Mediterranean Diet Soups And Stews

How to Lose 15-20 Pounds by Eating Soup

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Mediterranean Diet Soups And Stews

Many Americans grew up on soup from a can, or those little packets of dried noodles and yellow powder that, when mixed with water, transformed into something resembling chicken noodle soup.

What a far cry from the fresh soups and stews of the Mediterranean, infused with fresh herbs and vegetables just picked from the garden or plucked from the vendor, flavored with just a hint of savory lamb or chicken, egg, or fish, mussels, oysters, and shrimp straight from the sea.

Get back in touch with nature’s bounty with these Mediterranean-inspired recipes for soups and stews that make the most of the very best ingredients.

This Spanish favorite is hard for some to comprehend. Cold soup? And why not? Loaded with nutritious, fresh vegetables, gazpacho has a sparkling fresh taste with just a hint of spice-the perfect remedy for a torrid summer day, especially if you are feeling too lazy even to chew.

Traditional gazpacho often includes bread ground into the soup, but we prefer a more intense vegetable flavor and like to make this soup sans bread.


4 peeled, seeded, chopped ripe tomatoes (To peel, immerse tomatoes for about 30 seconds in boiling water to loosen the skins, plunge into ice water, then peel when cool enough to handle. The skins should slip right off. Cut in half and squeeze out the seeds, then chop the “meat.”)

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup chopped red onion

½ cup chopped bell pepper (any color)

½ cup peeled, chopped cucumber

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

Juice of one freshly squeezed lemon

1 cup organic vegetable broth with enough ice cubes

added to make 1½ cups liquid

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

Dash of cayenne pepper

How to make

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade or a blender container, combine all the ingredients and process until smooth.

Chill at least 2 hours, or overnight. Serve from a pitcher on the veranda, or take it to the beach!

We love bean soup. Filling, warm, hearty, and soul nourishing, this bean soup, inspired by traditional recipes from Tuscany, nourishes all year long but makes an especially nice supper on a chilly fall evening.


1 large yellow onion, chopped

2 ribs celery, chopped, including some of the greens

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon flour

1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary

1 large bay leaf

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

organic chicken broth

One cup frozen baby lima beans, rinsed and drained

One 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

One 15-ounce can red beans, rinsed and drained

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 medium red potato, unpeeled (cut out eyes and bad spots), cut into ½-inch cubes

2 sliced carrots

1 cup packed, slivered spinach leaves

How to make

In a large saucepan, sauté the onion, celery, and garlic in the oil 2 to 3 minutes; stir in the flour, herbs, garlic, and pepper, and sauté until the onions are tender, 2 to 3 minutes longer.

Add the chicken broth, beans (you can add the lima beans, frozen), and tomato paste to the saucepan; heat to boiling.

Add the barley, potato, and carrots. Return to a low simmer, and cook for 25 minutes. Stir in the spinach. Cook for 5 minutes more.

Remove from heat, fish out the bay leaf, and serve hot with a good loaf of bread.

This delicious stew features tender bits of lamb in a rich, savory sauce. Traditionally, cooks would prepare this stew using homemade stock, but if you don’t have the time to make your own stock (we never seem to!), you can buy many different varieties of very good organic beef, chicken, and vegetable broth.

The stew will still be good, warming, and comforting. The long stewing time fills the stew with lamb flavor but the bulk of the ingredients are vegetables and herbs, each of which perfume the stew in its own unique way.


1 pound lean, boneless lamb shank

1 tablespoon flour

1 tablespoon cumin

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 ribs of celery, diced

1 small sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes

3 cups homemade beef stock or purchased organic

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

How to make

Cut the lamb into 1-inch cubes. In a small bowl, mix the flour, cumin, ginger, and cinnamon. Add the lamb and toss to coat all the pieces.

Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil releases its aroma, add the lamb along with any leftover seasoning mix, and sauté until the meat is browned on all sides. Remove the meat with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Turn heat down to medium. Add onion, garlic, carrot, celery, and sweet potato to the skillet. Cook, stirring constantly, until vegetables just begin to brown, about 10 minutes.

Add 1 cup beef stock to the skillet, scraping to release any bits of meat and vegetables stuck to the skillet. Add lamb and remaining stock.

Bring stew to a boil, then turn heat down to low. Simmer the stew for 1 hour, adding more beef stock or water as necessary to keep the stew from drying out and sticking. Turn heat to medium-low, and simmer for 1 hour. Serve hot or warm, with pita bread.

Enjoy these wonderful Mediterranean recipes and hope you have a healthier life !

Mediterranean Diet Recipes: Hearty Stews

Mediterranean Diet Cookbook For Dummies

Stews are a great one-pot meal. From Morocco to Italy, you can find some amazing new stews to bring to the family table. Even though they often take a while to cook, they’re usually very simple to prepare. They’re the perfect meal to quickly throw together on a Sunday afternoon and then enjoy the wonderful aroma as the pot simmers all afternoon.

