can black beans(drained and rinsed)

1 can diced tomatoes

1/2 c. veggie broth

8 oz. can tomato sauce

2 TB. cornstarch dissolved in 2 TB. cold water

1 tsp. garam masala

1 tsp. coriander

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. oregano

salt & pepper

Directions:

1. Throw all ingredients into a crockpot. Set on high for about 3 hours, and low for about 2 hours. When the chili is done to desired consistency, turn crockpot to 'keep warm' until ready to eat.

This is hands down the best chili I have made so far!

And I owe a lot of it to this bad boy:

source

Tempeh has been my new found love for a while! It's basically cooked and fermented soy beans formed into a little patty. The kind of Tempeh I buy usually has added grains in it too! It doesn't have much flavor, but you can crumble it to the perfect texture to resemble meat crumbles. It gives you that hearty texture of meat, but a lot more nutrition and deliciousness! You can find it at any health food store, even Trader Joes!

For this chili I used Tempeh Bacon, which looks like this:

source

It has an awesome marinated smokey taste! Perfect for chili! :-)

And after our bellies were warm, we decided to take Baby Boo out for her first trick or treating experience!

Baby Boo has always been friendly with others, but I wasn't sure how she would act going up to random doors...

Luckily, that was about as scary as the costumes got....

And door after door, Baby Boo RAN.

Apparently she had one thing in mind...

It was like christmas for her!

Especially since her papa dressed like her idol:

It turned out to be the perfect night with fun costumes, lots of laughter, and full bellies filled with goodness!

Did I mention the leftovers made a delicious chili corn bread casserole? I'll share tomorrow friends!

Who knew a good thing could get even better?! :-)