Craving a hearty soup tonight? Look no further than this Instant Pot Minestrone Soup. This comforting and filling soup packed with pantry staples, fresh ingredients, beans, and pasta in a tomato-rich broth will warm you up on any chilly day.
When the weather turns cold and snowy, that’s when I turn to my favorite soup recipes.
Soups always hold a special place in my heart, and my love for soups isn’t hidden from my readers. Whether it be Instant Pot Pasta E Fagioli soup, Instant Pot broccoli lentil soup, or Instant Pot butternut squash quinoa stew, my family loves them all.
After all, a steaming bowl of soup has ALL the power to warm up our body and soul on a cold night, and Instant Pot minestrone soup perfectly falls into the category of soul-soothing comfort food.
What is Minestrone Soup?
Minestrone is an Italian vegetarian soup that features:
- A blend of vegetables such as celery, spinach, and carrots,
- Thick tomato broth,
- A wide variety of beans, and
- Contains either rice or noodles.
In short, it’s an extremely nourishing, well-balanced, healthy soup that is packed with proteins, minerals, fiber, and carbs.
It has everything you love about soup– veggies, pasta, thick base, and beans – all in one comforting bowl! The best part, this cozy bowl of goodness is kid-friendly, too, as it’s a pasta soup!
Ingredients and Substitutes for Instant Pot Minestrone Soup
Authentic minestrone requires specific ingredients, so don’t get deterred with a long list of ingredients. Every ingredient has a role to play and adds so much flavor and texture to this soup.
» Oil – I have used olive oil; however, you can add any mild flavor oil of your choice.
» Onion + garlic – aromatics that add tons of flavor to our soup.
- I prefer to use fresh garlic for my recipe, but garlic powder will work just fine.
- To add some warmth and zest to the soup, you can add a teaspoon of ginger paste too.
» Vegetables – I have added celery, carrots, zucchini, and fresh spinach leaves to my Instant Pot Minestrone Soup. Carrots, celery, and zucchini add a nice texture and flavor; furthermore, spinach adds so much nutrition and a pop of color.
- Minestrone’s beauty is that it’s very versatile- meaning there is no right or wrong way to this soup; you can add whatever vegetables you have on hand, from fresh veggies to frozen, everything works great.
- Other great veggie options include green beans, red potatoes, bell peppers, red cabbage, broccoli, squash, and any other leafy vegetable of your choice. Kale would be great here.
- To enjoy the nutritional value of assorted vegetables, I like to try different combinations of veggies in my soup.
» Beans – My choice for minestrone soup starts with a can of – Great Northern beans and kidney beans. You can use either canned or fresh beans for the soup. If using fresh beans, you’ll need to soak them for 6-8 hours, cook them until tender, then add them to the soup.
- You can use any beans; chickpeas, pinto beans, and cannellini beans as a substitute.
- Be sure to drain and rinse your beans before adding them to the soup.
» Diced tomatoes – Adds depth of flavor and makes a yummy base for our soup.
- I have used canned diced tomatoes, but you can use fresh tomatoes. If using fresh tomatoes, I would recommend adding 1/2 a cup of tomato paste as it will lend a nice texture and color to the soup.
- Moreover, you can use pasta sauce or crushed tomatoes for a rich consistency.
- You can even add fire-roasted diced tomatoes for some extra oomph of flavor.
» Spices and herbs – To make our soup flavorful, Italian seasoning, salt, chili flakes, and bay leaves (for some herbal flavor) are added. Italian seasoning includes basil, rosemary, thyme, marjoram, oregano, and sage – that’s where all our flavor comes from.
- You can welcome to use fresh herbs for more depth of flavor. The ratio of fresh to dried is 3:1.
- The amount of red pepper flakes added in this recipe doesn’t make the soup spicy, but if you prefer extra spicy, you can either increase the quantity of pepper flakes in the recipe or swap it with cayenne pepper.
