Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto

This fragrant, Italian-flavored soup takes advantage of quick-cooking ingredients-boneless, skinless chicken breast, bagged baby spinach and canned beans. It features a simple homemade basil pesto swirled in at the end to add a fresh herb flavor. If you are very pressed for time, you can substitute 3 to 4 tablespoons of a store-bought basil pesto. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.

Nancy Baggett

Used by permission. (c) Eating Well, Inc.

Chicken & Spinach Soup with Fresh Pesto

Did you change this recipe up a little? We want to know! Share it with us by adding your special Twist.

Did you change this recipe?

Add your Twist

    A twist is a way to share your own spin on our recipies!

    Submit your own twist!

    Ingredients

    2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided 6 ounces baby spinach, coarsely chopped
    1/2 cup carrot or diced red bell pepper 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans or great northern beans, rinsed
    1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 8 ounces), cut into quarters 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    1 large clove garlic, minced 1/3 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
    5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth Freshly ground pepper to taste
    1 1/2 teaspoons dried marjoram 3/4 cup plain or herbed multigrain croutons for garnish (optional)

    directions

    Prep: 30 min Total: 30 min (Quick)
    Try Kitchen View! Take your computer to the kitchen and view this recipe full-screen, with step-by-step directions.
    Enter Kitchen View
    • 1

      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.

    • 2

      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.

    • 3

      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.

    • 4

      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.

    nutritional information

    Calories:
    204
    Fiber:
    6 g
    Fat:
    8 g
    Saturated Fat:
    2 g
    Carbohydrates:
    16 g
    Protein:
    18 g
    Sodium:
    691 mg
    Monounsaturated Fat:
    4 g
    Exchanges:
    1 starch, 1 vegetable, 2 lean meat, 1 fat
    Cholesterol:
    29 g
    Carbohydrate Servings:
    1/2
    Potassium:
    529 mg
    Nutrition Bonus:
    Vitamin A (110% daily value), Folate & Vitamin C (20% dv).
    Connect with Us
    Follow Our Pins

    Yummy recipes, DIY projects, home decor, fashion and more curated by iVillage staffers.

    Follow Our Tweets

    The very dirty truth about fashion internships... DUN DUN @srslytheshow http://t.co/wfewf

    On Instagram

    Behind-the-scenes pics from iVillage.

    Do you have a recipe that will knock our socks off?

    Share Yours Now
    Today's Best Saving