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Vegetarian Minestrone Soup

Tender veggies, hearty beans, and pasta settled into a tomato-y broth … Vegetarian Minestrone Soup is what cozy dinners were made of. We’ve been living on minestrone all winter long, and we’re not slowing down for spring, either.

A pot of minestrone soup with a ladle in it.

What is Minestrone?

Minestrone is a hearty Italian soup made with beans, veggies, and pasta in broth. Whether or not your minestrone recipe is considered genuine depends on a few factors – like what area of Italy or the Mediterranean does your recipe come from? (Read more about the definition of minestrone here.)

I will disclaim that this recipe is my very own, straight from my American kitchen. I have no Italian blood flowing through my veins (sadly) – at least, none that I know of. I do think my version of minestrone is simple and delicious! And I hope you like it too.

A comforting bowlful of beans, pasta, and veggies overflowing in a tomato-based broth. Please pass the shredded parm and hunks of crusty bread!

Vegetarian Minestrone Soup Ingredients

I often think of minestrone as more of a formula than a recipe – a mirepoix, some garlic, tomatoes, broth, and beans (sometimes I’ll add some winter squash and/or potatoes too), and then after it all simmers for awhile, I’ll add any tender veggies and the pasta, and finally a finish of greens and parsley.

Usually, I take stock in what veggies I have in the fridge that need to get used up. Next, I make sure I have a can of beans on hand, a bit of pasta hanging around at the bottom of a box somewhere, and some veggie broth in the pantry or freezer.

Some minestrone recipes call for pancetta or chicken broth, but this one is an entirely vegetarian minestrone recipe. I rely on a parmesan rind for flavor, but if you leave it out, it can be vegan too.

  • We begin with a mirepoix – onions, carrots, and celery sautéed in olive oil.
  • Next up we have garlic, a can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes, beans (kidney beans are my go-to), vegetable broth, and a parmesan rind. If you’re okay with dairy, the parmesan rind is key for adding loads of flavor. So good.
  • Once the soup has simmered for a bit, I then add zucchini and pasta.
  • And then lastly, we add baby spinach and parsley along with any additional salt and pepper.
A comforting bowlful of beans, pasta, and veggies overflowing in a tomato-based broth. Please pass the shredded parm and hunks of crusty bread!

Why We Love Minestrone

I love that vegetarian minestrone uses up the bits and ends in the fridge, is super budget-friendly to make (that matters these days!), and always makes for delicious leftovers. One pot lasts us almost all week sometimes! So I thought it was high time I shared the recipe. Scroll on for the printable full meal deal!

A comforting bowlful of beans, pasta, and veggies overflowing in a tomato-based broth. Please pass the shredded parm and hunks of crusty bread!

More Hearty Soup Recipes

  • Oh hey! I published another minestrone soup recipe back in 2013! This one is a bit different with optional sausage and more broth, but it’s the formula I’ve been working with for many years now. (Also, I remember thinking those photos were pretty darn good!)
  • Lemony Chickpea Soup with Orzo & Dill is another brothy bean-and-pasta situation. I like the lightness of this one as the weather gets warmer.
  • Curried Vegetable Barley Soup is a lightly spiced spin on a classic; I love the chickpeas and the barley in place of the pasta.
  • This Tuscan Bean Stew with loads of beans, kale, and rosemary is a total keeper.


Vegetarian Minestrone Soup

A comforting bowlful of beans, pasta, and veggies overflowing in a tomato-based broth. Please pass the shredded parm and hunks of crusty bread!
Course Soup
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 260kcal
Author Kare


  • 1 3.5 quart or larger stock pot


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion diced; about 1 cup
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and diced; about 1 cup
  • 1 stalk celery diced; about 1/2 cup
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and minced; about 1 tablespoon
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 15 ounces fire-roasted diced tomatoes 1 can
  • 15 ounces cooked kidney beans 1 can; drained and rinsed
  • 2 Yukon gold potatoes diced; about 2 cups [optional]
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
  • 1 parmesan rind about the size of a domino
  • 1 small zucchini diced; about 1 cup
  • 1 cup pasta I prefer small-to-medium tubular pastas like ditallini, macaroni, penne, torchio, casarecce, etc.
  • 1 ounce baby spinach lightly chopped; about 1 cup packed
  • 1/4 cup flat-leaf Italian parsley chopped
  • Freshly shredded parmesan cheese for topping


  • Add olive oil to a large pot over medium-low heat. When hot, add the onions, carrots, and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 7-8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for another minute, until fragrant.
  • Stir in the broth, tomatoes, kidney beans, potatoes (if using), salt, and pepper. Drop in the parmesan rind. Increase heat to high and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low until the soup is at a simmer. Let simmer for about 20 minutes, until the potato (if using) is tender.
  • Stir in the zucchini and pasta. Cook for another 8-10 minutes, just until the pasta is barely tender.
  • Remove from heat. Stir in the spinach and parsley until wilted. Taste and add salt and pepper if desired.
  • Ladle into bowls and pass with plenty of parmesan and crusty bread.


Vegan option

Omit the parmesan rind and parmesan topping. 

Gluten-free option

Sub cooked rice or a gluten-free pasta. 


Calories: 260kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 336mg | Potassium: 772mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 4431IU | Vitamin C: 26mg | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 4mg

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