Recipe of the month

Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto

Healthy eating doesn't have to be boring. We're a huge fan of this delicious Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto - perfect for a healthy lunch or served with a chunky slice of fresh bread for a warming evening meal this winter.

Ingredients 

  • 2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • ½ cup carrot or diced red bell pepper 

  • 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 8 ounces), cut into quarters

  • 1 large clove garlic, minced

  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 1½ teaspoons dried marjoram

  • 6 ounces baby spinach, coarsely chopped

  • 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans or great northern beans, rinsed

  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • ⅓ cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves

  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

  • ¾ cup plain or herbed multigrain croutons for garnish (optional)

Method 

  • Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add carrot (or bell pepper) and chicken; cook, turning the chicken and stirring frequently, until the chicken begins to brown, 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Stir in broth and marjoram; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
  • With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken pieces to a clean cutting board to cool. Add spinach and beans to the pot and bring to a gentle boil. Cook for 5 minutes to blend the flavors.
    Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, Parmesan and basil in a food processor (a mini processor works well). Process until a coarse paste forms, adding a little water and scraping down the sides as necessary.
  • Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces. Stir the chicken and pesto into the pot. Season with pepper. Heat until hot. Garnish with croutons, if desired.

ENJOY!

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