Soups

Tuscan Minestrone Soup

This time of year just calls for hearty soups and this Tuscan minestrone soup is perfect for those chilly nights. It’s packed full of fresh vegetables, beans and rice plus it’s a great way to use up leftover veggies. Curl up with a blanket, a big bowl of soup and stay cosy!

A bowl of Tuscan minestrone soup on a wooden surface with bread

If I’m honest when I think of soup I think meh…I’d rather EAT something, like gimme a bowl of pasta with a rich, flavourful ragu or a slice of pizza.

But whenever a big bowl of homemade soup is plonked down in front of me with a few slices of crusty bread I LOVE IT and understand why people are so obsessed with eating soup during the colder months. (Also, you’ll note there’s a lot of eating in this soup!)

I mean let’s face it soup is cheap, easy and there are so many variations!

Minestrone Soup – The Traditional Recipe

When it comes to minestrone soup there is no traditional or set recipe because it’s meant for using up the vegetables that are in season. If you make minestrone in the summer it will be different from when you make it in the winter.

In Italy, it also depends on region and even the household, pretty much like all Italian food. Sometimes tomatoes are added although you’ll be surprised to hear most of the time they’re not. Also, rice is often added instead of pasta which I’ve done here and love it.

The thing to remember is to use seasonal veg, if it’s in season it tastes 100x better. Here’s a list of vegetables to use at this time of year;

Winter Minestrone Vegetables

  • Cavolo NeroTuscan kale and one of my favourites for this soup
  • Cabbage – your favourite kind
  • Onions, Carrots, Celerythis is always used as a base for the soup to give it extra flavour
  • Spinachmakes you big and strong like Popeye
  • Green Beansgives great texture
  • Leeksyou could use them instead of onion
  • Potatoeshearty and delicious

These are the most common vegetables that are found in a winter Italian minestrone soup. Broccoli, cauliflower, turnips and squash are also in season at this time of year but are not commonly used.

How To Make Tuscan Minestrone Soup – Step By Step

First make a sofritto by sauteing equal amounts of finely chopped carrots, celery and onion with a little olive oil (photo 1).

Top Tip: This is an important part and the only part of the soup you need to pay extra attention with. You need to saute the veggies slowly for around 10 minutes until they are soft. Don’t be tempted to turn up the heat because the flavours won’t really develop and it’s more likely to burn which will ruin the flavour of the soup.

Once the veggies are soft add the chopped potatoes, thyme and chopped garlic. Fry everything for 1-2 minutes until the garlic and thyme are fragrant then add the chicken stock (photos 2-3).

Step by step photos for making Tuscan minestrone soup

Bring the soup to a boil then turn down to simmer and cover for 30 minutes. The potatoes should be cooked through at this point. Using the side of a wooden spoon crush some of the potatoes against the side of the pot.

Add the chopped cavolo nero and savoy cabbage, cover again and simmer for 15 minutes (photo 4).

Next, put half of the cannellini beans in a bowl with a spoonful of soup liquid and blitz until completely smooth, add to the soup along with the other half of cannellini beans and green beans (photo 5).

Finally, add the rice and simmer for 10-15 minutes, add salt if needed and serve with some crusty bread (photo 6).

Variations

Tuscan minestrone soup is made with seasonal green vegetables and rice, preferably arborio rice. If you go up north to Liguria they top theirs with basil pesto (so delicious and definitely worth trying).

In Milan, they add canned chopped tomatoes, tomato paste and rice. You can sub the rice for small tubular pasta called Ditalini which is just as good.

AN overhead shot of Tuscan minestrone soup on a wooden surface

No matter what way you choose to eat minestone just make sure you’re tucked up all cosy inside with a blanket and a great movie. It’s the best way to deal with a rainy day which btw I love! Why are people always hatin’ on the rain? Being cosy is my favourite thing ever!

Extra Tips For Making This Minestrone Soup

  • Make sure to cut the cabbage into small to medium chunks so they are easier to eat.
  • I cut the green beans into 3 after removing the top and tails.
  • If you want to make this soup in advance follow all the steps apart from adding the rice. Only do this when serving as it will soak up a lot of moisture and turn mushy this goes for pasta too.
  • You can store this soup in the fridge or freezer but again do this before adding the rice.

More Delicious Soup Recipes To Try;

If you’ve tried this Tuscan Minestrone Soup or any other recipe on the blog please let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious food and what I’m getting up to.

