Green Minestrone with Pesto

4.67 from 6 votes
1 hour
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Green Minestrone with Pesto is a healthful taste of spring!  A twist on classic Italian minestrone, this version has lots of spring vegetables which will make transitioning from cold weather to warm weather easy and delicious!

Photo of a bowl of Green Minestrone with Radish Greens Pesto in white bowl on wooden base with herbs, pesto and beige napkin.

Does spring know how to play with a person or what?  There are those beautiful bird-chirping sunny days that make you want to run out and play.  Then, winter comes right back with cold, cloudy and rainy (or snowy!) days that make you want to hunker back down in front of the fireplace in a thick sweater.

Here’s a soup recipe that’s perfect for this time of year and we’re really going green!  Green Minestrone with Pesto!  Perfect with my Radish Greens Pesto!

What is green minestrone?

Green minestrone is a twist on classic tomatoey minestrone that’s made with green vegetables.

This version of minestrone is loaded with green vegetables so if you’re hit with any late winter–early spring crud like I was a few weeks ago, it’s got tons of green vegetable goodness to help you recover.  Green Minestrone with Pesto delivers a good dose of warmth which is perfect when the weather is still chilly.  However, it’s light so it’s just right for a spring lunch or dinner.

Photo of Green Minestrone with Radish Greens Pesto in blue Dutch oven with soup ladle.

How to make Green Minestrone with Radish Greens Pesto:

For the green goodness, this super soup has:

  • Leeks
  • Celery
  • Zucchini
  • Green beans
  • Cabbage
  • Peas
  • White beans for a good dose of fiber to make it more filling.

Photo of Green Minestrone with Radish Top Pesto with a ladleful being served from blue Dutch oven.

  • If you can, use fresh herbs.  Good fresh herbs have been a little hard to come by even here in the southern U. S. so I’m chomping at the bit to get out and plant my herb garden!
  • To give this soup a little extra “zing,” I like to serve it with my Radish Greens Pesto.  Basil, kale or arugula pesto would be just as amazing in this soup!

Photo of radish top pesto with soup in the background.

Green Minestrone with Pesto…for a healthful taste of spring!

Close-up photo of Green Minestrone with Radish Greens Pesto in a white bowl.

More delicious, comforting Italian-inspired soups!

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Green Minestrone with Radish Top Pesto - Overhead shot of soup in white bowl on wooden base with herbs, pesto and beige napkin

Green Minestrone with Pesto

4.67 from 6 votes

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By: Carol | From A Chef's Kitchen
Green Minestrone with Pesto is a healthful taste of spring!  A twist on classic Italian minestrone, this version has lots of spring vegetables which will make transitioning from cold weather to warm weather easy and delicious!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Soups and Stews
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6 -8
Calories 233 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large leek - or 2 medium, halved and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery - finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic - minced
  • 8 cups vegetable broth - or chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2-3 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 small zucchini - halved and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1 handful green beans - trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (approximately 1 cup)
  • 1 cup shredded Savoy cabbage - approximately 1/4 head
  • 2 cans (15-ounce each) cannellini beans - or navy or Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup frozen peas - thawed under cold running water
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Purchased or homemade pesto

Instructions
 

  • Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the leek and celery, reduce heat to medium and cook 7 to 8 minutes or until vegetables are softened. Add garlic and cook 15 seconds or until fragrant.
  • Add vegetable broth, bay leaf and thyme sprigs. Bring to a boil.
  • Add zucchini, green beans, cabbage, beans, basil, oregano and crushed red pepper flakes. Reduce heat to low, cover slighlty and cook 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  • Add peas and parsley and heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Top with a dollop of pesto.

Notes

MAKE AHEAD:  Can be made 1-2 days ahead of time.  Cool and refrigerate.  Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.
FREEZER-FRIENDLY:  Freeze in containers in amounts as desired for 2-3 months.  Thaw in the refrigerator or microwave.  Reheat on the stovetop or microwave.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 233kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Sodium: 1290mg | Potassium: 348mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1911IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 2mg

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you're using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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11 Comments

  1. This is a great soup! I initially came across it when looking for a recipe to use for some crazy beautiful radishes that fell in my cart. Ugh, they wilted before I got to them, but this recipe looked so good I made it anyway. I used arugula and pistachios for the pesto. WOW The pesto just brings this soup over the top! I want to eat this every day.

    For future reference, how much fresh basil or oregano would you used in place of the dried (if you happened to have it on hand)? The dried herbs, with the fresh green cooked veggies, and the raw pesto made a sort of magic together, so I don’t need to use all fresh, but since I plan to play around with this recipe in the future, it would be nice to know.

    1. Thank so much and glad you enjoyed! Ahhh… I can’t wait to have fresh herbs again! To answer your question, the general rule of thumb is to use twice the fresh herbs as dried (2:1 ratio). When herbs are dried, the flavor is concentrated so you would use less. Thanks again so much!

  2. 5 stars
    I love this Carol, great idea for using up radish greens! Perfect for this time of the year x

  3. 5 stars
    I love this Carol, great idea for using up radish greens! Perfect for this time of the year x

  4. 5 stars
    You must have more energy than me because all I want to do is stay inside and drink tea! :p
    This soup looks so good. I have only ever tried a classic minestrone soup. I would devour this!!

  5. 5 stars
    You must have more energy than me because all I want to do is stay inside and drink tea! :p
    This soup looks so good. I have only ever tried a classic minestrone soup. I would devour this!!