- Classic minestrone includes fresh parsley; therefore, I have added a teaspoon of chopped parsley towards the end. You can use fresh cilantro alternatively.
» Pasta – My favorite pasta for minestrone is small pasta shells. Therefore, I opted for macaroni pasta as it is just about the size of my chopped veggies, and I get to taste everything in each bite without worrying about pasta falling off the spoon.
- You can swap macaroni for ditalini pasta, mini penne pasta, or any small pasta of your choice. Orzo works great too.
- I found 1/4 cup of macaroni just enough for my soup because macaroni, when added to the soup, it expands in size, swelling to almost twice its original size. But feel free to add 1/2 a cup of macaroni if you like.
- Want to make it gluten-free? Swap pasta for white rice.
» Vegetable Broth – To keep the soup vegetarian, I have used vegetable broth. I have added less broth for a thicker consistency, but if you prefer a soupy consistency, simply add more broth to the soup. If using store-bought broth, use low sodium broth to control the sodium content.
- Although the traditional minestrone soup is meatless and vegetarian, you can surely add chicken broth for more flavor.
How to make Instant Pot Minestrone Soup
Cook the aromatics –Turn the Instant Pot to ‘Saute mode.’ Once it displays ‘hot,’ add oil to the insert. Add garlic and sauté for a minute or until fragrant.
Add chopped onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes until onions are soft and translucent.
Add the essentials – Stir in celery, carrots, great northern beans, kidney beans, chopped tomatoes, Italian dressing, macaroni pasta, bay leaves, salt, and red pepper flakes.
Assemble the soup – Pour in vegetable stock. Mix until everything is combined. Don’t forget to deglaze the base of the insert.
PROTIP – Deglazing the insert removes all the brown bits stuck to the base. Scrape everything from the base to prevent the burn message.
Turn the Instant Pot off. Close the lid and seal the pot. Press the Manual or pressure cook button and cook the Instant Pot Minestrone Soup for 4 minutes on HIGH.
PROTIP – It will take somewhere about 10 minutes for the pressure to build then the actual cooking time will start.
Once the cooking time has elapsed, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, turn the steam valve to the venting position to release the remaining pressure. When the pin drops, carefully open the lid.
Remove the bay leaves from the soup and discard. Add zucchini and spinach leaves. Give it a good stir.
PROTIP – Zucchini and spinach leaves take less time to cook, so always add them at last.
Turn the Instant Pot to ‘Saute mode.’ Allow the minestrone soup to simmer for 2-3 minutes, stirring periodically.
PROTIP – Don’t simmer for long; our purpose is to soften the vegetables. If simmered for long, the pasta will soak up all the liquid and become mushy.
Finally, add the chopped parsley leaves and serve warm.
Instant Pot Minestrone soup will last for about 3-4 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The soup becomes tastier and richer as it soaks in all the beautiful flavors, but make a small note that the pasta will absorb all the liquid, and the broth will become thick.
To reheat the next day, make a little base with pasta sauce and vegetable broth in a pan.
Add the soup and give it a gentle stir because the pasta will start to fall apart if stirred too much. Heat until warmed through. Serve hot.
I like to make a big batch of soups and stews and freeze them for future dinners. Frozen soups are perfect for adding to your meal plan, just bake some fresh bread to go along with it, and dinner is sorted!
But I am afraid that Instant Pot minestrone soup doesn’t fall into the convenient grab-and-go kind of soup.
When it comes to soups, I am a huge fan of thick-brothy soups, and I personally think Minestrone soup tastes best when served fresh.
This soup WILL freeze well, but the pasta and vegetables will become mushy and unappetizing when defrosted.
Can I half this Instant Pot Minestrone soup recipe?
You most certainly can! This recipe makes enough serving to feed a family of 6, but if you don’t want any leftovers, you can scale the recipe down to suit your preferences.
Likewise, if you prefer to feed a large gathering, this Instant pot Minestrone soup can be scaled up to match your needs.
