Growing up, one of the best “Comfort Food” dishes my mom made was a big batch of Minestrone Soup. It was meaty, salty, full of pasta and potatoes and there was no better way to serve it than smothered with a ton of Parmesan cheese.
These days I still love comfort food, but my palate has changed and my desire to stuff my face with my mom’s cheesy pasta soup has (on most days) been replaced with a desire to enjoy a nostalgic home-cooked meal while also stuffing my face with some vegetables. This soup is how I combine the two.
I should also note that I can’t actually make this soup without Garrett doing his Eric Ripert “Minestrone!” impersonation at least twice during the preparation. Despite the fact that this soup is very Italian, there was a Top Chef episode many moons ago where Ripert kept saying it OVER AND OVER in his very French accent and so now every time we eat it Garrett acts like he is about to launch into a performance of Les Poissoins. The second thing you should note is that on that same Top Chef episode I think the person who made the Minestrone was eliminated because her carrots were not all the same size. This really offended Tom Colicchio, so you know, KEEP THE CARROTS UNIFORM.
Um, or don’t. This is a rustic soup. That’s the best part, actually. It’s a chop, drop, season, stir and eat kind of soup. And the best part? It tastes EVEN BETTER a day or two after you make it. So make up some on the weekend and eat it for lunch all week. Bonus? It’s Whole 30 compliant! So what are you waiting for?
- 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
- 1 Large Yellow Onion, medium dice
- 6 Small Stalks Celery (preferably from the heart, leaves attached), sliced
- 4 Large Carrots, peeled and diced (try to keep them about the same size)
- 2 Medium Zucchini, medium dice
- 1.5 lbs Ground Beef
- 2 teaspoons Salt
- 1 teaspoons Pepper
- 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 3 Garlic Cloves, finely minced
- 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
- 2 (14.5 oz) Cans Diced Italian Tomatoes
- 8 Cups Beef Broth
- 4 Cups Red Cabbage (about half a large head) diced bite sized
- 1 Bunch of Kale, stems removed, chopped up
- Heat 2 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil in a large heavy bottomed pot (I used a 7.5 Qt Dutch Oven) over medium heat
- Add onions, celery, carrots and saute until translucent and vegetables start to soften (about 10 minutes)
- Add zucchini and saute for 3-5 more minutes and then push veggies to one side of your pot
- Turn heat up to medium high and ground beef in and proceed to crumble and brown
- As beef begins to brown, stir in with all the vegetables
- Add salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and minced garlic and saute for 2 minutes
- Stir in tomato paste and let it melt into other ingredients
- Add diced Italian Tomatoes and beef broth and bring to a boil
- Once boiling, lower heat to medium low and simmer for 30 minutes uncovered
- Add cabbage and kale and simmer for 10 minutes, covered
- Serve and Enjoy!