Anti-Inflammatory Low-FODMAP Zucchini Carrot Soup (Vegan, Paleo)
Here is a creamy, anti-inflammatory soup, rich in vegetables, gentle on digestion, and ready in 30 minutes.
I like to keep my personal life private, but when it comes to struggles that affect my gut health, I'm more than eager to share. Because chances are I'm not alone in the struggle and likely someone out there can relate.
I'm currently working with an amazing functional nutritionist, undergoing an elimination diet in order to deal with some issues that have crept up in the last few years. For the time being, my job is to keep my good gut bacteria happy and work towards destroying and reducing some of the culprits that thrive on prebiotics, starches, and sugars. Therefore most of those have had to go.
Don't get me wrong, prebiotics are amazing and beneficial; that is if you have a "normally functioning gut". But for the next few months, the name of my game is Low-FODMAP and Paleo.
The reason I've put off going on an elimination diet this long mostly has to do with giving up onion and garlic. The reaction I get from friends and family when I tell them that what I'm doing is: "What??, No, I can't...I won't. I wouldn't". But I did because I had to, and now I'm trying to make the best of it, however I can, by creating foods that still taste great, are nourishing to my gut, and actually help assist all the good gut bacteria in there.
I was inspired by a recipe I recently had to create a delightful, creamy, and nourishing low-fodmap soup that's very easy on digestion. It avoids some of the typical gut irritants that can cause issues in those with sensitive ones. I also wanted to have an anti-inflammatory soup on hand for those times when things are not so great. Additionally, this is a fiber-rich soup to help move things along in the digestive tract.
So without further ado, let's get to the recipe.
- It's Low-FODMAP, vegan, and paleo
Antioxidant-rich and anti-inflammatory
- Easy on digestion
- A great way to get children to eat more vegetables too
Rich in fiber
- It's also detoxifying as it is rich in cilantro
- Excellent low-fodmap lunch
Garlic Infused Olive Oil
Garlic-infused olive oil is one of the nice loopholes you'll find on the Low-FODMAP diet. You can find it in most grocery stores or order it online. It is a staple in my house. In a pinch, you can also make your own garlic-infused olive oil by heating ¼ olive oil and a large clove of garlic over low heat for 2 minutes, removing it from the heat and letting it sit for 10-15 minutes. Use it right away or store it in the garlic-infused olive oil refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Whenever possible, I prefer using organic carrots and organic produce in general. As this soup is intended to be healing, I want to use as few pesticide-exposed vegetables as possible.
You can use 2 large zucchini or 4-5 medium ones. You can't really go wrong if you have a little extra here.
So that it's easy to digest, it's best to remove all large stems from the kale and chop it into small bite-size pieces. You'll need 3-4 cups.
Ginger is one of the most powerful gut-healing agents as it helps with constipation as well as healing an unsettled stomach and soothing indigestion.
Including spices like ground ginger, turmeric, coriander, garam masala, and paprika, not only give this soup flavor but boost its antioxidant properties.
Whether you're using vegetable, chicken, or bone broth, I highly recommend that you use a low-sodium one so you can control how much salt goes into your soup. Also, most broths contain onion and garlic, so making your own is a good idea (by avoiding both), or you can use a LOW-FODMAP broth base.
The brand of coconut milk doesn't really matter but the less processed the better. Also, make sure it is always full fat.
Believe it or not, it is the lime juice that balances this dish so perfectly, taking the edge off of the coconut milk, and making it creamy without being overly coconutty.
As an incredibly powerful antioxidant-rich and detoxifying herb, cilantro definitely takes one of the top spots for me. It helps improve digestion, reduces gas and bloating, is antiviral and antibacterial, and helps reduce heavy metals from the body. It's also beneficial for reducing anxiety and stabilizing mood.
Step 1. In a large soup pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add chopped carrots, zucchini, and ¼ teaspoon of salt and cook them stirring regularly for about 5-7 minutes.
Step 2. Add fresh ginger, all spices and ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Stir for 1-2 minutes until all spices are aromatic.
Step 3. Pour in 3 cups broth, ½ cup coconut milk, and chopped kale. If you're able, make a little bouquet with 7-8 cilantro stems, tie them with kitchen twine and add them to the soup. This will infuse it even more (you'll remove the stems at the end). Simmer the soup for 20-25 minutes until all vegetables are very soft. If the carrots are not soft, cook the soup for an additional 5 minutes. You want to be able to easily blend. If you want additional broth, feel free to add another cup.
