Tuscan Bean Soup

    START TO FINISH: 20 minutes MAKES 4 servings

    • 1 cup packaged peeled baby carrots, coarsely chopped
    • 1⁄3 cup chopped onion (1 small)
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 32-ounce box vegetable broth
    • 2 15-ounce cans cannellini beans (white kidney beans), rinsed and drained
    • 2 to 3 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning, crushed
    • 1 5-ounce package baby spinach
    • Freshly cracked black pepper
    • Soft cracker bread (lavosh) (optional)

    1. In a large saucepan cook and stir carrots and onion in 1 tablespoon of the hot olive oil over medium-high heat for 3 minutes. Add broth, drained beans, and Italian seasoning. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Slightly mash beans with potato masher or fork.
    2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add spinach; toss with tongs for 1 to 2 minutes or just until wilted. Remove from heat.
    3. To serve, top soup with spinach and sprinkle with pepper. Serve with cracker bread.

    PER SERVING: 254 cal., 11 g total fat (1 g sat. fat), 0 mg chol., 1,269 mg sodium, 38 g carb., 12 g fiber, 14 g pro.