This vegetarian minestrone soup is the best way to use up winter veggies like butternut squash, kale, beans, carrots etc. Combined with a delicious tomato base and beans, this soup checks all the right boxes – healthy, hearty, filling, flavorful and loaded with veggies!
Hey there! Soup season is still here and I can’t be happier. If you are not a soup person treat this vegetarian minestrone soup as the easiest way to load up on veggies and all good things and go with that.
Traditional Italian minestrone soup has its base in a fresh tomato sauce that’s seasoned with herbs, veggies, some kind of meat and pasta. But I really wanted to keep this light on the stomach but still hearty. So last week for dinner, we opened the refrigerator, rummaged around for all the winter veggies that were stocked in there and made the most delicious stew like soup. And we didn’t miss the pasta one bit!
This is truly a one pot soup because even if you wanted to add veggies, you can just add them right to the pot towards the end and let them cook. The pasta will thicken the soup further so you will need to add more liquid. But if you are like me, and want to skip it, add your favorite beans or even lentils and trust me, this will still fill you up nicely!
There are no rules when it comes to making this vegetarian minestrone soup at home! I used a store bought chunky marinara sauce because it already has herbs and is full of flavor and saved me the time of cooking the tomatoes from scratch. The same applies for what vegetables you use.
Vegetables that go into this Minestrone Soup
A lot of vegetables can be used in this soup. Starting with root vegetables like potato or sweet potato to more seasonal veggies like squash, pumpkin, and greens such as spinach and kale. There are quite a few veggies that go into this version – onions, celery, carrots, butternut squash, french beans and kale. There is added nutrition from kidney beans which can be substituted with any of your favorite cooked beans.
Pasta in Minestrone Soup
Traditionally, Italian minestrone soup uses some form of pasta or rice. You can add pasta to this recipe by adding 1/2 cup dried pasta along with the french beans along with 1 1/2 cups water or stock. The additional liquid is required to cook the pasta, and because the starch in the pasta will thicken the soup considerably.
If you’ve been following along for a while, you know that I’m not one for boring insipid soups. If I’m eating soup, I want it to be hearty, usually thick and full of flavor. And this vegetarian minestrone soup hits all the right notes!
More Soup Recipes
Winter Vegetarian Minestrone Soup
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 6 Garlic Cloves minced
- 3/4 cup Onions chopped
- 3/4 cup Celery chopped
- 3/4 cup Carrots chopped
- 400 grams Marinara Sauce store bought chunky (any other pasta sauce)
- 2 cups Water
- 1/2 teaspoon Oregano dried
- 1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Flakes
- 2 cups Butternut Squash cubed
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 3/4 cup Kidney Beans or any other beans of your choice (cooked)
- 3/4 cup French beans chopped
- 2 cups Kale Leaves roughly chopped (stems removed)
- Heat olive oil in a large pot and add garlic, onions, celery and carrots. Saute for a few minutes till the onions start turning translucent.
- Pour in the jarred marinara sauce along with water, oregano, chilli flakes, butternut squash and salt. Give it a quick mix, cover and let this simmer for 15-20 minutes till the butternut squash is fork tender.
- Add kidney beans and french beans and simmer for another five minutes. Lastly add the chopped kale and turn off the flame. Cover and let this rest for 10 minutes to let the kale wilt. You can top this soup with grated parmesan, sour cream or olive oil for additional yums.
- Store bought marinara sauce can be substituted with canned tomatoes or fresh tomatoes + tomato puree. If you do so, add more herbs to the sauce to make up for the flavor. I would add dried oregano, basil and thyme.
- Cooked kidney beans can be substituted with cannellini or basically any beans of your choice. You can also add cooked lentils to the soup.
- Kale can be easily substituted with spinach if that's what you have on hand.