Let’s Get Real: On “Souping”

In case you missed it (lucky you, but I’m about to ruin that), the New York Times’ piece “Souping is the New Juicing” from this week’s Fashion & Style section isn’t worth a read, but it does make for some good coffee-fueled Friday chat.

First: the Juicing/Souping debate is in Fashion & Style. Just that.

I know you and I have had juices here n’ there; it happens, they’re tasty. We’ve tested some things in the Vitamix, but are not about to start replacing meals with frothy green cups of who-knows-what. We don’t need any convincing to get a variety of fruits or vegetables in every day, much less a machine pulverizing them into something that goes right through, anyway. Chewing is cool, too.

“Juicing” seems like our adult justification for wanting a sweet beverage, but not wanting to sip on a cup of sugar or to admit that you just want a cup of juice. I’ve been there, I hear you. But let’s not assume it’s the “best” way to get in nutrients, or to cleanse. 

So we’re in the anti-juicing camp yes? Right. Just eat fruits. They taste delicious and then a) you’ll actually feel like you consumed something and b) you won’t just pee most of it out.

But, “souping”? Is this a new verb? Have we souped before? I made a soup the other night, does that count as souping?

“The juice cleanses are difficult because you don’t chew,” the article quotes investment banker Vivienne Zhao who “has spent each Monday on a {soup} cleanse.” But you’re chewing these “liquid-based meals”? My guess is no.

I’m genuinely intrigued by this, and I suppose it’s a step up from juicing but isn’t this just a warm smoothie? {Insert thinking-face-emoji.} I’m honestly not sure there’s a difference. I made my soup in the Vitamix on the “soup” setting — which I consider a light form of magic — so let’s call the kettle black, right? I basically made a smoothie that came out steaming hot and happened to have beans. But some smoothies have beans! So, I’m going to be honest with myself and take a moment to realize that the Vitamix duped me and I’ve souped. I’m not saying it won’t happen again, but I won’t be endorsing any souping cleanses.

Fact: cleanses aren’t necessary. If you want soup for a meal, just have some soup. Soup is tasty, a great way to mix some vegetables, broths, and flavors together. But it doesn’t have to be a verb and it doesn’t have to dress up as a smoothie. That’s that.


  1. February 5, 2016

    This is hilarious! I’ve never heard of souping before, it’s just another marketing tactic or health trend.
    PS I totally read this whole post in your voice while chewing veggie pizza. That’s because the strawberry peach almond milk protein powder smoothie I had a little over an hour ago didn’t last long. Wait, did I actually have fruit soup? I’m confused.

  2. February 6, 2016

    I cannot tell you how irate juice cleanses make me. Your body does not need to be cleansed if your organs are in proper working order! I could go on for days and days about it. We are on the same page!

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