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20 Aug 2014 Savoury

Lunch Box Inspiration #3: Souper-Hero Minestrone with Cheesey Flapjacks

You will certainly have super-heros on your hands after they devour this hearty, warming and nutritious soup. There is a great selection of fun pasta shapes available now. Paddy O’s Granola is nutritious and it’s dried fruit gives a delicious contrast to the cheese in these savoury flapjacks.

Serves 4-6

About €1.45 per portion for soup with flapjacks


Preheat the oven to 180C (350F / Gas Mark 4).

Heat the oil in a large pan on a medium heat. Saute the onion, garlic, carrot, celery, courgette and bacon for 4-5 minutes until beginning to soften.

Meanwhile, make the flapjacks. Beat the eggs lightly in a large bowl and stir in the Paddy O’s Granola, cheese, chives and paprika along with a little seasoning.

Press evenly into a 18cm (7 in) square tin lined with parchment paper and bake for 10 minutes until set and golden brown.

Add the stock, tomatoes, chick-peas, pasta and seasoning to the soup and bring to the boil. Reduce to simmer for about 10 minutes or until the pasta and vegetables are tender.

Remove the flapjacks from the oven and allow to cool and set before cutting into 16 squares.

The minestrone can be kept warm for school lunch in a flask and package up the flapjacks to go along with it.


ALSO IN THE BOX: dried cranberries, orange juice, an apple, melon wedge.

NUTRITION: Spinach or other green leafy veg like cabbage, kale or swiss chard pack a punch with their iron content. The chick-peas and bacon provide plenty of protein and it goes without saying that the kids will devour plenty of vegetables without complaint. Choose wholemeal pasta if possible.


Photo © Joanne Murphy

You will need...

1 tbsp sunflower oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 carrot, finely chopped

1 celery stick, finely chopped

1 small courgette, diced

3 slices back bacon, diced

600ml chicken or vegetable stock

400g can chopped tomatoes

400g can chick-peas

50g dried pasta shapes (or 25g if tiny)

50g spinach, roughly chopped


2 eggs

200g Paddy O’s Granola

100g cheddar cheese, finely grated

2 tbsp finely chopped chives

¼ tsp paprika

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

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