Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup – This Italian favorite features a full-bodied broth seasoned with Italian herbs, onions, and garlic that is slow-cooked all day with a variety of fresh vegetables, protein-packed beans, and cute ditalini pasta.
Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup
Warm and comforting, this Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup is perfect for a chilly winter day…but also a great way to use up some seasonal veggies from the garden in the summer.
This Italian classic is loaded with fresh vegetables, chicken broth, beans, and ditalini pasta. It’s a hearty and healthy meal that the whole family will love.
Best of all, it’s easy to make – simply toss the ingredients into your slow cooker and let it do all the work!
Why You’ll Love This Minestrone Soup Recipe
- It’s full of so much flavor – This soup is packed with fresh herbs, onions, garlic, and a variety of vegetables. The tomatoes add a bright acidity that balances the richness of the broth.
- It’s kid-friendly – The ditalini pasta is the perfect size for little ones to eat, and its mild flavor is a great introduction to Italian cuisine.
- It’s healthy – This soup is packed with nutrients from the fresh vegetables and beans. It’s also low in calories and fat, making it a healthy choice.
- Easy recipe – One pot means you’ll have minimal cleanup after dinner!
Equipment you’ll need to make this Italian Minestrone Soup recipe
- Slow Cooker – This 6 quart slow cooker has been going strong for years and I still really like it.
- Veggie Chopper – This is my new favorite kitchen tool and it’s perfect for chopping all the veggies for this soup.
- Ladle – Have you ever tried to serve soup without a ladle? I don’t recommend it.
Ingredients you’ll need to make minestrone soup
Below is a list of the ingredients you’ll need to gather to make this recipe. Scroll all the way down for the full recipe card.
- ONION – I use white onion but yellow would work well, too.
- GARLIC – Freshly minced garlic cloves are best but garlic packed in olive oil also works and is convenient.
- VEGGIES – Diced celery, carrots, and zucchini are included here but you can also add potatoes, green beans, spinach, chickpeas…whatever you like.
- SEASONINGS – Salt, pepper, and italian seasoning, which I make myself.
- DICED TOMATOES – You’ll need two cans (28 oz) of diced tomatoes. I use the “basil, garlic, oregano” flavored variety.
- CHICKEN BROTH – I use chicken broth but vegetable broth can be used if you want a vegetarian soup.
- BEANS – Dark red kidney beans and white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed.
- DITALINI PASTA – Ditalini pasta is small, tube shaped pasta. You could also use tubetti or even macaroni noodles.
How To Make Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup
- STEP ONE: First, start by chopping up all of your vegetables – I like to use a mix of zucchini, carrots, celery, and onion. You can also add in some green beans or spinach if you’d like. It is very forgiving so use whatever vegetables you like or have on hand.
- STEP TWO: Next, add the chopped veggies, garlic, chicken broth, diced tomatoes, and rinsed beans to the slow cooker. Season with Italian seasoning (mix of oregano, basil, and thyme), salt and pepper (and maybe even a pinch of red pepper flakes). Stir and then cover and set the slow cooker to LOW for 6-8 hours or HIGH for 4 hours.
- STEP THREE: Finally, add one cup of uncooked pasta to the soup about 30 minutes before it’s done cooking. Or, if you’d like, you can cook the pasta separately and add it in at the end, so it doesn’t get mushy. You can even ladle the soup over the pasta in a bowl and keep the two separate for storage.
That’s it! Once the soup is done cooking, give it a good stir, ladle it into bowls, top with Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley and enjoy.
What To Serve With Your Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup
This minestrone soup is hearty enough to eat on its own, but it’s also great with a side of crusty bread (like Italian) or even beer bread.
How To Store & Reheat Minestrone Soup
Let the soup cool to room temperature, then store it in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for about four days.
To reheat, place the soup in a pot on the stove and heat it until it’s warmed through. You can also microwave it in a microwavable bowl.
If you know you are making enough leftovers, I recommend cooking the pasta separately so it doesn’t get mushy when reheated. You can add it back in right before eating.
Can You Freeze Minestrone Soup
Yes! This soup is excellent for freezing. Let it cool completely, then place it in a freezer-safe container (I love Souper Cubes) and freeze for up to three months.
When you’re ready to eat it, thaw the soup overnight in the fridge, then reheat it on the stove or in the microwave. If you’ve frozen it in the Souper Cubes, the portions are the perfect size for a mini crockpot. I used to keep it in my desk when I worked in an office – put the frozen soup in it in the morning and by lunch it is the perfect temperature.
What’s the difference between minestrone and vegetable soup?
Not much! Minestrone is generally just a heartier version of a vegetable soup since it includes pasta and beans.
Can I make this minestrone on the stovetop?
If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can easily make this soup on the stovetop in a large pot or dutch oven. Just simmer it for about an hour over low heat or until the vegetables are tender and the pasta is cooked.
Can I make this soup vegetarian?
Yes! All you need to do is replace the chicken broth with vegetable stock and skip the cheese for a vegan version of this soup.
What other veggies can I add?
You can add any veggies you like, potatoes, kale, baby spinach, green beans, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, anything you want!
What if I can’t find ditalini pasta?
In this recipe, any small pasta will work elbow macaroni, shells, orzo. Just make sure it’s a small shape.
Need more soup recipes? Try these:
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