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Mar 20, 2021

Minestrone Napoletana

This minestrone Napoletana is loaded with lots of spring and summer vegetables. Plus, it's so delicious and it makes it easy to get a day's worth of veggies in one bowl. You will feel so virtuous! 

Minestrone Napoletana

Minestrone includes fresh vegetables, along with some legumes and either pasta, rice, or both. Plus, there is usually some pancetta, olive oil, or lardons. 

I already have a delicious and light minestrone soup recipe on this site, so I decided to explore the regional minestrones from Italy. Almost every Italian region has its own recipe, and, in case you didn't know, Italians are pretty protective of their regional foods. Hopefully, the Italian soup police will forgive me if I got this wrong. 

This minestrone is from Napoli, or Naples, the capital of the Campania region is southwest Italy. It's inspired by the book, The Silver Spoon: Traditional Italian Home Cooking Recipes. The book is currently out of print, but it's an amazing encyclopedia of Italian cooking. There are over 2,000 recipes in the book. 

I was lucky to stumble across a copy of the book in a tiny bookstore in Cambria, California, while on vacation. It was sitting on a shelf on the sidewalk outside the store. I knew I "needed" it when I saw it, and it was worth lugging all seven pounds of this book back to our rental house and all of the way home. 

Minestrone Napoletana with crusty bread

The original recipe calls for a couple of ingredients that I couldn't easily find, including fava beans and cannolicchi pasta. For the fava beans, I substituted frozen lime beans, and for the pasta, I used fusilli. Dear Italian food police: Please forgive me! 

I also used some chicken broth, which is not called for in the original. The original recipe calls for just water and a much longer cooking time. 

This soup, topped with some fresh basil and freshly grated provolone cheese is so amazingly delicious. 

Plus, it's so nutritious. The veggies include roasted yellow bell pepper, onion, carrot, garlic, tomatoes, potatoes, lima beans, zucchini, peas, cabbage, endive, and eggplant. There's also pancetta and pasta! So good. 

Minestrone Napoletana with provolone

Serve this minestrone Napoletana with crusty bread and a salad and you will have a delicious and nutritious meal. You can also serve it as a first course instead of a salad on a cold day. 

This month's Soup Saturday Swappers theme is minestrone. Be sure to check out everyone's recipes:

Minetrone Napoletana topped with cheese and basil

Minestrone Napoletana

Minestrone Napoletana
Yield: 8 servings
Author: Karen's Kitchen Stories
This minestrone Napoletana is loaded with lots of spring and summer vegetables. Plus, it's so delicious that it makes it easy to get a day's worth of veggies in one bowl. You will feel so virtuous!


  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 ounces diced pancetta
  • 1/2 brown onion, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 6 small tomatoes, chopped
  • 5 cups water
  • 4  cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 sprig flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 potatoes, diced
  • 3/4 cup frozen lima beans
  • 1 zucchini, sliced about 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/4 white cabbage, shredded
  • 1 head Belgian endive, cut into strips
  • 2 small eggplants, diced
  • 3 1/2 ounces dried fusilli pasta
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • Freshly grated provolone cheese


  1. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray it with spray oil. Cut a yellow bell pepper in half, remove the seeds and stem, and splay the bell pepper skin side up on the sheet pan. 
  2. Broil the bell pepper until the skin blackens and blisters. Place the bell pepper in a plastic bag, tie the tip, and let steam until cool enough to handle. Remove the skin. Dice the pepper. 
  3. Heat the oil over low heat and add the pancetta, onion, carrot, and garlic. Cook until lightly browned. 
  4. Add the tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes. 
  5. Add the water, broth, and pepper. Bring to a boil and add the potatoes and beans and simmer for 45 minutes. 
  6. Add the zucchini, peas, cabbage, endive, eggplant, and yellow bell pepper and simmer for an additions 20 minutes. Add the pasta and simmer until al dente, about 9 to 11 minutes. 
  7. Taste and season with a little salt if necessary. 
  8. Sprinkle with the basil and serve with the provolone. 



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soup, minestrone
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Would you like to comment?

  1. I could use a bowl of that this morning. Your soup looks so tasty and healthy, Karen. Thanks for joining me this month.

  2. Ohhhh everything about this bowl of comfort is calling to me... you've got all the bases covered. And that crusty bread to sop up the broth? Yummmmmm!

  3. What a comforting bowl of soup this is Karen!

  4. This is so comforting and delicious! I love your soup and it is perfectly balanced in flavors.


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