Vegan recipe for Fall Minestrone Soup that is easy to make and tastes incredible. This healthy soup is loaded with plant-based fiber and protein for a super satisfying lunch or dinner.
This post has been updated from the original posted October 16, 2017. This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you.
The fall harvest is loaded with winter squash that is perfect for making vibrant and satisfying soup recipes. The obvious is pureed butternut squash soup, but this easy minestrone soup is another great way to enjoy butternut squash in soup.
Vegan minestrone soup is loaded with vegetables and pasta making it hearty and satisfying. Finally, a plant-based dinner that everyone loves!
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Diced veggies: A combination of carrots, onions, celery and parsnips adds flavor and nutrition. Substitute with leeks,
- Beans: These add plant-based protein and fiber that will help regulate blood sugar. I used canned kidney beans, but you could also use pinto beans, cannellini beans, chickpeas or any other variety you have on hand.
- Butternut Squash: Any winter hard squash you have, like acorn squash, kabocha, hubbard squash or pumpkin will work well in this recipe.
- Vegetable broth: I make easy homemade vegetable stock and keep it in my freezer for easy soup prep. If you buy already made veggie stock, make sure to read the ingredient list on the label carefully to avoid highly processed vegetable oils and excess sodium.
- Pasta: I used Jovival Brand Gluten-free brown rice elbow pasta. You can substitute with any pasta that meets your dietary needs, but be sure to cook it separately and for less time than the package calls for.
- Kale: I used lacinato kale in this recipe. Opt for hearty greens like chard, collard greens, red or green curly kale or turnip greens that won’t totally fall apart when cooked.
Nutrition in Kale
Fall Harvest Minestrone is a good way to eat seasonal while keeping in mind the energy available from greens to balance that out. Tuscan Kale (also known as Lacinato kale and some people call it dinosaur kale) isn’t as fragile as other greens that won’t do well with the dropping temps….plus it is loaded with nutrition. Tuscan kale is a significant source of Vitamins K, C and B6. It is also a good source of Thiamin, Riboflavin and iron. I like that it’s hearty enough to add to a soup. I don’t like soggy greens in soup, but a tuscan kale that’s wilted? Sign me up!
How to make this soup
First prep the vegetables: dice onions and celery, peel and then dice carrots, parsnips and butternut squash.
Saute onions in olive oil in a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until aromatic. Then add carrots, celery, parsnips and italian spices.
Use a microplane grater to zest garlic right into pan.
Stir in the vegetable stock, tomatoes with juices, squash and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and then turn down the heat to medium-low so the soup is just simmering. Cook for 20-25 minutes until the squash is tender, but not mushy.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta separately. Make sure not to overcook! Start testing for al dente pasta 2 minutes BEFORE the package directions call for. This is especially important if you’re making gluten-free pasta.
When the squash is tender, stir in beans until they’re heated through. Turn off the heat, add the pasta and kale and stir well until the kale has wilted.
Debra’s Pro Tips:
- Serve with a simple green salad for an easy and healthy dinner.
- Cook the pasta al dente so it doesn’t become mushy when added to the soup.
- Use my easy recipe for homemade vegetable broth to control how much sodium is in your soup.
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- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 medium carrots
- 2 stalks celery
- 2 parsnips
- 1 Tablespoon Italian spices (any combo of oregano, basil, thyme, marjoram, parsley, rosemary)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 small butternut squash (approx 2 cups diced)
- 1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1 can (14.5 oz) kidney beans
- 8 cups veggie stock
- 2 bay leaves
- ¾ cup dried pasta*
- 2 cups chopped tuscan kale, thick ribs removed
- Additional S+P to taste.
- Prepare veggies. Dice onion and celery. Peel and dice carrots and parsnips. peel squash and dice. Peel garlic cloves. Wash, de-stem and roughly chop kale.
- Heat olive oil in stock pot over medium heat. Stir in onions, sprinkle with salt and pepper and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add carrots, celery, parsnips and Italian spices and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Use a microplane to zest garlic into pot and mix well. Immediately add the diced tomatoes, squash, bay leaves and stock so that garlic doesn't burn. Mix well, bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes, until squash is tender.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions---al dente--I used a brown rice gluten-free pasta and cooked for 8 minutes. If you want to cook the pasta in the same pot as the soup, add an additional 2 cups of liquid (more broth or even water is fine).
- Stir in the pasta and beans to heat through. Turn off heat, add kale and continue to stir as it wilts.
- Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.
- Soup will stay good in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Liquid will absorb as soup sits so be prepared to add more stock as needed.
For the pasta: I used Jovial Gluten free Brown Rice Elbows.
Serving Size:2 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 254Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 479mgCarbohydrates: 45gFiber: 12gSugar: 14gProtein: 11g