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8-Bean Minestrone Soup
3 Tbsp Olive Oil
3 onions, peeled and diced
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, sliced
6 to 8 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
8 cups vegetable broth
1 ½ cups Inari 8-Bean mix
2 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
¼ to ½ savoy cabbage, chopped into 1” squares (about 4 cups chopped)
1 x 28 oz can whole tomatoes, with juice
1 tbsp dried oregano
Sprinkled sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Optional Ingredients: Nutritional Yeast or 8 slices thick cut bacon
Heat olive oil in a large soup pot, add onions, carrots, celery and garlic and sauté for a few minutes. Drain and rinse the beans before adding them to pot along with the broth. Bring to gentle boil then reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for about 30 minutes. Add zucchini, red pepper, cabbage, tomatoes and juice, and oregano. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for another 30 to 45 minutes, until vegetables are tender, but still hold their shape and beans are cooked.
In making traditional minestrone soup, parmesan rinds are placed in the soup pot while the soup simmers and removed before serving. To impart a similar flavour, sprinkle ½ to 1 tsp of flaked nutritional yeast each bowl of soup before serving.
For a non-vegetarian version, bacon can be used to add depth in flavour and a smoky undertone to the soup. If using bacon, this will be the first ingredient to start with.
In the pot, sauté bacon until cooked (not crispy). Drain ½ of the bacon fat from the pot. The remaining bacon fat will replace the olive oil. Then carry on with the recipe as described in the first paragraph above.