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Minestrone soup: thick, warm, comforting and overflowing with vegetables.

Minestrone Soup

  • Author: Balkan Lunch Box
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 60 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: Main Course



  • 4 carrots (peeled and diced)
  • 1 large onion (peeled and diced)
  • 1/2 pound ground beef (or veal)
  • 8 ounces green beans (cut into thirds)
  • 2 large potatoes (peeled and diced)
  • 8 ounces red beans (canned)
  • 8 ounces cannoli beans (canned)
  • 4 ounces peas
  • 46 ounces tomato sauce
  • 3 tomatoes (peeled and diced)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons parsley
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Oil
  • (Optional) 5-6 ounces elbow pasta (or other soup pasta)
  • (Optional) Sour cream


  1. Peel and dice all vegetables. Cut ends off green beans, and cut each into 2-3 parts. If using canned vegetables, place in coriander and wash thoroughly.
  2. Oil a large pot and simmer onion and carrot on medium until onion crystalizes (about 10 minutes). Add beef and continue simmering for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, mark an x on bottom of tomatoes and bring to boil in a separate pot. As soon as their skin starts shriveling, take out, place under cold water, and skin. Dice, and keep juices.
  3. Add green beans to the large pot, stir and continue simmering for 5 minutes. Add water as necessary to prevent burning. (You’ll be adding about 1 cup of water during simmering, and 4 cups near the end.)
  4. Add potatoes and simmer another 5 minutes. Add a little bit of water.
  5. Add beans and peas and simmer another 5 minutes. Add a little bit of water.
  6. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce and paste. Also add 5 cups of water. Stir vigorously. Add in the seasonings and bring the temperature up to high. Keep on high for 10 minutes.
  7. Bring to low and put in elbow pasta. Leave to simmer for another 10-15 minutes. Taste to make sure the seasonings are to your liking. Add more if necessary.
  8. Serve hot, with sour cream (optional), and a nice piece of bread.


Meat is also optional. Removing it you make this into a great vegetarian soup.
This soup is thick enough to be the main course with a nice chunk of bread. Alternatively, eat it as an appetizer.
If you have different vegetables, and are missing a few on the list, that’s fine. This is a very forgiving soup. But keep it to beans, and celery for example. This isn’t exactly a soup for cauliflower or broccoli.
It tastes the best the following day. If you opt for this, don’t put pasta in the first day. Instead, when you’re warming up the soup the following day, throw in a few handfuls of pasta and wait for it to soften up.
If you prefer using dried beans, make sure to soak them in water for at least a few hours before use.

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