Minestrone Primavera or ‘Italian Spring Soup’

Full of fresh, bright green spring veg, this classic Italian soup recipe is healthy and delicious. Minestrone Primavera or Spring Soup will feed 4-6 as a light meal.

I grew up eating my dad’s famous (and delicious) minestrone soup and always thought that was pretty much the only variation out there. It wasn’t until later that I discovered the vibrantly green, springtime cousin of that Italian winter warmer, Minestrone PrimaveraSpring Soup.

Minestrone Primavera Spring Soup

About This Recipe

This is a soup with a little of everything! As a kid, I always loved the story of stone soup, where a hungry stranger convinces a village to each share some of their food to make a meal enjoyed by all, and I think often the best soups are the ones that have a whole mixture of ingredients in them.

To be more specific, Minestrone Primavera is a lovely, vibrantly green soup with fresh spring vegetables like asparagus and the first leaves of basil. Perfect for those crisp springtime days where it’s still too cold to snack on a salad.

Soup Is perfect for the change of seasons

There is something so inviting about a bowl of soup. Whether you’ve come in from a chilly autumn walk, are enjoying some warming spring sunshine, are huddled inside avoiding wintery snow, or are sipping a chilled soup in a summer garden, there seems to be a bowl of soup for every occasion.

This recipe is flexible

I always think of recipes like this as a loose guideline, rather than something to be followed absolutely. I love the bright green colour of all the ingredients after a dreary end to winter, so I look out for vegetables with the brightest green I can find.

I prefer to make it with chicken stock as I find it gives a bit more depth to the soup, but vegetable is fine too. Either way, it is a fabulously bright and uplifting soup.

quick and Easy

This soup is super speedy. To be honest, the most time-consuming thing is the chopping of the vegetables, and when they are so beautiful and fresh even that isn’t much of a chore.

You don’t want to overcook them as it’s the vibrant green-ness of the vegetables that makes this soup so special.

Servings

This recipe will feed 4-6 as a light meal, with plenty of bread to soak it all up, and will keep for several days in the fridge, though the bright green will fade over time, that doesn’t make it any less delicious – in fact, I actually prefer it after the flavours have had some time to mingle!


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

I can’t get pasta stars! Can I use other shapes?

Of course! I like to use pasta stars or stelline in this soup as I get a childish kick out of the shape. Feel free to replace with any small soup pasta, ditalini or similar is good.

u003cbru003eI have different vegetables, can I still make Minestrone Primavera?

Yes! Add the vegetables into the pot in the order that you like them cooked – if something is particularly firm and you prefer it more tender, into the pot first. Things that live off their texture, asparagus for example, leave it until last. Use your judgement and see what you like. By the time you reheat this for lunch the next day, everything will be wonderfully amalgamated into a delicious vegetable medley anyway.

Do I really have to shell the broad beans?

I know shelling broad beans seems like a thankless task, but if you have them in the freezer like me I find the skins become too tough for a delicate soup like this. I weigh out 100g of frozen broad beans into a colander, run some cold water over then and then quickly pop the skins off.

Spring Soup Minestrone Primavera
Spring Soup Minestrone Primavera

WHAT TO SERVE WITH MINESTRONE PRIMAVERA?

On the side:

As a main course:

Spring Soup Minestrone Primavera

Minestrone Primavera ‘Spring Soup’

Jay Wadams
Full of fresh, bright green spring veg, this classic Italian soup recipe is healthy and delicious. Minestrone Primavera or Spring Soup will feed 4-6 as a light meal.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Serves 4

Ingredients
 

  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 zucchini, halved and thickly sliced
  • 1 large leek, root and dark green trimmed, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1.5 litres chicken or vegetable stock
  • 100 g green beans, trimmed and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 100 g frozen peas
  • 100 g broad beans, shelled
  • 400 g can of cannellini beans
  • 100 g pasta stars, (stelline)
  • 8 asparagus spears, cut into bite sized pieces
  • sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

to serve:

  • shaved Parmesan
  • 1 bunch fresh basil

Instructions
 

  • SAUTÉ THE VEGETABLES: In a large saucepan over a medium heat, warm the butter and the oil together until the butter is melted. Add the zucchini, leek and garlic and cook, stirring for 5 minutes, or until the leek and zucchini have softened, but not browned.
  • ADD THE OTHER INGREDIENTS: Add the chicken or vegetable stock to the pan, along with the green beans, peas, broad beans, cannellini beans and pasta stars. Bring to the boil, stirring as the stars will sink to the bottom and try to catch on the bottom of the pan, then turn the heat down to a simmer and add the asparagus.
  • SIMMER: Simmer for 5-10 minutes until the vegetables and pasta are tender to your liking, season to taste with salt and pepper. If you are using stock cubes it will probably be salty enough, if you are using fresh unsalted stock it will need a fair bit of salt, probably around 2 teaspoons. As always, err on the side of caution, add salt, stir well, taste and add more if necessary.
  • SERVE: Serve in warmed bowls topped with some torn basil leaves and with plenty of shaved Parmesan along with some crusty bread for dipping.

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Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 354kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 818mg | Potassium: 941mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 3565IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 140mg | Iron: 5mg
Tried this recipe?Leave a review or a star rating and let me know how it was! Use the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram so I can see your delicious creations.
Course | Light Bites
Cuisine | Italian

Looking for more soup recipeS?

Chicken Wonton Soup
Chicken Lentil Soup
Pumpkin and Ginger Soup
Chicken and Noodle Soup
Greek Lemon Chicken Soup
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Jay Wadams
Jay Wadams

Jay Wadams is a cookbook author, food photographer and Le Cordon Bleu Gastronomy and Nutrition graduate. Based in Italy 🇮🇹 Germany 🇩🇪 and Australia 🇦🇺.

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