Minestrone Soup

Minestrone Soup

By Brian Higginson, RD, CD
Clinical Nutrition Specialist

On a cold day when you need warming up, there’s nothing better than a homemade minestrone soup (serves 10). We like to make the whole recipe and then have it during the week for lunch or a quick dinner, or deliver it to friends and family as a surprise. The ingredient list may be a little long, but most of these should be staples in your kitchen. If not, put them on your list! Italian bread and romaine salad complete the meal.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 28- ounce can tomatoes, peeled Italian style
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 1 potato (½ lb) peeled and chopped
  • 1 14-ounce can red kidney beans
  • 6 cups fat free broth, chicken or vegetable, low-sodium
  • 1 teaspoon each dried basil and oregano
  • 2 ounces pasta, (such as broken spaghetti)
  • Optional Garnish: Parmesan cheese


  1. Sauté onion, garlic, celery and carrots in olive oil, until onions are translucent, 3-5 minutes,
  2. Add the remaining ingredients except pasta. Stir. Bring to boil & simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Add pasta (broken spaghetti is an excellent choice). Cook for 8-10 minutes longer, until pasta is al dente, not mushy. Stir frequently to keep pasta from sticking together.
  4. Serve in bowls & garnish with Parmesan cheese.

Per serving: 149 calories, 8gm protein, 25 gm carbohydrate, 3 gm fat, 1 gm sat fat, 2 gm mono, 1 mg cholesterol, 5 gm fiber, 370 mg sodium

THE SEASONED COOK A variety of seasonal vegetables can be substituted or added such as green beans, summer squash, and mushrooms. Navy beans instead of kidney beans would give the soup a whole new look.

Nutrition Goldmine: Kidney beans are rich in folic acid, iron, fiber, and protein.

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