Try this easy and very satisfying vegetarian soup! It's loaded with fiber, vitamins and minerals -- not to mention, it soothes the throat and warms your innards.
Recipe: Lentil and Vegetable Soup
3 T canola oil
2 cups chopped onions, celery and carrots
1 12-ounce package sliced mushrooms
1 large clove garlic, chopped
4 cups vegetable stock or broth
1 cup fresh green beans, cut into one-inch pieces
1 large can diced tomatoes, preferably no-salt-added
2 cups cooked lentils
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and black pepper, to taste (add at table or to pot)
2 cups fresh arugula or spinach, coarsely chopped
Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, celery and carrots. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently, until veggies soften and start to brown a little. Add mushrooms and garlic and cook another 3-4 minutes, stirring often.
Add remaining ingredients except spinach or aruglula and stir well. Cover and bring the soup to a low boil, then remove cover and cook until the green beans are tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in greens (arugula or spinach) and cook another 1-2 minutes, just until greens wilt. Serve immediately.
Serve with crackers, hearty whole-grain bread or brown rice.