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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Editor's Choice: Real Simple Delicious

As real winter finally settled in a few weeks ago, my “I want soup” reflex kicked in. Actually, I enjoy soup all year round, but there’s something about hot soup on a cold day—it’s one of the ultimate comfort foods. Like the kid in the TV soup ad, I used to blissfully enjoy soups of all kinds, without concern about its nutritional contents. 

In recent years, however, I find myself turning the can or packet over to check ingredients, especially the sodium level. That’s the one that is usually the show stopper and the can or packet goes back on the shelf.  I do still get my soup fix when eating out, but walking a couple of blocks with a small container of soup in the winter presents its own problems, and cold soup. And I have neither the talent nor the time to make my own soup.

Enter Real Simple Delicious ( The line of soups are already made, you simply open the soup pouch, pour into a pot or microwaveable dish and reheat. Like they say, real simple.  I, however, posed another challenge for the soups. You are supposed to eat the soups in a few days. I checked with the company and was told if that wasn’t the case, I should pop the pouch into the freezer.

So there I was one afternoon with a frozen block of Zucchini soup. To be honest, it didn’t seem too promising. But after thawing it out enough, I slipped it into the pot. After a few minutes, the delightful aroma of the soup came up. The soup is gluten-free and dairy-free, yet has a creamy consistency, which comes from the rice milk. It also has some substance from shreds of zucchini, carrots, celery and onions. It also has a little bit of sweetness and a mild kick from poblano chile. It was a very good choice. And as an added bonus, it only had about 402 mg. of sodium.

The soups come in a 12 ounce pouch and in flavors that include Carrot Ginger, Azteca Veggie, French Onion and Red Lentil and Asian Lemongrass. They would be perfect for retailers to display as part of a winter promotion or healthy eating.

As for me, I have a Tomato soup pouch waiting for me in the freezer.