I made this soup for the first time in the summer, but when I saw its bright red and green colors, my first thought was that it would make a perfect first course for Christmas dinner. —Marietta Slater, Justin, Texas
Cauliflower and carrots share the stage in this cheesy soup that's sure to warm you up on the chilliest nights. We like it with hot pepper sauce; however, it can be omitted with equally tasty results. —Debbie Ohlhausen
Chilliwack, British Columbia
I whipped up this satisfying soup last Thanksgiving for my family, and everyone was crazy about it! Even my brother, who is one of the pickiest eaters I know, asked for seconds.
-Kimberly Knepper, Euless, Texas
My husband and I try to have at least one vegetarian meal each week, and this is one of our favorites. The recipe makes a large pot of chili that's chock-full of color and flavor. Once the chopping is done, it's quick to cook.
Even the pickiest pea soup lover will request this time and again. Thick and well-seasoned, it packs a nutritional punch, plus plenty of fiber and protein. It's wonderful with a slice of crusty French bread. —Michele Doucette, Stephenville, Newfoundland
Years ago, when my husband and I put in our first garden, a neighbor suggested zucchini since it's easy to grow. Our kids were reluctant to try new things, so I used our squash in this cheesy chowder—it met with solid approval from all of us! —Nanette Jordan, Flint, Michigan
Meet the Cook: Soup is tops on the list of things I love to cook. I've used this one as the beginning course to a meal...and as a Sunday supper with hot rolls and butter. When we had a small restaurant in Arizona, I made my mushroom soup every day. We never had any left over. It got raves at a deli I worked at, too. I never cooked very much until my husband and I were married, 48 years ago. We're the parents of three grown sons and the grandparents of 12.
-Beverly Rafferty, Winston, Oregon
This simple homemade soup gets a head start from canned potato soup and frozen broccoli. People will be surprised to hear that it takes less than 30 minutes to prepare(if you tell them!).—Gladys Schuler, Bismarck, North Dakota