Minestrone
 
Ingredients: 2 carrots, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 small red or yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced (or 2 tsp prepared garlic)
4 cups vegetable broth
1 28-oz. can tomato sauce
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 cup small shell pasta or macaroni
1 cup shredded escarole, kale, or spinach
1 can cannellini or navy beans, drained
1 can kidney beans, drained
Salt and pepper
Grated Parmesan, for serving (optional)
 
Directions 1. Combine carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and beans in slow cooker. Pour in broth, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper and other seasonings. Cover and cook on low for 4 to 6 hours (or high for 3 - 4 hours).

2. Once vegetables are tender, stir in tomato sauce, pasta, and escarole. Cover, increase heat to high and cook until pasta is tender, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove bay leaves and serve hot, sprinkled with Parmesan, if desired.

Note: Do NOT add the tomato sauce until step 2 or the citric acid will prevent the carrots and beans from softening.