Low Cholesterol Soup – A One Pot Meal You Won’t Want To Miss

A low cholesterol soup is a cholesterol friendly lunch or dinner option that is warm and cozy for the winter months. It’s also done in one pot – so easy clean up!

If your LDL cholesterol (also known as your low density lipoprotein cholesterol) is high it can cause a heart attack, peripheral artery disease (PAD) or stroke. So, I would recommend getting this LDL marker into target using food, and this best soup for high cholesterol can do just that.

Why Make This Low Cholesterol Soup?

  • A low-cholesterol soup is a warm and cozy meal option suitable for winter, and it’s easy to prepare in one pot, making cleanup a breeze.
  • High LDL cholesterol can increase the risk of heart disease, peripheral artery disease, and stroke. The soup can help lower LDL cholesterol levels by incorporating cholesterol-friendly ingredients.
  • Ingredients to include in low-cholesterol soup include olive oil (instead of butter), legumes (like cannellini beans), vegetables (such as spinach), and whole grains (like barley) for their cholesterol-lowering and heart-healthy properties.
  • Avoid ingredients like cream, butter, coconut milk, and processed foods that can increase saturated fat and inflammation levels. This soup is rich in soluble fiber, low in sodium, and high in plant protein, offering numerous health benefits beyond just lowering cholesterol levels.

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Why Should We Worry About Cholesterol Levels?

High cholesterol refers to a build-up of LDL or low-density lipoprotein (also known as the “bad” cholesterol).

This build-up creates fatty deposits in the walls of your blood vessels.

These deposits lead to the narrowing of the vessels which impairs the flow of blood and increases the risk of heart attack or stroke due to clotting.

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Ingredients To Include

When looking at diets to lower cholesterol some that come to mind as a Registered Dietitian are the Mediterranean Diet, The DASH diet, and the Portfolio diet. I also have a great article on 39 foods to eat to unclog your arteries, and you can check out these low cholesterol cookbooks or my low cholesterol recipes for inspiration as well.

Olive Oil

Olive oil should be used instead of butter to lower cholesterol. Olive oil is part of the Mediterranean diet, and is full of monounsaturated fats that can increase healthy HDL cholesterol or high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and olive oil can manage blood pressure too

If you don’t have olive oil, try these alternatives, or add other monounsaturated fats like nut butter, nuts, seeds, or even avocado

Legumes

I’ve added cannellini beans to this low cholesterol recipe, as legumes have a magic nutrient called soluble fiber which is uber effective at lowering cholesterol. Soluble fiber is a nutrient that can lower excess cholesterol and bile acids from your body, resulting in lower cholesterol levels.

Adding legumes to your diet is something my clients have found very helpful to lower their cholesterol naturally. This is also the main component of portfolio diet recipes.

Not only do beans and legumes have fiber, but they are an excellent low cholesterol, high protein food. Plant based protein is lean and does not contain a lot of saturated fat, which makes it a perfect protein to include when looking to reduce LDL cholesterol levels. Other proteins to consider could be poultry, fish, tofu or nuts and seeds.

Vegetables

Spinach is an excellent green leafy vegetable that is great for heart health! Spinach is full of healthy nutrients such as vitamin A and C and minerals such as iron and magnesium.

Studies have shown that spinach can help your body make nitric oxide, which helps open your arteries and unclog them. Spinach has even been shown to lower blood pressure (1).

Spinach and other vegetables are low in calories, full of anti-inflammatory properties and have a nutrient called phytosterols that can lower cholesterol levels naturally too.  

Whole Grains

Barley is a type of cereal grain and fantastic heart-healthy food. It is a rich source of beta-glucan, a kind of soluble fiber. Beta-glucan has been shown to lower cholesterol levels. It does this by absorbing water and creating a web in your gut that slows down the absorption of nutrients, like cholesterol, into your body (2).

Not only is barley great to lower LDL cholesterol but helps with weight management and blood sugar too.

Another whole grain you could add is oats, like in this oatmeal soup.

Ingredients To Avoid

When making low cholesterol soup, I recommend avoiding using cream, butter or coconut milk because it increases the saturated fat content.

Another benefit of making your own soup is you can avoid processed foods while doing it.  Processed soup may have added trans-fat, saturated fat, salt, and omega 6 oils which can all lead to increased inflammation levels, which can further cholesterol levels.

Nutrition In Soup To Lower Cholesterol

This is the best soup for high cholesterol because it is low in saturated fat at only 2 grams per serving, and high in fiber at 15 grams per serving. Additionally, the beans make it a great source of plant protein at 14 grams per serving. You really can’t go wrong with this dish.

This soup not only contains foods that lower cholesterol, but it also avoids foods that can increase cholesterol like deli meat, processed meats and nutrients like trans-fat.

