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Just Add Water? Three Ways to Stretch Your Soup Further

If you are like me, you may have a penchant for eating quickly. You may have had people, specifically a waitress in a Toronto hotel, comment that you are ‘really fast at eating’. No, I have not let that comment go. My point is, whenever I have something delicious, I often wish there was just more of it. However, if I make too much of something, I’m likely to get sick of it if it’s the only thing I eat for a week. I’m faced with a bit of a conundrum which is also paired with my lifelong instinct for frugality. These have led me to investigate how I can use simple little cooking hacks to stretch my soups a little farther without having to make enough to feed an army!


Ok, this may be a little obvious, but just adding water is going to make your soup go a little further. If you stick to a 50/50 ratio between water and whatever flavoured liquid you’re using in your soup (be it tomatoes, a stock type, or a cream), you’re unlikely to dilute it to the point of making it unpalatable. A lot of people are worried about adding water without stock or something to give the soup extra flavour when it is a little thick, but as long as you stick to that golden ratio, you’re not likely to get a gross version of the soup you love!


As we all learned about five years ago when the Banting diet craze hit a head, fat makes you full. The fuller you are, the less you eat, and the less you eat, the more of that delicious, delicious soup you save for later. I can understand some people not wanting to make their soups too fatty – they are meant to be a healthy choice after all. Dumping a bunch of fatty meats (like cut-up sausage or bacon) into a pot of soup seems counterintuitive and even quite sickening. Committing softly by adding beans or lentils to your soup will have a similar effect – it keeps the vegetable content high, adds extra protein to your soup, and makes you fuller faster!


Contrary to what a lot of food websites, diet plans, and Instagram influencers will tell you: starch is not the enemy! As a species, we have been living off starch for tens of thousands of years – the cultivation of cereals was literally the impetus for civilization! The enemy isn’t starch, it’s lack of moderation. Our bodies crave as much starch as possible: it fills us up and helps us retain weight – this was an important evolutionary trait for when we were hunters and gatherers, which is less important now that we have cars that can drive to a supermarket. If I want to stretch my soup a little further, I’m not opposed to having a nice slice of bread on the side or adding a few croutons or crackers into the bowl when I’m eating. The key is to make sure that your soup outweighs the starch you decide on.

These are my tips – what about you? What kinds of magic spells do you put on your food to make sure you don’t blitz through it too quickly?


Ready to make soup?
Find the Creamy Potato, Turnip soup recipe with Microgreens here!

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Tayla Blaire

Tayla Blaire is a South African writer, teacher, epicurean, and (most importantly) mother to all cats. Tayla has been thinking (and subsequently writing) about food since she was a tiny tot after her mother taught her that measuring ingredients was for the weak. If you’re interested to see what Tayla has whipped up recently, check out her Instagram profile @tayla.blaire to see the recipes that she has lovingly filmed in her very own too-small kitchen.

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