Minestrone Soup

I just made minestrone soup for the first time in my life.  My memories of minestrone soup from my childhood involve tomato juice, hamburger, elbow macaroni, and slices of carrot.  Who knows if that's really how my mom made it?  I'm sure it was better than I remember it.

I saw this recipe for minestrone soup on Two Peas and Their Pod.  I was excited to make it because everything in it is healthy, veggies, whole wheat macaroni, white northern beans.  I served it topped with freshly grated parmesan cheese and warm, crusty, artisan bread.  My husband and I loved it.  My kids not so much (but I'm going to make it again anyway)

Minestrone Soup

recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod (adapted a little by me)

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 zucchini, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen green beans (I didn't have any so I left them out)
2 (14 ounce) cans diced tomatoes (I chopped these up more)
4 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water (I used 1 c. instead so it would be a thicker soup)
1 (14 ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup whole wheat elbow macaroni
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese-optional, for garnish

1. Heat olive oil in a large stockpot. Add onion, garlic, carrot, and celery. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add in zucchini, green beans, and diced tomatoes. Stir in vegetable broth and water. **Add beans, macaroni, oregano, and basil. Simmer until vegetables and macaroni are tender-about 35 minutes.

2. Season soup with salt and pepper and serve warm. Garnish with parmesan cheese, if desired.

**I threw in a few cubes of frozen butternut squash puree to add even more veggies.