It’s not too early for this soup. Cooler fall days are just around the corner and this summer minestrone soup is filled with summer produce.
Guys, I’m here with a soup recipe. And it’s still summer for a few more weeks.
I know that seems wild and crazy since we just (barely) got through a week of temps in the 90s and 100s, but I’m doing it anyway. And here’s why:
1. I freaking love soup. This is absolutely not secret, and you all know this. I have more soup recipes on my blog than anything else, and even when it’s a bit of a scorcher outside, soup is in the back of my mind. I just love it.
2. Summer produce needs to be made into a soup once in awhile. Otherwise they’ll feel left out, and we don’t want that, now do we? So this soup features zucchini (because most gardens have oodles of it and we run out of things to make), fresh basil, greens (spinach, kale or the like) and mirepoix. And if you grow and can your own tomatoes, they can be used here as well. Basically anything goes.
3. We are on the home stretch of remodeling our kitchen, and I wanted to cook soup in it for the first time. As I was stirring veggies in the pot, I was staring at our cute white subway tile with grey grout, the deep granite sink with bronze faucet and white original hardwood cabinets with the original bronzey-copper hardware. After typing that, I fully realize I’m obsessed with the kitchen remodel. Full blog post with photos to come.
So yeah, I made soup.
And not only does it have those beautiful veggies and herbs, it has pasta, beans and can easily host ground Italian sausage or cubed chicken breast, if you want to make it a full meal. Plus, the broth is KILLER. The trick is to use high-quality stock (homemade or I like Kitchen Basics brand), fire-roasted tomatoes with the juice (or homemade) and toss a fresh Parmesan rind into the mix while it simmers. You’ll no longer want a broth soup or broth that hasn’t been simmered in Parmesan. Trust me.
Summer MinestroneJulie Andrews
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 3 medium carrots peeled and sliced
- 2 stalks celery diced*
- 3 cups baby spinach leaves or chopped kale
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 Tbsp. dried oregano leaves
- ½ Tbsp. Italian seasoning
- 1 ½ tsp. coarse salt
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 15 oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 15 oz. can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- ½ cup whole grain elbow pasta
- 4-4 ½ cups unsalted vegetable or chicken stock
- 1 fresh Parmesan cheese rind
- 1 medium zucchini diced
- ½ cup fresh basil leaves chiffonade
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- In a Dutch oven or stock pot, heat olive oil to medium. Add onion, carrots and celery and cook 7-8 minutes or until soft. Add spinach/kale, garlic, oregano, Italian seasoning, salt and black pepper and sauté 1-2 minutes, until greens are wilted.
- Add diced tomatoes with juice, beans, pasta, stock and Parmesan rind to the pot and bring to a slow simmer. Cook 8-10 minutes or until pasta is almost al dente. Stir in zucchini and cook 2-3 more minutes.
- Scoop minestrone into bowls and top with fresh basil and freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
- Discard the Parmesan rind or save for another use.
I'm Julie - The Gourmet RD - A recipe developer, food photographer, food writer/blogger, chef and registered dietitian. I make healthy food sexy and craveable! Simple, wholesome, delicious recipes from my kitchen to yours.