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Over-the-Rainbow Minestrone

This colorful soup is vegetarian-friendly and full of fresh flavors from a rainbow of vegetables. You can use any multicolored pasta in place of the spirals. —Crystal Schlueter, Northglenn, Colorado
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Cook: 6 hours 20 minutes
  • Makes
    10 servings (3-3/4 quarts)


  • 4 large stems Swiss chard (about 1/2 pound) or fresh baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 medium yellow summer squash or zucchini, halved and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 medium sweet red or yellow pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked spiral pasta or small pasta shells
  • 1/4 cup prepared pesto
  • Optional toppings: Additional prepared pesto, shredded Parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper flakes and minced fresh basil


  • Cut stems from chard; chop stems and leaves separately. Reserve leaves for adding later. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and chard stems; cook and stir 3-5 minutes or until tender. Transfer to a 6-qt. slow cooker.
  • Stir in broth, tomatoes, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, squash, pepper, carrot and garlic. Cook, covered, on low 6-8 hours, until vegetables are tender.
  • Stir in pasta and reserved chard leaves. Cook, covered, on low 20-25 minutes longer, until pasta is tender; stir in pesto. If desired, serve with additional pesto, Parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes and fresh basil.
Nutrition Facts
1-1/2 cups: 231 calories, 7g fat (1g saturated fat), 2mg cholesterol, 1015mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 6g fiber), 9g protein.

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