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Witches' Brew Vegetable Stew

This week’s PIP haul was brimming with all sorts of treats, no tricks! We rescued, boxed up, and shipped out so many colorful vegetables, just in time for Halloween weekend. We know there will be plenty of sweets enjoyed in the coming days, so here’s a fun dinner idea to work some fresh, nourishing produce into the meal plan!

This bright green “Witches’ Brew” gets its amazing color from lots of green vegetables, like celery, zucchini, and kale. Chickpeas help to thicken it up and add protein and fiber for staying power. Make a tray of spooky roasted vegetables using the rainbow carrots, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, and colorful romanesco or cauliflower, then serve them atop the Witches’ Brew for the ultimate Halloween-themed vegetarian stew.

Whether enjoyed before trick-or-treating to fuel up, or after the festivities to warm up, this Witches’ Brew Vegetable Stew is sure to thrill. Show us what PIP produce you’re serving up this Halloween weekend by snapping a photo, posting it to social, and tagging us @perfectlyimperfectproduce! Happy Halloween, PIP fam!

Witches’ Brew Vegetable Stew

Active time: 30 Min.

Total time: 60 Min.

Servings: 4-6


For the roasted vegetables:

Perfectly Imperfect rainbow carrots

Perfectly Imperfect sweet potato

Perfectly Imperfect bell peppers

Perfectly Imperfect butternut squash

Perfectly Imperfect romanesco or colorful cauliflower

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

For the soup:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 Perfectly Imperfect onion, chopped

2 stalks Perfectly Imperfect celery, chopped

1 medium Perfectly Imperfect zucchini, chopped

1 medium Perfectly Imperfect yellow carrot or parsnip, chopped

Salt and pepper

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

½ teaspoon ground turmeric

4 cups low sodium vegetable or chicken broth

14.5 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 bunch Perfectly Imperfect kale, stems removed and coarsely chopped (about 4 packed cups)

2-3 tablespoons Perfectly Imperfect lemon juice

A large handful of baby spinach (optional)


To make the roasted vegetables:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper for easy cleanup (or spray with cooking spray).

Slice off the bottom two inches of the carrots to use as “creepy fingers”. Slice the carrots into coins, then use a stainless steel drinking straw to poke holes in the middle for “eyeballs”. (Tip: use a metal skewer to pop the veg bits out of the straw.) Or, use a paring knife to cut out two small triangles for “mini pumpkins”. Slice the sweet potato crosswise into ½-inch rounds. Use a small themed cookie cutter to cut Halloween shapes. Cut the bell peppers into strips. Use the straw to cut two eyes and a mouth for “ghosts”. Peel and cube part of the butternut squash. Chop up part of the romanesco or cauliflower into florets.

Toss the vegetables in olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread in an even layer on the sheet pan and roast for 25 to 30 minutes, or until fork tender; set aside.

To make the soup:

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, zucchini and carrot/parsnip and sweat for 10 minutes, stirring often. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then stir in garlic and spices. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add the broth, chickpeas, and kale; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, or until parsnips/carrots are tender. Remove from heat, stir in lemon juice, and carefully transfer soup to a blender (or use an immersion blender for a more textured soup). Work in batches, if necessary, and blend until very smooth. For a brighter green soup, add the spinach with the soup to the blender. The soup will likely be in need of salt, so add more to taste!

Serve soup as is, or topped with roasted vegetables.

By Carolyn Hodges, MS, RDN

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