Day 253: Italian Wedding Soup

Poco Cocoa's Italian Wedding Soup post grabbed my attention last week. All those vegetables AND a way to use up leftover pesto!

It was filling and satisfying -- a sweet spot! -- on a cold, wintry day. Don't skip the pesto, it adds a needed flavor burst.

TIP: Substitute chayote (there's a picture here) for its summer-squash cousi
n zucchini whenever the cooking time is longer than a few minutes. Chayote holds its shape, color and flavor without the mush factor of zucchini.

For other soups made with piles of vegetables, see here in the Recipe Box.

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Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Time to table: 50 minutes (less if ingredients aren't frozen)
Makes 11 cups

6 cups broth (today, turkey broth leftover from Thanksgiving)

1 tablespoon olive oil (Poco Cocoa uses 2 tablespoons)
2 large carrots, diced
1 large onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced

8 ounces frozen green beans
3 cups slow-roasted tomatoes, this is the Eat Local angle (or a 15-ounce can of diced tomatoes)
2 chayote squash, diced (or zucchini)
Parmesan rind (my addition)
15-ounce can navy beans, rinsed and drained
Salt and pepper to taste

Pesto for garnish

Bring the broth to a boil in the microwave. (This is a time-saving trick that can be skipped if you're in no rush.)

In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil til shimmery on MEDIUM HIGH, then add the carrots, onion and celery as they're prepped. (I add the carrot first because it takes the longest to cook.) Saute til soft and the onions are golden.

Add the hot broth and the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to MEDIUM, cover and let simmer for about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. (This needed a lot of salt!)

Fill bowls and top with a spoonful of pesto. Serve and enjoy!

Without the pesto which varies widely in calories, Per Cup: 105 Cal (13% from Fat, 22% from Protein, 65% from Carb); 6 g Protein; 2 g Tot Fat; 0 g Sat Fat; 18 g Carb; 5 g Fiber; NetCarb 13; 45 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 645 mg Sodium; 0 mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 1 point

With high-fat pesto, Per Cup of Soup and 1 Tablespoon Pesto: Per Serving: 181 Cal (41% from Fat, 18% from Protein, 41% from Carb); 9 g Protein; 9 g Tot Fat; 2 g Sat Fat; 19 g Carb; 5 g Fiber; NetCarb 14; 147 mg Calcium; 2 mg Iron; 748 mg Sodium; 4 mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 4 points

Poco Cocoa says the recipe originates with Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson

(c) Copyright 2005 Kitchen Parade
Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. You know, the original recipe said that the pesto was optional, but I think the pesto is what really makes the soup!

  2. This sounds delicious. I think I've found a new recipe to add to my collection. ;)

    And I have plenty of basil from my garden to make some yummy pesto. Perfect.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna