Easy healthy minestrone soup made from pasta sauce base. Super quick minestrone in about 20 minutes with tomatoes, carrots, yellow bell pepper, kidney beans, orzo and fresh spinach.
Within this post you’ll learn about minestrone and what exactly it is. Plus you’ll lean about cooking extra flavor into rice, pastas and grains. You may be asking what pasta sauce and minestrone soup have to do with each other. I didn’t know it was a thing until creating this easy and healthy minestrone soup either. And easy it is! I was trying to figure out how to best write the instructions, and you literally just throw everything in a pot and let it cook about 15 minutes; enough said. No long prep, pre-cooking or multiple pans needed.
This minestrone soup recipe is a simple mixture of vegetables, legumes, and some seasonings, so it’s super healthy; loaded with vitamins, fiber, and complex carbs to fill you up, while being vegetarian. To make it hearty and more filling I added orzo, but you can easily omit or substitute with something healthier or gluten-free.
With rainy days and early evenings, a warm bowl of soup was just what I was looking for. Soups are a simple way to enjoy healthy comfort food meals that last, and freeze easy for lots of leftovers. This minestrone soup photographed beautifully with an intentional rustic quality to set a comforting and warming mood. I had my share of soups a while back while developing and photographing 6 recipes for a freelance vegetable client within a month period. My freezer had never seen so much soup!
The main base is Bertolli® Riserva Pasta Sauce which adds a rich flavor and thick consistency. Betolli began selling olive oil in a small town in Italy more than 150 years ago. Eventually exporting to America, and being the first exporter of olive oil. Today that tradition continues with a broad range of Italian products that include pasta sauces. I used the Porcini Mushrooms & White Truffle Oil flavor. It’s subtle enough put perfectly flavors this soup. Minestrone soup is thicker than traditional soups and you’ll learn more about it in the cooking tips section below.
Life can be busy (like my 6 soups in a month sprint) so taking time to enjoy simple things is important. Quality comfort food meals like this healthy minestrone soup come together in minutes so you have more time to enjoy things that matter most to you.
Cooking Tips: What is minestrone and how to get more flavor into soups, rice and grains.
Minestrone is a thick soup of Italian origin. It’s a tomato base mixed with a stock, and commonly served with pasta or rice. Vegetables in this soup usually include beans, onions, carrots, celery and tomatoes. I’ve made mine a little more Tuscan with the use of bell peppers and spinach.
How to get more flavor into rice or grains: An easy trick is to cook with tomato liquid, vegetable or chicken stock, instead of water. You can substitute equal parts to replace water. For example, to make a Spanish rice, use canned diced tomatoes with the liquid, or use chicken stock to make quinoa. This minestrone soup recipe has no added water, and uses diced tomatoes with liquid to create a base and cook the orzo. Just be aware these liquids contain sodium, so it will affect the amount of salt you add, if any.
Difficulty: Super easy
Flavor profiles: Savory, rich and umami flavors from tomato based pasta sauce. Legumes and vegetables at starchy flavors.
Texture: Thick soup base with tender vegetables, orzo pasta and kidney beans.
Dietary Options/Substitutions: Can omit orzo; rice or quinoa can but used for gluten-free.
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Pasta Sauce Healthy Minestrone Soup with Orzo
- 1 (24-ounce) jar pasta sauce
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 (15 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 (15 ounce) cans kindey beans, drained
- 1 ½ cups sliced baby carrots
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, chopped
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian seasonings
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup dry orzo, uncooked
- 3 cups fresh spinach leaves
- Parmesan cheese as garnish
- Stir all ingredient together except spinach leaves in a large pot. Heat over medium-high heat until boiling. Reduce to low, cover and simmer for 15–20 minutes, until orzo is cooked and tender.
- Remove from heat and stir in spinach leaves. Garnish with shredded Parmesan while serving.
Save $1.50 on Bertolli® plus learn more cooking tips with this link.