With the return of cold weather comes the return of delicious and hearty soups and stews. Warm, inviting, and easy to make, soups and stews are the perfect reprieves from the common woes of winter: harsh weather, sickness, and/or that I-don't-want-to-get-out-of-bed, it's-way-too-cold-to-cook feeling. Soup can be frozen for up to three months, making it a versatile and simple go-to meal for now and later. But not all soups freeze the same; it's important to double-check your ingredients before you start filling up mason jars.
Typically, bean and lentil, rice, broth, and meat-based soups all freeze (and most importantly, reheat) very well. Pureed vegetable soups can typically be frozen and reheated with few complications, but just make sure your puree doesn't consist of any of the following:
Dairy, seafood, corn starch, and potato-based soups typically don't freeze well. Dairy and potato-based soups' ingredients are likely to separate while frozen, dramatically affecting flavor and consistency once reheated. Seafood is also prone to developing off-flavor, and soups thickened with corn starch or eggs can reheat thin and watery. Extra ingredients like pasta, tortilla chips, fresh herbs, and cheeses should also be omitted before freezing to avoid an overcooked, mushy, wilted, and/or sour mess.
We've compiled ten mouthwateringly delicious soups and stews that are easy to make and even easier to freeze. Keep reading for some bonus pro-soup-saver tips (if you can keep yourself from running to the grocery store to make one of these amazing recipes, that is).
Packed with toasty flavors of cumin, coriander, and allspice, this spicy fava bean soup will only be hard to freeze because you'll want to eat the whole batch all at once. This recipe calls for Greek yogurt and pistachios as toppings; make sure you omit these ingredients before freezing.
Don't let the word 'vegan' deter you -- the hearty combination of kidney beans, carrots, and peppers will leave you full and satisfied. Plus, your wallet will stay full, too. Between the produce, canned beans, and salt and pepper needed for this simple soup, you can make huge batches of delicious, legume-y goodness for around ten bucks.
We've all been there -- we buy a huge tub of greens in the hopes of eating healthy for the week, just to find them wilted and souring two days (or was it six?) later. Don't just toss them out; try this nutritious and simple lettuce (any mixed greens will work) soup. Pro tip: double the spice recommendations listed and add cayenne powder, smoked paprika, and cumin to taste.
I'm not entirely convinced lentils aren't magical. Somehow, a moderately-sized, two-dollar bag can last me months, and a single serving inexplicably transforms in the pot to feed (and fill up) several bellies at once. This legume-and-rice power combo is the perfect freezable soup to have on hand during cold winter months.
A freezer-friendly alternative to the classic chicken noodle, this chicken and rice soup is packed with mineral-rich veggies, tender chicken breast, and filling long-grain brown rice. This recipe can easily be made vegetarian by substituting white beans for the chicken.
Full of rich beef chuck and tomato flavor, this beef stew is sure to melt any frost lingering on the ends of your nose and toes this winter. The ingredients of this recipe can be pre-frozen together and added to a slow cooker for 5-6 hours for an effortlessly delicious and hearty meal. If you plan on freezing the stew right away, omit the corn starch until you're reheating to be served.
Creamy, savory, and smoky, this ham and split pea soup is bound to be a recurring favorite in your cold-weather meal rotation. Since the potatoes are mashed together with the peas in this recipe, you don't have to worry about your texture changing too drastically in the freezer. For a vegetarian alternative, add a few drops of liquid smoke and omit the ham.
If you haven't yet experienced the rich, buttery flavor of cashew cream, this is a perfect way to do so. The boldness of the carrot and ginger cut through the earthy creaminess of the cashews, creating a delicious, dairy-free, vegan soup that is certain to please even the most carnivorous of your household.
This flavorful soup takes a half hour to make and can last you up to three months -- we can't think of a better time-saving trick, can you? The best part about this recipe is the way the ingredients continue to marinate and intensify as it's stored.
We recommend using glass mason jars for the freshest seal on your frozen soups and stews, but be careful not to overwhelm the glass with drastic heat changes.