This hearty soup is satisfying and most will not even notice it is all veggies and beans. It is the perfect meal served with a salad or a huge hunk of crusty bread. If you are concerned about pleasing the meat lovers in your house, you can easily add ground beef, sausage or shredded chicken to this soup.
You will find that we cooked the pasta separately and added it in as this soup was served; this prevents the pasta from getting overcooked and preserves more of the broth to enjoy. If you choose to, you can add the pasta during the last 10 minutes of cooking instead.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, minced
1 tbsp garlic, minced
8 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth, we use low sodium
2 cups water
1 can petite diced tomatoes
1 cup celery, sliced
1 cup carrots, peeled and sliced
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can small white beans, drained and rinsed
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried thyme
Salt and black pepper, to taste
1 pound green beans, fresh or frozen, if fresh - trim and cut in half
4 cups fresh baby spinach
1 pound pasta of choice, cooked according to box and set aside
Shredded Parmesan or Romano cheese, optional
1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large pot.
2. Saute onion, garlic in the oil for 5 minutes or until onions begin to soften.
3. Add vegetable broth, water, diced tomatoes, celery, carrots, kidney and white beans and spices to pot.
4. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes or until carrots and celery start to soften.
5. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
6. Add green beans and cook for an additional 10 minutes, then add spinach and cook until spinach starts to wilt.
7. Pour soup into individual bowls and divide pasta into each bowl.
8. Serve hot and sprinkle with cheese if desired.