Sunday was a horribly dreary day in South Mississippi. I had no motivation and was totally glad it was a scheduled rest day. It rained quite hard in the morning and then stayed grey and gloomy the rest of the day. A perfect day to curl up with a cup of green tea and a book.
It was also perfect weather for soup. I don’t know why rainy days make me crave comfort food, but they do. It’s almost like my internal happiness switch is located in my stomach on rainy days. So off to the cabinet I went to double check the ingredients for my usual go-to soup which is my step-mom’s mom’s (did you follow that? If not, it’s my step-grandma’s) taco soup. I love it because it’s super easy and is comprised of ingredients that are staples in my pantry so I know I always have them on hand. Now, there are about a billion (alright, slight exaggeration…) variations of this recipe on the web but Grammy’s version fits well into my clean eating lifestyle. It’s also hubby approved which is a big bonus since he refuses to join the clean eating bandwagon. Someday, Jody, someday. So here you go:
Clean Taco Soup:
- 1lb ground turkey
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 28oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 15.5oz can red (light or dark) kidney beans, undrained
- 1 16oz can black beans, undrained
- 1 15oz can pinto beans (I like to get the ones with jalapenos), undrained
- 1 15oz can whole kernel corn; drained
- 1 packet clean taco seasoning
- 1 1oz packet of dry ranch dressing
- 1/2 cup water
- Salsa (optional)
- Shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
- Plain greek yogurt (optional)
Brown the turkey and onion together, drain. In a large pot, combine the 1/2 cup water, tomatoes and all of the beans together, including their liquids which will make the base of the soup. Drain the corn and add to the soup mixture. Next, add your browned meat, taco and ranch seasoning, stir. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors get friendly with each other. Ladel soup into bowls and top with salsa, cheese and yogurt.
I understand that Taco Soup is typically served with corn chips but since I don’t eat corn chips, I like to make cornbread. Besides, it’s a healthier option then fried chips. The recipe I use for cornbread comes from Clean Eating Magazine but it’s a savory cornbread and I like mine on the sweet side so I made just a couple changes. If you prefer savory, the original recipe can be found here.
Clean Maple Cornbread:
- 1 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1 cup stone-ground cornmeal (make sure to get only cornmeal & NOT the cornmeal mix)
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 2 egg whites, whisked
- 1 cup skim milk
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- Olive oil cooking spray
Preheat your oven to 400°F. In a mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients: flour, cornmeal and baking powder. In another bowl, combine the wet ingredients: egg whites, milk and maple syrup. Slowly add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Spray your pan with cooking spray (I used a 9×9 but if you like thicker bread you can use and 8×8) and then pour your batter into the pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown on top. Cut into squares and serve with soup. Side note – I like to put my pan in the oven while it’s preheating so it’s hot when I pour the batter in it; it creates a nice crust on the bottom of the cornbread.
Question: What is your favorite rainy day meal?