The perfect Sunday night healthy minestrone soup with ham bone and and macaroni. A hearty, soup that is satisfying and full of nutrients.
It’s soup season and I’m not just saying that because we’re about to get our first round of “weather” here in Oakland (rain in the forecast).
I’m saying that because people I know are buried under snow and need to warm up.
There are people who are feeling under the weather after having a little too much fun over the holidays and need something nutritious and soothing to assist in their wellness.
There are people who made new year’s resolutions to eat better and soup is a great way to do just that.
I’m a major soup fan. I like to eat soup year round, especially now that we live in Oakland because it never gets all that warm like it did in San Diego.
People thought I was REAL weird eating soup in 90 degree weather at the beach.
The reason I love soup so much is because it’s versatile, hard to mess up, and void of most “filler”. For example, I love everything in the middle of sandwiches but the bread part to me is just filler.
For the most part you can just throw a bunch of stuff in a pot with some stock or water and call it soup. It doesn’t get much simpler than that, and lord knows I can always use any way to simplify my meal prep.
Healthy Minestrone Soup
This soup should be called New Year’s Soup. It’s an awesome clean-out-the-fridge recipe for those who made a resolution to get organized this year, as well as being a flavorful vehicle for hiding healthy stuff like green vegetables for anyone getting on a health kick this year.
Personally I would eat this totally vegetarian and carb free, but I added a little bit of pasta, and some hearty ham hock meat to appease The Hubs who is not always thrilled with fully vegetarian meals.
Not being much of a resolutioner myself, I’m just stoked to eat something that’s going to help fuel me through another busy year. I swear the holidays get rougher as I get older. When I get out of my normal eating and exercise routine, it seems like every aspect of my life becomes a fiasco. Over indulging in sugar, booze and dairy causes all kinds of crazy blood sugar issues for me.
I stop sleeping well, my energy spikes and drops throughout the day, I have problems motivating and concentrating, and overall I just feel yucky despite all the holiday cheer floating around. Forget moderation. I have zero willpower when it comes to holiday punch and appetizer spreads so I just deal with the consequences as they come.
I’m thrilled to finally be through the holiday hustle and back to normal life, and normal eating. I do better with a routine, and this ham hock healthy minestrone soup recipe is starting my new year routine off on a great foot.
Try these other great soup recipes
- Ham, black eyed pea and potato slow cooker soup
- Slow Cooker Pork Ramen
- Chicken and Parsnip Soup
- Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
- Greek Lemon Chicken Soup
- Spiced Vegan Lentil Soup
Ham Hock Healthy Minestrone Soup
- 3-4 lb ham hock ***
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 leek thinly sliced
- 1 32oz container chicken stock
- 1 bunch broccolini trimmed
- 3/4 cup dried macaroni
- 2 cups kale de-stemmed and roughly chopped
- 1 cup cabbage roughly chopped
- 1 cup green beans trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 cups frozen peas
- 1/2 cup parsley roughly chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- finely grated parmesan cheese for garnish
- 1/2 lb ham steak diced **OPTIONAL
Place ham hock in a large stock pot and cover with cold water. Place pot over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Carefully removed the hock and reserve 2 cups of cooking liquid. Remove the rind from the hock and discard. Using 2 forks shred the meat and set aside. ***If your hock does not produce a lot of meat, you may want to supplement with an additional ham steak (Optional)
In the same stock pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add leek and cook, stirring constantly, until softened, about 3 minutes.
Add chicken stock and reserved cooking liquid. Bring to a simmer. Add broccolini and macaroni. Cook for 3 minutes. Add kale, cabbage and green beans. Simmer for two minutes. Add peas and simmer for 1 more minute. Add ham and parsley. Stir. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Spoon into 6 bowls and top with finely grated parmesan cheese.