My Minestrone Soup recipe is made with lots of fresh, good-for-you veggies and pasta to make it hearty and filling. The delicate tomato veggie broth is spiked with parmesan rind to ramp up this classic recipe. You’ll give this healthy and easy recipe a warm welcome as a new addition to your weekly dinner rotation.
It’s time for a healthy meal that will make you feel good from the inside out! As you know I cook with lots of meat, especially chicken, but every once in a while I crave a good vegetarian meal. This soup is a favorite in my veggie repertoire. Deep, rich flavors with loads of goodies in every bite.
Variations of this simple vegetable soup have been around for centuries, but the Minestrone we know and love today originated in Italy. Some of you may have come to love this soup as a popular item at Olive Garden, along with the classic Zuppa Toscana. However you stumbled across this recipe, one thing is certain. You are going to savor each and every bite!
Keep scrolling for to the recipe card for the full list of ingredient amounts and instructions or click the “Jump to Recipe” button at the top of the page!
- Olive oil – Avocado, safflower, sunflower, canola, or vegetable oils will work instead.
- Veggies – Onion, celery, potatoes.
- Garlic – Use more or less as you prefer.
- Red kidney beans – I used one can, rinsed and drained. Other types like black beans or cannellini beans will work too.
- Seasoning – Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, onion powder.
- Tomatoes – Both diced tomatoes and tomato paste.
- Bay leaves – Fresh or dried.
- Vegetable broth – Chicken broth will work too, but try and use a low sodium one.
- Pasta – A small shape such as ditalini, which is what I used, elbow macaroni, shells or orzo.
- Parmesan rinds – (Optional) I saved some in my freezer from ghosts of parmesan wedges past.
- Lemon juice – Fresh or bottled.
How to make minestrone soup
- Sauté: Heat the oil in a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until softened. Stir in the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
- Simmer: Add the potatoes, beans, seasonings, bay leaves, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, broth, pasta, and stir everything well. If you’re using parmesan rinds, add them now as well. Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 20 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through and the potatoes are fork tender. Discard the parmesan rinds if using and the bay leaves.
- Finish and serve: Add lemon juice, then cook for another minute. Serve piping hot with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
What else can I add to my soup?
This classic vegetable soup is your shining opportunity to load up all those veggies in your freezer or fridge that need a home. While these add-ins aren’t typical of a “classic” minestrone, your soup, your rules.
- Broccoli or cauliflower
- Green beans
- Bell pepper
- Fresh herbs
What to serve with your homemade soup
If you’re looking for a bit of protein you can throw together some simple baked chicken breasts or thighs to enjoy alongside your soup. For a classic restaurant experience I would serve this soup with:
A fresh salad
and some warm homemade bread
You can store your soup right in the pot you cooked it in, as long as it has a lid. You can also transfer leftovers to an airtight container. Make sure the soup has fully cooled down to room temperature before storing it in the fridge. It’ll last 3-4 days refrigerated.
Reheat either in the microwave or on the stovetop. Add a splash more broth if you feel the veggies or pasta have soaked too much liquid up.
If you’re making this recipe with plans of freezing it, I would leave the pasta out until you plan on serving it. It can be frozen directly in the pot you made the soup in, or transferred to an airtight container. Just like the fridge, make sure your soup has fully cooled down before popping it in the freezer. It’ll last 4-6 months.
Reheat in the microwave or stovetop. If the pasta isn’t already in the soup, add it once the soup has come to a simmer and cook until tender.
Get ready for more comforting homemade soups:
- Bacon Beer and Cheese Soup
- Easy Tortellini Soup
- Vegetable Soup
- Creamy Loaded Potato Soup
- Italian Meatball Soup
- Easy Hamburger Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
Looking for more recipes? Follow on…
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 2 medium carrots chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 medium potatoes peeled and chopped (yellow squash, zucchini, green beans would also work)
- 15 oz red kidney beans or Great Northern beans or cannellini beans (1 can), drained and rinsed
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 28 oz diced tomatoes (1 can or 2 small 15 oz cans)
- 2 bay leaves
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 6 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth, no sodium added or low sodium
- 1 cup pasta such as elbow, tubular or small shells
- Parmesan rinds optional
- 1 tbsp lemon juice freshly squeezed
- Saute the Mirepoix: Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots, celery to the pot and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.
- Make the soup: Stir in the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds until aromatic. Add the potatoes, red kidney beans, Italian seasoning, onion powder, salt, pepper, bay leaves, tomato paste, diced tomatoes, vegetable broth, pasta and stir well to combine. If using Parmesan rinds add them now. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through. Discard the parmesan rinds if using and the bay leaves.
- Finish the soup: Add the lemon juice and cook for another minute.
- Garnish and serve: Garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese and serve warm.
- You can store your soup right in the pot you cooked it in, as long as it has a lid. You can also transfer leftovers to an airtight container. Make sure the soup has fully cooled down to room temperature before storing it in the fridge. It’ll last 3-4 days refrigerated.
- Reheat either in the microwave or on the stovetop. Add a splash more broth if you feel the veggies or pasta have soaked too much liquid up.