This recipe for Vegan Pesto Zuppa Toscana is a hearty and cozy meal that’s totally vegan! Inspired by the Olive Garden favorite, “Tuscan Soup” is a perfect weeknight dinner full of protein and nutrients.
- 1/3 cup cashew pieces
- 3 TBS extra virgin olive oil
- 1 block of tempeh, crumbled (optional, white beans work well as a substitute)
- 1 tsp tamari or soy sauce
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 3 ribs celery, sliced into thin pieces
- Salt and pepper
- 5 large clove garlic
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup pesto, homemade or store bought (I like Trader Joe’s Cashew Pesto)
- 8 small red potatoes (or 2–3 medium-size russets), chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 6 cups low sodium vegetable broth (or 3 cups full sodium broth + 3 cups water)
- 5 cups kale, chopped
- 1 tsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
- Begin by preparing cashew cream. To a high-speed blender, add cashews and 1 cup water. Blend until creamy. If you do not have a high speed blender, let the cashews soak in 1 cup of hot water for a little while until they are slightly softened. Set aside. This is our “cashew cream.”
- To a large pot on the stove, add olive oil over medium heat. Add tempeh pieces and let brown for 5-7 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Add tamari/soy sauce. You want the tempeh to take on some color. Add a splash of water if it begin to stick (this will also help steam out any bitterness from your tempeh).
- Add to the pot the chopped onion and celery. Stir to combine and add a pinch of salt and a few twists of pepper. Let cook for 5 more minutes until onion is golden. Add garlic, red pepper, and pesto and cook 1 minute more.
- To this pot, toss in your chopped potatoes and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and let cook for 6-9 minutes, until potatoes are soft enough to be pierced with a fork.
- Remove from heat and add in reserved cashew cream, kale, lemon juice. Taste and see if you’d like to add more salt or lemon.
Soup can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for 5 days.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Soup
- Cuisine: Italian-American
- Serving Size: One sixth of recipe
- Calories: 277.4 calories
- Sugar: 4.5 grams
- Sodium: 359.2 milligrams
- Fat: 17.5 grams
- Saturated Fat: 3.1 grams
- Unsaturated Fat: 14.4 grams
- Trans Fat: 0 grams
- Carbohydrates: 21.8 grams
- Fiber: 4.2 grams
- Protein: 12.1 grams
- Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Keywords: soup, tuscan, italian