- Heat oil over medium heat in large soup pot. Sauté diced onion and minced garlic until soft but not browned. Add lentils, rice and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat 5-8 minutes.
- Puree one can or half of the diced tomatoes. Add diced carrots, sliced celery, diced green pepper, diced and pureed tomatoes and the beans (with liquid) to soup. Cover and simmer about 45 minutes or until lentils and rice are cooked.
- Stir in cooked, chopped chicken and season with basil, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper.
- Ladle into bowls and serve with sprinkle of cheddar cheese and minced parsley.
This hearty soup can make a satisfying lunch or supper meal with some good crusty bread. For a lighter soup, dilute with more stock, tomato juice or water. If you are using ready-to-serve chicken broth, you can substitute half water and adjust seasonings and salt before serving. Freeze extra portions in smaller containers for lunch meals at home or at the office.