Hello Everyone! Because today is the first day of October, and that fall weather is sneaking up on us, I decided to share a recipe I found for some hot Vegitable Minestrone! The easy part about making this soup is that anyone can just cook it in a crockpot. It is quick, easy, healthy, afforadable, and just PERFECT for the college students that do not have the time to put together a meal in between their busy schedule!

I made this vegetable minestrone this past Tuesday, and it last my three roomates and I a few meals. The ingredients were not expensive. We split the cost and amoung the group it took no longer than fifteen minutes to prepare before we just mixed it all in the crockpot.

This hearty recipe has a very complex flavor. One of the more surprising parts of the recipe is that pasta cooks right in the crockpot.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

Total Time: 8 hours, 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups vegetable broth or stock
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. dried basil leaves
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 2 (14 oz.) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked rotini pasta
  • Parmesan cheese

Preparation:

Mix all ingredients except pasta and cheese in a 4-5 quart crockpot. Cover crockpot and cook on LOW for 7 to 8 hours until vegetables are tender. Stir in pasta. Cover and cook on HIGH setting for 15-25 minutes until pasta is tender. Sprinkle each serving with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. 12 servings

 

This recipe comes from About.com, under the “Busy Cooks” section. It is absolutely ideal for a group of about 3 to 5 people because it allows for second servings and leftovers.

The responses I got from the recipe were great! All of the girls including myself enjoyed it. Our weather this week was cold and rainy, so it fit perfectly! There are many other soups that you can make in the crockpot, or in a short amount of time with very little preparation, if vegitable minestrone is not your style or will not please your audience.

Everyone who shared the meal said that the recipe was “hearty” and “very satisfying.” Sometimes vegetable soup can be light and not always give that full feeling one is looking for at dinner time. But this minestrone really does the trick. Especially with some bread on the side and a nice fresh side salad to go with it!

You can’t have soup without garlic bread! Right? Well check out the most delicious garlic bread recipe we found!

Things You’ll Need:

  • Bread. Any bread you have handy will work.
  • Oleo
  • Garlic powder
  • A flat pan such as a cookie sheet or pizza pan.
  • Parmesan – optional

Lay out your bread slices on the pan. They can touch but not overlap. A good rule to follow is two slices per person. Since you had forgotten about the garlic bread, you probably only have regular sliced sandwich loaf bread. That’s okay. Any bread works. Rye, white, wheat, sourdough, they all work. This is about getting some garlic bread on the table, not about looking fancy!

Slather each slice with oleo. Yes, slather. Be generous.

Season each slice generously with garlic powder. NOT SALT, powder.

Place your pan of bread under the broiler in your oven for about 3 minutes. Done!

Optional – If you have Parmesan cheese handy, sprinkle to taste onto the bread before you broil.

Another option is to line your pan with foil for easy cleanup!

I think the best part about this meal was that there was not much cleanup, and not much time went into the actual making of the minestrone or garlic bread. We were able to leave the soup cooking while we went to class and ran errands and periodically check on its progress. The main thing to remember is not to leave the minestrone in the crockpot for 8 hours without checking on it.

Try many other crockpot recipes that might be a perfect fit for your friends and family.

Goodluck as always! And let me know how your minestrone turns out and just what your guests say about it! Thanks again and check next week for our next fall recipe!

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