I agree it tastes just like Olive Garden’s! A friend from my Mom’s Club years ago, Lisa Crespin-Hoggan shared this recipe with the group. I found it again in my inbox and pulled it out to share today with all of you. It makes a big pot for healthy leftover lunches or when you have company or share it with your neighbors (which is what I did). I cut the 3 cups of hot water and also took the frozen spinach option.
Minestrone Soup Recipe
(From the kitchen of Lisa Crespin-Hoggan)
This recipe is a copy cat of Olive Garden’s Minestrone soup. It’s pretty close to it, and it’s one e of our favorites for those cold days. It goes wonderfully with nice crusty bread.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small minced white onion
- 1/2 cup chopped zucchini
- 1/2 cup frozen cut Italian green beans
- 1/2 stalk minced celery
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cans (15 oz) red kidney beans, drained
- 2 cans (15 oz) great northern or small white beans, drained
- 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup shredded carrot
- 2 tablespoons minced parsley
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 3 cups hot water
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach (I’ve substituted 1/2 a bag chopped frozen spinach)
- 1/2 cup small shell pasta
- 8oz can of tomato paste (or 8oz tomato sauce) – this ingredient is optional, I added it because I wanted the soup to have more of a tomato-y taste. You can add half the can if you want less of a tomato flavor, or you can use tomato sauce in place of paste.
Measure olive oil into a large stock pot and heat on medium.
Put the onion, celery, garlic, green beans, and zucchini into the pot and sauté for about 5 minutes or until the onions become see-through.
Add the vegetable broth, drained tomatoes, beans, carrots, hot water and spices to the pot.
Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.
Add the spinach leaves and the pasta and cook for an additional 20 minutes.