Traditional recipes

Spinach-Broccoli Soup with Garlic and Cilantro

Spinach-Broccoli Soup with Garlic and Cilantro

Blanching the spinach before blending helps this broccoli soup recipe retain a vibrant green color. Parsley would work in place of the cilantro.


  • 1 head of broccoli (about 10 oz.)
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons virgin coconut oil or olive oil, divided
  • 6 garlic cloves, 4 cloves chopped, 2 cloves thinly sliced
  • 5 (or more) cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • ¾ cup cilantro leaves with tender stems
  • 2 bunches spinach, trimmed
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Recipe Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Separate broccoli stalk from florets. Finely chop florets, transfer to a rimmed baking sheet, and toss with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast, tossing halfway through, until dark brown and tender, 15–20 minutes. Meanwhile, trim and peel broccoli stalk; chop and set aside.

  • Heat 2 Tbsp. coconut oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high. Add onion and chopped garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pot, and cook, checking and stirring occasionally, until onion and garlic are very soft, 25–30 minutes (this long, slow cooking draws maximum flavor out of the vegetables). Add broccoli stem, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5–10 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high, add 5 cups broth, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until flavors meld, 10–15 minutes. Let cool slightly.

  • Set aside 1/4 cup cilantro for serving. Blanch spinach and remaining cilantro in a large pot of boiling salted water until bright green and just wilted, about 30 seconds. Drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking; let cool. Drain; squeeze out excess liquid.

  • Working in batches, purée soup base and blanched spinach and cilantro in a blender until very smooth (make sure lid is slightly ajar to let steam escape; cover with a towel). Transfer to a large bowl or pitcher.

  • Pour soup back into pot and thin with broth, if needed. Taste and season with salt and pepper; keep warm.

  • Heat remaining 1 Tbsp. coconut oil in a small skillet over medium. Cook sliced garlic, swirling skillet often, until golden brown, about 1 minute. Transfer garlic to a small bowl with a slotted spoon; set garlic oil aside.

  • Add roasted broccoli florets, lemon zest, and reserved cilantro leaves to garlic and toss to combine. Serve soup topped with broccoli-garlic mixture and drizzled with reserved garlic oil.

  • Do ahead: Soup (without broccoli-garlic mixture) can be made 4 days ahead, though its bright green color will fade over time. Let cool; cover and chill. Cover and chill raw broccoli florets separately. Roast broccoli and prepare topping just before serving.

Reviews Section

Recipe Summary

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups chopped fennel
  • 1 ⅓ cups sliced leeks
  • 1 ¼ cups chopped celery
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 (10 ounce) zucchini, cubed
  • 1 (10 ounce) package fresh spinach
  • ½ (12 ounce) bag fresh broccoli florets
  • 6 leaves Tuscan kale, ribs removed and cut into small pieces
  • ¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cups hot water as needed
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 teaspoon spirulina powder
  • 10 tablespoons gomasio (toasted, crushed sesame seeds)

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add fennel, leeks, celery, and garlic cloves and saute until soft and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Add zucchini, spinach, broccoli, kale, and parsley mix to combine. Cook until kale and spinach have wilted slightly, about 3 minutes.

Stir in vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat. Puree soup with an immersion blender until smooth, adding hot water if needed to achieve desired consistency. Add avocado and spirulina powder and blend until smooth.


This recipe was created using the contents from the Large CSA Box from the week of 1/24/2021 - 1/31/2021. This soup is almost creamy, without any cream, and full of fresh spinach, broccoli, and romanesco (or cauliflower!) flavor. Perfect for a cold or rainy day. It freezes well, so makes a great make ahead recipe. The chopped salad is very versatile, and can be made with any combination of greens. It makes a lot, so feel free to cut the recipe in half if you have a smaller family.


To make the Spinach Broccoli Soup, to a large soup pot, with lid, heat oil over medium-high heat.

Add garlic and chopped chard stems. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.

Add chopped broccoli, romanesco, and spinach. Stir in spices. Toss to distribute. Cover to steam for about 5 minutes.

Add in vegetable broth, stir, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes. Returning to stir about every 15 to 20 minutes.

Remove from heat. Add in avocado, and carefully puree with an immersion stick blender until smooth. (Alternatively, very carefully add to your tabletop blender in batches.)

Garnish with a few slices of radish, a leaf or two of arugula, a pinch of microgreens, and a drizzle of Citrus Avocado Cream, all floated right on top.

