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Meatball Minestrone Soup

A heartier minestrone that’ll fill you right up.

I don’t know about you, but I generally think of minestrone soup as a reasonably light soup that manages to pack in a lot of veggies but maintain a great flavor. Well, this Meatball Minestrone Soup takes that same nourishing but delicious flavor profile and adds in savory meatballs so that it’s the type of soup you can really make a meal out of. It’s the best of both worlds – and it’ll fill you right up without sacrificing flavor!

While this is a heartier minestrone, there are still plenty of veggies in this pot. There’s onion and celery and carrot and zucchini that are sauteed until tender…

… and then joined by navy beans, tender pasta, spinach, and a pound of quick-to-make meatballs that bring beefiness to the soup in both flavor and robustness.

Quick and comforting, it’s a cozy soup that’ll easily keep you going until your next meal. And bonus? It makes excellent leftovers or meal prep!

Serves 6

15m prep time

25m cook time

Rated 4.4 out of 5
Rated by 14 reviewers
For the meatballs:
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 1/2 cups breadcrumbs
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons milk
For the soup:
  • Olive oil, as needed
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • 1 (15 oz) can navy beans
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked ditalini pasta
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, breadcrumbs, 2 cloves garlic, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, egg, and milk. Season with salt and pepper, mix to combine, and portion out and roll into small meatballs. Chill for 15 minutes.
  2. Once chilled, place a large pot over medium-high heat and add 3 tablespoons olive oil to pot. Once hot, brown the meatballs in batches, 3-4 minutes. Remove meatballs and set aside.
  3. Add more olive oil if needed, followed by the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook until starting to soften, 3-4 minutes.
  4. Add zucchini, Italian seasoning, red chili flake, garlic, and salt and pepper. Cook 1 minute.
  5. Stir in tomato paste, then add meatballs back to pot, followed by navy beans, and broth.
  6. Bring soup to a simmer, cover partially with a lid, and reduce heat to low. Gently simmer 25 minutes.
  7. Turn off heat, and stir in spinach, cooked pasta, and parsley. Adjust seasoning as needed, and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from The Cozy Apron.

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