Green Minestrone

Prep and Cook Time: about 35 minutes. Notes: Basil and mint make this version of the classic soup especially refreshing. If your sugar snap peas are longer than 2 inches, cut them into bite-size pieces.

Yield: Makes 11 cups; 4 or 5 servings
Recipe from Sunset

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Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 252
  • Calories from fat: 4%
  • Protein: 23g
  • Fat: 1.1g
  • Saturated fat: 0.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 37g
  • Fiber: 8.7g
  • Sodium: 286mg
  • Cholesterol: 0.0mg


  • 2 quarts fat-skimmed chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 pounds leeks (2 or 3)
  • 2 cups sugar snap peas (8 oz.; see notes)
  • 1/2 cup tiny dried pasta such as conchigliette or orzo
  • 1 can (15 oz.) cannellini (white) beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 quart baby spinach leaves (4 oz.), rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves, rinsed, drained, and slivered
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh mint leaves, rinsed, drained, and slivered
  • Shredded parmesan cheese


  1. 1. In a 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat, bring broth to a boil.
  2. 2. Meanwhile, trim and discard tough dark green tops and root ends from leeks. Cut leeks in half lengthwise and rinse well under running water, flipping layers to release grit. Thinly slice leeks crosswise. Trim ends from sugar snap peas and remove strings; rinse and drain snap peas.
  3. 3. Stir pasta into boiling broth, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. 4. Add leeks, peas, and beans to pasta. Return to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until pasta is tender to bite, about 2 minutes longer.
  5. 5. Stir in spinach, basil, and mint. Cook, covered, just until greens are wilted, about 1 minute.
  6. 6. Ladle soup into bowls. Add parmesan cheese to taste.
  7. Wine pairing: The vegetables in the soup call for a crisp, grassy Sauvignon Blanc.
  8. Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.
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