The days when I have dinner cooking in the crock pot are always good days. It’s a combination of a sense of freedom, knowing that I don’t have to do a minute of cooking that night, and excitement of how the ingredients I put in the crock pot have transformed throughout the day. So this morning when I put the ingredients in my crock pot for a new chili recipe I wanted to try, I was stoked for dinner that night. You can only imagine how disappointed I was when I came home to see that my crock pot had somehow turned off during the day, leaving my chili half-cooked. I mean…what the?! How does that even happen?
Once I got past my major disappointment and silenced my growling stomach with a little snack, I realized I had to figure out what to have for dinner. As I scanned my refrigerator for possibilities, I eyed this soup I made to bring for lunch all week.
It’s a perfect lunch soup because it’s light and broth based, but full of flavor from the lemon zest and red pepper flakes. Even though I had eaten a bowl earlier for lunch, it was so good that I decided to go for round 2 of the day. I paired mine with a grilled cheese sandwich for dinner but it would also pair perfectly with a chunk of crusty bread or a light salad. To make the soup heartier, you could even add some shredded chicken breast or a can of cannellini beans. However you make it and whatever you pair it with, don’t forget the Parmesan cheese on top. Not optional.
Israeli Couscous, Lemon, and Spinach Soup
adapted from Bake Your Day
1 tbsp olive oil
1 white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp dried thyme
1 lemon, zested and juiced
3 cups fresh spinach leaves
1 cup Israeli Couscous
6 cups vegetable broth
salt, to taste
Parmesan cheese, for topping
In a large pot or Dutch oven, add olive oil. Over medium-high heat, add the onion and garlic and cook for 4 minutes. Add the red pepper flakes, lemon zest, and thyme and cook another 3-4 minutes until the onions are translucent.
Add spinach and couscous and cook for 1 minute. Next, add the broth and lemon juice. Bring to a simmer and let cook for 12-15 minutes, until the couscous is barely tender.
Top with grated Parmesan cheese and enjoy!