I have a few bones to pick with the universe.

Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone I howsweeteats.com

And by the universe, I mostly mean the weather. So totally cliche, right?

Wait. Oh wait. This is bad… I mean, really bad. That I’m talking about the weather again? I feel like a complete loser, but it might just be because the only real human interaction I’ve had over the last three days has been that weird middle-aged woman reading an audio book in multiple voices that are freaking me out and my mailman who was forced to bang on my door for like 14 straight minutes because I was blasting Paula Abdul’s Rush, Rush so loudly that I couldn’t hear a thing and he obviously knew someone was home. We’ve since developed a relationship of sorts.

Can either of those be considered human interaction? Please say yes. In other words, I perfected a zillion (literally, obviously) batches of whole wheat cinnamon rolls. Which would be amazing except for the whole having to eat a zillion batches of cinnamon rolls thing.

I think I’ll sleep on the treadmill tonight.

Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone I howsweeteats.com

It’s just that right now it seems like we skipped right over Spring… went directly from winter to almost summer. Don’t get me wrong, I’d like to go lie outside and toast myself like a crouton… but I’m kind of only into that if there is water around. In other words, my perfect temperature is say, 63 degrees. Maybe even a little lower. Why did we have to skip that lovely temp? I dig all the seasons and appreciate them for the time when they should be here (for, like a few months), but can this crazy climate start taking it’s meds. Can’t we just be normal for a hot sec, where it’s not 21 degrees last week and 81 inside my house yesterday?

I’m also wondering why must I find a pretty, watercolor pillow I like online at Anthropologie that costs about $500. Right next to the lamp with ugly birds on it that is also ludicrously priced. I’m pretty sure I could paint something similar to both with my eyes closed, so yeah, I may work on that today.

And why must cheese have calories? The least the universe could do is make the good stuff (like fontina) magically have LESS calories without resembling the lovely texture of plastic.

Oh and the biggest thing I’m so annoyed with right now is that lots of cute crop top type things are apparently back in style, like Kelly Kapowski type crop tops and I am most definitely too old to wear that stuff. But when they WERE in style before, I was way too young. The real question is why does the universe hate me?

Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone I howsweeteats.com

To deal with the insanity that the clouds above are tossing our way, last week I made some soup that screamed springtime when it decided to snow after the first of April. Those are not my kind of April showers, but whatever. I had recently bought three bunches of super thin asparagus (my fave) and was going to shove spring inside anything I could get my hands on.

This soup is embarrassingly easy. Throw half the junk in the crockpot, set it, come back and throw the other half in before you eat. I make a humongous (props to you, spellcheck, for recognizing such a fab word) batch, freeze half (which I never do, so you know it’s good) and keep the other half on hand for lunches or dinners. Or until I forget about it and have to throw it out three weeks later. I even did this whole makeshift pot pie thing one day too.

This is making me feel better about all the cheese.

Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone I howsweeteats.com

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Springtime Crockpot Minestrone

Yield: serves about 6-8

Total Time: 6-8 hours

Ingredients:

1 sweet onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 (28 ounce) can of diced tomatoes
2 (15 ounce) cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
3 cups water
8 ounces of uncooked ditalini pasta
12 thin asparagus spears, stems removed and cut into thirds
1 cup of frozen sweet peas
1 (6 ounce) bag of fresh spinach
1/3 cup freshly grated romano cheese + more for topping
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Add diced onions, garlic, carrots, the whole can of diced tomatoes, cannellini beans, stock and water to your crockpot. Cook on low for 4-6 hours, stirring once or twice if you can.

About 10-15 minutes before serving, add in asparagus (I like mine with some crunch, add it earlier if you want it softer), spinach, peas and pasta. Cook on low for another 10-15 minutes then stir in grated cheese. Taste and season with salt and pepper as desired. I used about a 1/2 teaspoon of each, but it will depend on the sodium levels in your stock, tomatoes, etc. Serve immediately with additional cheese on top!

Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone I howsweeteats.com

…and the cinnamon rolls.

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92 Responses to “Easy Springtime Crockpot Minestrone.”

  1. #
    51
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — April 11, 2013 @ 9:21 am

    Looove how colourful this looks! Yum!!

    Reply

  2. #
    52
    Lacy — April 11, 2013 @ 9:29 am

    nice linens. definitely, not napkins.

