It’s true. We’ve been huge fans of Michelle Smith (@thewholesmiths) since our little brand got started — and likewise, she has been a long time supporter of ZÜPA NOMA. Michelle is a bestselling Whole30 Endorsed cookbook author (check out the Good Food Cookbook stat!), veggie lover, mom to two girls… and basically a professional rapper (based on her Instagram Stories at least).
It was a match made in heaven when we asked her to collaborate with us on a new summer bundle, featuring all of her and her family’s favorite flavors, plus our newest seasonal addition, Summer Squash! This bundle includes two each of Summer Squash, Beet Orange Basil, Tomato Gazpacho, Yellow Pepper Turmeric, and Tomatillo Kale Jalapeño soups — and two each of Carrot Ginger Turmeric, Tomato Vinegar Habanero, and Carrot Ginger Turmeric Veggie Shots. Her collection is the ultimate summer celebration — with fresh sun-ripened veggies in every sip — and supports Michelle’s mission to bring wholesome eating and happy living to her growing community.
We sat down with Michelle recently while on her book tour — keep reading to learn more about her family, her passion for healthy living, and ZÜPA in this super fun interview:
Q: What do you love about our new Summer Squash flavor?
A: There are certain flavors that always scream summer to me; watermelon, BBQ ribs, caprese salads, and now this soup with its amazing summer veggies and herbs! The fresh squash and zucchini, paired with vine ripe tomatoes, make this soup scream and taste like summer! I love it!
Q: Why did you select these flavors for your bundle? Why are these your favorites?
A: I love these flavors in particular because they’re vegetables and flavors that I eat and love on a regular basis at home. But the truth of the matter is, I don’t always have the time to properly prepare these veggies at home but still want their fresh taste. A great example of that is with the Beet Orange Basil variety. I absolutely adore the flavor of beets but roasting them up in the middle of summer isn’t always ideal. Fortunately, I can still get that great flavor in my ZÜPA. I also made sure to pick the flavors that felt the most like “summer” to me. Ingredients like basil, tomato, and yellow peppers always remind me of warm summer days.
Q: What’s your favorite vegetable?
A: Brussels sprouts, but they need to be roasted. And for the record, my former 10-year old self would be withering in shock at this answer.
Q: What’s one food you can’t live without?
A: Olives. I know, people love them or hate them. I use them all the time in my cooking and as a snack.
Q: How do you and your family use our Superfood Soups?
A: My family loves using ZÜPA NOMA for a dose of on-the-go veggies or when I’m in a time crunch at home and don’t have time to prepare and/or cook vegetables. I love the Tomatillo Kale Jalapeño as an afternoon snack when I go to pick up the girls from school. I grab one from the fridge and drink it on the way over. I love the light kick of spice that the jalapeño brings to the bottle. I guess you can say it gives me that extra kick I need to get through the afternoon!
Q: What is your favorite time of day to drink our new Veggie Shots?
A: I’ve made it a habit to have one while I’m making dinner. Rather than nibbling and ruining my appetite, it’s a great way to get a healthy little treat in while I’m preparing the meal.
Q: What are your kids’ favorite flavors?
A: My kids love the Tomato Gazpacho! Tomato is a flavor they’re used to and is fairly mild, which makes it so easy to get those extra veggies into them. They also love the Carrot Ginger Turmeric shots. We pack them up for outings and I know that way they are at least getting SOME veggies into their system! Not to mention they go down quickly and they can get back to playing just as quickly.
Q: Why were you inspired to share your favorite ZÜPA products?
A: I understand that veggies can be tough to fit in our diets throughout the day because we don’t always have time to prep and cook them. And while you can grab some raw veggies on the go, that gets old, and often isn’t ideal. I love that ZÜPA has created a product that solves that problem and makes it easy to get veggies into our day when we may not have time to do so otherwise.
Q: What’s your favorite #SOUPSWAP?
A: My favorite #SOUPSWAP has been replacing my morning latte with a ZÜPA NOMA instead. While I don’t do it every day, it’s a great way to get the day started with lots of nutrients, particularly when I feel I may not have hit that goal the day before. Tomatillo Kale Jalapeño and Yellow Pepper Turmeric are my favorite soups to grab in the morning!
Q: If you could have any superpower what would it be?
A: Whatever superpower would qualify me to become Starlord’s sidekick. I already have the sassy attitude so I guess I’m halfway there!
Q: If you could be any rapper, who would you be? And do you have any good rap lyrics about vegetables?
A: Missy Elliott for sure! She encompasses it all. And do I have any good rap lyrics about vegetables?! Phhh, let’s do this! “Mo veggies, no problems” “I’m not a player I just ZUP-a lot” “Every day I’m brusselin’” “I got chives on it” I can keep going but we’ll leave it at that...