Minestrone Soup with Quinoa

Hearty, healthy, and delicious minestrone soup with quinoa – an easy-to-prepare vegetarian and gluten-free soup recipe.

Minestrone Soup with Quinoa | TheRoastedRoot.net #healthy #vegetarian #vegan #glutenfree

One thing I don’t talk about on here very much is where I’m from. If you’ve been lurking around my site for quite some time, you know that I grew up in Lake Tahoe, where cutting out of school early to go skiing is not only acceptable, but it is encouraged. And you can get P.E. credit for it. In the small, almost too cozy town I grew up in, seeing my teachers and coaches on the chairlift or mountain biking trails is commonplace, and secrets are simply a luxury you just do not have. Tahoe residents have long-standing “you know you’re from Tahoe when. . .” jokes.  For instance, you know you’re from Tahoe when…

  • Your idea of a traffic jam is three cars lined up behind a snow plough
  • “Hucking the palisades” is a real life phrase. And you use it. Regularly.Similarly, “shredding the gnar” is also a real life phrase. You do this regularly.
  • You can’t make it out of the grocery store in less than 1 hour because you’re bound to run into at least 10 people you know.
  • You’ve dated at least one pro skier or mountain biker. Or you are a pro skier or mountain biker.
  • You and all of your friends make each other beanies for Christmas. Because you’re broke. And your head is cold.
  • You’ve biked Big Blue.
  • You are the proud 3rd owner of a 1998 Subaru Outback.
  • The population of the town you live in is lower than the elevation.
  • You’ve zip-lined across more lakes than most people have been to.
  • Your level of awesomeness is commensurate with the height of the cliffs you’ve jumped.
  • You can guess which of your friends caused the power outage by crashing into the pole with their bald-tired 1998 Subaru Outback.

Which brings me to my next point: power outages during huge snow storms are a frequent occurrence. Being stuck at home because someone ram-rodded the power lines, and you can’t trudge through the 4 feet of snow to your car, much less un-bury your car, much less drive your car, much less park your car, in order to get from point A to point B, is to be expected multiple times per winter.

During these times, it is important to have a stash of candles and non-perishable food. Welcome to Tahoe Survival Guide 101. Growing up in a house with a well-prepared mountain dad meant we always, always had enough food in the pantry for our family to survive a nuclear holocaust….or an extremely large snow storm or power outage. During these days of inclement weather when it wasn’t safe to leave the house, we’d break out the canned veggies and make a big pot of soup or stew.

Canned vegetables and soup fixings not only got us by the cooped up days, but they welcomed us and warmed our bellies after a long day on the mountain. Aside from being immobile during certain times of the winter, it can be also be difficult to find good fresh produce at the store. If you stock your cupboards with your favorite canned tomatoes and veggies so that you can not only eat when you’re hauled up in your cabin, but eat well, you’re one step ahead of your neighbor, who is, no doubt, eating saltines covered with grape jam.

Minestrone Soup with Quinoa | TheRoastedRoot.net #healthy #vegetarian #vegan #glutenfree

Because I’m huge on soup, especially during the snowy winter months, I love having a stock of canned food to facilitate my feeding process. Girl gets hungry after shoveling snow for half the day. I use diced tomatoes in my soup and chili recipes as opposed to fresh tomatoes because they save time, and I like the texture and flavor they bring to soups. Finding fresh green beans at my grocery store can be hit or miss, so I used canned to make this minestrone soup happen.

Traditional minestrone soup includes pasta noodles, but I replaced the noodles with quinoa in order to keep the soup gluten-free. You can easily re-tradition this recipe by adding noodles and skipping the quinoa.

And that’s it, folks! Enjoy your cozy, healthy winter soup!

Tools I Used to Prepare This Recipe:

Minestrone Soup with Quinoa | TheRoastedRoot.net #healthy #vegetarian #vegan #glutenfree

Minestrone Soup with Quinoa

Author: Julia


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 2 carrots peeled and chopped
  • 3 stalks celery chopped
  • 2 red potatoes chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon ground sage
  • 2 ounce cans Diced Tomatoes 14.5-
  • 6 cups low sodium vegetable or chicken broth*
  • ½ cup dry quinoa
  • 1 rind parmesan cheese optional
  • 1 ounce can kidney beans drained and rinsed, 14-
  • 1 ounce can cannellini beans drained and rinsed, 14-
  • 1 ounce can Cut Green Beans drained, 14.5-
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste


  1. In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, add oil and heat to medium. Add the chopped onion and sauté until fragrant and softened, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the carrots, celery, and red potatoes. Continue sautéing, stirring frequently, until vegetables have softened, but are still al dente, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and spices and sauté another 1 minutes.
  4. Add the diced tomatoes, chicken broth, quinoa, and parmesan cheese rind. Bring the soup to a full boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 30 minutes or until vegetables are cooked through and quinoa is cooked.
  5. Add the 3 types of beans and cook an additional 8 minutes.
  6. Remove the parmesan rind (or leave it in and eat it).
  7. Test the soup for flavor and add desired amount of salt.
  8. Serve with crusty bread and shredded parmesan cheese

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  1. Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

    I always have canned tomatoes; diced, whole, and crushed on hand! I also keep plenty of black olives and artichoke hearts in my pantry just in case I get a salty craving. I am loving how you replaced the noodles with quinoa. I have to try this. Minestrone is my fave soup!

