Minestrone Soup

I truly wish it wasn't 88 degrees outside as I write this post. This photo would be far more effective if a chill was in the air....if the sky was grey and gloomy....if you were bundled up in a scarf. But, you'll have to take my word for it: Minestrone is good, no matter the season! In fact, it's a great soup for summertime, owing to all the fresh produce you can pour in. It's also a great soup for substitutions. The recipe is versatile and forgiving--and best of all, easy and healthy!

Minestrone (from a few different sources, combined into a new recipe)
-4 cups vegetable broth
-4 cups diced tomatoes (canned are fine, if you want to go that route)
-2 tablespoons olive oil
-2 cups carrots, chopped
-1/2 onion, diced
-1 tablespoon minced garlic
-2-3 stalks celery, chopped
-3 zucchini, chopped
-1/2 tablespoon dried basil
-1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
-1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
-Large pinch of Italian Seasoning
-2 bay leaves
-1 14.5-ounce can Cannellini beans
-1 14.5-ounce can dark kidney beans
-1/2 small can tomato paste
-About 1-2 cups cooked short pasta (like Ditalini, Alphabet, or Orzo)

1. Saute carrots, onion, and garlic in olive oil over medium heat in a dutch oven. Cook until tender.

2. Add tomatoes with juice, celery, zucchini, beans, seasoning, and tomato paste to the pot. Add broth. Stir well.

3. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover and let simmer for at least 30 minutes.

4. When ready to serve, add the cooked pasta. Remove bay leaves and serve. Top with parmesan for a vegetarian option.

-Serves at least 8 generously as a main course.

Note: This makes a *lot* of soup. SO, another benefit of this tasty dish is that it's also economical! We froze our leftovers, which I think will work out fine. I'm looking forward to busting it out for an impromptu meal.


Katie said...

Oh, man. I've had such a soup craving lately, but I don't want to make it because I keep my air on 80 degrees. :/ I love that you used alphabet pasta!

Tina said...

This is a great hearty soup-one of my favorites. Nothing like fresh veggies in minestrone--bookmarked for the winter. thanks for sharing.

egb said...

I love your use of letter noodles! So whimsical! This looks like a great fall soup! Can't wait till it cools off down here so I can try it out!

Reeni said...

I love soup all year around! I don't know if I've ever made a minestrone - seems strange with my love of soup. This looks fresh and healthy - the alphabets are so cute!

Dom said...

Looks delicious. I LOVE soup.

All Things Yummy said...

Love the cute alphabet pasta addition.

FamilySpice said...

Seriously loving the alphabet noodles! I have to find me some. My middle child would eat chicken noodle soup everyday. I've been packing it for his lunch since school started - and he eats it in the heat!

Mary @ A Simple Twist Of Faith said...

I found this recipe on Pinterest, and am going to try it for Christmas Eve dinner. We go to church on Christmas Eve, so I wanted something light and delicious to have when we get home. Have you ever tried this is a crockpot?

Heather said...

I haven't tried it in a crockpot, but I can't see any reason why it wouldn't work. I'm not sure how the pasta would work out (I'm not much of a crockpot aficionado), so I'd probably make that beforehand and throw it in once you get home.

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