Veggie-Packed Minestrone Soup

Minestrone soup is packed with vegetables and hearty beans. This recipe may look simple, but there’s something about the flavor combination that is homey and perfect. I first had homemade minestrone when my sister in law brought it to my house for dinner and shared the recipe. I tweaked it a little and it’s one of my family’s favorite dinners. This meatless soup is still filling and makes a great main dish or side dish. Pair it with fresh crusty bread or your favorite sandwich!

warm soup in a bowl

Ingredient and Equipment Notes

  • Heavy Soup Pot – this recipe makes a large batch, so you’ll want a nice large soup pot. My favorite is an enamel-coated cast iron pan, like this one.
  • Canned Beans – This recipe calls for two different kinds of beans, a white bean and kidney beans. You are welcome to adapt depending on your preference of canned beans. Chickpeas would also be great.
  • Pasta – I like classic ditalini pasta, but any small shaped pasta will work great in minestrone soup.


  1. Saute chopped carrots, celery, and onion.
  2. Add zucchini and garlic.
  3. Add the beans and seasonings, as well as a can of tomatoes.
  4. Add vegetable broth and simmer these ingredients for about 30 minutes. During this time the beans break down a little and help add body to the soup.
  5. Add the pasta until cooked through.
  6. At the very end, turn off heat and add fresh spinach and parsley.

Note: This a thick soup, which is how my family likes it. You can easily add a little more broth or water at the end to make it the perfect consistency for you!

Serving Suggestions

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can this be frozen? Totally! This soup works great to freeze in portions to heat up later. Sometimes pasta isn’t the best to freeze, but in this soup, the small amount of pasta is almost hidden- it blends in with the veggies so that works great.
  • Can I leave out the pasta? Feel free to omit the pasta if you need to, minestrone is still super delicious.
Minestrone Soup in a bowl

Veggie-Packed Minestrone Soup

5 from 2 votes
This vegie packed and flavorful minestrone soup is perfect for cold winter days!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes


  • Ingredients1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil1 medium onion diced1 large carrot, thinly sliced or finely diced2 stalks celery, diced1 small zucchini, diced or shredded4-5 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed1 cup frozen French cut green beans, or used canned if preferred2 15-ounce cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed2 15-ounce cans white beans like Great Northern or Cannellini1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano1 teaspoon dried basil1/2 teaspoon dried thyme1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt1/2 teaspoon black pepper32 ounces vegetable broth (that's 4 cups)3 cups hot water1/2 cup ditalini or other small shell pasta4-6 cups loosely packed fresh spinach leaves1/4 cup fresh minced parsley


  • Heat a large stock pot to medium heat. 
  • Add olive oil to coat bottom of pan.  Add onions, carrot, and celery.  Saute 4-5 minutes, until onions start to look translucent. 
  • Add zucchini and garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes longer, stirring until garlic is fragrant. 
  • Add green beans, kidney and white beans, tomatoes, and seasonings and stir to combine. 
  • Add broth and water and bring soup to a simmer.  Cover pot and simmer on low for 20-25 minutes, until carrots and celery are tender. 
  • Add pasta and cook until pasta is soft, 8-10 minutes. 
  • Remove pot from heat and stir in spinach and parsley.  Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
  • Feel free to add additional broth or water for a thinner consistency.
  • Season with additional salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
Keyword: minestrone soup
Author: Our Best Bites
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Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. Thanks Kim for the advice about spinach. We love spinach, so we buy the huge bags from Costco. but sometimes we don’t go through it all before it goes bad. Thank
    you Sara for the recipe. I’m so excited to try it!

  2. THANK YOU SO MUCH for posting a vegetarian recipe!! I have followed your blog for a long time, but last fall we embraced a whole foods, plant-based diet after reading/watching Forks Over Knives, Fresh, and Food, Inc. We don’t take any animal products anymore, and have completely limited what oils we eat/use after reading Fats that Kill, Fats that Heal. I used to love your recipes, but so many of them don’t fit my lifestyle anymore. When the recipes just call for olive oil I can caramelize onions with water instead, or just leave it out & we’re good…but knowing what your recipes are like in terms of ingredients you get the idea.

    Anyway, just wanted to shout a huge THANK YOU for the veggie recipe. If you posted more I totally wouldn’t complain. 🙂

  3. Just wanted to say that I tried this recipe out last night and it was absolutely delicious! I’ve been trying lots of minestrone soup recipes(looking for one that my husband and kids would like) and this is the first one that we all liked. My husband even said, “This is really good soup!” That is a miracle because he NEVER likes soup! And my 3 year and and 2 year old loved it to. Thanks to you and your fab sis in law for sharing!

