how does your garden grow: minestrone soup

Fall Bean & Carrot Bounty

I haven’t had much time to spend in the garden recently, and the copious amounts of rain hasn’t helped either. I did manage to spend 20 minutes cleaning a bed last week, and my husband harvested the cayenne peppers over the weekend for me.

Yesterday, since I was making Minestrone soup for dinner, I decided to check the garden for carrots. To my surprise I found the bean plants still alive and kicking, and producing fresh beans. I picked about one pound and used them in the Minestrone along with the few carrots I found. The tomatoes in the soup I froze this summer, and the potatoes were dug up in August.


Minestrone Soup

Based on a recipe in Twelve Months of Monastery Soups


2/3 cup olive oil
large onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
one pound of green beans, prepped and cut in inch-size pieces
1 15 ounce can of cannellini beans, drained
1 15 ounce can peeled tomatoes
10 cups water
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 bay leaf
chopped parsley
salt and pepper to taste


Saute onion, carrots, and celery in olive oil for about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and beans and continue sauteing for 20 minutes.

Add water and bring the mixture to a boil. Add in the rest of the ingredients, and cover the pot. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 60 minutes. Turn off the heat, and let the soup stand on a cool burner for 15 minutes. Remove the bay leaf before serving.


I used a very full gallon freezer bag of plum tomatoes. Before putting them in the pot, I defrosted the bag, and drained the liquid. Instead of using water, I used vegetable broth which I made last week. I skipped the 15 ounce can of cannellini beans since I had none, and I also skipped the white wine since we don’t use alcohol. My last change was to omit the radicchio and substitute dried kale.

Share your vegetable garden progress in the comments!

Also part of Harvest Monday, Garden Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Hearth and Soul Blog Hop, Fat Tuesday, Weekend Gourmet Carnival, Monday Mania, On the Menu, and Share Your Sunday Best.

Meet Barb

Barb Hoyer has written 4295 posts.

After working in the fundraising world for over ten years, Barb is an avid runner, writer, photographer, parent volunteer, and lover of dictionaries and thesauruses. Wife to an engineer and mom to 5 kids, Barb lives in the suburbs of Philly. Her idea of relaxation is an afternoon on the couch with a stack of books.

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    • babhoyersh says

      Thanks! I’m feeling better, but my ds6 has viral bronchitis and the beginning of an ear infection. He and it sounds bad, but he’ll be better soon.

  1. says

    I know it makes no sense but it just never dawned on me to make minestrone instead of buying it in a can. Considering I make everything else from scratch we have just been avoid it. Going to have to pin this so I can make it when life calms down.
    Rebecca recently posted..Week in Review

    • babhoyersh says

      It’s funny how there are some things we never think of making! I love minestrone because you can tailor to your family’s likes. Sometimes I’ll make it with sausage, sometimes with pasta.

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