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Comfort Foods: Crockpot Veggie Soup and Homemade Cornbread

By Marni Sumbal

This is just what I needed after a long day!

When it comes to comfort food, I think we all associate the comforting food with a former memory or habit. In order to change a few old eating habits, try adding some of your favorite treats to your heart-healthy recipes. It may take some time weaning yourself away from old favorites, but eventually I think you will find yourself gravitating more towards wholesome foods and less towards processed (or high fat) options.

We had some leftover Sun Chips from my menu a few weeks ago so I decided to top our soup with a little crunch from the chips. If you are a salty or crunchy eater, topping a bowl full of veggies is a perfect way to incorporate something old with something new. The cornbread was super spicy. It was a little dense because I used whole wheat flour but when served warm....delicious!


soupCrockpot Veggie, Brown Rice and Bean Soup

  • 1 can of your favorite beans (about 3 cups)
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 cup corn
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 small onion (sliced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 2 cups baby carrots (chopped in large chunks)
  • 3 celery stalks (chopped)
  • 1 container mushrooms
  • 1 large stalk broccoli (chopped)
Put all ingredients in a crockpot and cook for 4 hours. Stir occasionally in the last hour. Add enough water to slightly cover all the veggies. 

Note: you may add any combination of spices to add a little bit of kick to your soup!

soupSpicy Homemade Cornbread

  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 3-4 tbsp water (just enough water to get out the clumps)
  • 1/8 cup chives (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup corn
  • 2-3 tbsp finely chopped jalapenos (green... or really hot red)
  • 1 tsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine all ingredients and mix well. Pour into lightly sprayed bread baking dish. Cook for 25-30 min or until top begins to crack.

Marni Sumbal holds a Master of Science in Exercise Physiology, is a Certified Sports Nutritionist (CISSN) and is certified in adult weight management by the American Dietetic Association. Marni is a Level I USAT coach and is currently pursuing a registered dietician degree. She is a Hammer sponsored athlete, 2007 Ford Ironman World Championship finisher and just finished her third IM, the Ford Ironman Louisville Triathlon on August 30, 2009, with PR of 10 hours and 54 minutes. Marni enjoys public speaking and writing. She has several published articles in Hammer Endurance News, Cosmo Girl and Triathlete Magazine, and contributes monthly to and You can check out her blog at