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Hearty Minestrone Recipe

Hearty Minestrone Recipe

“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. YIELD:12 servings

Ingredients

  • 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

Directions

  • 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).

Nutritional Facts

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