Minestrone Vegetable Soup is chock full of fresh vegetables, tender beans, and chewy pasta, for a healthy soup that eats like a meal. This hearty soup can easily be made vegetarian or vegan.
Winter winds are whipping around here with a mighty vengeance that sounds as if a blustery freight train is seconds away from rumbling through the house at times. Bacon Slayer was out of town for a bit last week, so naturally that’s precisely when our new(er) furnace decided to be a little mischievous and take a break from all the hard work of keeping our house and toasty warm from the winter chill. Thankfully, my man has become intimately acquainted with the device this winter, so he was able to walk me through getting her up and running again over the phone.
As we’ve moved, we’ve learned that each house usually has has a few gremlins to contend with, and the pellet furnace is where they reside at our new house in the country. Well, there and in the belts of our snow throwers because those suckers can’t seem to hold it together for more than one clearing of the driveway without snapping like taut rubber bands. I’m more than a little concerned that Bacon Slayer has taken to researching tractor-tractors as sport. I have a feeling that one day soon, I might come home to a new-to-us piece of equipment in the garage that can better handle the towering snow drifts on our property.
When you live Up North, you quickly learn that there is no such thing as bad weather, only only inadequate tools for the job and poor clothing choices.
At least we have a handle on the cold weather gear! Our cousins drove up for the long weekend to spend their winter break in the land of 5 foot snow drifts. My only advice to them was to pack all of the warm layering pieces that they thought they would need, and then pack a few more layers just in case. It’s just good policy.
After sledding and frolicking in subzero temperatures for far longer than we probably should have been outdoors, coming in from the cold and being greeted by the aroma of freshly baked no knead artisan bread and Minestrone Vegetable Soup simmering on the stove was a welcome respite. A big bowl of soup on a cold day is just so comforting. Even my pickiest eaters slurp this soup with wild abandon while dipping fat slices of the crusty bread so that not a drop of broth is left in the bowl. Minestrone Vegetable Soup is so healthy and hearty with all of the vegetables and chewy pasta that even a modest bowl will leave most bellies warm, full, and satisfied.
Minestrone Vegetable Soup is my copy cat version of the Olive Garden favorite first course. Yes, there are a good number of ingredients in the soup, but don’t worry, because it’s quick to prepare, and it doesn’t require active monitoring. For a vegetarian soup, substitute vegetable stock for the chicken. Skipping the cheese isn’t a phrase in my vocabulary, but vegans may choose to do so. It will have few ill effects on the result, except for the part where there is no longer any cheese. 😉
Make a big pot Minestrone Vegetable Soup the next time you’d like a delicious and satisfying way to warm up from the cold.
Minestrone Vegetable Soup is chock full of fresh vegetables, tender beans, and chewy pasta for a healthy, hearty soup that eats like a meal.
20 minPrep Time
25 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
- 2 Tbs. light olive oil
- 1 Tbs. salted butter
- 1 C. (1 small) diced onion
- 1/2 C. thinly sliced celery, with leaves included
- 1/2 C. thinly sliced carrots
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning blend
- 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 4 C. (1 quart) low sodium chicken (or vegetable) stock
- 4 C. water
- 1 parmesan cheese rind, optional but encouraged
- 1 (16 oz.) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (16 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (16 oz.) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 C. fresh green beans cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 (15 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
- 2 C. (packed) baby spinach, rinsed, dried, and roughly chopped
- 1 C. (3 oz.) Orechette (disk) shaped pasta
- 1/2 C. shaved parmesan, divided
- Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven set over medium-high heat. Drizzle the olive oil into the pot and heat until sizzling with the butter. Sauté the onions, celery, and carrots until the vegetables just begin to soften. Stir the minced garlic into the pot, sautéing for 30 seconds. Season the softened vegetables with the Italian seasoning, salt and pepper.
- Pour the chicken stock and water into the pot; stir well. Float the parmesan rind in the soup. Bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium. Add all of the canned beans and fresh green beans to the soup, stirring well. Return to a boil. Stir the canned tomatoes, baby spinach, and Orechette pasta into the soup. Cover the pot and turn off the heat. Let stand for 10 minutes.
- Taste the soup and adjust seasonings, as desired. Fish the rind of parmesan out of the soup and discard. Serve soup with a sprinkle of shaved parmesan cheese.
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