° 1 pound lean ground beef
° 2 tsp olive oil
° Salt / black pepper
° 1 yellow onion, chop (1 cup)
° 3/4 cup chopped red pepper (slightly more than half the middle)
° 3/4 cup chopped green pepper
° 2 garlic cloves, minced
° 2 (14.5 oz) cans diced cherry tomatoes
° 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
° 1 can (14.5) beef broth
° 2 1/2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley, plus more for garnish
° 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
° 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
° 1 cup of uncooked long-grain white or brown rice (I’ve tried and liked both)
• In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the beef to the saucepan and season with salt and pepper. Cooking, stirring while breaking up beef, to browned. Drain the beef, pour into a dish lined with paper towels, and set aside.
• Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pot, then add the onion, red pepper and green pepper and sauté for 3 minutes, then add the garlic and fry for 30 seconds. Pour diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and meat broth, add parsley, basil, oregano and cooked beef, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to boil, reduce heat, covering / simmer, stirring, for 30 min.
•• While the soup is simmering, prepare the rice according to the directions on the package, then once the soup is cooked, stir the desired amount of the cooked rice into the soup*. Serve warm with optional cheese and garnish with fresh parsley.
•• * For a thinner soup, don’t add the whole rice and for a heartier, thicker soup, add it all. Also, if you plan to eat it with your leftovers the next day, don’t add the rice to the soup bowl, just add it to each individual bowl, then keep the rice in a separate bowl in the fridge to add to the soup. The next day (otherwise it will turn into mush).