Step 4. Turn off the heat and using a submersion blender, give the soup a few blitzes until some of it is creamy but still has visible vegetables. Add 2 rounded tablespoons of cilantro into the soup along with the lime juice. Adjust seasoning. Sir and serve right away.
*The soup can be refrigerated for 4-5 days.
What Are FODMAPs?
Low-FODMAPs (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols) are carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in people who have sensitive guts. These carbohydrates tend to absorb a lot of water and ferment in the colon, causing the unpleasant symptoms many struggles with, such as bloating, constipation or diarrhea, and general discomfort. Monash University provides a comprehensive list of all things FODMAP and is a fantastic resource for those who are following a short-term or long-term FODMAP diet.
How Can Soup Help With Constipation and Bloating?
One of the biggest culprits of constipation is not getting enough water and fiber. Consuming soups rich in vegetables and broth, delivers both liquid and fiber, to help things move along the intestinal tract. Incorporate soup with at least one meal every day, if you can.
What Makes This Soup Low-FODMAP?
By avoiding the biggest triggers like onion and garlic and including gut-healing vegetables like carrots, zucchini, and kale as well as broth, and good fat, we are creating a soup that's nourishing and delicious. The fiber and liquid are an added bonus for soothing inflamed guts. Since we are using no animal products, this soup is also vegan as well as paleo, for those who follow the lifestyle.
Is There An Alternative To Cilantro?
I know that not everyone is a cilantro lover like me, and some may not do well at all with it. In this case, you can use a substitute like basil or parsley or just leave the cilantro out entirely.
Can You Use Spinach Instead of Kale?
Most certainly. If kale is not your thing, you can substitute spinach for it. Since spinach is tender and cooks very easily. Wait to add it in the last 5 minutes or so of cooking.
What Is An Alternative To A Submersion Blender?
If you don't have a submersion blender, simply remove 2-3 cups of the soup and add it to a regular blender. Pulse it a few times and return it to the pot. Stir until the soup is incorporated.
More Soup Recipes You Might Like
Curried Butternut Squash Soup
Bone Broth Vegetable Soup (Vegan Option)
Coconut Cilantro Sweet Potato Soup
Tuscan Sausage And Kale Soup (Vegan Option, Paleo)
Mom’s Easy And Nourishing Vegetable Soup
Anti-Inflammatory Low-FODMAP Zucchini Carrot Soup (Vegan, Paleo)
- 1 tablespoon garlic infused extra virgin olive oil
- 5 organic carrots, peeled and chopped into small cubes
- 4-5 medium zucchini, chopped into small pieces
- 3 cups kale, stems removed and chopped into small pieces
- 1" knob fresh grated ginger
- 2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ¼ teaspoon ground sweet paprika
- ¼ teaspoon garam masala
- 3-4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- ½ cup full-fat coconut milk
- juice of 1 lime
- Cilantro (divided into leaves and stems)
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add chopped carrots, zucchini, and ¼ teaspoon of salt and cook them stirring regularly for about 5-7 minutes.
- Add fresh ginger and all spices and ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Stir for 1-2 minutes until all spices are aromatic.
- Pour 4 cups broth, 1 cup coconut milk, and chopped kale. If you’re able, make a little bouquet with 7-8 cilantro stems, tie them with kitchen twine and add them to the soup. This will infuse it even more (you’ll remove the stems at the end). Simmer the soup for 20-25 minutes until all vegetables are very soft. If carrots are not soft enough, cook soup for another 5 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and using a submersion blender, give the soup a few blitzes until some of it is creamy but still has visible vegetables. Add 2 rounded tablespoons of cilantro into the soup along with the lime juice. Sir and serve right away.
- The soup can be refrigerated for 4-5 days.
- 1. If you don't have a submersion blender, feel free to add 2-3 cups of soup to a regular blender, pulse a few times and return back to pot.
- 2. An alternative to cilantro is basil or parsley.
- 3. A substitute for kale can be spinach or any tender green of your choice, but I think spinach would work best in this soup.
- 4. You can make your own garlic-infused olive oil by heating ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil and a large clove of garlic over low heat for 2 minutes, remove it from the heat and let it sit for 10-15 minutes.