Sunday, April 28, 2013

Copycat Olive Garden Minestrone

I lurve Olive Garden! I love the pasta, I love the breadsticks (who doesn't?), I especially love the salad and I love their soup.  Except I hardly ever order it if we go out because I'd rather have the salad prior to my pasta entree.  Ty ALWAYS orders the soup and I have a spoonful and get all jealous that I'm sitting there eating salad.  Delicious salad, but hey it's still salad.

Luckily I found this copycat Olive Garden Minestrone soup recipe and Ty got really excited about it.  So I made it!  

3 Tbl olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
4 tsp minced garlic
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 medium zucchini, quartered and chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
2 14 oz cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 19 oz can navy beans
1/2 cup carrot, shredded
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
2 tbl frech minced parsley
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 tsp ground thyme
salt & pepper
2 cups hot water
1 cup red wine
4 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup shell pasta

Phew.  Ok, you got all that?  So chop up your onion, mince garlic, chop zucchini and celery, and get your kettle going for broth.  Then heat the 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot and toss in the onion, garlic, zucchini and celery and saut√© for about 5 minutes.

While thats cooking, drain your beans, shred your carrot, and drain your tomatoes as best you can.  I did poorly.  Ok when the veggies are good, add the broth, beans, carrots and tomatoes to the veggies in the pot.  Then add in your spices, the hot water, and the wine.  I think adding the wine is a really important part of the flavour of this soup!

Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the temperature and simmer for 20 minutes!

Then add in the 4 cups of baby spinach and the pasta and continue to cook for another 15-20 minutes!  Then you're ready to chow down!

It's not quite right.  I used a strong red wine, which is over powering the flavour just a bit.  And a little extra salt and pepper is a good addition.  Ty didn't love it and we both agreed it really wasn't close to the Olive Garden version.  He said I should just make my regular minestrone from now on :) 
MyMeatlessMondaysKeeping It Simple


Shannon {Cozy Country Living} said...

This looks really good! I love trying new soups! Thanks for sharing:)

Christina @ It's a Keeper said...

This looks pretty close to the original! I can't wait to try it!