  2. Julie

    I keep the petite diced tomatoes on hand, because I’m ok with tomatoes, but don’t want a large bite of them. I like the quinoa addition!

  3. Natalie

    I also appreciate the convenience and taste of canned diced tomatoes in my soups– so those, and canned pineapple. Ya never know when you might want to throw them into a dish to give a nice sweet flare!

  4. Kelly H.

    I like to have canned tomatoes, tomato sauce and paste, kidney beans, black beans, garbanzo beans, green beans, low sodium chicken stock, pears, apple sauce, fruit cocktail, pineapple and cans of premade soup and chili if I don’t feel like making any of my own. 🙂 There’s so much you can do with all of the above!

  5. Denise Fedor

    I ALWAYS have DelMonte canned sliced peaches in lite syrup on hand. Also diced tomatoes. Canned peaches make a Great lunch when you are snowed in and have no food!

  6. Heather @ The Soulful Spoon

    Hi There! I’m a new subscriber here as of January 4th, and I just love your blog<3 Anyway! I My go-to MUST have pantry staples are fire roasted organic canned tomatoes ( no salt added). They turn just about any soup I make into this savory sweet heaven!:) I also like to stock canned pumpkin on hand year round. I'm actually weird and prefer it to fresh!:) Thanks for the giveaway!!

  7. Brekke

    Definitely canned peas to decorate any meal. Canned fruit (minus the added sugars/syrups!) for a quick, delicious dessert snack. Also, canned tomatoes for the days (like today; -50 degrees) when you are in desperate need of some chili!!

  8. Paula Gardner

    I always keep a varied assortment of fruits and veggies but what I always have is different flavors of tomatoes. I love adding them to salads, soups, and even sandwiches.

  9. Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health

    Man, I’d love to knit beanies and zipline over lakes! Sounds like heaven. Seriously though, Brandon and I dream of retiring in Tahoe. It’s one beautiful place.

    I always have diced tomatoes in my pantry. They’re so versatile!

    p.s. I love the idea of adding quinoa to minestrone. I will definitely be giving that a try!

  10. Cathy Truman

    I have corn, peas. green beans, lima, beans, kidney beans. baked beans, peaches, pineapple and mixed fruit in my kitchen cabinet.

  11. Malya Levin

    Ditto on the canned diced tomatoes! I use them for soups, shakshuka and spicy braised green beans. Eager to try this soup, too!

  12. Vicki andrew

    I always keep some cans of black beans on hand, along with fresh oranges and lemons for juice or zest to add

  13. Tieghan

    Haha! I love your ” you know you’re from Tahoe when…” It is pretty much the same thing here!!

    Love the soup. I wish I had a bowl right now. I am freezing and hungry!

  14. Liren

    Loved this post, Julia! My husband and I always play around with the idea of leaving the Bay Area and moving to Tahoe whenever we are up there to play. My daughter would have no problem playing hookie to ski, that’s for sure! Ah, maybe one day.

    This bowl of soup is perfect for a cold winter day. As for canned goods, I always have a bevy of canned tomatoes, beans, and olives in the pantry. Always works in a pinch!

  15. Joanne T Ferguson

    G’day! very healthy looking soup! Great photo, true!
    Love the idea of adding healthy superfood quinoa which have never cooked with to date, but your recipe inspires me to do!
    Cheers! Joanne

  16. Joanne

    We dont’ really have power outages like that in NYC, but that doesn’t stop me from keeping my pantry stocked with good quality ingredients like this! Especially if they’re what I need to make this soup. YUM.

  17. Tamar

    I stock everything in my pantry: cranberries, beans of all types/sizes, green beans, corn, pineapples, potatoes, etc etc etc. I am a cannery!

  18. Anastasia

    I LOVE tomatoes 🙂 From fat, juicy tomatoes off the vine to cherry tomatoes! They’re all so good 🙂 Lately, I’ve also started developing a thing for cucumbers. I don’t know why, but suddenly I am finding them super delicious 🙂

  19. Natalie @ Tastes Lovely

    I always keeps plenty of cans of tomatoes on hand. Whole, diced, crushed, you name it!

