This slow cooker vegetarian minestrone soup is the epitome of healthy and hearty. It’s great as an easy meatless meal, or served along side of chicken or beef as a side. The crock pot does all of the work for you, and the end result is a flavorful Italian style soup that’s vegan, dairy-free, and loaded with beans, pasta (with a gluten-free option), and vegetables like celery, carrots, potatoes, green beans and tomatoes.
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Ingredients for Slow Cooker Minestrone
This vegetarian and vegan minestrone recipe calls for two types of ingredients. The first category will be your fresh ingredients that need to be prepped, which include potatoes, carrots, celery and onion. These four vegetables will need to be diced, and the carrots and potatoes can be peeled if you prefer the skin off.
You will also need some pantry staple ingredients, such as the spices, garlic and vegetable broth. If you’re not keeping this vegan, chicken stock or broth can be used in place of vegetable broth. The canned items that are needed include diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, green beans, northern beans and kidney beans. Ditalini pasta is used in this minestrone, which is the more traditional minestrone pasta option, but any type you prefer could be used in it’s place.
Making Your Minestrone Gluten-Free
If you’re making this gluten-free, when you add your pasta to the crock pot, you will simply want to use your preferred gluten-free pasta brand. They do make gluten-free ditalini pasta, which keeps this recipe close to as written. However, if you already have a gluten-free pasta shape on hand, that can be used in the same 1.5 cup measurement.
I would avoid using chickpea pasta here. The pasta gets dumped into the slow cooker at the end and cooks in the same liquid as the soup. Chickpea pasta does not cook well with that method, and tends to get foamy and sticky and can ruin your soup. If you do want to use chickpea pasta, I suggest boiling it on the stovetop and following the cooking instructions on the package and then adding it to your soup after it’s cooked.
Step by Step Cooking Process
Slow cooker vegetarian minestrone is incredibly quick and easy to prep. You’ll first start by chopping your fresh vegetables and adding them into your crock pot. Then you’ll add the canned tomato sauce and diced tomatoes, and your garlic and spices.
Once those are all in your slow cooker, pour the broth and water over top, and give everything a good stir to incorporate the spices in with the broth and vegetables. You’ll cover the slow cooker with the lid, and cook it on high for 6 to 8 hours, or on low for 3-4 hours. Set your slow cooker aside and come back to it right before you’re ready to serve and let it do all of the cooking for you!
The final step is to add in the green beans, canned northern and canned kidney beans, and pasta. This will be done 30 minutes prior to serving to allow just enough time for the pasta to cook and beans to heat. At this point, give your minestrone a taste and add any additional salt or pepper to taste.
You can also add 2 large handfuls of spinach or diced zucchini at this time as well if you’d like to bulk it up with vegetables even more. Because these two vegetables are softer and do not need to cook in the same way the others do, they should be added at the very end when the beans and pasta go in.
Serving Your Minestrone Soup
This soup is perfect as it’s own cozy meatless meal. That being said, it is also great as a side soup severed along with grilled or baked chicken, pork chops or large salad.
We love this minestrone topped with croutons, shaved parmesan, and fresh cracked black pepper.
How to Store Slow Cooker Vegetarian Minestrone
This soup is great for leftovers if you’re meal prepping it for work week lunches. It’s good in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, as long as it’s stored in air tight containers. You will first want to let the crock pot and soup cool completely, and then divide them into their individual containers.
This minestrone is also freezer friendly, and can be stored in the freezer for up to 4 months. You can either freeze it in one large container, or divide it out into individual portions for easier reheating and quick meals. Prior to freezing, you will want to let the soup cool completely, and then leave at least one inch of room between the soup and the lid of the container to allow room for the liquid to expand.
To reheat, remove the soup from the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. You can then either microwave the vegetarian minestrone soup for 3 minutes, or until warmed throughout, or pour it into a soup pot and heat over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
My Favorite Freezer Safe & Meal Prep Storage Containers:
Other Slow Cooker Recipes You’ll Love:Print
PS. If you’ve made this recipe, don’t forget to rate this recipe and let me know in the comments how you liked it!
- 1 (8oz) can tomato sauce
- 2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with liquid
- 4 cups vegetable broth or stock (low sodium, or adjust salt)
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups chopped carrots
- 2 cups chopped potatoes
- 1.5 cups chopped celery
- 1 white onion, diced
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 2 bay leaves
- 1.5 tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1 (15 oz) can green beans, drained
- 1 (15 oz) can great northern beans (white beans), drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1.5 cups uncooked ditalini pasta
- Add all ingredients except for canned green beans, canned beans and pasta into a large slow cooker
- Stir to combine, cover with the lid and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours.
- 30 minutes prior to end time, add in the canned green beans, canned northern and kidney beans, and uncooked pasta. Stir into the soup. Replace the lid and let cook for 30 minutes, or until pasta is cooked
- Serve with shredded parmesan, fresh cracked black pepper or croutons
- You can add 1 ½ cup diced zucchini and 2 cups spinach for extra veggies during the last step when you add in the beans and pasta
Keywords: vegetarian soup, vegan minestrone, meatless, gluten free soup, slow cooker, crock pot soup
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