Chicken Stew with Chickpeas and Plum Tomatoes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 skinless chicken thighs

1 small onion, chopped

1 celery stalk, chopped

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

One 14.5-ounce can chickpeas, drained

One 28-ounce can whole plum tomatoes, with juice

6 cups low-sodium chicken stock

1/4 cup red lentils

1/2 cup long-grain rice

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

In a large stock pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the chicken thighs and cook for 3 minutes on each side. Add the onion, celery, spices, and chickpeas and cook for 3 minutes to heat the spices.

Pour in the tomatoes (with their juice), stock, lentils, and rice. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Stir in the lemon juice and divide the stew into six bowls. Garnish each bowl with 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro and serve.

Per serving: Calories 346 (From Fat 82); Fat 9g (Saturated 2g); Cholesterol 38mg; Sodium 721mg; Carbohydrate 47g (Dietary Fiber 6g); Protein 22g.

Seafood Stew with Shrimp, Cod, and Tomatoes

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, sliced, plus 1 whole clove

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons tomato paste

One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes

1-1/2 cups dry white wine

One 8-ounce bottle clam juice

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Zest of 1 small orange

1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed

2 pounds cod fillets, cut into 2-inch pieces

1 pound uncooked large shrimp, peeled and deveined

6 slices French bread or crusty whole-grain bread

1 cup parsley, chopped

In a large stock pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, sliced garlic, and red pepper flakes and cook for 8 minutes, stirring every minute.

Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, wine, clam juice, bay leaf, thyme, zest, and fennel seeds. Bring the mixture to a boil, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the fish and shrimp and cook for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, broil the bread until lightly toasted on both sides, 4 to 6 minutes. Rub the raw garlic clove over each piece.

Season the soup with salt, stir in the parsley, and serve along with the bread.

Per serving: Calories 417 (From Fat 49); Fat 5g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 180mg; Sodium 790mg; Carbohydrate 32g (Dietary Fiber 3g); Protein 49g.

Tangine Stew

Prep Time: 12 minutes, plus refrigeration time

Cook Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon coriander

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon turmeric

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

One 1/2-inch piece ginger, grated or minced

2 cloves garlic, sliced

Peel of 1 preserved lemon, or 1 tablespoon preserved lemon peel, chopped

4 cups low-sodium chicken stock

1 cup pitted green olives, halved

One 2-inch cinnamon stick

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine the first eight ingredients and rub the mixture on the chicken. Allow the chicken to sit in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours; afterward, sprinkle the chicken lightly with flour.

Heat the olive oil in a large cast-iron Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add half the chicken and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove from the pan and repeat with the remaining chicken. Drain the chicken on paper towels.

Add the onion, ginger, and garlic to the hot pan and sauté for 5 minutes or until tender. Add the lemon peel strips to the pan and then return the chicken to the pan.

Add the stock, olives, bay leaf, and cinnamon stick and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 1 hour or until the chicken is tender. Remove the cinnamon stick and bay leaf and stir in the cilantro; add salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Per serving: Calories 228 (From Fat 93); Fat 10g (Saturated 2g); Cholesterol 76mg; Sodium 499mg; Carbohydrate 11g (Dietary Fiber 1g); Protein 23g.

Preserved lemons are lemons that have been pickled in salt and their own juices; they’re common in Middle Eastern and Moroccan cooking. You can also buy just the preserved lemon peel so that you don’t have to deal with the rest of the lemon. Look for these products in ethnic grocery stores.

Beef Stew with Red Wine

Cook Time: 2 hours, 45 minutes

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, cut into 8 wedges

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

2 pounds beef chuck shoulder, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 carrots, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds

2 celery stalks, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces

2 cups crimini mushrooms, quartered

2 cloves garlic

2 sprigs thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

2 cups red wine

One 14.5-ounce can diced or petite diced tomatoes

2 cups low-sodium beef stock

1 teaspoon granulated sugar

Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until hot. Brown the onions in the oil for 5 minutes and remove them from the pan with tongs.

Meanwhile, combine the flour, salt, and pepper; dredge the beef in the flour mixture, shaking off the excess. Add the meat to the pan and brown on all sides, about 10 minutes total.

Return the onions to the pot and stir in the carrots, celery, mushrooms, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, and oregano. Add the wine, tomatoes, stock, and sugar, stirring to blend.

Bring the mixture to a boil and cover; drop the temperature to low and continue to cook for 2-1/2 to 3 hours or until the meat is tender. Stir in the parsley and serve.

Per serving: Calories 291 (From Fat 73); Fat 8g (Saturated 2g); Cholesterol 47mg; Sodium 418mg; Carbohydrate 20g (Dietary Fiber 3g); Protein 21g.

2:53 pm Updated by

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