Lemon Chicken Spinach Soup

You read right. Lemon in soup. It's incredible. Lemon can impart a wonderful tightness to many dishes, and this soup will become an instant favorite. This recipe is high in protein, low in calories and fat, and has as much (or little salt) as you prefer. It's light yet filling, a perfect soup for cold or even warm nights. 

White beans? Yes. Definitely. The Italian white beans Rita used to make this are high protein, low fat and low salt. They add a richness and hearty flavor to this wonderful soup. Plus, they're easy on your tummy. 

Give this healthy soup a try. Trust us when we say this will become an instant favorite. Enjoy.

Lemon and Spinach Chicken Soup

Prep Time: 20 minutes | Cook Time: 2 1/2 hours | Servings: 8 appetizers or 4 entrees

Difficulty: Easy

Olive Oil Cooking Spray (like Pam)
14 oz. Chicken Breasts (skinless/boneless)
3 - 32oz cartons of Swanson's Natural Goodness Chicken Broth (low-salt)
4 oz. celery (chopped)
1 med. onion (chopped)
4 oz. spinach (chopped)
1/2 can S & W Small White Beans (low salt) rinsed
3 med. lemons (zest & then squeeze juice & strain)
Fresh Dill (3 -4 stalks- chop leaves only)
Fresh Ground Pepper
Fresh Ground Sea Salt

Using a 5 to 7 quart French oven such as Le Creuset, quickly sear the chicken breast in Olive Oil Pam (or a similar cooking spray) on high heat. Do not burn. Flip quickly. Add a quick grind of salt & pepper. Once you have a little browning, add the first carton of chicken broth and begin to braise the chicken over medium heat. (Do not let it boil, turn the heat down or move to a lower temperature burner to keep it a steady simmer.) Keep this covered.

This process will take about 1 3/4 hours. Check the chicken every 20 minutes and add more liquid, never letting the liquid level down to less than 1/2 the height of the chicken. After about 40 minutes, begin the break the chicken apart with a tong. In the last 20 minutes, uncover and,break the chicken even further, until it has a shredded constancy and has absorbed all the liquid. Add one more quick grind of salt and pepper. Add the remaining container and one more. Turn the heat back up until it can be lowered again to a steady simmer.

In the meantime, in a large sauté pan, sauté the onion in the olive oil spray until translucent. Add the celery and continue cooking until tender. Hold aside until the chicken is ready and shredded. Add the onion, celery, spinach, white beans, lemon zest, lemon juice, chopped dill, salt and pepper to the French oven. Add salt and pepper to taste. Do not over salt. Cook on medium heat for 45 minutes, covered. The longer this cooks the better it is. Check every 15 minutes or so to make sure it is not boiling.

Nutritional Info:

Appetizer Serving (8) about 1 to 1 1/2 cups

Calories 108
Protein 16
Fat 1
Carbs 14
Fiber 3

Entree  Serving (4) about 2 1/2 to 3 cups
Calories 216
Protein 32
Fat 2
Carbs 28
Fiber 6

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