Slow-Cooker Pesto Minestrone

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 7 hr 25 min
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Nutrition Info
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2 carrots, chopped

2 leeks (white and light green parts), halved lengthwise, sliced and rinsed

2 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

1 bulb fennel, trimmed, cored and chopped, plus chopped fronds for topping

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 15-ounce can petite diced tomatoes

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus 1 small parmesan rind

3 tablespoons pesto, plus more for topping

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1 15-ounce can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup ditalini pasta

4 slices rosemary focaccia bread


  1. Toss the carrots, leeks, potatoes and fennel with the olive oil in a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker. Add 5 cups water, the tomatoes, parmesan rind, 2 tablespoons pesto, 1/2 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper. Cover and cook on high until the vegetables are tender, 7 to 8 hours.
  2. Uncover and stir in the beans and ditalini. Cover and continue cooking on high until the pasta is al dente, about 15 minutes. Remove the parmesan rind. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon pesto and season with salt and pepper. Top each serving with more pesto, the parmesan and fennel fronds. Serve with the focaccia.