To make the Citrus Avocado Cream dressing, add all ingredients to the base of your blender and blend until silky smooth. If to thick, add a small amount of water or additional orange juice until desired consistency is reached.

Chill until ready to serve. If you have a squeeze bottle available, transfer to a squeeze bottle , which makes drizzling easier.

To make the Chopped Green Salad, first massage the chopped kale thoroughly with about 2 tablespoons of Citrus Avocado Cream.

Then, simply toss with remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Serve with additional radishes and microgreens as garnish, and, of course, a liberal amount of Citrus Avocado Cream.


For the Spinach Broccoli Soup:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 tablespoons minced garlic

1 cup chopped Rainbow Chard stems

1 head broccoli, including stems, roughly chopped, reserving 1/2 cup florets for salad)

1 head Romanesco (or cauliflower), including stems, roughly chopped, reserving 1/2 cup florets for salad)

1/2 box Spinach (about 4 cups leaves)

1/4 cup nutritional yeast, optional

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 tablespoon dried parsley

For garnish: Sliced radishes, arugula, microgreens, Citrus Avocado Cream

For Citrus Avocado Cream:

Flesh from 2 ripe avocados

1 tablespoon minced garlic

For the Chopped Salad:

1 bunch curly kale, stems removed, chopped

1/2 box (about 4 cups) spinach leaves, stems removed, chopped

1 bunch Rainbow Chard, leaves only, stems removed, chopped

Reserved 1/2 cup broccoli florets, chopped

Reserved 1/2 cup romanesco, chopped

1/2 box, about 3 cups, arugula, stems removed, chopped

1 orange, peeled and chopped into segments

1 1/2 cups sliced radishes, reserve a handful for garnish

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Recipe Summary

  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 3/4 tsp. kosher salt, divided
  • 2 (10-oz.) pkg. fresh broccoli florets, divided (about 8 cups)
  • 1 pound fresh baby spinach (about 16 cups)
  • 2 cups unsalted chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 4 ounces French bread, torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 ounces Parmesan cheese, shredded (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (from 1 small lemon)

Preheat oven to 425°F. Bring 4 quarts water and 2 tablespoons of the salt to a boil in a large pot over high. Set 1 cup of the broccoli aside. Add remaining broccoli to pot, and cook 3 minutes. Add spinach, pushing down to submerge in water. Cook 1 minute or until broccoli is tender and spinach is wilted. Remove 1 cup cooking liquid set aside. Drain in a colander, discarding remaining cooking liquid. Run cold water over broccoli and spinach, draining well, until cool, 2 to 3 minutes.

Process cooked, cooled broccoli and spinach, 1 cup reserved cooking liquid, stock, and parsley in a blender until smooth, 1 minute. Transfer to pot stir in half-and-half, 2 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper.

Toss together bread, Parmesan, and 3 tablespoons of the oil. Place in 1 layer on 1 side of a greased rimmed baking sheet. Toss reserved 1 cup broccoli with remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Place in a single layer on other side of baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until broccoli is tender and bread is toasted, 7 to 9 minutes.

Gently reheat soup over medium until steaming, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in lemon juice. Ladle soup into bowls, and top with roasted broccoli and croutons.

Eat your Greens

I wanted to combine the powerful green goodness from both spinach and broccoli, in this easy soup recipe. Spinach, packed with iron, vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin B2, all of which helps the function of red blood cells. The broccoli ensures you get folic acid, potassium, fiber, vitamins K and C &ndash which builds collagen and is a powerful antioxidant agent.

  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 30 g (½ ) small onion, peeled, quartered
  • 80 g (1 ) celery stalk, cut into chunks
  • 40 g (½ ) small carrot, peeled, halved
  • 80 g (½ ) small zucchini
  • 60 g (2 cups) fresh spinach
  • 260 g (1 ) medium russet potato, steamed, peeled, halved, divided
  • ⅛ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 480 ml (2 cups) vegetable stock
  • ½ teaspoon salt, optional
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  1. Place the stock, water, garlic, onion, carrots, asparagus, broccoli, potatoes, spinach, squash, courgette, basil, pepper, salt, and lemon juice into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure lid.
  2. Select Variable 1.
  3. Turn machine on and slowly increase to the highest speed.
  4. Blend for 5 minutes 30 seconds or until heavy steam escapes from the vented lid.
  5. Reduce speed to Variable 2 and remove the lid plug.
  6. Add garbanzo beans through the lid plug opening and blend for 5 seconds.

