The skeptics out there might raise an eyebrow at the name of a product WAG was recently asked to sample.
It’s Zoup! Good, Really Good Chicken Broth.
How good, the skeptics might ask? Well, we have to say, the creators of Zoup! were not exaggerating.
In fact, the first thing I said when I tasted our sample of the low-sodium version was, “Wow, that really tastes like… real chicken soup.”
It seems that Eric Ersher, founder and CEO, had an idea – and successfully ran with it. A 20-plus year veteran of the soup business (the fast-casual chain Zoup!), Ersher saw a need for something different – a quality broth that he said would be, “good enough to drink.”
As press materials explain, he said, “The world didn’t need another chicken broth. What it needed was one that tasted better. We’ve been refining this broth recipe for over 18 years, shortly after getting into the soup business. Zoup!’s clean ingredient deck, exceptional quality and complex yet balanced flavor, make it unlike anything else you’ll find on shelves. It’s the broth you’d make yourself if you had the time.”
The chicken broth is prepared in kettles using restaurant-quality cooking methods and standards. The small-batch production leads to low-calorie, paleo-friendly, no-carb results, which are also free of hormones, gluten, GMOs, fat, trans fat and saturated fat.
The company also makes Veggie Broth, as well as Chicken and Beef Bone Broth – and its website is filled with recipes (think Winter Squash Soup with Apple, Smoky Bacon and Sage, White Chicken Chili or Angel Hair Pasta). We had our sample of Zoup! as a simple bowl, adding rice and a few spices for a satisfying weekend lunch.
Here’s a recipe shared with us from Zoup!, something to keep in mind as we fully embrace autumn and the holiday season:
Cornbread Stuffing with Spicy Sausage, Chard and Sage Brown Butter
6 cups prepared cornbread (1 pound loaf), cubed into 3/4-inch chunks
1 pound bulk sausage
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 cups Zoup! Good, Really Good Broth (any variety)
8 cups Swiss chard (about 2 bunches), leaves and stems coarsely chopped
8 tablespoons butter, cubed
½ cup sage leaves, coarsely chopped
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly grated black pepper
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Lay out cubed cornbread onto lightly sprayed or greased rimmed baking pan and bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until cornbread is golden and crisped, stirring as needed, and reserve.
- In large skillet over medium-high heat, cook sausage, breaking up with wooden spoon into coarse chunks, until browned and cooked through. Remove cooked sausage from skillet with slotted spoon and transfer to large mixing bowl. In same skillet, over medium-high heat, cook chopped onion for 5 to 8 minutes or until slightly translucent. Add garlic and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, stirring as needed. Deglaze skillet with broth (any flavor is good – we used chicken bone broth) and bring to simmer. Add chard in batches, cooking until just wilted, and pour over reserved sausage.
- In same skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter and cook until lightly browned and frothy. Add sage leaves and cook for about one minute or until sage leaves are darkened and lightly crisped. Pour over sausage and vegetable mixture.
- In small bowl, add eggs, salt and pepper and whisk until combined. Add to vegetable mixture, stirring to combine, and fold in cornbread. Transfer to glass or ceramic 2-quart baking dish. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until golden and edges crisped. Let cool on wire rack for 15 minutes and serve warm.
Chef’s Tip: Try using greens such as kale, collards, spinach or mustard greens. Cheese lovers can top with finely shredded parmesan or your favorite cheese before baking.
Zoup! is available in original and low-sodium varieties at natural and mainstream markets. It’s sold in 31-ounce glass jars at a suggested retail price of $6.95.
For more, visit zoupbroth.com.
– Mary Shustack