For a larger batch, make sure you are using a large pot to accommodate all the ingredients.
Not a vegan
Since my version of minestrone soup is vegan, I have skipped the cheese, but if you are not vegan, feel free to top your soup with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese or the cheese of your choice and serve.
The addition of cheese takes this minestrone soup to a whole new level and adds its distinctive taste and flavor.
LET ME KNOW WHAT YOU THINK!
This minestrone has a ton of flavor and is a meal-in-one kind of soup, but I like to pair it with our family’s favorite garlic knots or dinner rolls for a more filling meal! Do give it a try, and I am sure it’ll become your family-favorite too!
Should you make this minestrone soup, please let me know your thoughts by sharing your comment below.
And don’t forget to share it with your family and friends.
CRAVING FOR MORE, TRY SOME OTHER WINTER SOUPS!
Instant Pot Minestrone Soup
- 1¼ tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 cloves of Garlic finely chopped
- 1 medium Onion finely chopped
- 3 stalks of Celery diced into cubes
- 2 small Carrots diced into cubes
- 15 oz. can of Great Northern Beans drained and rinsed
- 15 oz. can of Kidney Beans drained and rinsed
- 2½ cups Diced tomatoes
- 4 cups Vegetable Broth
- 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
- ½ teaspoon Chili flakes
- – – Salt to Taste
- 2 – Bay leaves
- ¼ cup Macaroni Pasta or pasta of your choice
- 1 medium Zucchini diced
- 1 cup Fresh Spinach leaves
- 1 teaspoon Fresh Parsley Leaves
- Turn the Instant Pot to ‘Saute mode.’ Once it displays ‘hot,’ add oil to the insert. Add garlic and sauté for a minute or until fragrant.
- Add chopped onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes until onions are soft and translucent.
- Stir in celery, carrots, great northern beans, kidney beans, chopped tomatoes, Italian dressing, macaroni pasta, bay leaves, salt, and red pepper flakes.
- Pour in vegetable stock. Mix until everything is combined. Don’t forget to deglaze the base of the insert. PROTIP – Deglazing the insert removes all the brown bits stuck to the base. Scrape everything from the base to prevent the burn message.
- Turn the Instant Pot off. Close the lid and seal the pot. Press the Manual or pressure cook button and cook the Instant Pot Minestrone Soup for 4 minutes on HIGH.PROTIP – It will take somewhere about 10 minutes for the pressure to build then the actual cooking time will start.
- Once the cooking time has elapsed, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, turn the steam valve to the venting position to release the remaining pressure. When the pin drops, carefully open the lid.
- Remove the bay leaves from the soup and discard.
- Add zucchini and spinach leaves. Give it a good stir. PROTIP – Zucchini and spinach leaves take less time to cook, so always add them at last.
- Turn the Instant Pot to ‘Saute mode.’ Allow the minestrone soup to simmer for 2-3 minutes, stirring periodically.PROTIP – Don’t simmer for long; our purpose is to soften the vegetables. If simmered for long, the pasta will soak up all the liquid and become mushy.
- Finally, add the chopped parsley leaves and serve warm.
- Add oil to a heavy-bottomed pan. Once the oil is hot, add garlic and sauté until fragrant.
- Add onions and cook over medium heat until translucent.
- Now add celery and carrots, sauté for about 8-10 minutes until the vegetables are softened.
- Add diced tomatoes and season the minestrone soup with herbs and spices. Give it a good stir.
- Add vegetable broth, great northern beans, and kidney beans. Cover the pan and let it simmer for about 10 minutes over medium-low heat.
- Add pasta to the soup and simmer the soup until the pasta is al-dente.
- Once the pasta is cooked, stir in zucchini and spinach leaves. Mix it well.
- Allow the soup to simmer for another 2-3 minutes. Adjust the thickness of the soup to your liking.
- Once the spinach leaves have wilted and zucchini is soft, take the Minestrone soup off the flame.
- Spoon the soup into a bowl and serve.