Winter Minestrone Soup - Andrea Meyers

Winter Minestrone

Heavily adapted from a recipe posted by Rita M. DuCharme-Muskat, Saudi Aramco BBS.
Course Soup
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Cannellini beans, gluten free, kale, minestrone, pearl onions, potatoes, tomatoes, vegan, vegetarian, winter
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6
Calories 432kcal
Author Andrea Meyers



  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 large celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil or 1 cube frozen basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried or fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup pearl barley (optional, omit for gluten free)
  • 2 red potatoes, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 16 ounces pearl onions, fresh or thawed from frozen
  • 2 quarts vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup chardonnay
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 or 4 grinds of fresh black pepper
  • 2 cups cooked cannellini beans
  • 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • a few sprigs of parsley
  • 8 ounces fresh kale, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 cup whole grain orzo (optional)


  • fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese or vegan alternative
  • crusty bread or gluten-free bread


  • Warm the olive oil in the pot over medium heat. Sauté the celery, garlic, basil, rosemary, oregano, thyme until the celery is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the barley, potatoes, carrots, pearl onions, stock, wine, and bay leaf. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  • While the soup simmers, prepare the orzo pasta in the medium pot according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • Stir in the beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, and parsley. Bring to a boil, cover, gently boil until pasta is cooked (15 minutes).
  • Add the kale and cook, uncovered, until it is tender-crisp (5 minutes). Remove the parsley sprigs. Salt and pepper to taste and stir in the cooked orzo. Serve in bowls, topped with grated Parmesan cheese and crusty bread on the side.

Make it Gluten Free

  • Omit the pearl barley. Make rice or quinoa and pour soup over it. Make the pasta on the side and pour soup over it. If you use purchased stock or other ingredients, check the label to sure those items are gluten free.


Calories: 432kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2027mg | Potassium: 1493mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 8360IU | Vitamin C: 71mg | Calcium: 200mg | Iron: 6mg