One chilly April afternoon, I craved a hearty soup but had less than an hour to prepare a meal. I came up with this chowder that uses pantry ingredients, and everyone thought it hit the spot. —Jenna Rempe, Lincoln, NE
Meet the Cook: The basis for this recipe was handed down to me by my aunt, who said she got it from a "grizzled Montana mountain man". I added some zesty ingredients to come up with the final version.
Hot food is something that my husband's family isn't accustomed to. So I adjust the spices for them. In fact, with a few simple alterations to the "heat" index, I can serve this chili to anyone.
Chad and I and our 2-year-old son live 12 miles from town in the country.
-Lisa Humphreys, Wasilla, Alaska
Loaded with ground beef, squash, tomatoes and two kinds of potatoes, this hearty soup makes a great family meal on a busy night. Go ahead and substitute any of the vegetables with those that better suit your tastes.
We have a small asparagus patch, and my husband and I wait eagerly for this tasty vegetable to appear every spring. We're pleased to use our precious harvest in this soup. Lemon and nutmeg give it a surprising spark.
—Darlene Swille, Green Bay, Wisconsin
Since our two daughters did not like beans in their chili, I adapted a recipe to suit our whole family's tastes. We all agree that mushrooms are an appealing alternative and go very well with the ground beef and sausage.
This soup tastes especially good in cold weather—which we have a lot of here on the shore of Lake Michigan! I love cooking (I like to try a new recipe every week, and my family loves soup, so I'm always looking for one more.
This chowder is a wonderful warmer-upper on a rainy afternoon. For a quick and delicious variation, spoon chowder into a split baked potato! I like all types of cooking, especially baking pies. I'm a volunteer at our local hospital. When at home, I enjoy reading, biking and hiking.
Chicken noodle soup brings back memories of childhood. This revamped version takes the chill off with a healthy twist. It's a favorite at my house, especially after working outside on a cool day. —Cynthia LaFourcade, Salmon, Idaho
While I don't have scientific proof of it, Red Pepper Soup works for me as a head cold remedy! It is a good gift to take when visiting a sick friend, too. For a pretty touch, top the soup with grated cheese and parsley. We enjoy it with jalapeno cheese buns. You can also serve it with warm garlic bread.
-Barb Nelson, Victoria, British Columbia
This chunky soup from Katherine Preiss of Penfield, Pennsylvania is full of flavor...and zip! “If you don’t want as much heat, you can eliminate the jalapeno pepper,” she notes. “To make it vegetarian, I omit the turkey and add a small can of garbanzo beans in the last few minutes of cooking.”