If Instastrone isn’t a real word, it will be after you try this amazing dish! Minestrone is a wonderful Italian vegetable soup, thick and hearty. In restaurants it’s often served with pasta, but it’s not a necessity. We prefer ours with only yummy veggies!
This recipe requires a bit of chopping, but then you just throw the ingredients in and wait for some delicious soup! But you’ll only have to wait for 4 minutes of cook time! That’s why it’s Instastrone!
And it really is very delicious!
- 1 large onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 2-3 carrots, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 2-3 stalks celery, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 bell pepper, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 8 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon dried basil
- 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seed, optional (Use it if you have it, but it can be hard to find. Don’t let that keep you from making this.)
All the rest
- 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 to 1/2 head green cabbage, shredded (about 3-4 cups)
- 6 cups cooked red kidney beans or white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (4 cans)
- 1 can (14-15 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes
- 2 cups water or low-sodium broth (vegetable, chicken, or beef would be great)
Let’s talk BEANS: The whole cooking dried beans thing can seem like a worthless hassle when you could just open a couple of cans and dump them in, but I’m telling you…It’s worth it!
Cooking your own beans can taste so much better, and you have control over everything that’s in them! Not to mention they are substantially cheaper than buying canned beans. And the Instant Pot is fabulous for cooking dried beans.
For this recipe, I put on the pot of beans at 4:00 and they were ready to go into our soup at 5:00, with very little effort on my part. If you teach your 14 year old to do it, it’s even less effort!
If using dried kidney beans, pre-cook in Instant Pot:
- Sort and rinse 1 pound of dried beans.
- Cover well by at least one inch of water.
- Add 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil, and 2 bay leaves.
- Pressure cook on <High> Pressure for 35 minutes and Natural Release.
*Bonus Tip: You could also do 2 pounds in a 6 Quart Instant Pot and freeze the extras for next time!
- Turn Instant Pot On to <Sauté>. When it is hot, add 2 to 3 Tablespoons of olive oil. When oil begins to shimmer, add aromatic vegetables: onion, carrots, celery, bell pepper. Add salt, and sauté until veggies begin to sweat.
- Add garlic, basil, oregano, and optional fennel seed. Sauté for 1 minute.
- Carefully stir in remaining ingredients: cabbage, beans, tomatoes, and water or broth.
- Place lid on Instant Pot. Set valve to <Sealing>. Select <Bean/Chili> program. Set pressure cooking time to <4 Minutes> on <High> Pressure. Press <Start> or wait for your machine to beep and start cooking. (Depending on which model Instant Pot you use.)
- When pressure cooking program is finished, allow to Natural Release for 5 to 10 minutes before releasing remaining pressure.
- Salt, pepper, and hot sauce are delicious additions at the table!
- Enjoy with your family!
How to get your Cooking Kids involved:
Little ones (2-6):
- Help sort and rinse beans
- Help carry cans and other ingredients like spices from the pantry
Medium kiddos (ages 6-10):
- Pour in ingredients
- Stir the pot
- Help measure spices into pot
- Chop garlic in a chopper
- Open cans with a can opener
Older children (ages 10 and up)
- Dice onions and bell peppers
- Sauté vegetables
- Measure spices independently
- Follow recipe from start to finish
- Plan meal, add needed items to a grocery list
*Remember, always supervise children in the kitchen. Even the smartest and most capable ones need reminders on kitchen safety!
- Large 18 x 14 Bamboo Cutting Board
- OXO Large Chopper
- Instant Pot DUO 6 Qt
- Wüsthof 7” Santoku Knife
- Kuhn 5” Santoku Knife
- Adult Cut Glove
Try out this delicious italian soup, and let us know in the comments how it turns out!