This healthy twist uses colorful red cabbage (higher in antioxidants than green) and a better-for-you (but still delicious) ratio of soup to bread and cheese. The onions and cabbage are naturally sweet, Worcestershire sauce brings deep savory flavor, and acidic balsamic vinegar balances everything out.
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 (2-lb.) head red cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
2 medium sweet onions, thinly sliced
1 cup dry white wine (or 7 oz. vegetable stock plus 1 oz. white wine vinegar)
5 cups unsalted vegetable stock
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1?½ teaspoon honey
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
2 bay leaves
6 (½-in.-thick) slices whole-wheat baguette or other fresh bread
¾ cup shredded Gruyère cheese
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
Fresh thyme leaves, for garnish
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium. Cook cabbage and onions, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften, about 4 minutes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until completely softened, tender, and caramelized, 35 to 40 minutes.
Increase heat to medium-high. Add wine and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost completely evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Add stock, Worcestershire sauce, honey, salt, and bay leaves; bring to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium and simmer, undisturbed, for 5 minutes.
While soup cooks, preheat broiler with rack 6 inches from heat source. Arrange baguette slices on a baking sheet and top evenly with cheese. Broil until cheese is melted, bubbly, and starting to turn golden brown, about 2 minutes.
Remove soup from heat, and remove and discard bay leaves. Stir in vinegar. Ladle soup evenly into 6 bowls; top with cheese toasts and garnish with thyme. Serve immediately.
Freeze soup, sliced baguette, and shredded cheese separately. While soup reheats, broil cheesy toasts.
Integrated Diabetes Services, Director of Lifestyle and Nutrition.
Jennifer holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Nutrition and Biology from the University of Wisconsin. She is a Registered (and Licensed) Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Educator, and Certified Trainer on most makes/models of insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring systems.