A bowl of Tuscan minestrone soup on a wooden surface with bread
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5 from 5 votes

Tuscan Minestrone Soup

This time of year just calls for hearty soups and this Tuscan minestrone soup is perfect for those chilly nights. It's packed full of fresh vegetables, beans and rice plus it's a great way to use up leftover veggies. Curl up with a blanket, a big bowl of soup and stay cosy!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Cabbage Soup, Italian Minestrone Soup, Minestrone Soup
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6 servings
Calories 252kcal
Author Emily Kemp

Ingredients

  • 1 large carrot finely chopped
  • 1 large celery stalk finely chopped
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 medium sized potatoes cut into cubes
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 8.5 cups (2 litres) chicken stock
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1/2 small savoy cabbage finely chopped
  • 6 leaves cavolo nero finely chopped
  • 3.5 oz (100g) green beans trimmed and cut into 3
  • 14 oz (400g) cannellini beans canned
  • 3/4 cup (150g) arborio rice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  • Saute equal amounts of finely chopped carrots, celery and onion with the olive oil on a low to medium heat until soft (around 10 minutes).
  • Top Tip: This is an important part and the only part of the soup you need to pay extra attention with. You need to saute the veggies slowly for around 10 minutes until they are soft. Don't be tempted to turn up the heat because the flavours won't really develop and it's more likely to burn which will ruin the flavour of the soup.
  • Once the veggies are soft add the chopped potatoes, thyme and chopped garlic. Fry everything for 1-2 minutes until the garlic and thyme are fragrant then add the chicken stock.
  • Bring the soup to a boil then turn down to simmer and cover for 30 minutes. The potatoes should be cooked through at this point. Using the side of a wooden spoon crush some of the potatoes against the side of the pot.
  • Add the chopped cavolo nero and savoy cabbage, cover again and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Next, put half of the cannellini beans in a bowl with a spoonful of soup liquid and blitz until completely smooth using an immersion blender or use a regular blender, add to the soup along with the other half of cannellini beans and green beans.
  • Finally, add the rice and simmer for 10-15 minutes, add salt if needed and serve with some crusty bread.

Notes

Extra Tips For Making This Minestrone Soup

  • To speed things up prep all the veg in advance.
  • Make sure to cut the cabbage into small to medium chunks so they are easier to eat.
  • I cut the green beans into 3 after removing the top and tails.
  • If you want to make this soup in advance follow all the steps apart from adding the rice. Only do this when serving as it will soak up a lot of moisture and turn mushy this goes for pasta too.
  • You can store this soup in the fridge or freezer but again do this before adding the rice.
Nutrition Facts
Tuscan Minestrone Soup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 252 Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 6%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 265mg 11%
Potassium 492mg 14%
Total Carbohydrates 42g 14%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 2g
Protein 13g 26%
Vitamin A 65.6%
Vitamin C 22%
Calcium 8.8%
Iron 21.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Tuscan Minestrone Soup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 252 Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 6%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 265mg 11%
Potassium 492mg 14%
Total Carbohydrates 42g 14%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 2g
Protein 13g 26%
Vitamin A 65.6%
Vitamin C 22%
Calcium 8.8%
Iron 21.4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Helpful Info For All Recipes 
  • I always use extra virgin olive oil in all of my recipes unless stated otherwise
  • When I use canned or jarred tomatoes of any kind I always use this brand for the best results and flavour
  • All vegetables are medium sized unless stated otherwise
  • All recipes are tested and developed using a fan oven
  • Read more about how the nutritional information is calculated here
Did you try this recipe?Mention @insidetherustickitchen or tag #insidetherustickitchen! We'd love you see what you're getting up to in the kitchen!
Tuscan Minestrone Soup. A hearty and comforting bowl of soup made with green vegetables and rice. This minestrone is so easy, delicious and perfect for a rainy day. | Italian Minestrone Soup | Authentic Italian Recipes | Italian Soup | #Insidetherustickitchen #minestrone #soup #Italianfood

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7 Comments

  • Reply
    Helen of Fuss Free Flavours
    September 25, 2018 at 12:24 am

    I love soups like this, wholesome and a meal in a bowl. Deliciously warming and excellent that you can use leftover veggies.

  • Reply
    Tisha
    September 24, 2018 at 11:14 pm

    Such a great soup for a cool night!!!

  • Reply
    Katherine Hackworthy
    September 24, 2018 at 11:05 pm

    This is the wonderful looking soup. Just how it should be, chunky, and full of flavour. Just what you need as the colder weather comes in.

  • Reply
    Pam Greer
    September 24, 2018 at 9:45 pm

    I’m with you, I could live on soup and bread alone. Thanks for explaining about all the variations of minestrone – I always wondered!

  • Reply
    Cindy Gordon
    September 24, 2018 at 9:43 pm

    Oh this soup looks perfect for a cool fall day! YUM

  • Leave a Reply

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