Minestrone Soup – 40 Minute Meal!

Minestrone Soup is one of my “go-to” meals when life is hectic and I’ve forgotten to take out whichever frozen slab of ___ for dinner.  When I was a working Mom/Wife we ate this quite a bit.  It’s so unbelievably fast to make and it tastes great!  It makes enough for lunch the next day too, assuming you have a family of 4!  Sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese on top and you’ll think you’ve been transported to your favorite Italian restaurant.  
Oh yes, the kids like it too.
And I didn’t have to bribe them with iPod Touch’s to get them to eat it.

Start off with a tablespoon of olive oil and toss in 5 slices of bacon that have been chopped and saute for 5 minutes until crisp.  Judging by this picture, I must’ve answered the phone while pouring in the olive oil.  Looks like a tad more than 1 tablespoon.

I’m human.

You pour off the oil/fat later anyway.

You could just fry the bacon in a dry pan if you are that daring.

Crispy crittlins of bacon.  HEAVEN!  This is where you pour off some of the fat/oil.  Leave about 1 tablespoons worth in the pot.

In goes 1 cup of chopped onion, 2 celery stalks chopped and 1 small carrot chopped.

The “Holy Trinity”.

The “3 Amigos”

The base of all things fabulous!

Ok, I’m done.

Saute until the veggies are starting to get soft, about 5 minutes.

Add 5 cloves of garlic, minced.  See that garlic press?  My absolute FAVORITE tool in my entire kitchen!  It’s the Rosle Garlic Press and I heart it more than life itself.  Ok, maybe not that much, but close.  It’s the easiest garlic press you will ever use (and clean).  I’ve tried them all and was given this as a gift by the Hubs.  That was the day I knew he’d have my heart forever.

If you clicked the link and you’ve gone into sticker shock, I promise it’s the best money you will ever spend.  Seriously!  I’ve had mine for over 8 years and it looks brand new.  Works like brand new.  So go buy one and you can thank me with flowers and candy later.

*Note: This has not been a paid advertisement for Rosle Garlic Presses.  I wish Rosle would pay me, but they have not.  The End.

You need 6 cups of Chicken Stock.  I hate a pantry full of cans, so I use Better Than Bouillon Reduced Sodium.  Scoop out a spoonful and add it to hot water and PRESTO – Chicken stock and it’s far better than the canned stuff.  In my humble opinion, of course.

Genteladies (and men) start your Can Openers!  You need 2-15 oz cans of diced tomatoes, 1-10 oz can Kidney Beans, 1-10 oz can White Beans (Cannelini), 1-9 oz can Garbanzo Beans.  Open them all up and get those puppies ready.

To the veggies that have been waiting patiently while I’ve ranted on and on about garlic presses and chicken stock, add the cans of: tomatoes, kidneys, white beans and garbanzos.  Toss in your chicken stock as well.  Now add the greens: 1/2 cup chopped Italian parsley; 5-6 basil leaves chopped (chiffonade style); 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano and let it simmer for 20 minutes.

Add 1 1/2 cups of pasta (whatever shape flips your skirt or trousers).  Cook 8 minutes more.  Call the hungry troops cuz it’s grub time!!

Minestrone Soup
{Printable Recipe}


1 tbsp olive oil
5 slices bacon, cut into bite-size
1 c onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
6 c chicken stock
2 15 oz cans diced tomatoes
1 10 oz can kidney beans
1 10 oz can white beans (cannellini)
1 9 oz can garbanzo beans
1/2 c Italian parsley, chopped
5-6 basil leaves, chopped
2 tbsp oregano leaves, chopped
1 1/2 c shaped pasta

1) Saute the bacon until crisp in 1 tablespoon of olive oil, about 5 minutes.  Remove the oil and fat from the pan leaving about 1 tablespoon.
2) Add the chopped onion, celery and carrot and saute until the vegetables begin to get soft.  About 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute more.
3) Add the broth, tomatoes, beans and chopped herbs and bring to a boil.  Turn down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
4) Add the pasta and cook for 8 minutes more.
5) Serve in big bowls with Parmesan cheese and crusty bread.

~Mange!

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