Vegan minestrone soup
- April 2021
- Makes 4 portions
- Hands-on time 20 min, simmering time 10-13 min
This vegan minestrone soup is a recipe of a thousand variations: throw in whatever’s in your veg drawer, plus leftovers such as cooked pasta.
Alternatively, adapt this beautiful vegan spring vegetable soup recipe to suit your taste.
- Dairy-free recipes
- Vegan recipes
- Vegetarian recipes
- 3.6g (0.5g saturated)
- 24.7g (10.4g sugars)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion or leek, finely sliced
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- 2 woody herb sprigs, leaves stripped – we used thyme and rosemary
- 2 bay leaves
- 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 litre hot vegetable stock
- 100g dried pasta shapes (see Don’t Waste It)
- 100g or so green veg, chopped – we used kale and green beans
- Small handful soft herbs such as fresh parsley and basil, finely chopped
- Heat the oil in a deep saucepan over a medium heat, then fry the onion/leek, carrots and celery for 10 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, tomato purée, woody herbs and bay leaves, then cook for 1 minute more.
- Pour the tomatoes and stock into the pan, add the pasta, then bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, season well, then cook for 8-10 minutes until the pasta is nearly cooked. Add the green vegetables to the soup and simmer for 2-3 minutes more until wilted and heated through. Scoop out and discard the bay leaves (see Make Ahead).
- Ladle into warm bowls, then scatter over the chopped fresh herbs to serve.
Don’t waste it: Not a vegetarian? Add a parmesan rind to the stock if you have one – it will add depth of flavour. This is a good recipe for using up the ends of packets of spaghetti/linguine, too – break into pieces and add in step 2. Alternatively, use 150-200g leftover cooked pasta instead of dried, then add it to the pot with the green veg.
Scale up or down: If you don’t have room in your freezer to batch cook, the minestrone keeps well in the fridge for several days — or halve the recipe to make 2 portions. If you need to feed a crowd, on the other hand, the only limit is the size of your pot. Double (or triple) the recipe to make 8 (or 12) portions — follow the Make Ahead tips for how to freeze.
Make the soup to the end of step 2, then cool and freeze in portions/bags for up to 3 months. Defrost, then reheat until piping hot and add the fresh herbs before serving.
Tweak the recipe according to what you have in the cupboards…
If you don’t have any fresh herbs to hand, swirl in a good dollop of pesto from a jar or tub at the end of the recipe to instantly boost the flavour of the minestrone.
If you’re on a gluten-free diet you can replace the pasta with a gluten-free alternative – or swap the pasta for tinned beans or a pack of ready-cooked lentils. You’ll need to reduce the stock to around 500-600ml.
Use up any root vegetables – potatoes, turnips, swede, parsnips, jerusalem artichokes – you have handy: chop into cubes, then cook them with the onion/leeks and carrots. When they’re in season you could add diced chunks of squash too.
Add a North African flavour by stirring in 1 tsp ras el hanout spice blend and 1 finely chopped preserved lemon (pith removed) along with the tomato purée.
For non-vegans, after reheating the soup, stir in some ricotta for a richer, creamier texture, or swirl in a splash of double cream.
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