    Reply

    • Jessica — April 11th, 2013 @ 9:41 am

      hahaha. definitely.

      Reply

  3. #
    53
    Gloria @ Simply Gloria — April 11, 2013 @ 10:53 am

    I love the colors in all the shots you took…especially the non food items! It goes with the pretty soup! I also love the name you put for this dish…Perfect!

    Reply

  4. #
    54
    Nutmeg Nanny — April 12, 2013 @ 12:52 pm

    Minestrone is one of my favorite soups :) this looks delicious!

    Reply

  5. #
    55
    Heather — April 12, 2013 @ 3:39 pm

    If you want to hear how an audio book should be done, look up Hank the Cowdog. I know, I know, technically it’s for the kids but he’s so good with the voices and the books are so funny I enjoy them, perhaps even a bit more than the kids do. The author himself reads them, his name is John R. Erickson, hands down the best.

    Reply

  6. #
    56
    angela @ another bite please — April 12, 2013 @ 3:41 pm

    u had me at spring!

    Reply

  7. #
    57
    Brittany — April 14, 2013 @ 7:11 pm

    This looks AMAZING! I wish I had found it before I went grocery shopping today. I might have to run back to the store.

    Reply

  8. #
    58
    Joey Buscarino — April 14, 2013 @ 9:32 pm

    Treadmills are a great piece of exercise equipment, not only do you get to exercise your legs, your arms also get to work out as well.Treadmills also have speed settings, so you can choose the speed that is right for you. Beginners can start with a small jog.^

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    Reply

  9. #
    59
    Kanisha Peek — April 20, 2013 @ 1:34 pm

    Listening to audio books is practical and it meets the busy lifestyle of contemporary people. You can tune in to your favorite books anytime anywhere, while you are walking, sh… The popularity of iPod and MP3 players has raised the marketplace of audiobooks in recent years. Some book publishers also believed that audio books could outsell paperback books or e-books one day. Indeed, this pattern is clear if you think about some great benefits of audio books over paperback books. -

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  10. #
    60
    Rachel @ Twin Tough — April 21, 2013 @ 8:17 pm

    This soup looks so bright and fresh! Great way to eat your veggie quota for the day! :)

    Reply

  11. #
    61
    Jules — April 22, 2013 @ 4:13 pm

    This looks so pretty! One question: what size of crockpot do you use? I like to know, just in case I need to scale the recipe down to fit my mid-sized one. Thanks!

    Reply

  12. #
    62
    Kimberly — April 29, 2013 @ 6:39 pm

    Made this today in a stock pot and it is delicious! I cutback on the beans and added extra asparagus and pasta. Yum! Thanks for a wonderful recipe! :)

    Reply

  13. #
    63
    Brooke — May 1, 2013 @ 12:31 am

    I thought this looked really good but it was super really good! My 7 year old has been sticking her nose up and hating everything i have made lately and she came in whining and complaining extra loud how gross it looked and how she wasn’t eating it. But I only cook one meal and that is all the kids get so she finally tasted it and she who hates everything said “hey, this is actually pretty good!” So you are awesome! Thank you so much for all your recipes! They are always my favorites!

    Reply

  14. #
    64
    Kati — May 8, 2013 @ 1:35 pm

    Das ist sowas von lecker. Probiert es aus, es lohnt sich.

    Reply

  15. #
    65
    Harper — May 17, 2013 @ 11:08 am

    Italian Secret: we always cook the pasta separate and add it per bowl. Why? Because when you make minestrone you always make more than you need and it’s a stew you can keep adding to. Add the pasta in it and that becomes slimy, see?
    Also the gluten-free-people can eat it without :)

    Also “Cook’s Treat”: save up all the hard rinds from parmesan and romano and add it to the bottom of the pot, they become edible and soooo good! ;)

    Reply

  16. #
    66
    Charisse — June 27, 2013 @ 10:25 am

    You’re funny. And you think a lot like I do. And I want to make this soup. TODAY. But it will likely wait until tomorrow.

    Reply

  17. #
    67
    Erin — December 30, 2013 @ 8:35 pm

    I just finished eating a bowl of this and it was fabulous! I added some Italian meatballs so my husband would eat it. The best thing is that my 1 year old loved it too! Anything she eats that isn’t pb&j must be delicious. Quick prep before work and really quick when I got home – perfect!

    Reply

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