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Fertility Foods: 5 Nutritionist-Approved Winter Soups

December 8th, 2022 | 7 min. read

By Sierra Dehmler

It's officially soup season, and we have some delicious, fertility-friendly recipes for you to try! Whether you serve them to family and friends or store them in the freezer for an easy weeknight dinner, we hope you enjoy these yummy, warming winter soups.

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Foods for Fertility

When we call a recipe “fertility-friendly,” what exactly do we mean? It means that there are nutrient-dense ingredients specifically built into the recipes, giving you the biggest bang for your buck nutrition-wise.

💡Pro tip: Not only are these soups super tasty, but they are rich in immune-boosting vitamins, folic acid for pre-conception/conception health and other prenatal necessities.

Want a few tips to take these recipes to the next level?

  • Use lower sodium broths whenever possible.
  • When buying anything canned, make sure it’s BPA-free.
  • Make these recipes your own by adding your favorite whole grain, bean, or healthy starch. We recommend quinoa, chickpeas, sweet potatoes, black beans, or ancient grains!
  • Have veggies in the fridge that need to be used up? Toss them into a soup to make it even heartier.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment!

5 Fertility-Friendly Winter Soup Recipes

Note: These recipes were brought to us by AMG Catering & Events and have been reviewed and approved by Illume Fertility's Nutrition Team. Enjoy!

1. White Bean and Kale Soup

Makes 6 servings
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 large garlic cloves, crushed or minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cups chopped raw kale
  • 4 cups low-fat, low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans white beans, such as cannellini or navy, undrained
  • 4 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian herb seasoning
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup chopped parsley

In a large pot, heat olive oil. Add garlic and onion; sauté until soft.  Add kale and sauté, stirring, until wilted. Add 3 cups of broth, 2 cups of beans, and all of the tomato, herbs, salt, and pepper. Simmer 5 minutes.

In a blender or food processor, mix the remaining beans and broth until smooth. Stir into soup to thicken. Simmer 15 minutes. Ladle into bowls; sprinkle with chopped parsley.

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2. Black Bean Soup with Jalapeños and Cilantro

Makes 4 servings
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1-2 teaspoons chopped jalapeño chili with seeds, divided
  • 2 15-16-ounce cans black beans, undrained
  • 1 15-ounce can petite diced tomatoes in juice
  • 1 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Chopped green onions
  • Crumbled feta cheese

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, and garlic; sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 6 minutes. Mix in cumin and 1 teaspoon jalapeño. Add beans, tomatoes with juice, and broth; bring soup to boil.

Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until carrots are tender, about 15 minutes. Transfer 3 cups of soup to blender and pureé until smooth. Return pureé to pot.  Simmer soup until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes.

Season to taste with salt, pepper, and remaining 1 teaspoon jalapeño, if desired.

💡Pro tip: You don't have to eat "perfectly" every day (or any day). Small, sustainable nutrition changes - like adding in more veggies, cooking at home more often or drinking more water throughout the day - will be most beneficial in the long run. 

3. Low-Fat Butternut Squash Bisque

Makes 10 servings
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 packages already “cubed” butternut squash
  • 3 sweet potatoes (peeled and cubed)
  • 1 bunch of leeks (cleaned and chopped)
  • 6 carrots (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 quart apple cider
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 12 oz can evaporated milk (or other milk of your choice) 
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste

In a large soup pot, sauté leeks in butter for about 10 minutes. Then add squash, sweet potatoes, carrots, cider, orange juice, and chicken broth. Bring this to a boil until the potatoes and squash are very soft.

Remove from heat and add can of evaporated milk or other milk of your choice. Using hand blender, pureé the soup. Season with salt and pepper, and serve nice and hot!

Want more mouthwatering fertility-friendly recipes?

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4. Curried Lentil Soup with Chickpeas 

Makes 4 servings
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped, divided
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) curry powder
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 15- to 16-ounce can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained, rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced 1 lemon, cut into 6 wedges

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion and carrot; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until onion is translucent, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Add half of chopped garlic; stir until vegetables are soft but not brown, about 4 minutes longer.

Add 2 tablespoons curry powder; stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add lentils and 2 cups chicken stock and 2 cups apple juice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Increase heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until lentils are tender, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, pureé chickpeas, lemon juice, 1/4 cup water, remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and remaining garlic in processor. Add chickpea pureé and butter to lentil soup. Season to taste with salt.

5. Tomato Dill Soup with Brown Rice

Makes 10 servings

  • 2 white onions, diced
  • 10 carrots, cut small
  • 1 bunch leeks, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 #10 can of whole peeled tomatoes (6 pounds canned tomatoes) Note: #10 is just the size and type of can…look for the big one!
  • 2 cups brown rice (not cooked)
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bunches of fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons stevia

Sauté carrots, onions, leeks, and brown rice in olive oil for about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and chicken stock and cook on high until rice is tender (about 45 minutes). Remove from heat and add fresh dill, salt, pepper, and stevia.

Pureé with hand blender and serve.

What's the best diet for fertility?

How to Eat for Optimal Fertility

Eat up!

We encourage you to savor the time you spend making these warming winter soups either by yourself (hello, alone time!) or with a loved one (could make a great date night idea). 

Remember that nourishing your body with nutrient-rich meals that are also delicious can only improve your chances of conceiving and is always to your benefit - and your future baby’s benefit too.

Enjoy these delicious fertility-friendly soups this winter (or any time of year!) and feel confident that you're fueling your body with fantastic ingredients. As Julia Child would say...bon appétit!

More Fertility Nutrition Resources

Sierra Dehmler

Sierra Dehmler is Illume Fertility’s Content Marketing Manager - and also a fertility patient herself. Combining empathy gained on her personal journey with her professional experience in marketing and content creation, she aims to empower and support other fertility patients by demystifying the fertility treatment process.