Mary Ann Esposito’s Chunky Roasted Vegetable Soup

Get the most flavor from your leftover veggies with this warm and hearty soup recipe.

Chunky Roasted Vegetable Soup in pot

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Mom made her version of a “kitchen sink soup” with vegetables she cleaned out of the refrigerator that had gone limp. And while her soups were always delicious, I introduced her to a new way of getting more flavor by roasting the veggies first. The natural sugars will caramelize as they cook and provide a greater depth of flavor. It’s a nice feeling when you can teach your mom something new.

Chunky Roasted Vegetable Soup
Zuppa di Verdure Arrostite

Chunky Roasted Vegetable Soup in pot
Chunky Roasted Vegetable Soup
Photo by John Hession

(Makes 8 servings)


  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large leek, white part only, well washed and thinly sliced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons coarse salt
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoons celery seed
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3 small red skin potatoes cut into chunks
  • 3 large peeled carrots or parsnips cut into chunks
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 4 ribs celery, cut into chunks
  • 1 large red onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1 small bunch flat leaf parsley
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Crusty bread


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in large soup pot (4 quart); add garlic and leeks and cook over medium high heat until leeks are very soft. Turn off heat.
  3. Combine salt, pepper, celery seed, and oregano in large bowl. Add potatoes, carrots, broccoli, celery, and onion and toss veggies well in mixture. Add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to veggies and coat well.
  4. Transfer veggies to baking sheet in single layer. Roast veggies for about 30 minutes, turning them once or twice.
  5. Add roasted vegetables to soup pot with tomato juice and wine. Tie parsley and thyme together with kitchen string and add to pot.
  6. Bring mixture to boil, then lower heat to simmer and cook for 25 minutes. Remove and discard parsley and thyme.
  7. Stir in lemon juice. Correct seasoning, adding more salt if desired. Serve piping hot with crusty bread and salad.

Reprinted from Ciao Italia Family Classics: More than 200 Treasured Recipes from Three Generations of Italian Cooks by Mary Ann Esposito. Published by St. Martin’s Press. Copyright © Mary Ann Esposito. Photograph by John Hession. See more recipes from Mary Ann Esposito in the March/April 2014 issue.

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