a true winter minestrone, low-simmered with fresh herbs, that’s loaded with all kinds of hearty flavors filling enough to be a meal
Minestrone is a thicker Italian soup originally made with lots of vegetables and a starch of either rice or pasta. Some of the traditional ingredients include beans, onions, celery, carrots, stock and tomatoes. Never stray too far away from a classic recipe but some changes, for a heartier and healthier dish are always okay. I opted out of using the heavier carbs like rice or pasta and used quinoa instead. I also added not only kidney beans but chickpeas as well. Quinoa, kidney beans, and chickpeas are loaded with fiber. Fiber allows us to feel fuller for a longer period of time allowing this fiber-rich meal is hearty enough to be a full meal. It’s loaded with various vegetables, allowing us to gain a wide variety of nutrients that are beneficial to us. Fresh fragrant herbs, fulfilling, nutritious, and delicious, this is going to be a go-to minestrone soup recipe.
Quinoa Minestrone Soup
3 tbs olive oil
1 large white onion
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 russet potato, chopped
1 can diced tomatoes
3 fresh thyme sprigs
3½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
1, 15 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1, 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
½ tsp dried oregano leaves
¼ tsp red chili flakes *optional*
¼ cup quinoa
3 tbs fresh Italian parsley, chopped
3 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped
Salt to taste
Cracked black pepper to taste
- In a large pot on medium heat, add oil and allow to warm. Add onions, carrots, celery and garlic . Saute until onions become translucent, stirring occasionally.
- Add potatoes and saute for another 2 minutes.
- Add tomatoes and tied thyme sprigs. Add in chicken broth. Stir in beans and chickpeas. Add dried oregano leaves, red chili flakes, and add in quinoa.
- Reduce to low heat, cover soup and let simmer for about 15-20 minutes, allowing the soup to reduce and the potatoes to tenderize.
- Add in parsley and spinach, which will wilt and reduce. Carefully add in salt and pepper to taste. If you find soup has thickened too much, slowly add in more broth. Remove thyme sprigs.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
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