Olive Garden Minestrone Soup: What To Know Before Ordering

Fans of Olive Garden know there are some cult classics that cannot be passed up. Menu items like the house salad, breadsticks, and soup, become a favorite meal when the soup and salad combo is ordered. However, those that have another favorite soup at Olive Garden might wonder just what their minestrone soup has to offer. While the eatery has several homemade soups to choose from, none of them are quite like this hearty soup. 

Olive Garden's minestrone soup is the only vegan and vegetarian-friendly option. All of the other soups include chicken, beef or sausage (via Olive Garden). That makes the minestrone soup a great choice for those that do not eat meat or who are looking to cut back on their animal protein in-take. The soup could also be a good way to get more vegetables into a meal. From the basic information of Olive Garden's minestrone soup to what it tastes like, Mashed has gathered everything you need to know before giving this soup a try.

How much does it cost?

Whether you are looking for a great appetizer or a lighter meal, Olive Garden's minestrone soup is listed on the menu for a great price. You can get a whole bowl for just $6.79 (via Olive Garden). If you choose to get the combo meal, which also includes breadsticks and salad, it's $9.99. It's even cheaper when you order it for a weekday lunch at just $7.99. Other options for soup sizes include a whole gallon, which serves 12, for $24.49 or a half-gallon that serves six people for $14.99.

With these size options, you could easily get a bowl of soup for a quick and delicious lunch for a steal. However, you could also order pick-up or delivery from the restaurant chain and have a batch of your favorite freshly made soup to enjoy throughout a week or two. No matter what your needs, Olive Garden has the perfect selection of soup sizes at great prices available for order.

How does it taste?

According to Chow Hound, the minestrone soup at Olive Garden ranks third out of the four soups available. However, that doesn't mean it is bad by any stretch. It simply wasn't the reviewer's favorite. But for those who don't eat meat, or anyone who wants a vegetable-filled soup, the reviewer found the soup to be quite flavorful. In fact, the only thing the Chow Hound reviewer disliked about the soup was that the pieces of tomatoes were far too large for their liking.

Olive Garden describes the soup as having a light tomato broth, so this minestrone soup should not be as heavy as other creamier soups. The vegetables in the soup also meld together to bring out all kinds of delicious flavors, so anyone who loves vegetable soup should love this pasta-filled minestrone too. The soup is also well seasoned with salt, so there's no need to pick up the shaker when the bowl comes to the table. You can simply grab a spoon and dive right in.

When you can get it

Minestrone soup is one of the core soups offered at all Olive Garden restaurants. So there's no need to worry about it being a special on the menu or only being available for a limited time. Anyone can get Olive Garden's minestrone soup anywhere at any time of the year. In fact, the core four soups at Olive Garden — Minestrone, Chicken and Gnocci, Pasta e Fagioli, and Zuppa Toscana — are all always available at restaurant locations everywhere.

There's is actually only one special soup that cannot be ordered at just any Olive Garden location. That's the Stellini soup, which is only available regionally (via Olive Garden). In fact, the Stellini soup is not even listed on the digital Olive Garden menu. It's simply visible on the nutritional information page that's made available to everyone. So, with the exception of Stellini soup, no one has to worry about their favorite soup not being on the menu.

How it's made

As far as how the minestrone soup is made, Olive Garden describes it as being filled with "fresh vegetables, beans and pasta in a light tomato broth." But Chow Hound dives a little deeper to explain that there are "leafy greens, onions, tomatoes, celery, green beans, zucchini, shell pasta and beans" in the bowls of vegan soup. While it is not exactly clear what kind of leafy greens are used, it could be kale, spinach or arugula. Something like kale would hold up in soup very well. In fact, the longer kale stews the sweeter the flavor will be (via The Infinite Kitchen). 

The best part of Olive Garden's soups, including the minestrone soup, is that it is made fresh daily in house (via Delish). No need to worry about the soup being made too far in advance and frozen. You can enjoy a bowl knowing that the soup is just about as fresh as it can be.

Nutritional information of Olive Garden Minestrone Soup

Given that the minestrone soup at Olive Garden is primarily vegetables with some pasta mixed in, you could expect the soup to have fairy good nutritional information. And it is certainly one of the best options on the Olive Garden menu. In terms of calories, the minestrone soup at Olive Garden is the lightest option at just 110 calories per bowl. The soup only has 1 gram of fat and no saturated or trans fat. 

The entree also has no cholesterol, 5 grams of protein, packs 4 grams of sugar, has 17 grams of carbs, and 4 grams of fiber. The primary drawback is that the soup is quite high in sodium, with 810 milligrams of sodium per bowl. So if you're on a low-salt diet, you might want to reconsider this soup option. Most of Olive Garden's soups are high in sodium with the best option being the Pasta Fagioli soup which still has 710 milligrams of sodium.