Pairing booze with food is tricky. It’s especially a pain in the ass when the goal is to drop ten pounds before beach season. No one wants to see a whale in a polka dot bikini—sorry.
We’re here to help, so here are our top five fav pairings for soup plus liquor, the lowest-calorie alcohol there is.
1. Pho And Moscow Mule
If you wanna be fancy, make pho and pair it with a super trendy drink. Making your own pho is relatively easy—just combine cooked rice noodles with a boiled-together concoction of chicken stock, fish sauce, lime juice, garlic, ginger, lemon grass, and green onions. Remove the lemon grass before serving, add in some shredded rotisserie chicken and throw in the noodles. Boom—not totally authentic but still really good pho. Because of the lime juice factor in the pho, a Moscow Mule will complement the dish. Combine vodka, ginger beer, lime juice and ice—only add in simple syrup if you want the extra calories.
2. Green Pea Soup And A Shot Of Aquavit
Nothing makes us feel healthier than knocking back a bowl of bright green soup. Melt a little butter in a saucepan and throw in the white parts of a few leeks, thyme, salt, pepper, two cups of frozen peas, and chopped and trimmed fresh asparagus. Cook for a few minutes before throwing it all in a blender with a little vinegar and a bit of chicken broth. Now you have soup. If you’ve never heard of Aquavit, a Scandinavian liquor, get acquainted with it. Its notes of caraway seeds, coriander, and dill pair perfectly with this green concoction. You’ll feel mighty, like a fucking Viking.
3. Butternut Squash Soup And A Cosmo
Hear us out on this one—the creamy and borderline sweetness of butternut squash soup is healthy IF you don’t add a bunch of shit to it. We’ve already covered how to make it, but, if you forgot: roast a bunch of cubed butternut squash; throw it in your Vitamix with salt, pepper, and reduced sodium chicken broth; blend super hard; and eat. Now, pair that with a NOT totally fattening and calorie-ridden Cosmo. Make one by combining raspberry flavored vodka with a splash of cranberry juice, a squeeze of lime, and a bit of seltzer. Plus, what could be more goddamn wintry than a butternut squash soup with a cranberry cocktail?! I mean, really.
4. Spicy Tomato Soup and Tequila Mixer
Obviously, tequila is made for Mexican food (like nachos). Because nachos aren’t exactly on our liquid diet, make a spicy tomato soup (use this one from Cooking Light as a guide) by roasting tomatoes, garlic, fresh oregano, and jalapeños in the oven then blending together with chicken stock and a bit of Parmesan. Throw a little cilantro on top and pair with a draaaank that’s a combo of silver tequila, lime, agave nectar, and a little seltzer. Bam. So liquidy.
5. Borsht And A Vodka Soda
It’s time for you to embrace this bright red poor people soup of Russia. It’s got tons of beets, onions, and spices to warm you up. We used this recipe from Eating Well, but basically, all you need to do is boil some beets and potatoes, sauté some onions, add in some broth, and like, bam. Soup. We paired it with a vodka seltzer with a twist of lime, because you’re not going to NOT have vodka with a Russian dish. Combine a shot or six of good quality Russian vodka with a bit of seltzer and a little fresh lime juice. The fizz and flavor will cut through the rich beet soup, giving you strength and making you feel like you could wrestle Putin and/or a bear in a match to the death.