Every time I make this Minestrone Soup, I get multiple requests for the recipe. It’s amazing and delicious. As a hearty Italian soup, it is made with Italian sausage, vegetables, legumes, pasta, and herbs in a tomato base broth. At the end of the day, it’s the ultimate comfort food, especially in the fall and winter months. I’m ready for a bowl right now. Another favorite and comforting Italian soup I like to make in the fall and winter is this Sausage and Sweet Potato Tortellini Soup.
I’ve had good intentions to get this Minestrone Soup recipe on the blog for years, but each time I forget to take the step-by-step photos. So I think to myself, “I’ll do it next time.” Next time is here, but in my true fashion, after I finished this recipe I realized I had forgotten to add the beans (a very important part). Ugh!
Well, I thought about waiting and making the soup again to get pictures with the beans in them, but the reality is that might take me another five years. Who wants to wait that long? You guys need this recipe today. Just make sure to add the Kidney and Great Northern Beans even though they are not in the pictures but in the ingredients list. Okie dokie? 🙂
Comforting Soup Recipes
- Classic Chicken Noodle Soup
- Chicken Tortellini Soup with Extra Veggies
- Chicken and Mushroom Wild Rice Soup
- Poor Man’s Egg and Spaghetti Soup
- Olive Garden Pasta Fagioli Soup
- Corn Chowder
step-by-step pictures on how to make minestrone soup
Frequently Asked Questions about how to make Minestrone Soup
what type of pasta should I use?
I usually use bow tie pasta, but this time I used Fusilli. Any small-shaped pasta will work in this recipe–Ditalini, elbow macaroni, mini wheels, etc. I do not recommend using a large-shaped pasta in this soup. If all you have on hand is large-shaped pasta, you can break up the pasta by putting it in a clean kitchen towel and smashing it into smaller pieces until they’re all about the same size.
I don’t have great northern beans? what’s a good substitute?
If you don’t have Great Northern Beans, a good substitute is Cannellini or even Navy Beans.
can i use chicken BOUILLON and water in place of the chicken broth?
Yes, you can. When I don’t have chicken broth on hand, I use chicken bouillon and water. Vegetable broth is also another substitution you can use.
do i have to use Italian sausage in this recipe?
Technically, no. Minestrone Soup is traditionally made without any meat, but I like to add the Italian sausage for another layer of texture and depth of flavor. The fennel or anise seeds and the red pepper flakes that are mixed in with the pork are what gives Italian sausage a distinct flavor. If you leave the Italian sausage out, the soup will still taste good.
is there a good substitute for the pasta?
Yes. In place of the pasta, use rice. It’s a good option, especially if you want to make it gluten-free and you don’t have any gluten-free pasta.
- 1 lbs Italian sausage
- 1 large onion, diced
- 4-5 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 2-3 cups zucchini, sliced and quartered
- 4-5 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- A pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp tomato paste or 1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
- 1 (15.5 oz.) can Kidney Beans, rinsed
- 1 (15.5 oz.) can Great Northern Beans, rinsed
- 7 cups chicken broth
- 12 ounces pasta
- Pesto and grated Parmesan cheese for serving
- In a large soup pot, brown the Italian sausage.
- Next, add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, salt, and pepper. Sauté for 5-6 minutes.
- Add the oregano, basil, and brown sugar. Stir for one minute.
- Add tomatoes, chicken broth, and rinsed beans. Bring to a boil. Add the zucchini and bring back to a boil for 5-7 minutes.
- Next, add uncooked pasta and cook until pasta is done (5-15 minutes depending on the type of pasta). If needed, add more chicken broth.
- Serve with a spoon of pesto in each bowl and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.