Summer Minestrone Soup with Basil Pistou

A light, vibrant soup that calls in all the flavors of summer!

What is in summer minestrone soup?

I put “summer” in the title of this recipe because this recipe uses some pretty traditional summer vegetables like tomatoes, fresh corn, green beans and yellow squash! A winter minestrone might not have the fresh corn and yellow squash, and would use white beans.

What is pistou?

Not to be confused with pesto, pistou is similar, but doesn’t have any pine nuts as traditional pesto. Pistou uses basil, olive oil, salt and garlic. It is blitzed together in a food processor, or mashed together using a mortar and pestle! It is a wonderful topping for this minestrone soup, drizzled on the top for a pop of fresh flavor and color!

For the meatballs

To balance out this soup to make it a complete meal, mini turkey meatballs are dropped into the soup in the final step. These little meatballs are a delight, and add the protein you need to feel full and satisfied.

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 25 min Cook Time 45 min Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Servings: 4
Best Season: Suitable throughout the year


A beautiful collection of summery vegetables come together with vegetable broth, to make a hearty, yet light and soothing soup. Topped with basil pistou, this soup is simple yet sophisticated!

You Need

For the Pistou

For the Mini Meatballs


Make the pistou

    • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender.
    • Blitz until combined. 
    • Set aside to drizzle on the finished soup. 

Form the meatballs

    • Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix just until combined. Do not over mix or your meatballs will be tough.
    • Scoop into small balls, place on greased, or parchment lined cookie sheet.
    • Let sit in the refrigerator until ready to drop into soup later.
    If you have a small cookie scoop to form the turkey meatballs that makes things so easy! If not, you can just estimate. I made these about the size of grapes.

For the soup

    • Start by meting the fat in a large pot, I am using a large dutch oven.
    • Add the onion, garlic, leeks, salt. Cook over medium low heat until soft, about 10 minutes.
    • Add tomatoes, cook 5 minutes.
    • Add potatoes & carrots.
    • Add broth & simmer for 5 minutes, uncovered.
    • Add green beans and corn. 
    • Bring back to a strong simmer, and slowly add the turkey meatballs.
    • Add the kale.
    • Cover, and cook at a gentle simmer, 5 minutes more.
    • Serve with a few dollops of the basil pistou!
Keywords: summer soup, minestrone, pistou, basil, olive oil, garlic, yellow squash, meatballs, turkey, meatball soup, healthy dinner, light dinner, pesto
Creamy Leek Potato Salad


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