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Summer Pesto Mini Meatball Soup

This summer pesto mini meatball soup is the perfect comfort food in warmer months! Lots of fresh basil, a delicious broth and noodles. Delish.
5 from 22 votes
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Ingredients

small batch pesto

  • 1 cup packed fresh basil
  • ¼ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • pinch of crushed red pepper
  • salt and pepper
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

mini meatballs & soup

  • 1 pound lean ground chicken or turkey
  • ¼ cup seasoned breadcrumbs, panko or fine crumbs both work
  • 3 tablespoons pesto
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 shallot diced
  • 8 cups chicken stock or broth, low sodium is fine - you may want a pinch more salt
  • 12 ounces tiny cut pasta, like ditalini or annellini
  • fresh basil, for topping
  • shaved parmesan, for topping

Instructions 

pesto

  • Place the basil, parmesan, pine nuts, garlic, red peppers flakes and a pinch of salt and pepper in the bowl of your food processor or blender. Pulse until small pieces remain. Blend while streaming in the olive oil until combined. You can store extras of this in the fridge for about a week.

mini meatballs & soup

  • In a bowl, combine the chicken/turkey with the breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, pesto and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix until just combined the form the mixture into mini meatballs. (Or large! Whatever you prefer!)
  • Heat a large stock pot over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the meatballs in a single later, browning on all sides, about 8 to 10 minutes total. Remove the meatballs from the pan and place them on a plate.
  • Keep the pot over medium heat and add the remaining olive oil. Stir in the shallot with a pinch of salt and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the meatballs back to the pot. Add in the broth.
  • Bring the mixture to a simmer and stir in the pasta. Cook, uncovered and stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if needed. Once the pasta is cooked, stir in 1 or 2 tablespoons of the pesto. (Note: the soup is not a pretty color!) Ladle the soup into bowls and the stir in more pesto on a bowl-by-bowl basis, however much you want. Garnish with shaved parmesan and extra fresh basil and serve!
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