Apr 17, 2021

caldo non pollo soup


Time: 45 minutes
Dishes: large pot

Hello, hello Dear Readers!

This is a rice, protein, vegetable soup that is tomato-based. It is meatless, vegetarian and vegan. My kids are all into soups right now and I like to oblige them, especially when it is something easy. This one-pot soup is just that, plus very delicious.

It is easy to throw together, but the long cooking time of the brown rice kicks it up to 45 minutes. If you use white rice, the total cooking time is around 30 minutes. Use short, long or medium grain - doesn't really matter.

As another versatile soup, use the vegetables that float your boat, not just the ones I have subscribed. I used green beans in this soup, but I was tempted with zucchini, peas, even potato or turnip. If you add any leafy greens, add it in the last 10 minutes for the tougher greens and last few minutes for something like baby spinach.

I used Gardein strips, but that is what I have available near me - use Seitan or Soy Curlz or  Savory Tofu - or the chicken-type of strips that are available in your area.

In this recipe the rice is first toasted to give it a nutty flavor. If you are using frozen protein, add it with the rice to cook. After you add the liquid, use tongs to remove them to chop up. This way the rice is not clinging to the strips. This step saves you the need to defrost the protein, but if it is already thawed, just chop before cooking. 

For the garnish and accompaniments, use either corn tortillas, to keep within the Mexican theme if using cilantro in the soup, or divert and use croutons if you used parsley. Either way, the soup is delicious and filling.    

If you need inspiration for your weekly menu, check out ours HERE.


Speedy Cooking Tips:

  • Heat the pot while you rinse the rice.
  • If frozen, cook the protein whole and then remove later to chop.
  • Chop the onion while the rice and protein are cooking.
  • Chop the green beans while the onion, rice and protein cook.

(Printer-friendly doesn't seem to be so friendly. Just select the text between the arrows (including the white space to add margin on the top), right-click, select Print, and now it's printer-friendly. Can also be saved as PDF:  choose Save as PDF in Destination drop-down, instead of a printer.)

Caldo non Pollo Soup


Makes 4 servings 


2 teaspoons olive oil

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 cup brown rice, rinsed

1/2 medium onion, chopped

10 ounces Gardein or seitan, chopped if thawed

1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes (do not drain)

1/2 cup tomato sauce

2 cups chopped green beans (8 ounces)

2 medium carrots, chopped or sliced

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro or parsley

1 tablespoon Easy Savory Broth mix** or 2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon

8 cups water


Diced avocados

Broken tortilla chips or corn tortillas

Minced cilantro


1. Rice: Add the oil, garlic, rice, onion and protein to a large pot over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until the rice is golden, about 5 minutes.

2. Vegetables: Add the tomatoes, green beans, carrot, herbs and broth mix to the Rice as they are ready.

3. If the protein was not thawed when started cooking, remove the large chunks now and chop them. Add them back to the soup. Cook the soup at a strong simmer until the Rice is tender, over medium heat, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

4. Serve: Ladle into bowls and top as desired.

** Substitute for Savory Broth Mix: 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1 teaspoon sage and 1 teaspoon oregano. 

© 2020 Copyright Zsu Dever. All rights reserved.

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