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Minestrone

Vegetables and herbs fresh from my garden make this one of our favorite soups. This recipe makes a lot, so it's perfect for large gatherings or to freeze in smaller containers for fast meals.—Virginia Bauer, Botkins, Ohio
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Cook: 1-1/2 hours
  • Makes
    20 servings (5 quarts)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups coarsely chopped onions
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes or 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped cabbage
  • 1 cup sliced fresh carrots
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil or Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1-1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1-1/2 cups sliced zucchini
  • 1 cup cut fresh green beans
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup uncooked ditalini or 4 ounces spaghetti, broken into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  • In a stockpot, saute the onions, celery and parsley in oil until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, tomato sauce, cabbage, carrots, basil, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour.
  • In a large skillet, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Stir into soup along with the zucchini, beans and pasta. Cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until vegetables and pasta are tender. Top each serving with cheese.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 209 calories, 9g fat (3g saturated fat), 26mg cholesterol, 538mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 4g fiber), 14g protein.

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Reviews

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Average Rating:
  • Gramma Amy
    Jun 5, 2017

    Good hearty soup. I prefer a stronger herb flavor, so I added more basil, garlic, and Italian seasoning, salt & pepper. It was very thick, so I also added 1 /2 c water when all the ingredients were preparing to cook at the end. Still was very thick and good flavor

  • Gigi
    Jan 28, 2017

    Great recipe! Everyone loved it!! A couple changes I made; I used a large can of diced tomatoes, no cabbage, a whole zucchini, 8 cups of beef broth and used 6 pieces of crumbled bacon instead of ground beef. Next time I won't use a 1/4 cup of oil as it just didn't need that much.

  • nannaboo
    Oct 19, 2016

    We loved this soup, but made a few changes according to our taste. Did not add cabbage or leeks, used kidney beans, and added about 1 to 1.5 cups more broth. Husband and I both loved it. Will be added to our regular menu - we both love soup for our evening meal with salad and fresh bread. Since it is just the two of us, divided the left over into freezer containers. Try this one - perfect as written!

  • gaylean93
    Apr 30, 2016

    I used two cans of white beans instead of the other beans, no cabbage, or green beans and I added a little wine and three bay leaves. It came out perfect. I was shocked how much flavor it had. It needs more liquid though.

  • Magnaglow
    Feb 20, 2016

    Absolutely wonderful soup! I didn't have any cabbage but it's great without it! I had to thin it out some with about 3 cups of broth and tomato juice. Still very hearty. Used mini shells and I can't say enough good things about it!!!!!' Freezes great too!

  • rmbarr059
    Nov 21, 2015

    Really good. I threw in a bunch of extra stuff to account for all the stuff that I didn't have on hand and it still turned out delicious! Even my husband and 2 year old loved it!

  • sbrody41
    Nov 3, 2014

    Delicious. I mixed lean ground beef with pork sausage (cut from the casings) and the whole family loved it. I also used mini shells for the pasta and loved the look and taste. I must admit, I am not sure how this is supposed to make 20 servings. I made this for Sunday dinner, feeding 6 adults and two children, and we barely had enough leftover to make one bowl of soup the next day for lunch. Granted, I used BIG bowls to serve the soup in, so that might have something to do with it. ;)

  • Deder100
    May 26, 2013

    My family loved this! In fact, my six year old had thirds and asked for this to go on his list of favs.

  • August1
    Feb 22, 2013

    No comment left

  • Cblume
    Apr 9, 2012

    This was great! I made it for a sick friend, and it made so much we had some for our dinner too. We don't even like minestrone, and this soup converted us! I used Italian sausage instead of ground beef and added more stock. Will add more cabbage next time, too, since that was my favorite part!