“You don’t have to become a vegan. You can become a plant-passionate, plant-inspired bean lover! “

Kris Carr

Straight to the recipe, because you guys made it abundantly clear that I should save my healthy ranting for later.  I’m learning.

Healthy Black Bean Soup from Mommy Blogger Amber Faust 2021


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
  • 6 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 4 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Red pepper flakes to taste (I love spice, so more)
  • 4 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional topping)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional toppings: diced avocado, extra cilantro, chives, tortilla chip, cornbread, tomatoes, pico de gallo, salso, sour cream, etc.


  1. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat and add the onions, celery and carrot and  lightly  salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft.
  2. Stir in the garlic and spice and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour in the beans and broth and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook about 30 minutes.
  3. Blend half of the soup with an immersion blender or your normal.  Just a few pulses.
  4. Return the blended soup to the pot, stir in the cilantro, lime juice and salt and pepper, to taste. Serve.

My morning walk today was cooler.  Is it fall now? Cooler weather makes me want soup.  We had the ingredients for this soup in the pantry.  That was the inspiration for today’s recipe.  I don’t have many rambles on a simple bean soup that everyone makes. So I’m going to write about some simple health tips.

Simple ways to add in some extra healthy living.

Sometimes I write health tips out on this mom blog, because it makes me healthier. It makes me practice what I preach.  I want to be healthier for my family and friends. I also hate being sick.  Like I would rather run a marathon than have a stomach virus, and I hate running. 

I know that spending hours at the gym may not spark the interest of everyone, but there are plenty of smarter choices that you can make within your everyday life; it just takes some thinking, because where there’s a will, there’s a way.

One easy step to a healthier lifestyle is something that everyone can afford, just plenty of rest. At least seven hours of sleep a night is sure to give you more energy to make it through the day. More sleep leads to feeling better and being more alert, and let’s face it, who doesn’t like lying in bed? 

Simple ways to burn some calories are trying to keep moving, regardless of what your day has planned. When running errands, instead of opting for the parking spot next to the door, park at the back of the lot; just a few extra yards at each stop can get your heart rate moving a little faster than it normally would. 

Also, find local spots that are within walking distance from your home. If you want to go grab a bite to eat, walk there and back instead of hopping in your car; one good thing leads to another, and maybe by the time you get there, you’ll choose a meal that reflects how great you feel about your walk there.

Other ways to cut corners are sure to save you a few calories a meal. For example, instead of getting white bread on your sandwich, explore your other options. See if the place you are dining offers whole wheat bread, wheat pitas, or spinach wraps. Instead of laying the mayonnaise on thick, try some mustard instead (virtually calorie-free), hummus or an avocado spread is also great mayo alternatives. 

Try a new salad dressing; instead of smothering your greens in ranch, choose a vinaigrette or even lemon juice. Instead of a layering cheese onto your omelets, sandwiches, and salads, try going without cheese; it really makes a difference. Get rid of excess bread. Easier said than done, I love breads and croutons.  Maybe instead of a handful of croutons, add a couple. 

Make sure that you are eating breakfast. Eating in the morning is an important way to kick start your metabolism for the day. Instead of the whole egg, try something with egg whites only. Instead of smothering your side dishes in ketchup (full of sugar and sodium), grab a bottle of hot sauce, or explore your other options. 

I’ve written about hydration, we all know that hydration is important. It keeps you moving, it keeps your brain sharp. 

Maybe you don’t want to measure out your eight glasses of water a day, so look for things to spice it up. Have y’all tried the Mio powders or syrups? The extra squeeze only has a few calories and some even have caffeine.  The extra flavor is sure to help you incorporate more water into your daily life. I need to put Mio on the list to investigate.  Are they healthy?  I love a squeeze of lime or orange too. 

Cut the sodas y’all; it doesn’t matter they are diet or sugar-free, they are just not good for you! I grew up in Texas, I treat myself to a Dr. Pepper here and there.  But sodas are no longer a part of my daily life.

What healthy living tips are you sneaking into your daily life?