Skip to main content

Chicken and Green Bean Soup with Pesto

Serves 4-6

Warm your family with this wonderful pesto chicken soup!


  • 1 cup basil leaves, lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley (a couple of handfuls)
  • 1/4 cup dill (a handful)
  • 1/4 cup lightly toasted shelled pistachios or pine nuts
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped and mashed into paste with a little salt or grated
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (a generous handful)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/3-1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus 2 tablespoons, divided
  • 3/4 pound chicken tenders, chopped into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 medium to large onion, chopped into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 ribs celery from heart, chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 cups chicken stock or 6 cups chicken stock, plus 2 cups water
  • 2 cups frozen French-cut green beans
  • 1 cup small cut pasta, such as small penne or ditalini


  1. Combine the herbs, nuts, garlic and grated cheese in a food processor. While the machine is running, stream in the EVOO, about 1/3 cup, to make a pesto. Scrape the sauce into a small dish and reserve.
  2. In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons EVOO, two turns if the pan, over medium heat. Add the chicken and lightly brown, 3-4 minutes. Add the onion, celery, carrot, bell pepper and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 4-5 minutes more. Add the stock and/or water and bring to a boil. Stir in the green beans and pasta and keep at a low boil until the pasta is cooked to al dente.
  3. Serve the soup in shallow bowls and stir in rounded tablespoonfuls of pesto.