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It’s soup season and, no surprise, January is National Soup Month. And so, that means soup for you. With all these cold weather snaps, everyone appears to be making, talking and cozying up to a bowl of warm broth.

What I like most about soup is that it is filling and can be a meal in itself.

Today’s soup is far from homemade and that’s what makes it a beauty. This soup recipe is super quick and easy thanks to canned broth and frozen chicken wontons.

We all have favorite convenience foods, and these frozen wontons are one of mine. And while I typically have homemade chicken or vegetable stock squirreled away in the freezer, I also keep canned broth at hand.

Several years ago, these Chicken Cilantro Mini Wontons sold at Trader Joe’s came into my life. And since then, they’ve been a staple not only for this soup but as an easy appetizer.

In today’s soup, the wontons work two-fold — providing the chicken as well as the starch or noodle or pasta all wrapped in one tiny nice package. Add them to the soup straight from the freezer, and they need just a few minutes in the boiling broth.

The shiitake mushrooms are another one of my favorites. As mushrooms go, shiitakes lend that meaty flavor to most dishes. They are best just slightly cooked or sauteed first as they are in this soup. To clean shiitakes, wipe with a damp paper towel and remove the stems. You can chop and use the stems to flavor stocks.

Carrots, snow peas and sliced baby bok choy are a good addition to this soup.

A few splashes of soy sauce give the soup additional depth of flavor, and you can add a drizzle or two of sriracha or chili paste for a spicy kick.

When using soy sauce, I always use ones that are labeled less-sodium. How much less varies with the product. The amounts are usually listed in percentages and in comparison to their regular product. Be sure to check the label.

With a measly 226 calories for a generous 11/2-cup serving, this soup is impressively filling.

Quick and Easy Chicken Wonton Soup

Serves: 4 (generously)

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Total time: 20 minutes

2 packages (4 ounces each) shiitake mushrooms

2 teaspoons canola oil

61/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

About 1/2 bag (more if desired) chicken cilantro mini wontons (such as Trader Joe’s)

2 tablespoons less-sodium soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil or hot chili oil, or to taste, optional

2 cups coarsely chopped Napa cabbage

3 green onions, washed, thinly sliced

Remove and discard the stems of the shiitakes. Wipe the shiitakes clean with a damp paper towel. Cut the shiitake caps into thin slices.

In a medium saucepot, heat the canola oil. Add the shiitakes and saute until soft. Pour in the broth and bring to a boil. Add the wontons and cook about 3 minutes. Reduce the heat and stir in the soy sauce and sesame oil, if using; Napa cabbage and green onions. Simmer 2 minutes. Remove from heat and ladle into bowls.

Nutrition information: 226 calories (28 percent from fat), 7 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 28 g carbohydrates, 15 g protein, 634 mg sodium, 8 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber. (Analysis based on 1 serving, about 11/2 cups.)

From and tested by Susan Selasky for the Free Press Test Kitchen.

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