Easy Butternut Squash, Kale, and Chickpea Soup

This quick and easy vegetarian soup is chock-full of vitamin-rich vegetables and protein-rich chickpeas, so you'll stay satisfied well after you've finished eating.  

Serves 6

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 yellow onion, diced

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

3 celery stalks, sliced, preferably with some leaves

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed (about 3-4 cups)

1 (14.5 oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

7 cups low-sodium vegetable broth (more if you prefer it soupier)

1 small bunch kale (dinosaur or curly), washed and thinly sliced (about 5 cups)

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

salt, to taste

1/3 cup chopped fresh basil

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

grated Parmesan cheese, for sprinkling on top

1. In a large pot over medium heat, warm olive oil. Add onion, carrots, and celery, and saute 5-7 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the squash, chickpeas, and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce to low and cook 5-7 minutes, or until squash is tender but not mushy. Add kale, crushed red pepper, and salt. Heat through, about 3 minutes. Stir in herbs. Taste it, and adjust seasonings as desired. Serve hot, garnishing each bowl with a sprinkling of grated cheese.