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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


  • 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


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

Reviews for Hearty Minestrone

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pajamaangel User ID: 1603339 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 User ID: 7655019 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 User ID: 1977993 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 User ID: 1365012 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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