  4. I have to share a tip about fresh spinach in soup. My kids don’t like whole spinach leaves in their soup, and honestly, neither do I. I prefer them smaller. But I also don’t like chopping spinach. So I put the bag of spinach in the freezer. Mwhen I want to use it, I pull it out and crunch it in my hands a little. It breaks right up and thaws almost instantly in the soup. Instant chopped spinach. And it keeps the spinach from going bad if I don’t use it right away. So nice since spinach has that pesky habit of going bad in just a day or two.

  5. It is amazing the alchemy that can occur with fresh veggies in a pot, isn’t it? My toddler has just started to try soup, and getting veggies in him can sometimes be a challenge, so I’ll have to give this one a try.

  6. I’m so excited to try this. I’ve recently been searching for a good minestrone! Thank you!!

  7. I can’t wait to try this. I try doing a soup once a week at least and my family loves them. I’ve never tried a good minestrone so I am looking forward to trying this one.

  8. How do you feel about reheating soup that has pasta in it? I think if I was making this soup, I might cook just the amount of pasta I needed for the servings that time and add it separately. I know this is extra work, but I don’t like how pasta becomes bloated and overcooked upon reheating.

  9. Love the kitchen backsplash, mind sharing what it’s called and who makes it? 🙂

  10. Awesome! I can’t wait to make this! I always steered clear of veggie broth because it was so much higher in sodium than chicken. Maybe I’ll try the brand you used. It doesn’t take too much salt for me to think there’s too much, but I’m willing to give it another go!

  11. Thanks so much for denoting the amount of servings. My children have left for college (sniff, sniff) so just 2 of us at home—- could I freeze the leftovers into several containers and have soup once/week/month?

  12. This looks fabulous! Thanks for another great recipe! Just curious- is 30 grams of fat per serving correct?

  13. I have a Minestrone soup recipe that I really enjoy but I may have to give it a try. I’m trying to cook vegetarian one to two times per week. It would be perfect.

  14. I have a Minestrone soup recipe that I really enjoy but I may have to give it a try. I’m try to cook vegetarian one to two times per week. It would be perfect.

  15. I tell my kids anything white is chicken too. My 2-year-old loves the weeknight chili; let’s see if I can get his sister to love this soup! I’ve been trying to copy Olive Garden because I’m sick of spending the money just for soup. That is the only reason I go there.

  16. We are building a house and I am trying to choose a new stove. Can I ask for more details about yours? Brand etc? Thanks!

    1. Misty, I put Thermador appliances in my new kitchen. This is the range I got and I absolutely love it. There’s a warming drawer underneath it that you can see in that photo. I’m going to do a whole post on my kitchen appliances this month so that might be helpful as you plan. How fun you’re building a house, we’re sure happy to be in ours now!

  17. Yum! Just curious what type of bean you would sub for the kidney beans? Kidney beans are not loved by any of us 🙁

    1. Any bean you like, really. You could always just leave out the kidney beans, there’s 4 whole cans in there so there’s beans to spare! If you do like it really packed with beans, like the recipe calls for, you could add an extra can of white beans in there.

  18. This looks delicious and I can’t WAIT to try it! I have a question, not necessarily related to this particular recipe: How do you figure out the nutritional break-down of the recipes? Is there a website that helps you calculate it? If so, do you have any idea how I could figure out the fiber amount? I know, it’s a huge pain for you guys to do all that so I’m just curious how I could figure it myself. Thanks for all the yumminess!

    1. There’s tons of websites where you can pop in a recipe and have it give you the nutritional info, just google and you’ll find a bunch. I’ve used before. I use a Bodybugg calorie counter so my software automatically does that and I track my total daily fiber intake, so it just takes time to look it up for a single recipe. If I remember though, I’ll try to include it!

  19. This soup looks amazing, and perfect for these super-cold days we’re having in Idaho. I don’t have high hopes for my kids eating much of it (they wrote the book on picky) but I’ll just pair it with the sandwiches or, my fallback, garlic bread, and make it anyway!

  20. Your other minestrone is my husband’s favorite soup of all time. So when I make this one, I might just call it veggie soup so he’s not disappointed by the difference. This one looks amazing too. I’ll be making it when my vegetarian sister comes to town.

  21. This does look delicious. My ques. is about the pasta- is it needed, can I sub. rice or quinoa noodles or just leave it out? I know that probably means it’s not minestrone so to speak but Mr Wheat Allergy means no pasta in this house. Thanks for all the great recipes. Can’t wait to see all of your kitchen! That stove looks wonderful!

  22. This soup looks delicious! Can’t wait to try. I love soup and could eat it every day. My family on the other hand will only allow it once a week. This will be our weekly soup next week.

  23. This looks so good, and I love how healthy it is! Your kids approval must mean it is pretty delicious 🙂

  24. Beans and veggies make the best soups, and yours looks great. Plus, who could resist all those colors.