This Easy Minestrone Soup recipe is loaded with veggies, beans, and pasta. Hearty, filling, and healthy, this soup is ready in under an hour. Perfect for busy weeknights and the leftovers make an excellent lunch!
The Best Minestrone Soup Recipe
If you love traditional vegetable soup, then you’re going to love this easy minestrone soup recipe! An Italian classic, minestrone soup is loaded up with fresh and canned veggies, beans, and pasta in a perfectly flavored vegetable broth. It’s hearty, filling, and a great way to use up whatever vegetables you may have on hand.
Watch The Recipe Video!
We love minestrone soup on chilly evenings, as it’s one of those soups that warm you from the inside out. But truthfully, it’s so good you’ll want it year-round!
Why You’ll Love This Hearty Soup
Minestrone soup will quickly become one of your fall and winter go-to recipes. Here’s why.
- Ready in under an hour. From start to finish, this soup comes together in under an hour – and that includes 30 minutes of simmering!
- Loaded with veggies. Minestrone soup is quite healthy, as it’s made with a vegetable broth base and LOTS of veggies.
- Makes great leftovers. This is a great recipe to make at the beginning of the week to enjoy for lunch all week long!
What is the Difference Between Minestrone Soup and Vegetable Soup?
Italian minestrone soup and vegetable soup are very similar, both are typically made with a vegetable broth base and veggies. The main difference is that minestrone soup always contains pasta, while vegetable soup sometimes does not, and minestrone soup typically includes beans in addition to the other veggies.
This hearty soup is loaded with fresh and canned veggies, beans, and pasta. See the recipe card below for measurements.
- Olive oil – For sauteeing the vegetables.
- Vegetables – Fresh carrots, onion, and celery are added to this soup, along with diced tomatoes and canned green beans. You can also use fresh green beans if you prefer.
- Seasonings – Sea salt, black pepper, red pepper flavors, and minced garlic flavor this vegetable soup, along with bay leaves and dried thyme and oregano.
- Red kidney beans – Be sure to drain and rinse before adding them to the soup.
- Vegetable broth – Be sure to use low-sodium to control the salt level.
- Pasta – I used elbow macaroni pasta but any small pasta works.
- Parsley – For serving.
- Parmesan – For serving.
Can You Make This Soup Recipe with Meat?
While minestrone soup doesn’t have meat in it traditionally, you can certainly add it to the soup. Ground beef, ground turkey, and diced chicken would all work well in this recipe. Just be sure to cook it separately, then add it to the vegetables.
How to Make Homemade Minestrone Soup
The best thing about minestrone soup is that it’s both easy and quick to make, with no need to let it simmer for hours!
- Cook the vegetables. Add the carrots, onion, celery, salt, and pepper to a dutch oven with the olive oil. Cook until the vegetables soften.
- Add the other ingredients. Stir in all other ingredients, except for the pasta. Bring to a boil then simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add the pasta. Add the pasta to the pot and cook for 10 minutes, until the pasta is al dente.
- Enjoy. Remove the bay leaves, garnish, and enjoy!
Recipe Tips & Variations
This soup recipe is pretty straightforward but here are a few suggestions to help you perfect it, along with a few variation ideas.
- Can I use other pasta? Yes, any small pasta will work in this recipe. Ditalini pasta is commonly used but elbow pasta is typically what I have on hand.
- Season to taste. Be sure to sample the broth before serving and add salt and pepper as needed. Keep in mind the recipe may need less salt if your broth is not low-sodium.
- Add other vegetables. Pretty much any veggie can be added to your minestrone soup. Some good options include zucchini, butternut squash, russet potatoes, and kale.
- Don’t overcook the pasta. The pasta will cook quickly, since we’re working with small noodles. Be sure that the soup is almost ready before you add it, so you can cook it just to al dente.
- Try it with rice. Instead of pasta, you can also use brown rice or wild rice in your minestrone soup for a fun twist.
What to Serve With Italian Minestrone Soup
The wonderful thing about minestrone soup is that with the pasta and veggies, it’s a pretty filling meal all on its own.
We do like to enjoy it with a slice or two of crusty bread, just the make sure every last drop of broth is soaked up. If you’re a fan of garlic bread, add some garlic butter spread to turn any bread into homemade garlic bread. Olive Garden breadsticks are a great option too!
And, of course, you can never go wrong with soup and salad! If that’s your preference, feel free to serve this up with a simple side salad.
How to Store & Reheat Leftovers
- Refrigerate. Store any leftover minestrone soup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Reheat. Reheat the soup in the microwave or on the stovetop. Note that the pasta will soak up the broth, so you may want to add some extra broth when reheating.
Can You Freeze Minestrone Soup?
I do not recommend freezing minestrone soup with noodles, as the pasta will absorb all of the liquid and become mushy. However, if you do plan on making extra, you can easily freeze the soup before you add the pasta. Allow to cool, transfer to a freezer-safe container, and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge and add the pasta when you reheat it on the stovetop.
More Easy Soup Recipes:
- Cabbage Roll Soup
- Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
- Italian Wedding Soup
- Cheeseburger Soup
- Creamy Cauliflower Soup
- Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 medium carrots chopped
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2 celery ribs sliced thinly
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes not drained
- 15.5 oz can dark red kidney beans drained and rinsed
- 14.5 oz can of cut green beans drained
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon dried ground thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 cup elbow macaroni pasta uncooked
- ½ cup of parsley for serving
- ½ cup of shredded parmesan cheese for serving
- In a large dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the carrots, onions, celery, salt and pepper. Stirring often, cook until vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the tomatoes, garlic, dark red kidney beans, green beans, broth, bay leaves, thyme, oregano and red pepper flakes. Stir until well combined. Bring the pot to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer for 30 minutes.
- Stir in the pasta and cook for 10 more minutes or until the pasta is cooked.
- Once the pasta is done, remove from heat and take out bay leaves.
- Garnish with parsley and parmesan cheese and serve.