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Recipe: Crock Pot Minestrone Soup
February 24, 2016
Picture this if you will:
You are spending a lovely Saturday afternoon wandering the aisles at Target. Oogiling over cute shirts and throw pillows you clearly NEED. You walk in the door at 6pm (because clearly you spent all day at Target) and you are STARVING.
But look! You have an amazing soup ready to be eaten because you quickly through it together before leaving the house. That is what you call winning at life folks. #adulting
This Crock Pot Minestrone Soup Recipe is so hearty and warm and the addition of the sausage if you choose to add it will just make it even more delicous then it already is. I love how the sausage adds some additional flavor.
And one of my favorite things about this particular recipe is that it makes a TON. So get used to liking left overs because you will have lunch for DAYS!
1 lb Sweet or Mild Italian turkey sausage (optional)
1/2 Small White Onion
2-3 Carrots diced
2 Celery Stalks diced
3 Garlic Cloves minced
1 1/2 cups of Frozen Green Beans (or roughly half of a bag)
1 Small zucchini sliced
1 cup Fresh Baby Spinach
1 (28 oz) can of Diced Tomatoes
6 cups of Chicken or Vegetable broth
1 (15 oz) can Cannellini Beans rinsed and drained
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary (or 1 teaspoon fresh)
1/8 teaspoon Red Pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 - 3/4 cup elbow or small sized shells or other small pasta (whole wheat if you can find it)
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Freshly-grated Parmesan cheese for serving (optional)
1. Brown sausage in a skillet, breaking into small pieces and then add to crockpot. The sausage I usually get at Whole Foods and its not in links-so it becomes more of a crumble. I also tend to cook it through then just brown it. Its up to you!
*Note the sausage addition is optional. Leave out if you are doing a vegetarian version.
2. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, green beans, diced tomatoes, broth, and beans to the crockpot.
Tip: While I was making this, the container of Vegetable Broth I had didn't have enough for 6 full cups. I ended up subbing 2 cups of water and it was just fine!
3. Add the bay leaves, oregano, rosemary, and red pepper flakes and stir to combine.
The last time I made this I forgot the rosemary and it was just fine without it too. So don't worry if you don't have it on hand in the pantry!
4. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
5. 30 minutes before the soup is done cooking, add in the zucchini, pasta, and spinach.
6. Remove bay leaves (if you can find them, its hard with the spinach). And season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
7. Top off with some freshly grated parmesan cheese on top and some crusty bread on the side!
This recipe will give you plenty of left overs to bring to work for lunch (thats the beauty of crock pot meals!)So while I cook with 2 people in mind, this recipe serves up about 8-10 servings. Its so delicious and perfect for a cold winter day!
BONUS!!!!! It can be incorporated into the 21 day fix meal plan!