Green Minestrone...Yummmmm!

These days green is in for dinner time. I am trying to stick to a healthier diet for everyone in our household. For something quick and easy for lunch or dinner, this is a family favorite. I usually pair it with a fresh fruit salad, whole grain bread or my homemade biscuits (more on those later).

Bon Appetie!

Green Minestrone
courtesy of Rachel Ray and

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 slices panchetta, chopped or .25 pound proscuitto (leave out if your doing a vegetarian version of this recipe)
1 medium onions, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 larges garlic cloves, crushed
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 bay leaf
1 can white beans
1 can garbanzo beans
Dash salt
Dash pepper
8 cups chicken broth (I use Swanson Low Sodium)
1 cup pasta small shells
1/2 pound green beans
10 ounces fresh spinach or other greens, chopped
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
12 leaves fresh basil

Heat a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and panchetta. Saute 2 minutes and add onions, celery, zucchini and bay leaf. Season veggies w salt and pepper to taste. Saute veggies 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add white beans, garbanzo beans and chicken stock. Cover pot and bring to boil. Add pasta and green beans to soup and cook 8 minutes or until pasta is tender. Stir in spinach to wilt. Stir in cheese and ladle soup. Top with fresh basil