Introduction to Soups

A warm bowl of soup can be as comforting as it is nutritious. Not only can a cup of soup serve as a starter in a multi-course meal, but it can be paired with a salad, making it a fast and nutritious meal by itself.

A warm bowl of soup can be as nutritious as it is comforting. Not only can a bowl of soup serve as a starter in a multi-course meal but also it can be paired with a salad, making it a fast and healthy meal by itself. Soups are a great way to use leftover meat, grains and vegetables. When blended, even the pickiest eater will not recognize all the healthy ingredients that can be added to soups. They are easy to make and can be prepared in advance and simmered for a long while. Alternatively, the ingredients can be put into a crock-pot in the morning and when you arrive home at the end of the day, the soup will be ready.

The recipes in this chapter demonstrate that soups can be a tasty way to add vegetables, lentils and grains to your diet. When making soups at home be sure to follow these suggestions:

  • Reduce the amount of salt and instead add black pepper, ginger, herbs and spices to boost the flavor.
  • For creamy soups, use skim milk, evaporated skim milk, non-fat dry milk powder, or calcium-fortified soy milk instead of water, whole milk or cream. Pureed cooked potatoes or cooked rice can also help to thicken soups and give them a rich, creamy consistency.
  • Add frozen or leftover vegetables to increase fiber, vitamins and minerals in your soup. Spinach, broccoli, corn, celery, carrots and potatoes work well in most soups.
  • Add beans and whole grains for more fiber and protein. For example try potatoes, beans, lentils or lima beans.

So in the future, when you wonder what you should make for dinner, think soup!

Spinach, Broccoli & Thai Green Curry Soup

Hi Foodies, it’s so exciting to be able to share a recipe with you via Amcarmen’s Kitchen and I want to say a big thank you to Allison for organising such a wonderful global blogging experience. Last year, I was able to cook and collaborate in the same kitchen with Allison, where were exchanged some delicious recipes. If you haven’t had the chance to read them, here are the links to my Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie and Cookies & Cream.

My friends call me a chilli fiend. I can’t help it, I am after all Indian. I just love the pungency and zing it adds to soups, curries and stews. I created this recipe on one of those cold winter Sydney evenings when feeling a little bit under the weather. It’s packed full of delicious super greens, fragrant herbs and spices that will help to reinvigorate your senses. Make a big batch and pack it for work the next mayor freeze in snap-lock bags for 1-2 months.



For the green curry paste

  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled
  • 5cm piece of ginger, washed
  • 2 spring onions
  • 1 bunch coriander, washed, roots and stems scrubbed
  • 1 bunch Thai basil, washed (optional)
  • 2 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2-3 small green chillies
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 cup firmly packed English Spinach, washed and finely chopped
  • 1 broccoli, cut into florets, stem diced
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • Lime wedges
  • Extra coconut milk, to serve
  1. Roughly chop the garlic clove, ginger, spring onions, coriander leaves, root and stems, and Thai basil. Place these and the remaining ingredients into a blender along with a 1/4 cup water. Blitz to form a smooth paste. You may need to add some more water to help the mixture along.
  2. Heat the sunflower oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the curry paste to the saucepan and cook, stirring occasionally until fragrant. Add the spinach and broccoli and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add 1L cold water and cook over medium-high heat for 10 minutes or until the broccoli stems are tender and the spinach is wilted. Allow to cool.
  3. Purée the mixture using a stick blender, then return to the heat and add the coconut milk. Allow to heat through. Serve with lime wedges and a drizzle of coconut milk. This soup goes really well with turkish borek or spinach and ricotta triangles.

For more tasty recipes and Sydney food adventures head to

About Brendon
I’m a food writer, blogger and passionate home cook living and working in Sydney. By day I work at one of the world’s fastest growing premium restaurant delivery services, and by night I cook, style and photograph recipes for my award-winning recipe blog. I really can’t stop smiling, believe me, I’ve tried and probably lasted 2 seconds. Sharing food, stories and recipes with family and friends makes me happy, which is exactly why I created “Smiling Chef”. I often try to include a selection colourful vegetables in my cooking, for both it’s nutritional benefits, and the fact that it makes such great #foodporn for Instagram. Get in touch if you need #instaworthy shots of your restaurant or cafe food for your website and social networks. I’m also keen singer and pianist and also love street and landscape photography – see more at @my_omd_and_me.

