My Grandma's Minestrone Soup

My Grandma's easy minestrone soup recipe is one of the healthiest vegetable-loaded soups you'll make, and it tastes far better than any of those Olive Garden copycat recipes thanks to the secret ingredient in the savory broth.

Course Soup
Cuisine Italian
Keyword minestrone
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8 to 10
Calories 327 kcal


  • 4-5 slices bacon roughly sliced into bite size pieces
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 2/3 cup chopped leeks white part only
  • 2/3 cup chopped celery
  • 3 quarts beef stock 12 cups
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2-3 chunks of Parmesan cheese rind
  • 1 1/2 cups potatoes
  • 1 cup small macaroni
  • 1 15- ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15- ounce can red kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 2/3 cup frozen peas thawed
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Add the bacon to a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat and cook until browned but not crispy.

  2. Add the onion, carrots, leeks and celery then reduce the heat to medium and cook until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  3. Add the beef stock, kosher salt, pepper, and cheese rinds. Bring to a boil then reduce to a gently rolling simmer and cook for about 15 minutes, partially covered with a lid.

  4. Add the potatoes, macaroni, and tomatoes, then partially cover with the lid, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes more.

  5. Add the kidney beans and peas, and simmer until warmed through. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your taste.

  6. Just before serving, add the grated Parmesan cheese and serve sprinkled with more Parmesan if you’d like.

Recipe Notes

Make your own homemade beef broth/stock with this recipe

Or, use a vegetable broth instead. 

Nutrition Facts
My Grandma's Minestrone Soup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 327 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Fat 11g17%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 24mg8%
Sodium 1608mg70%
Potassium 1276mg36%
Carbohydrates 36g12%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 23g46%
Vitamin A 3155IU63%
Vitamin C 18mg22%
Calcium 306mg31%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.