This butternut squash minestrone soup is the perfect winter meal. It’s packed full of hearty vegetables and ham and ready in just about an hour!
I remember the day I made this soup. It was the first real cold day of winter (which now is laughable because currently it’s so cold the wind freaking hurts my face) and I was craving soup. I wanted something hearty and stick to my ribs but I didn’t want it to take all day to make. While I love a good slow cooker soup I hate that it takes all day long to cook. Then I’m forced to sit around smelling all that deliciousness knowing I can’t eat it until hours later.
So I came up with this soup. It’s full of my favorites things and then topped with a little store bought pesto because I’m a huge fan of flavor. If you have some homemade pesto laying around feel free to use that instead. I personally think my garlic scape pesto would be awesome in this soup!
This takes just a little over an hour to make and will make your whole house smell like heaven. The great thing about this soup is that it’s pretty flexible too. You can keep it vegetarian by using vegetable stock and no ham, if you like acorn squash us that and if you love spinach more that escarole you guessed it – use it! You really can’t go wrong with this soup.
Oh and when serving I like to keep my pasta out of the soup. I feel like it soaks up all the broth and then the pasta gets all weird. I simply scoop the pasta in my soup bowl and pour the hot soup overtop.
Butternut Squash Minestrone Soup
This butternut squash minestrone soup is the perfect winter meal. It's packed full of hearty vegetables and ham and ready in just about an hour!
Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cups diced ham steak, bite size pieces
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 (32 ounce) containers chicken stock
- 2 cups butternut squash, cut into bite size pieces
- 2 cups fresh green beans, cut in half
- 1 smoked ham hock
- 1 (15 ounce) can cannelloni beans
- 2 cups packed chopped escarole
- Kosher salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 pound small pasta, cooked
- Pesto, store bought
Adapted from BonAppetit
In a large soup pot add olive oil and set over medium heat.
Once the oil is hot add in ham, celery and onion. Cook for about 10 minutes over medium heat until the vegetables are soft but not browned. Add in garlic and saute just until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add in chicken stock, butternut squash, green beans and ham hock. Turn the heat up to high, bring it to a boil and then lower the heat back to medium and simmer until the vegetables are just tender. Stir in beans and escarole and stir to just warm the beans and wilt the escarole.
Remove ham hock, taste the soup and season with desired amount of kosher salt and pepper.
To serve: you can add the cooked pasta to the soup OR add pasta to a bowl and pour the hot soup over top. I like doing it the second way so the pasta doesn't soak up all the broth. Then I top with a spoonful of pesto.
Note: If while cooking the soup becomes too thick simply add in more stock until you have reached your desired soupiness. I like a thick soup without a lot of broth so I tend to make them with less broth.