As a bonus, this soup is also low in sodium as it uses no salt added tomatoes and low sodium vegetable broth. 

Store Bought Low Cholesterol Soup

If you can’t make soup at home and need to buy it at a store, a good rule of thumb is purchasing soup that is low in saturated fat (less than 1.5 grams per 100 g serving) and high in soluble fiber (look for ingredients like beans, lentils, or barley).

Why Make Soup To Lower Cholesterol

  • Great source of soluble fiber, potassium, and plant protein
  • Low in sodium, unlike canned soup
  • Inexpensive compared to store bought
  • Only requires one pot
  • Loaded with protein, fiber, potassium and calcium
  • Satiating

Other Benefits Of Eating Low Cholesterol Soup

Eating this low cholesterol soup recipe has benefits that go beyond lowering cholesterol.  It can lead to:

  • Weight loss, as it helps keep you satiated
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Can regulate blood sugar 
  • Improve gut health

Ingredients

  • Extra-virgin olive oil – or if you don’t have olive oil check out healthy olive oil alternatives
  • Garlic, onion – used for flavor and antioxidants
  • Diced tomatoes – I choose no salt added canned products to keep the overall sodium low in this recipe to help with blood pressure control
  • Vegetable broth – for flavor, chicken stock can also be used here, just make sure there is no salt added
  • Herbs – fresh or dried would work well. I used dried here, because I had it in my pantry
  • Barley – adds soluble fiber, and keeps things satiating
  • White kidney beans – adds soluble fiber and plant protein, choose no salt added if you can find it  

How To Make The Best Soup For High Cholesterol

This recipe only takes 5-10 minutes to prepare.  You basically just dice all of the ingredients and throw them into the pot.

The base of this dish starts with adding olive oil, onion, and herbs.  Cook for a bit until they are golden brown.  This is probably the most important step since it adds flavor and antioxidants to the dish.

The next step is similar. Once everything has softened, add the remaining ingredients, bring to a bowl and simmer for 20-25 minutes.

Batch Cook To Save Time

Make extra soup and you’ve got an easy, next-day lunch.

Or double this recipe to batch cook this wholesome, nourishing soup to lower cholesterol to stash in the freezer ready to defrost for an easy lunch or dinner.

Leftovers

In my onion, this low cholesterol soup tastes better the longer it sits. The barley plumps up which makes it a little heartier. If you find it too thick the next day, add some water to thin it out and reheat it in the microwave or on the stovetop.

This soup to lower cholesterol will last in the fridge for 3-5 days or in the freezer for 3 months.

Vegan

This low cholesterol soup recipe is vegan as is.

Watch The Video Tutorial

What To Serve It with?

This soup is awesome to pair with a sandwich or toast ideas like

Other Low Cholesterol Soup Recipes To Try!

Other Ways To Lower Cholesterol

Lowering cholesterol and decreasing heart disease risk can be also achieved through developing other healthy lifestyle habits including:

  • exercising 
  • Stop smoking
  • reducing alcohol consumption 
  • taking medication as prescribed (3).

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a comforting and healthy soup that is packed with flavor and can help manage your cholesterol naturally? Look no further than the best soup for high cholesterol.

This low cholesterol soup is a nutritious and delicious meal that is easy to make and perfect for any season. Give it a try and see for yourself how satisfying and flavorful it can be!

An image of Veronica The Heart Dietitian cutting an apple, and an image of a book. The text on the image and book reads "FREE 4 steps to a happy heart without restriction ebook".

Low cholesterol soup in red bowl on a blue napkin with red tomatoes and black pepper in the background.

Low Cholesterol Soup

A low cholesterol soup is a cholesterol friendly lunch or dinner option that is warm and cozy for the winter months. It's also done in one pot – so easy clean up!
No ratings yet
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 36 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course dinner, Lunch, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 298 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 tsp olive oil
  • 1 white onion chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tbsp Herbes de Provence
  • 1 can cannellini beans 15 ounce
  • 1 can diced tomatoes no salt
  • 6 cup low sodium vegetable broth
  • 3/4 cup barley
  • 2 cup spinach frozen

Instructions
 

  • Heat oil on medium-high heat in a large stockpot.
  • Stir in onion, garlic, and herbes de provence and cook for around 5 minutes or until they turn golden.
  • Add the barley, tomatoes, and beans to the pot and stir until the soup comes to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, simmer the barley for approximately 15-20 minutes until cooked.
  • Add the spinach and simmer for approximately one minute.  
  • Serve and enjoy!

Video

Nutrition

Calories: 298kcalCarbohydrates: 55gProtein: 14gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 264mgPotassium: 493mgFiber: 15gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1573IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 155mgIron: 6mg
Keyword low cholesterol soup, soup
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