Minestrone Soup for the Soul

Posted by Brittany Reese on February 23, 2018

Flu season is in full swing. It seems like you can’t go anywhere without hearing about someone who has the flu or at least someone sniffling or coughing. Other than standard precautions of hand hygiene and getting the flu vaccine what can you do to keep yourself from getting sick? Food of course!

I’m sure the first thing that came to mind when I said food and flu was Vitamin C. According to Mayo Clinic, Vitamin C can be useful before the onset of cold symptoms and may shorten the duration, but it cannot cure the flu or cold.1 So, should you just forget about Vitamin C? Of course not, but there is no need to buy every Vitamin C supplement you can get your hands on.

Instead of filling up on supplements, use the food that you already eat to help up your intake of Vitamin C AND warm yourself during the last stretch of winter. Other foods that are high in Vitamin C other than oranges are: bell peppers, kale, kiwis, berries, broccoli and other citrus fruits such as grapefruit, lemons, and clementine.2

Here is a yummy soup recipe from the Food Network to help fill your belly with wonderful nutrients and comfort.

Minestrone Soup

Total: 45 min

Prep: 15 min

Cook: 30 min

Yield: 6 servings

Level: Easy

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 1/3 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes
  • 1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 15-ounce can low-sodium kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup elbow pasta
  • 1/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add the celery and carrot and cook until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the green beans, dried oregano and basil, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste; cook 3 more minutes.

Add the diced and crushed tomatoes and the chicken broth to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in the kidney beans and pasta and cook until the pasta and vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Season with salt. Ladle into bowls and top with the parmesan and chopped basil.

Recipe courtesy Ellie Krieger for Food Network Magazine


  1. Cold remedies: What works, what doesn’t, what can’t hurt. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/common-cold/in-depth/cold-remedies/art-20046403?pg=2. Published January 24th, 2017. Accessed February 18th, 2018.
  2. Food Sources of Vitamin C. Dietitians of Canada. https://www.dietitians.ca/Your-Health/Nutrition-A-Z/Vitamins/Food-Sources-of-Vitamin-C.aspx. Published March 7th, 2017. Accessed February 18th, 2018.
  3. Ellie Krieger. Minestrone Soup. Food Network. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ellie-krieger/minestrone-soup-recipe-1973378. 2018. Accessed February 18th, 2018

Brittany Reese is a registered dietitian, personal trainer, group exercise instructor and food lover. Do you have questions or comments? Fill out the form below and we’ll get back to you very soon.

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