Minestrone with Mini Meatballs

This hearty soup is so delicious and flavorful! The mini meatballs are a fantastic addition to a very comforting bowl of the best vegetable soup I can image. You will reach for seconds or even thirds!

A couple of days ago, it started snowing for the first time this season. Boy, the excitement in our house! I gotta admit, it is a very special time of the year. There is something magical about snowflakes falling down from the sky! On some days, you kind of feel like your sitting in a snow globe looking outside into the world. And seeing it through children’s eyes makes it extra magical!

Now of course snow means cold weather. And in cold weather, what’s better than a hot flavorful soup? Maybe topped with a mountain of parmesan cheese? Freshly grated of course – if you have. I cannot think of anything more comforting except maybe curling up on the couch with a blanket and a good book. Any good book you’ve been reading lately?

Minestrone is a very classic Italian vegetable soup. I have seen different variations of it over the years, sometimes it has small noodles (star-shaped for example) in it as well. Or white beans. I prefer it without both of these ingredients. You can theoretically also omit the potatoes if you want to avoid carbs but it will not be as nice. I tried it before and it just lacks something.

I have such wonderful childhood memories about minestrone. It was this soup that my mum always made on vacation in Italy. I remember her – and later me – sitting on the terrace of our bungalow cleaning and cutting vegetables. Potatoes, carrots, peppers, zucchini, onions … and somehow I specifically remember fresh green beans. Maybe because I hardly ever see them fresh here in the shops and connect them with Italy and vacation time.

Even though it was summer, we still LOVED this soup. Cooked on the gas stove for a long time, it was just perfect. I was trying to recreate these childhood flavors with my version of Minestrone. It has to cook a long time (2.5 hours to be exact) to develop all those deep flavors that you want in a bowl of soup. But after cutting all the vegetables, frying them for a few minutes and adding the broth, there is really not much left to do. You can go write a letter so long. Or read a book. And then enjoy this delicious soup later! Topped with a MOUNTAIN of parmesan cheese. Ok? Ok.

Will you make this yummy soup soon? Or how about my Roasted Pepper, Tomato & Garlic Soup?

Minestrone with Mini Meatballs

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 20 mins Cook Time 160 mins Total Time 3 hrs
Servings: 5


This hearty soup is so delicious and flavorful! The mini meatballs are a fantastic addition to a very comforting bowl of the best vegetable soup I can image. You will reach for seconds or even thirds!



  1. Peel carots and chop them. Seed the bell pepper and chop it. Also chop the zucchini. Peel and chop the potatoes. 

  2. In a large pot, heat up the olive oil. Once hot, add the chili flakes and chopped garlic cloves and fry for 1 minute. Then add the rosemary and thyme and fry for another 30 seconds.

  3. Add carrots, potatoes, bell pepper, zucchini and green beans and fry for 5 minutes. Stir every now and then. 

  4. Add the chopped tomatoes and broth to the pot. Stir together and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 30 minutes. 

  5. In the meantime, shape the minced beef into mini meatballs. Add the soup after 30 minutes. Let simmer for another 2 hours (2.5 hours in total). 

  6. Ladle soup into bowls and top with a generous helping of freshly grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy!


Whole30 friendly - just omit the cheese and you're good to go!

Keywords: Minestrone, minestrone with meatballs, beef meatballs, mini meatballs, Italian soup, vegetable soup, dinner soup,

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Andrea Epstein in her kitchen

Andrea Epstein

Hi, I'm Andrea, a full-time food blogger, mother of 1 wonderful son, 2 equally wonderful stepsons and wife to a darling husband. I live in Munich, Germany with my family. I loves traveling, sharing new recipes, and spending time with my family.

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