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Posts Tagged ‘Soups’

December 9, 2014

Hearty Italian Tortellini Soup

Life can get crazy around the holidays. You have a whole list of people to shop for, parties to attend, and cards to send out in just a month’s time, all the while keeping up with your regular to-dos.

Scott and I were out late last night and bounced from one holiday party to the next. While it was convenient to already be ready, it was kind of a bummer that we had to cut out early at one and miss a lot of the other. Boo.

In an attempt to stay on track through this week of madness, I wanted to put together a hearty and comforting recipe. With the chilly weather outside, my body is craving soup more than ever! Aren’t soup leftovers the best?

The following recipe took around 40 minutes to prepare. Now that I’ve made it once, I could probably put it together closer to a half an hour. It’s pretty simple, and what I would consider to be a loaded (yet healthier) version of the standard Italian Tortellini soup.

hearty italian tortellini soup recipe


3 (4 oz.) Italian turkey sausage links, casings removed

1 medium onion, chopped

6 garlic cloves, minced

4-6 cups light sodium chicken broth (depends on your thickness preference)

3 large carrots, peeled and sliced into thin coins

3 ribs celery, thinly sliced

1 (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained (I used organic with Italian herbs)

1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans

1 (9 oz.) package refrigerated cheese tortellini noodles

1 (5 oz.) package baby spinach, coarsely chopped

3/4 tsp. dried basil (you can also substitute thyme or oregano)

1/4 tsp. pepper

generous dash of red pepper flakes (optional)

shredded Parmesan cheese (optional)


cook time: 40 mins.

servings: 6 (about 2 quarts)



1. Crumble sausage into a large skillet. Add onion. Cook and stir over medium heat until meat is no longer pink.

2. Add garlic. Cook and stir 2 more minutes.

3. In a large pot, combine broth and tomatoes. Bring to a boil.

4. Stir in tortellini, carrots, celery, and beans. Return to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer (uncovered) for 5-8 minutes or until pasta is tender, stirring occasionally.

5. Add the spinach, basil, pepper, and pepper flakes (if desired). Cook 2-3 minutes longer or until spinach is wilted. Serve with Parmesan cheese on top, if desired!

healthy tortellini soup
Want to get in on my secret of making almost any soup better for you?

Step 1: substitute the red meat for a lighter protein.

browning italian turkey sausage and onions

Step 2: chop up as many veggies as you can (that make sense)!

slicing vegetables for soup

Step 3: sneak in even more veggies (and beans for extra protein).

adding spinach to soup

Step 4: substitute whole wheat, veggie or gluten-free noodles. For tortellini, you could go for a veggie stuffed tortellini like mushroom or squash.

making tortellini soup

Step 5: get rid of the garlic salt and stick to using real garlic and fresh herbs.

healthy italian tortellini soup

Step 6: ENJOY!!

Sorry if I just made you hungry. (Maybe lunch or dinner is right around the corner?) I’m off to heat up leftovers and will see ya back in a few with my latest Stitch Fix breakdown!

Question of the Morning

What is your favorite kind of soup?

I have two all-time favorites, and they totally reflect my love for Italian and Mexican cuisine. One is minestrone and the other is chicken tortilla. If a restaurant offers either, I will most likely order it!

March 26, 2014

WIAW #47: Dinner Snacks

Good Afternoon! Today put us right back into a busy week with a home game both tonight and Friday. I leave for Florida on Saturday morning, so there is a lot to do on this girl’s to-do list before then!

I only have a few minutes to put this post together, so lets get right down to business and talk What I Ate Wednesday.

This week I am covering a full day of snacks and meals that took place on Monday. While I normal highlight Tuesdays, Scott and I had a dinner date at a nice steakhouse last night, and I knew I would feel a bit silly whipping out my camera to take pictures of our meal there. (It was phenom, by the way.)

All right, before I start rambling… here’s this week’s extra snack-y eats!

What I Ate Wednesday Monday

Breakfast came together in a pinch, thanks to the preparation of a batch of overnight oats Sunday night.

This time I changed it up a little by leaving out the chia seeds and substituted Super Oats (<- the same bag used in yesterday’s recipe!) instead of regular rolled oats.

overnight super oats with blackberries

I think it is time for me to dedicate an entire post to overnight oats and the concoctions I come up with to create them. There’s a ton.

Until then, please refer to Julie’s recipe to get the gist!

overnight oats with super oats and greek yogurt

I felt content and full enough to skip a morning snack, then ended up turning to lunch early right a Noon.

I had one thing and one thing only on the mind, which was a Monster Salad.

monster salad with beans feta and olives

Spring mix, baby spinach, warm black beans, tomatoes, carrots, black and green olives, feta cheese, ground pepper, and an oil and vinegar drizzle for dressing.

I am becoming quite the black bean maniac and have been averaging 1-2 cans of them per week. Is that normal? Borderline excessive? I haven’t been huge on meat lately, so it has been nice to fill in the protein gaps with them when I am just not feeling it.

Anyways, immediately after I face dove into the salad, I finished off my lunch hour with a small bowl of fresh berries.

fresh berries healthy snack

I could probably eat an entire pint of them in one sitting if I wanted to.

Soon after making my way back downstairs to the computer, I spent the rest of my afternoon back and forth to the kitchen. Instead of “dinner” Monday, I found myself craving small snacky meals and just let it happen.

Dinner Snack #1: Gluten free corn tortilla chips and black bean salsa.

gluten free chips and black bean salsa

(I told you, I might actually turn into chips + salsa. Same with the black beans?)

Dinner Snack #2: Amy’s Gluten Free Veggie Burger, Havarti dill cheese, and ketchup on a whole wheat English muffin, sided with a pickle spear.

organic GMO free veggie burger

I might have had to improve on the bun situation… but it seemed to work out just fine.

(Plus!) I finally found a Non-GMO, organic veggie burger I actually like! I know I can always count on Amy’s to keep me straight.

amy's organic sonoma veggie burger

Dinner Snack #3 (packed and consumed during dance practice): Chocolate Brownie Clif bar and Earth’s Best Butternut Squash Pear baby food.

clif bar and butternut squash baby food

Yup. Still goin’ strong on the baby food thing. Judge me all you want… the fruity flavors are an incredibly delicious and nutritious pick-me-up!

*Word of advice: if you decide to give it a go, I have heard to steer clear of the meat flavors. So far, I have tried anything from sweet potato to cran-apple and they have all tasted great.

I finally started feeling full around the end of practice and wasn’t sure if a real “dinner” would even happen when I got home. By the time I took a shower and got back downstairs, I wanted a little something and settled on a can of Amy’s Organics Rustic Italian Vegetable soup.

amy's organic vegetable italian soup

Another Amy’s purchase for the win! This week, I skipped over the dessert and still went to bed feeling more than satisfied.

Welp, I guess I better get going so I can make it out the door ready for court time. See you all tomorrow morning!

• If you liked this WIAW post, head on over to Peas & Crayons to check out plenty others, or even link your own!

• Also, you can always find my latest What I Ate Wednesday posts by exploring the “WIAW” tag on the right hand sidebar.

Questions of the Day

• Do you ever find yourself snacking your way through the day, rather than of eating three big meals?

• What is one healthy meal or snack idea you’ve enjoyed this week? (Feel free to link up!)

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Although I am a certified personal trainer, the workouts I post are what work best for me and might not be the right type of exercises for you.

I am not a registered dietician and do NOT post everything I eat. All content I post on this blog stems from my personal experience and knowledge, and I recommend consulting a doctor or health professional before making changes to your diet or fitness routine.

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