Friday, July 18, 2014

Crockpot Minestrone Soup

Crockpot Minestrone Soup
Above picture and recipe courtesy of

I am going to be honest, I am not a huge fan of veggie filled soup... I am more of a chowder/thick soup person. (Like baked potato soup) However this one is one I really love. This is not a typical summer recipe for me, I usually don't make a lot of soup in the summer, just because it is so hot. I also only make this recipe when I have Parmesan rind. So my husbands grandmother is 94 and has not been feeling well. She thinks I am the most amazing cook in the world and I try every few weeks to make her a meal. She loves soup, and this soup is her absolute favorite. So that is why I made it yesterday. I kept a little for myself for lunch today. 
So minestrone soup is a classic Italian soup and is very hearty with white beans, tomatoes, zucchini and pasta. It cooks down with the rind of pamesan which infuses the flavor throughout the soup, giving it a richness that is delicious. 

Here is what you will need: (A few things not pictured, but noted below, I had to change it up a little) 
 You will need:
  • 1 (15 oz) can white beans, drained, rinsed (cannellini or navy) (not pictured above) 
  • 32 oz container reduced sodium chicken broth or veggie broth
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced celery (Not pictured above) 
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (28 oz) can petite diced tomatoes (i used (1) (14oz can of diced tomatoes and the rest were fresh cherry tomatoes I cut up) 
  • Parmesan cheese rind (optional) (I keep these in my freezer when i have used up all the cheese) 
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil (not pictured) 
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley (not pictured)
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt and fresh black pepper
  • 1 medium 8 oz zucchini, diced
  • 2 cups chopped fresh (or frozen defrosted) spinach, kale, swiss chard whatever you prefer.  (I did not use greens because it can change coumadin levels and his grandmother is on coumadin) 
  • 2 cups cooked small pasta such as ditalini or elbows (al dente)- use what you have on hand, try whole wheat pasta as well. 
  • This is also good with ground turkey or make little mini meatballs, chicken would also be good added to this soup to add in some protein. 
  • extra parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)
Step 1: Turn crockpot on low. Drain and rinse beans and put into a blender or food processor. Add in 1 cup of broth. Blend well. Add mixture to the crockpot, followed by the remining broth. Add in basil, parsley, bay leaves, rosemary, parmasean rind, salt, and pepper.
 Next add in your tomatoes. Give it a good stir. 
 Step 3: Chop up your onion, carrots, celery, and mince your garlic. Add oil to the pan and saute veggies until soft. Around 8-10 minutes.
Transfer veggies to the crock pot, mix it all together and put the lid on and cook on low 6-8 hours. Forty minutes before you are ready to serve, add in your zucchini and greens (spinach, kale, or swiss chard) Let it cook for 30 minutes. At this time you can also cook your pasta, so it will be ready to serve with the soup.

To serve: add 1 yellow container 3/4 full of pasta (preferably whole wheat) to your bowl. (remember you used a can of white beans in this, so don't fill your yellow up completely. The beans will count towards some of your yellow also. Top with 1 Green container of soup. Get lots of good veggies in your container. Add a little broth if needed. Top with Parmesan cheese. Remove the Parmesan rind from the soup (this tastes amazing, but the added calories of eating it do not fit into the plan)

This soup is a great way to add in some green containters. It is filled with good veggies. I also don't tend to count broth in my containers. I figure the amount of broth used, fills in the gaps between the veggies in the container. (i used veggie broth) I may be incorrect in this thinking, so if anyone knows the answer to this please let me know.

I would count this as follows:  1 Yellow, 1 Green, 1 Blue, and 1 tsp.
** if you were to add in chicken or turkey meatballs, then I would also count it as a 1 Red


  1. Wow!! So delish!! I didn't puree the beans, just threw them in whole. And I did add meatballs so I could get a red in. Otherwise followed the recipe exactly. Fantastic recipe - and so easy! Hip hip hooray!!

    1. I am glad you enjoyed it. Pureeing the beans just thickens the soup if you like it a little thicker.

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  2. How many servings does this recipe make?

  3. This makes 8 servings of 1 1/2 cups each.

  4. This makes 8 servings of 1 1/2 cups each.