Creamy Minestrone Soup (Freezer Meal)

Man, have my freezer meals come in handy lately! Jana made this one for the last swap I participated in, using a recipe she found on All Recipes as a guide. It was SOOO good! Even Mike, who was not excited when he saw we were having soup for dinner, gave it his stamp of approval :-).

1 lb ground beef or Ground Sausage or both
8 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
4 (14 ounce) cans chicken broth
4 (15 ounce) cans mixed vegetables, with liquid (Jana used fresh cut-up vegetables)
2 (16 ounce) cans kidney beans, with liquid
2 (14.5 ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes,with liquid
1 (16 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 1/4 teaspoons garlic powder
4 teaspoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 cup uncooked elbow macaroni
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, drained
4 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese for topping

1. In a large stock pot over medium heat, stir and cook onions in butter until soft. Add ground beef/Sausage and cook until browned. Add broth, mixed vegetables, kidney beans, tomatoes, spinach, and tomato paste; simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours.
2. Using a slotted spoon, remove about half of the vegetables to a blender or food processor, reserving liquid in stock pot. Puree the vegetables until smooth and return them to stock pot. (Jana did not puree - she left the vegetables chunky and I agree - loved it with the chunky veggies)
3. Stir in garlic powder, parsley, salt, pepper, basil, macaroni, 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese, garbanzo beans, and heavy cream; cook for 1/2 hour, stirring frequently. Pour into bowls and sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese.


Liz L said...

So is it okay to freeze it after you add the cream and cheese? I have a friend who's having a baby and I want to make her a couple freezer meals.

MaRiN said...

Wow, this must taste amazing with that long list of ingredients. I love minestrone soup.

Marci said...

I think cream and cheese freeze well when mixed up in something like this case they were fine. The first freezer meal I made for our swap was an enchilada recipe and I froze the sauce, which had sour cream and milk in it, separately and it didn't fare so well though.

Your Best Friend said...

Sounds really yummy. I love making soup. My family isn't as fond of it but they mostly prefer chicken nuggets anyway. :-)

Congrats on the new baby! I feel bad that I haven't commented on your blog much lately, but I'm very happy for you and your family.

Unknown said...

This is unbelievably good! Such a great winter meal. I served it at an informal luncheon for my gal friends. I added garlic bread on the side, a small green salad, and a glass of red wine. (And for dessert: old fashioned homemade pineapple upside-down-cake I had baked in a cast iron skillet.) It was a cold, rainy day and they LOVED everything. Each friend asked for the soup recipe!! Thank you for this wonderful soup! One change: for veggies I added frozen mixed instead of canned. It freezes great.