Heart-Healthy Minestrone Soup Recipe

It's hard to beat a meal that you can thoroughly enjoy eating and that you can also feel great about. Those loaded potato skins from the pub? Sure, they taste great, but they may not feel amazing. Pizza? Delectable, but salty and greasy. Ice cream? Calorie central.

But then, you have a dish like this heart-healthy minestrone that comes courtesy of chef and recipe developer Miriam Hahn. As the name suggests, this is a hearty-healthy soup, so people watching out for their hearts (not to mention the rest of their cardiovascular systems) can dig in. "When you have heart disease or if you are headed there with high cholesterol, it is super important to eat very low-fat and as many plant-based meals as possible," Hahn says. "There are many research studies that show eating this way can actually reverse heart disease."

It's also just a delicious meal, and one that hits every food group square on the head and will leave you full and satisfied yet without leaving you feeling stuffed and bloated. And also there's none of that ice cream or pizza or loaded potato skin guilt, either.

And don't be too frightened by the hefty ingredient list: Gathering what goes into this soup will take you a lot more time and effort than the actual making of it! "The soup is easy to make as long as you are good with lots of chopping," says Hahn adding: "It's an easy one-pot meal!"

Gather your ingredients

As noted, it takes a lot to make this soup just right. A lot of ingredients, anyway — not too much effort. And what are said ingredients? First, start with a few cups of broth. Then, make sure to grab  a diced onion, some minced garlic, diced stalks of celery, diced carrots, a couple of medium Yukon potatoes, also diced, a couple of 15-ounce cans of fire-roasted tomatoes (and their fluid), some water, a tablespoon of Italian seasoning, a teaspoon of garlic powder, some salt and pepper, some red pepper flakes, a cup of small shell pasta, a can (or box) of kidney beans, drained, same for cannellini beans, a bunch of Swiss chard, and some optional fresh parsley or basil for serving.

Whew ... still with us? Great, let's cook!

Start cooking your aromatics

Add one-quarter of a cup of broth to a large soup pot, and turn the burner under it to medium-high heat, then add in the diced onion, garlic, celery, and carrots. Cook these veggies for eight minutes, stirring frequently. While they are cooking, go ahead and de-stem the Swiss chard and then chop it. You can use spinach here if desired — you can just roughly chop. However, it will cook down a lot more than the chard will, so don't worry about getting it perfect.

Add the potatoes and pasta

Now add in the rest of the broth along with the diced potatoes, cans of tomatoes, water, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and of course, the pasta. (And by the way, you can use elbow macaroni if need be.) Cook everything in there for eight minutes on medium-high heat (reduce to a simmer if too much fluid is cooking off) or until the potatoes are tender and the pasta is al dente.

Add the rest of the ingredients, then enjoy

Now add both kinds of the beans and the chopped Swiss chard (or spinach). Turn the heat of the burner to low and cook the soup for about five more minutes, or until the Swiss chard is wilted. Note that if you are using spinach, you only need two minutes here — the beans don't need any cooking!

Your soup is now ready to serve. Top it with fresh parsley or basil if desired, and as for how best to enjoy it, Hahn says: "I like to serve this with a big green salad, but it is perfectly balanced with nutrition if you eat it on its own. Topping with fresh herbs is nice, as they add extra medicinal benefit as well."

And should you have some left over, she adds: "It stores nicely for up to a week in a sealed container, and you can freeze it for up to a month."

Heart-Healthy Minestrone Soup Recipe
5 from 20 ratings
As its name suggests, this is a hearty-healthy soup, so those watching out for their hearts (not to mention the rest of the cardiovascular system) can dig in.
Prep Time
10
minutes
Cook Time
20
minutes
Servings
8
servings
soup in bowls
Total time: 30 minutes
Ingredients
  • 4 cups broth, divided
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 medium Yukon potatoes, diced
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup small shell pasta
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems removed and chopped
Optional Ingredients
  • Fresh parsley or basil
Directions
  1. Add ¼ cup broth to a large soup pot and heat to medium-high, then add in the onion, garlic, celery, and carrots.
  2. Cook for 8 minutes, stirring frequently. De-stem the Swiss chard and chop.
  3. Now add in the rest of the broth, potatoes, tomatoes, water, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and pasta. Cook for 8 minutes on medium-high until the potatoes are tender and the pasta is al dente.
  4. Now add the beans and Swiss chard, and turn to low and cook for about 5 minutes until the Swiss chard is wilted.
  5. Serve with fresh parsley or basil if desired.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 260
Total Fat 1.3 g
Saturated Fat 0.3 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 51.5 g
Dietary Fiber 11.3 g
Total Sugars 7.1 g
Sodium 616.0 mg
Protein 12.9 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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