Hearty Vegan Italian Vegetable Soup
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 cup carrots, chopped
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 2 potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1, 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 28 oz can petite diced tomatoes
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 package of plant-based meatballs (e.g., Beyond Meat Italian meatballs)
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp dry oregano
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Additional herbs (sprig of rosemary, Italian parsley, and basil)
In a large pot, sauté the diced sweet onion for 5-7 minutes, then add the minced garlic and sauté until fragrant.
Add chopped carrots, celery, cubed potatoes, drained chickpeas, and the dried seasoning (Italian seasoning, paprika, dry oregano, red pepper flakes if using) to the pot. Stir and cook for a few more minutes.
Pour in the can of petite diced tomatoes and vegetable broth. Drop in the bay leaves. Stir well.
Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat to low, allowing it to simmer. For extra flavor, take a sprig of basil, make a few slits in the stem without detaching it, and add it to the center of the soup.
While the soup is simmering, slightly brown the plant-based meatballs in a separate pan. Once browned, add them to the simmering soup. Also, add the sprig of rosemary (remove the stem).
Let the soup simmer on low for about 30-40 minutes. This allows the flavors to blend, the veggies to soften, and the potatoes to thicken the soup.
Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed, adding more salt and pepper if desired.
Serve this hearty Italian vegetable soup warm and enjoy its comforting flavors!