Saturday, January 19, 2013

Fab Fit Day: Crockpot Minestrone Soup

Finally, the first recipe I have ever made in a crock pot. My parents bought me a new crock pot for Christmas. I may have hinted that I needed one. I'm all about preparing food in advance, it saves so much time. 

Making soup seemed like the perfect thing to do, especially because of the four days of rainy weather. I expected more from you, Georgia! I tried Olive Garden's Minestrone a couple years ago. I was immediately hooked. I wanted to challenge myself to create a recipe for minestrone that was just as good. 

There are tons of minestrone recipes out on the web. I couldn't decide which one to make. I took the traditional minestrone ingredients and put a twist on everything to make the recipe my own.  I am so glad I did because according to my taste buds, my recipe beat Olive Garden's. My boyfriend agreed. 

2 Cups Frozen Peas  (Defrosted)
3 Small Yellow Summer Squash
1 Cup Snapped Green Beans
2 Medium Zucchini
5 Medium Celery Stalks
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Cup Baby Carrots or 2 Large Carrots
1 Large White Onion
1 Tbsp Extra Light Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Tbsp Black Pepper
1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1/8 Cup Fresh Oregano
2 Tbsp Minced Garlic
1 Tsp Parsley
2 Cans Reduced Sodium Kidney Beans
1 Can White Kidney Beans
2 Cans Died Tomatoes (Basil, Garlic, Oregano)
2 Boxes Organic Vegetable Broth
2 Tbsp Light Brown Sugar (My secret Ingredient) 

-Rinse green beans.

-Cut the ends off and dispose.

-Chop the green beans into thirds.

-Peel and dice onion.

-Rinse celery.

-Cut off ends and dice.

-Rinse Carrots and dice.

-Dice summer squash.

-Rinse bell pepper.

-Remove the bell pepper's seeds and dice.

-Cut each zucchini into fourths.


-Add all ingredients to a large bowl and set aside. 

-Open all cans

I used Emeril's organic vegetable broth because I thought it had the best flavor, but there are tons of other brands you can find and choose from. 

-Rinse beans to strainer and rinse.

-Add: vegetables, tomatoes and beans to crock pot. 

-Combine well.

-Mix in : chopped oregano, parsley, salt, pepper, garlic powder, olive oil, brown sugar, minced garlic, broth and combine well. 

-Turn crock pot on high, and cover.

-Cook 5-6 hours. 

-When ready to serve turn crock pot to low.

This recipe makes 32 servings. It's incredibly low calorie. It's just made up of: broth, vegetables and seasonings! It's loaded in nutrients and a perfect way to fit in those veggies through out the day. I recommend this soup to the "veggie haters." This might change your mind about eating vegetables and help you create a taste. 

I added my soup to a large container in my refrigerator. Jeremy and I have been eating it for the past couple days. It only gets better and better as it marinates in the broth. 

For re-heating, I just use the stove top. 

Olive Garden's is more than twice the calories and the sodium is sky high. Also, do we know what is put into their soup? I like to know what I'm putting into my mouth. After my New Year's resolution started, I find myself wanting to cook everything instead of dining out. 

I never realized how important it is to make your own soup. Most brands or restaurants are full of MSG and over 800 mg of sodium! This soup is guilt free, I never feel bad for going back for another bowl, or three. I topped mine with a couple croutons last night, and it was the perfect touch. 

If you are super hungry, this and a salad is ideal! You'll be stuffed in no time. Now, if only I could make Olive Garden's lemon cake healthy...

I am thinking about whipping this one up for the super bowl, or maybe I'll try to create a low calorie chili. Maybe a vegetarian chili! This crock pot is so convenient  I can't believe I've been missing out for so long. (Thanks, mom and dad)

If you have any healthy crock pot recipes, please share! I'm excited to try more.

Nutrition Per Cup  

58 Calories, .06g Fat, 11g Carbs, 5g Fiber, 3.5g Protein, 3g Sugars,  200mg potassium, 415g Sodium, 

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1 comment:

  1. What size of crockpot are you using? I prepared this recipe thos morning and found that I didn't have room for some of the ingredients. I followed your recipe to the T.



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