Italian Chicken Lentil Soup

This is one of the first meals I learned how to make when I started out learning to cook two years ago.  After trying a couple different recipes I found one that was pretty good.  Betty Crockers Italian Chicken - Lentil Soup.  It was good the first time I made it but it needed something.  I prefer a hearty soup so I added more veggies.  That still seemed to missing something so I added some of my own ingredients.  Here is what I came up with...


Italian Chicken Lentil Soup (Crockpot)



Ingredients

2 Large chicken breasts
1 Medium chopped summer squash (optional)
2 Medium chopped zucchini
6 - 8 Chopped carrots (I scrub the outside well and just chop them up, no peeling)
1 Medium chopped onion (I don't like onions so I used onion powder instead)
1 clove of minced garlic
1 cup of dried rinsed lentils (you can add up to 1 1/4cup if you would like more)
9 cups of chicken broth (I use between 7-9 cups depending on how much lentils I use)
pinch of salt and pepper
1 package of chopped mushrooms
1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes (undrained)
1 tablespoon dried basil
Fresh shredded Parmesan cheese


In a large Slow Cooker add chicken, summer squash, zucchini, carrots, onion, garlic, lentils, 7-8 cups of chicken broth, salt and pepper.  Cook covered on low for 6 hours.  

When 6 hours is up gently shred the chicken.  Add mushrooms, tomatoes, and basil. Feel free to also add more broth if needed.  Cooked covered for 30 minutes.  

Serve with shredded parmesan cheese.  


*I freeze extras in quart size containers.  To reheat defrost in refrigerator overnight.  Heat in a covered pot on the stove with a bit of water or broth.


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