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Quick and Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice


  • 1/2 head of cauliflower
  • 1 large carrot, chopped up into smallish pieces
  • 1 big handful of snow peas, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 1- 1 1/2 tablespoons of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon tamari (or regular soy sauce)
  • white pepper, to taste
  • sea salt, to taste
  • chili pepper flakes, to taste
  • toasted sesame seeds to garnish
  • diced green onions to garnish
  • cilantro sprigs


    Prep your cauliflower. Cut the heads of the cauliflower off and feed the heads and top of the stem through the grater on your food processor. You might also be able to use a blender on pulse or hand grate using a cheese grater (but who has time for that). (1-2 minutes)
  1. In a 10-12 inch saute pan, add about 2 teaspoons of your oil (not two tablespoons!) and heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, shallot and carrots to your pan. Saute until the shallots are transparent and the carrots have softened just a bit. (

Love cauliflower? Craving something to warm you up on a cool fall or winter evening? Check out my Hazelnut and Cauliflower Soup. It’s also delicious and surprisingly healthy.

Spinach Broccoli Pasta Casserole

What is the first thing (or one of the first things!) that comes to your mind when you think of weeknight dinners. A casserole! Even better if it is a pasta casserole. And a whole lot more better if it has lot of vegetables in it – all mixed with the saucy yet stretchy cheese. It is a perfect option for a meatless monday dinner. And the best part (yes, there is one more) is that you can make this ahead over the weekend and have one less thing to think about on that particularly long day of a Monday, especially when all you want to do is to finish feeding the family and yourself and collapse into your bed.

All you need to do is to get back home, pop the casserole into the oven, put on some music, pour yourself a glass of wine and pretend it is Friday. Ok ok, I think I forgot the kids. Well, I tried.

Spinach Broccoli Pasta Casserole – The Recipe

  • 2 cups bow tie pasta or any other short pasta
  • enough water to cook the pasta
  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil or butter + 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar
  • ½ cup grated parmesan
  • 2 cups chopped spinach
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • ½ tsp red chili flakes
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan
  • ¼ cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp minced parsley

Cook the pasta in salted water, take it out before it gets al dente, drain and keep aside.

In a heavy bottomed pan, heat the oil and add the flour to it and whisk well till well incorporated and the color changes ever so slightly. Add the vegetable broth to it and once it thickens, add the cheeses and switch off heat.

In a separate pan, heat the 1 tbsp oil and saute the spinach and broccoli till the spinach wilts. Add garlic powder, salt, pepper and the red chili flakes.

Preheat the oven to 350F. In an oven proof casserole, mix the drained pasta, cheese sauce and sautéed vegetables. Mix the extra parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and parsley and top the casserole with it. Bake for 20 mins or so, until the cheese starts to melt on top.

Tip: To make ahead, do not bake in the oven. Follow steps till you top the casserole with the cheese – bread crumbs mix and pop in the refrigerator or freezer. Bring to almost room temperature before putting it in the oven.

Emeril’s Asparagus Soup Steps

  1. Drop the tough ends of the asparagus into the simmering chicken broth. A large saucepan or medium soup pot will do. Let the broth continue to simmer while you finish working on the asparagus and preparing the onion and garlic.
  2. Cut the buds from the asparagus spears to use as garnish. Cut the remainder of the spear into 1 inch pieces.
  3. Melt the butter over medium heat in a medium sized skillet. Sauté the onion and garlic together until they are transparent. Do not brown or caramelize the onions lest the onion flavor overpower the asparagus.
  4. Lift the tough ends of the asparagus from the broth using a slotted spoon. As soon as they are cool, the chickens can have them. Drop the asparagus buds into the broth and let them cook for 1 minute. Pull the buds out with the slotted spoon and spread them on a cool plate so they will stop cooking. The asparagus color should be bright green.
  5. Add the tender asparagus pieces and wine to the stock and allow to simmer until the asparagus is tender.
  6. Add the onion-garlic mixture to the soup pot.
  7. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup. Add the cream and blend some more.
  8. Mix in salt and pepper. Taste and make necessary adjustments.
  9. Ladle the soup into warm cups or bowls and garnish with the asparagus buds.

If you have any leftovers, store them in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container. To warm them up, warm them slowly and carefully so as not to cause the cream to separate. If it does separate, the flavor is still good, but the visual appeal is compromised.