Hearty and oh-so comforting, this chicken minestrone soup is the perfect one-pot meal to cozy up with. It’s made with a handful of simple, yet flavorful ingredients like vegetables, hearty beans, protein-packed chicken, and pasta; and can be cooked on the stovetop or in the crockpot. And with only 10-minutes of prep, you can enjoy this satisfying meal with very little effort.

Overhead image of a white bowl with a rad based soup with a spoon in it.

5 star review

“This was so good. My husband said he likes minestrone but wished it had meat. And now it does!! I had chicken thighs. Worked well. Thank you ☺️ ”

– Laura

Visual Guide: How to Make Chicken Minestrone Soup

Jump to Recipe Instructions

Testing Notes from Robyn

Hearty soups with minimal ingredients are one of my specialities, and this chicken minestrone is one of my new favorites. Packed with vegetables, beans, pasta, and chicken and simmered in a tomato broth, this is one of those hearty one-pot, high protein meals that I find myself making again and again.

Plus, it’s ready in less than 45 minutes if your cooking it on the stovetop, meaning it’s a perfect last-minute dinner for any night of the week. As always, I focused on keeping the ingredient list as streamlined as possible so you don’t have to buy a ton of ingredients or do a lot of chopping. 

But, even with simple ingredients, this chicken minestrone is bursting with flavor from savory garlic and onion, and a touch of balsamic vinegar at the end which brightens the whole dish.

It’s delicious year-round but especially good when the temperatures drop (just IMAGINE cozying up to a warm, nourishing bowl after a long day).

And, if you’re looking for a lighter soup without beans or pasta, check out this very similar chicken vegetable soup.

Origins of Minestrone Soup

Traditional minestrone soup is a rustic vegetable soup of Italian origin. It’s commonly made with beans, onions, celery, carrots, leaf vegetables, stock, parmesan cheese, tomatoes, and pasta. However, there is no set recipe for minestrone soup, and it can be made with or without meat and with whatever vegetables and beans you have on hand, as in this variation.

Closeup shot of a wooden spoon scooping beans, elbow pasta, shredded chicken, and vegetables out of a pot of soup.

Ingredient Notes & Substitutions

Beans: I call for both kidney beans and white beans, but you can use one or the other or another bean altogether.

Crushed tomatoes: My family isn’t a fan of chunks of tomato, so I used crushed tomatoes in this recipe. But if you like chunks of tomato, substitute crushed tomatoes with a can of diced tomatoes and its juices.

Chicken: The chicken breasts cook right in the broth, which gives the soup added flavor. Feel free to use diced rotisserie chicken instead and just skip step 5.

Pasta: Macaroni is a classic pasta for minestrone, but you can use any small pasta you like, though you may need to adjust the cooking time. For a gluten-free version of this soup, make sure to use gluten-free pasta.

To keep this a one-pot meal, I added the pasta at the end, however you can always cook the pasta separately and add to the soup at the end. If you’re using the crock pot cooking method, make sure to cook the pasta separately.

Balsamic vinegar: Added at the end, balsamic vinegar does not make the soup taste vinegary. Instead it adds brightness to a soup. I highly recommend not skipping this!

Make this Vegetarian

To make this a vegetarian minestrone, skip the chicken, add one more can of beans, and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. Or you can try this hearty winter minestrone soup recipe.

Overhead image of a white bowl with a rad based soup with a spoon in it.

What to Serve with Minestrone

While excellent on its own, the optional toppings take this chicken soup to the next level!

A glug of extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle of chili flakes, fresh chopped herbs (parsley or basil are great), and freshly grated parmesan cheese (use dairy-free for dairy-free version) add depth and a dose of freshness, especially for leftovers.

I especially love serving this soup with my easy time-saving garlic bread. Yum!

Speaking of leftovers, this soup freezes well stored in a sealed freezer friendly container for up to 2-3 months. I especially love to refrigerate or freeze leftovers in mason jars for easy lunches on the go.

Serve this beautiful soup with a green salad with balsamic vinaigrette on the side and some crusty bread and you’re good to go.

Overhead shot of a pot with a red based soup topped with basil leaves.

This Recipe Is…

Overhead image of a white bowl with a rad based soup with a spoon in it.
5 stars (2 ratings)

Easy Chicken Minestrone Soup (Slow Cooker & Stovetop!)

Hearty and oh-so comforting, this chicken minestrone soup is the perfect one-pot meal for any time of year. It’s made with a handful of simple, yet flavorful ingredients like nourishing vegetables, hearty beans, tender chicken, and a la dente pasta, and can be cooked on the stove or in the crockpot.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, small diced
  • 1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 cup carrots, medium diced
  • 1 cup celery, medium diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, or 2 cups rotisserie chicken

To Add at the End

  • ½ cup elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

Optional Serving Suggestions

  • Freshly grated parmesan cheese, fresh basil leaves, extra virgin olive oil, red pepper flakes

Instructions 

Stovetop Instructions

  • In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook until just softened, about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the carrots, celery, garlic, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook until the vegetables start to soften, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the broth, beans, tomatoes, chicken, and 1 teaspoon salt, stirring to combine. Bring to a rapid boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer, covered, for 25-30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
  • Carefully remove the chicken (if not using rotisserie chicken) to a cutting board. Dice into 1-inch pieces, then add back to the soup along with the macaroni, stirring so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • Bring the soup back to a boil, then reduce to a strong simmer and cook until the macaroni is cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  • Ladle into bowls, and then top with parmesan cheese, bail, extra virgin olive oil, and red pepper flakes, if desired.

Slow Cooker Instructions

  • In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook until just softened, about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the carrots, celery, garlic, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook until the vegetables start to soften, about 3 minutes.
  • In a 6-quart slow cooker, the broth, beans, tomatoes, chicken, and 1 teaspoon salt, stirring to combine. Cover and cook on high for 4-6 hours, or low for 6-8, or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
  • While the soup cooks, cook ½ cup macaroni until just tender. Set aside
  • When the soup is ready, carefully remove the chicken (if not using rotisserie chicken) to a cutting board. Dice into 1-inch pieces, then add back to the soup along with the cooked macaroni, stirring to combine.
  • Ladle into bowls, and then top with parmesan cheese, basil, extra virgin olive oil, and red pepper flakes, if desired.

Notes

See blog post, above, for substitution suggestions, vegetarian version, storage, and more. 

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1 (of 6), Calories: 217kcal, Carbohydrates: 15g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 48mg, Sodium: 748mg, Potassium: 587mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 3663IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 33mg, Iron: 1mg
Nutrition disclaimer
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