A bowl of minestrone soup can be a delicious option when looking for something healthy and satisfying to warm you up, or just fill you up.
Since this soup contains not only vegetables but also pasta and beans, it can serve as a filling meal all by itself. Already a healthy choice with beans and vegetables, it can be made extra healthy by switching the pasta in the soup to whole grain pasta and including green leafy vegetables such as kale, one of the most nutritious of the vegetables out there. If you don’t have kale, spinach also works perfectly fine as a replacement. Other veg can also be substituted in depending on what you have on hand in the house.
The herbs create a lovely flavor with this soup. If you have fresh basil available, it really finishes it off, but dried basil also works if that’s all that you have available. This a great recipe for batch cooking, so extra portions can be saved in the fridge to be heated up for lunch next day. In general though, not a lot of portions are left over for the next day in our house, since we find it pretty difficult to have only one bowl.
Healthy Minestrone Soup
- 100 grams of wholegrain spaghetti
- 1 medium onion
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon of oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon of thyme
- 500 ml of vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon of tomato puree
- 2 medium carrots
- 2 celery sticks
- 2 tins of chopped tomatoes
- 1 tin of cannellini beans
- 1 courgette
- 150 grams of kale
- 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
- a big bunch of fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast optional
- Start by preparing the 500 ml of vegetable stock
- Peel and finely chop the onion
- Put a large pot on medium heat
- Add some of the vegetable stock in the pot with the chopped onion and the 2 bay leaves. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Peel and finely chop the garlic and add to the pot along with oregano and thyme
- Add the chopped celery sticks and chopped carrots to the pot. Cook for 5 minutes . Stir regularly ensuring that the ingredients are not sticking to the pot, and add more vegetable stock if needed.
- Add the remaining of the vegetable stock, the chopped tomatoes and the tomato puree
- Chop the courgette into small cubes and add to the pot.
- Add the balsamic vinegar
- Add the cannellini beans
- Break the spaghetti and add to the pot along with 300 ml of boiling water.
- Remove the tough middle spines of the kale, roughly chop of the leaves, and add to the pot .
- All vegetables and pasta should be covered by the water, add a small amount more boiling water if needed.
- Cook for 15 minutes on a low simmer
- turn off the heat and add a bunch of chopped basil and 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast (optional)
- Add a sprinkle of black pepper and salt to taste.