Very Veggie Minestrone
Time on High: 3 to 4 hours on high Time on Low: 4 to 6 hours on low This was the result of an attempt to incorporate more vegetables into my family's diet as well as at least one meat-free meal a week.
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 large carrot, diced
2 Cups green beans, ends trimmed, cut in 1/2 inch pieces
1 Teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
Salt & pepper to taste
2 cans (14 oz each) fire-roasted diced tomatoes
2 cans (14 oz each) low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
1 can (15 oz) white beans, drained & rinsed
1 medium zucchini, diced
Parmesan cheese rind
1 Cup fresh spinach
Prepared basil pesto
Grated Parmesan cheese
1. Heat the olive oil in a 10 inch or larger skillet. Saute onions and garlic until softened, add celery, carrot and green beans. Let soften slightly before seasoning with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.
2. Heat Crock-Pot® slow cooker on high. Add the diced tomatoes, broth, zucchini and Parmesan cheese rind, followed by sauteed vegetables.
3. Heat on high for one hour, then reduce heat to low and cook 4 to 6 hours. Additional broth or water may be added as needed.
4. Shortly before serving add fresh spinach and beans.
5. To serve: Ladle soup in each bowl, top with a dollop of basil pesto and sprinkle with the grated Parmesan cheese.