    And oh my goodness, I’m from the East Bay Area and I go to Tahoe at least twice a month! In fact, we’re driving up this weekend. We stay in S. Lake Tahoe, and the Mont Bleu Casino usually. It’s like my second home : )

  20. Annelise

    Canned corn is easy to use when on hand! Also, this may be weird but canned artichokes …when used properly can be very good.

  21. Cindy Merrill

    For a quick addition to any tomato based soup, I really like to have either canned turnip greens or kale stocked in my pantry. Right now, prices on these items are reasonable.

  22. amy pugmire

    We love everything! we have tomatoes, green beans, peas, corn and black beans, we also love peaches and applesauce.

  23. Susan Ladd

    I keep peas, corn and peaches.
    I tweeted with #SweepstakesEntry”.
    I want to thank you for this awesome sweep 🙂

  24. Paul

    I will make it, and eat it, and eat it, and when I am almost done, i will eat it again. That’s three times eaten. Yum.

  25. Francesca

    My parents live in Virginia, so we’ve got some similar ‘you know you’re from here when…’ jokes, with some more redneck undertones to them 🙂

    The power always go out at their house, especially with any kind of POLAR VORTEX! They always always have canned tomatoes and beans.

    This looks totally delicious!

  26. sara haaf

    I always have a fully stocked pantry, tons of different kind of beans are what is most often used though, very versatile and healthy.

  27. Allison Downes

    This looks great! I haven’t had a hot bowl of minestrone in so long. I love stocking up on green beans, tomatoes, and corn. Thank you for the nice giveaway!


  28. margaret

    This may sound crazy, but I must always have canned mandarin oranges. When I get sick with the flu, my appetite goes right out the door and the ONLY thing I am willing to eat is those tiny little orange segments. When I’m well, they’re great in cottage cheese for breakfast or a snack.

  29. Carolsue

    I keep stewed and diced tomatoes on hand because I use them so often in cooking.
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

  30. D Schmidt

    My favorite vegetables to stock in the pantry are sweetcorn, carrots, green beans and beans. I love to choose them all in a variety of recipes but I have to admit I am rather obsessed with green bean casserole at the moment!
    My favorite fruits to store are tangerines, pineapple and peaches! My children love to eat them straight from the cans and I like to use them in trifles.

  31. Margot C

    Green beans, corn, lots of types of tomatoes, fruit like peaches and pears – all yum amd good places to start when cooking.

  32. sharonjo

    I always keep canned tomato products on hand along with canned peaches and pineapple and mandarin oranges.

    I’ve never visited Tahoe but loved your “Your know you’re from…” list! Thanks.

  33. Kate

    A lot of those “You know you’re from Tahoe…” items could be labeled “You know you’re from Sun Valley”! Except…we don’t so much have snow this year. Sad. No “skiing the Burn” this year!

    1. Julia Post author

      This winter has blown my mind…I hear nothing is in the forecast and our economy is hurting pretty badly up here. I’m hoping mother nature gives us some snow lovin soon 😉

  34. Nancy

    I keep a well-stocked pantry of canned goods. Favorites: Cannellini beans; diced tomatoes; cut green beans; peaches; pineapple – chunk, slice and crushed; black beans; asparagus; mandarin oranges.
    I love Lake Tahoe. My husband and I were married there 31 years ago this May! Hope to visit it again.

  35. katy

    I love having corn, beans and tomatoes in my pantry. There are endless possibilities for recipes with those 3 stapes.

  36. Wild Orchid

    I love to stock up on canned green beans and pineapple chunks.

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

  37. clynsg

    I try to keep a pretty good supply of several fruits and vegetables on hand, but the mainstay is tomatoes, in various forms.

  38. Terri Moore

    I like to keep in stock canned corn, peas and tomatoes, mandarin oranges, pineapple chunks, pickles, olives and jars of artichoke hearts. Can always make something quick with those on hand.

  39. Betty C

    I use tomatoes so often I have to keep a big supply on hand. I also keep corn and green beans as well as kidney and pinto beans. For fruit I have to have peaches, pears and mandarin oranges if for no other reason than to add to my cottage cheese.

  40. Stephanie Larison

    Canned green beans are the fave here. We have them pretty often so we keep a bunch in the pantry. My daughter is crazy about peaches, so we always keep some on hand too.

  41. susan smoaks

    I love to have canned pears stocked in my pantry. I can never have enough of them. susansmoaks at gmail dot com

  42. Yasmin

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  43. Sandra

    This looks super good and especially since I love soup all year long! By the way, how big is a serving? 1 cup or more? I am having a hard time with portions and calorie control!

    1. Julia Post author

      So glad you like it! I’d say 2 cups would be a portion. Not gonna lie, I typically eat myself silly when it comes to soup cause I feel like it’s pretty guilt-free. Hope you enjoy!

  44. Lollypaul

    Made this minestrone tonight. Good, but even with the Parmesan rind, needs more umps. Maybe up the spices, particularly the garlic. Thanks for the healthy recipe!


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