Minestrone Soup

The Best Minestrone Soup | Soup Recipe | Healthy Recipe | This is honestly the best Minestrone Soup! A vegetable broth tomato base and then loaded with fresh vegetables, beans, and tender small shell pasta. It simmers in one pot on the stove top for a delicious and healthy dinner.




INGREDIENTS
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
2 medium ribs celery, chopped
¼ cup tomato paste
2 cups chopped seasonal vegetables (potatoes, yellow squash, zucchini, butternut squash, green beans or peas all work)
4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried thyme
1 large can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, with their liquid (or 2 small 15-ounce cans)
4 cups (32 ounces) vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 bay leaves
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup whole grain orecchiette, elbow or small shell pasta
1 can (15 ounces) Great Northern beans or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained, or 1 ½ cups cooked beans
2 cups baby spinach, chopped kale or chopped collard greens
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for garnishing (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

Warm 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or stockpot over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the chopped onion, carrot, celery, tomato paste and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables have softened and the onions are turning translucent, about 7 to 10 minutes.
Add the seasonal vegetables, garlic, oregano and thyme. Cook until fragrant while stirring frequently, about 2 minutes.
Pour in the diced tomatoes and their juices, broth and water. Add the salt, bay leaves and red pepper flakes. Season generously with freshly ground black pepper.

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