Archive of BBC Food Recipes

Minestrone with butternut squash ‘noodles’

Prep time less than 30 mins
Cook time less than 30 mins
Serves 4
Dietary Vegetarian
This gluten-free soup uses spaghetti-like strands of butternut squash instead of pasta for a healthy take on a classic. Equipment and preparation: For this recipe, you will need a julienne peeler. This meal provides 348 kcal, 18g protein, 45g carbohydrate (of which 18g sugars), 11g fat (of which 4g saturates), 16g fibre and 2.5g salt per portion.


  1. Heat the ghee in a large, lidded saucepan over a low heat. Add the onion, celery and bay leaf and fry for 6-8 minutes, or until softened.

  2. Meanwhile, peel the butternut squash into spaghetti-like strands using a julienne peeler

  3. Add the garlic, carrot, oregano, basil, chilli flakes and stock to the pan. Bring just to the boil, then reduce the heat immediately and simmer, covered, for 6-8 minutes.

  4. Add the tomatoes,chickpeas and squash strands and continue to simmer for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  5. Stir in the cavolo nero and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until tender. Season with salt and pepper.

  6. Ladle the soup into serving bowls, then sprinkle with grated parmesan. Drizzle over a little extra virgin olive oil and serve.


  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 1 celery stick, trimmed, diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 butternut squash, trimmed, peeled, deseeded
  • 3 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes or chopped fresh chilli
  • 800ml/1¾ pints vegetable stock
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes (or 6 large fresh tomatoes, deseeded and chopped)
  • 2 x 400g tins cooked chickpeas, drained, rinsed
  • 200g/7oz cavolo nero, tough stalks removed, leaves finely sliced
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve

  • large handful grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)
  • drizzle extra virgin olive oil

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Minestrone with butternut squash ‘noodles’

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