Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nut and Egg-Free Pistou Soup

We are having tummy troubles at the Gordon home, so the doctor prescribed something gentle yet tasty: soup.  Now, my daughter Margot is pretty unhappy because not only does her stomach hurt, but she is not the biggest soup fan. Please note the number of string beans that I stirred in. This is a mother’s love, because those string beans mean that I will not be able to eat the soup (I pre-cooked the string beans and stirred them in at the end so I could have a taste before they were added), but I had to do it because Margot finds string beans so irresistible that she won’t have a choice but to try this Mmm Mmm good potage.

Now, most people think of pesto like one would find at fancy restaurants, rich and cheesy and filled with pine nuts. It doesn’t always have to be so, and I would obviously never serve you such a thing, dear reader.  Sometimes, I just make a little pesto sauce for gluten-free pasta with garlic, basil, salt and lots of olive oil. It’s delicious and light and exactly what goes into Pistou. Pistou is a Provencal, broth-based vegetable soup that is primarily green but has a few chopped tomatoes thrown in for good measure. Minus the string beans, I love it, and I’m hoping that Margot and her ouchy tummy will too.

While we await test results to see if this is h. Pylori or something more serious, we’ll pull up a bowl of soup and chill out.

Pistou Soup

Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nut and Egg-Free

Cuisine Vegetarian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 3 about 1 cup medium carrots diced
  • 3 about 1 cup stalks celery diced
  • 1 about 1 cupp medium zucchini diced
  • about 1 cup handful of trimmed string beans quartered
  • ½ cup diced tomatoes drained
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • ½ tbsp salt
  • 5 springs thyme
  • 5 springs parsley
  • 1 cup frozen green peas optional

For the Pesto

  • 20 basil leaves
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 tbsp olive oil


  1. Add the olive oil to the bottom of a large stock pot and heat it over medium-high. Add the onion, carrots and celery to the pan and sauté for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables soften. Add the zucchini and continue cooking for another 3 minutes. Add the string beans, tomatoes, chicken stock, thyme and parsley. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes.

  2. While the soup is simmering, make the pesto. Add the basil leaves, olive oil, tomato paste and garlic to the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Set aside.

  3. When the soup is done and the vegetables are tender, add the peas if you are using them. Stir in the pesto, remove the thyme and parsley sprigs and serve piping hot.

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