Negative Calorie Roasted Asparagus and Cauliflower Soup


Negative Calorie Roasted Asparagus and Cauliflower Soup

I heard this theory of negative calories foods about a year ago. And while this idea would be a dream come true, I’m not actually convinced of it’s validity.

The theory is that some food cost your body more energy in calories to consume and digest than the food actually contains.

Take celery for instance. A stock of celery is 5 calories, but between chewing, swallowing and digesting, it takes 15 calories to actually eat a  stalk of celery, for a net loss of 10 calories. Now, if celery could just taste better, and not like, well, celery, than we’d be all set. Clearly, this theory doesn’t apply to French fries.

On the list of “Negative Calorie Foods” are:


-Beet Root







-Hot Chili




-Green Beans


























While this theory has been widely discredited, there is no arguing with the fact that this is an incredible list of foods. If more than half of your diet was pulled from the above list, and the rest of your diet was “sensible” you would never have to diet again and those skinny jeans would be yours.

I did a bit of a test of my own. I made a batch of this soup and ate it for lunch every day for a week.

I lost 2 lbs. Which is a lot for me, given that I have a BMI of 20.6.

That doesn’t really prove anything. Other than the fact that a low calorie vegan soup is a good route to take when looking to drop those holiday pounds. Believe the theory or not, this is still a fantastic list of healthy foods.

Even if this soup isn’t “Negative Calorie,” it still only has 78 calories per serving.


Vegan Chipotle Stout Chili with IPA Cashew Cream


    For The Cashew Cream:
  • 2 cups raw cashwes,
  • 1 to 1 ½ cups almond milk
  • Additional 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 2 tbs IPA beer
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp garlic
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • For The Chili:
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup crimini mushrooms, finley diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12 wt ounces Soyrizo
  • 2 cup stout
  • 2 cups veggie broth
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1 (15 oz) can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz) can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz) can stewed diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 or 2 large chipotle peppers in adoboe, minced
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • 1/3 cup bulgur wheat
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Garnishes:
  • ½ cup Cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Avocado, sliced
  • Tortilla Chips


  1. Add the cashews to a bowl, pour almond milk over cashews until covered. Let stand for 4 hours.
  2. Drain cashews and add to a food processor with 1/3 cup almond milk, IPA, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and vinegar. Process until smooth, about 5 minutes, possibly longer. Add additional almond milk or beer for a thinner consistency.
  3. In a pot over medium high heat, add the olive oil, onions, red peppers and mushrooms. Cook until onions and peppers have softened and the mushrooms have darkened.
  4. Add the garlic and the soyrizo, stir, breaking up the soyrizo.
  5. Add the stout, broth, tomato paste, black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes and chipotle, allow to simmer for about 10 minutes.
  6. Add the quinoa, bulgur, cumin, smoked paprika, salt and garlic powder, simmer until the quinoa has cooked, about 15 minutes. The longer chili simmers, the thicker it will be.
  7. Plate on top of tortilla chips, if desired, top with cilantro, avocado, and cashew cream.

Negative Calorie Roasted Asparagus and Cauliflower Soup

48 thoughts on “Negative Calorie Roasted Asparagus and Cauliflower Soup

  1. I fell in love with roasted cauliflower soup this winter, so I can’t wait to try yours! That’s a seriously impressive list of supposedly neg cal foods… I got kind of excited reading it. 🙂 I think I’ll try your soup for a week, I’m all about bringing lunches to work!

    1. You’re the best! I cut and pasted from a word doc, I must not have grabbed the first line. Thanks! I fixed it 🙂

  2. The calories burned by chewing is negligible. Calories burned by digestion might make some foods have “negative calories” when they’re raw and take more work to digest, but cooking and pureeing those veggies surely negatives that effect. Still, the soup sounds yummy!

    1. Don’t I WISH chewing burned a bunch of calories! I think overall, it’s an interesting theory and you’re right mostly applies to raw, ice cold food. But either way, it’s a great list of foods to keep front and center in your diet!

  3. I recommend the book Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human by Richard Wrangham if you’re interested in how modifying foods affects their calorie-availability!

  4. I’m still struggling to lose weight but I think i could eat more of those foods and itmight help. worth a try, they are all good.

  5. I made a few batches of vegan soup last week and have been doing the same thing – soup everyday for lunch – and while I haven’t weighed myself, I totally feel it slimming me up. Plus, it tastes great, so I don’t dread eating it. Totally bookmarking this one, Jackie! Can’t wait to try.

  6. For a low calorie soup, not bad! will make again, but i’ll probably add cream, even though it would be vegan like you want

  7. This soup sounds tasty, healthy, and easy. It’s a triple-threat!

    P.S. It’s totally a negative calorie dish. Just dance around the kitchen for the 20 minutes it takes the veggies to roast, and voila – you burn more calories making it than you gain from eating it! 😀

  8. Made this recipe and love it! It wasn’t getting blended enough with the immersion blender so I put it into the Blendtec and added some spinach leaves (uncooked) to my individual serving and blended it on the soup setting–absolutely delicious. I think if you added spinach to the whole thing it would end up turning brown, so did it for just the individual serving–so delicious. Thanks!

    1. YAY! I’m glad you like it 🙂 I really liked it too, especially since it was under 80 calories, hard to beat that!

  9. This soup looks delicious! Although, I think that by cooking the vegetables and puréeing them into soup you have cancelled out any negative calorie potential – as you’re not chewing up or digesting raw vegetables you are really burning very little calories as you eat this. I think that the reason you lost weight is because this would be a very low calorie option with no carbs or sugar.

    1. I agree! I’m not totally sold on the idea of negative calorie foods in the first place, but I think it’s biggest potential is with very cold raw foods. But no matter how you eat them, these are all really great foods 🙂

  10. This information is completely incorrect. The energy required to digest a foodstuff Is calculated and factored into the calorific value that gets given to the food. Negative calorie foods don’t exist.

  11. Has anyone actually tried to make this recipe yet? I just finished making it and I failed:( I followed all of the instructions but my final result is more like mush than the creamy velvetty soup that is pictured – any suggestions?

    1. I’ve had several people make it and report good results. Do you think it could be your blender? Maybe try some more broth?

  12. Hi Jackie,

    do you think I can freeze the soup? I am the only one in the house that likes cauliflower, but I am not sure I will to have the same soup for a week. LOL

  13. Made a similar soup without the asparagus, and I used the cauliflower water instead of vegetable broth and seasoned with above seasonings and a 1/4 tsp. of thyme. So delicious!!

  14. I made this last night for dinner. I absolutely loved it and so did my husband. I have shared the recipe with some friends to try! This is a keeper.

  15. Soup sound amazing. Can’t wait to try. You had me going on the negative calorie debate until the end of the list with all those sugary fruits. Lol

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