Hearty Minestrone Recipe
Hearty Minestrone Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Hearty Minestrone Recipe

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“This is my all-time favorite soup. I love make big batches and freeze some for later. This hearty dish reminds me of spaghetti and sauce in soup form!” -Katie Koziolek of Hartland, Minnesota
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 45 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 45 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups tomato juice
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) beef broth
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar, optional
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS (for each batch):
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup uncooked ziti or small tube pasta

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 242 calories, 7g fat (2g saturated fat), 25mg cholesterol, 853mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 6g fiber), 15g protein .


  1. In a Dutch oven, cook the pork, celery and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Drain.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes, beans, tomato juice, tomato sauce, broth, carrots, zucchini, Italian seasoning, salt, sugar if desired and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until carrots are tender.
  3. Transfer 6 cups of soup to a freezer container; cool. Freeze for up to 3 months. Add water and pasta to remaining soup; bring to a boil. Cover and cook until pasta is tender.
  4. To use frozen soup: Thaw in the refrigerator; transfer to a large saucepan. Stir in water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Add pasta; cover and cook until tender. Yield: 2 batches (6 servings each).
Originally published as Hearty Minestrone in Simple & Delicious March/April 2008, p19

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pajamaangel 228374
Reviewed Jun. 22, 2015

"I didn't add the water as I wasn't really looking for a soup. I wanted something a little heartier but with the same flavor. It came out pretty good. I think I'll wait until the cooler weather comes to make it again though."

KaylaRW 167702
Reviewed Jun. 11, 2014

"This is the best Minestrone soup I have ever had! I have made this repeatedly for about 4 years now. Whether I freeze half or make it all to serve to guests or have extra for lunches. Its my favorite. I often just make it with hamburger because thats whats most commonly in my freezer."

jen k 97547
Reviewed Jun. 15, 2012

"I make this often for my family, easy to make. This is my oldest daughter's all time favorite meal."

melissacurls 153801
Reviewed Nov. 30, 2010

"served this when i had guests over, everyone had seconds!! i actually left the pork out, and it was still a hearty delicious soup."

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