You can't beat the simplicity of pasta e fagioli, aka Italian pasta and bean soup. It's comforting, healthy and will have your family begging for more. 242 calories and 5 Weight Watchers Freestyle SP
So often the best recipes are not the ones from some fancy shmancy restaurant cookbook, but rather the ones learned at grandmother's side. They are the recipes that are frequently passed down verbally from generation to generation, but rarely written down with pen and paper.
My friend, Liz of The Lemon Bowl (you know her well from our Healthy New Year Challenge) has taken on an amazing project - capturing the recipes of her family and her husband's family in a series of eCookbooks, starting with Food From Our Ancestors: The Ultimate Italian Sunday Dinner. The eCookbook is only $3.99 (less than a latte!) and features recipes such as Spinach & Potato Frittata, Sunday Gravy and Uncle Vinny's Shrimp Scampi (I can tell that I already like Uncle Vinny).
The wonderful thing about good Italian food is that the ingredients lists are often very basic. It's the quality of the ingredients and the seasoning that makes the difference. Good olive oil, high quality canned tomatoes, fresh basil and so on.
Pasta e fagioli, otherwise known as pasta and beans is a classic vegetarian soup that is hearty and healthy, and practically begs for a piece of crusty bread to dunk into the broth. You may have seen me making Liz's recipe on Snapchat and my Instagram stories (I'm @cookincanuck in both places). What you didn't hear was my family's enthusiastic reviews of the soup, including T (my younger son) saying, "I could eat this every night." That says it all.
Other healthy vegetarian soup recipes:
Cookin' Canuck's Slow Cooker Vegetable Barley Soup
Cookin' Canuck's 30-Minute Rice Noodle Soup with Mushrooms & Kale
A Cedar Spoon's Thai Coconut Zoodle Soup
The Healthy Maven's Quinoa Tortilla Soup
Eating Bird Food's Roasted Garlic Lentil Soup
Pasta e Fagioli Recipe (Italian Pasta & Bean Soup)
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 small onion thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning mixture of oregano, parsley, basil, etc.
- 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
- 6 cups water
- 6 cups low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth for vegetarian
- 1 15 ounce can of red kidney beans, reduced sodium, drained and rinsed
- 1 15 ounce can of cannellini or Great Northern beans (reduced sodium), drained & rinsed
- 1 15 ounce can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), reduced sodium, drained and rinsed
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ pound ditalini or elbow pasta cooked according to package
- ¼ cup minced flat-leaf parsley
- grated Parmesan cheese for serving leave off for vegetarian or use asiago
- Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large soup pot and saute onion, garlic and spices until just tender about 4-5 minutes.
- Add tomato paste and stir well. Reduce heat to low and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the water, chicken stock and beans to the pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Stir in cooked pasta and parsley just before serving. Garnish with Parmesan cheese and serve with crusty bread for dunking, if desired.
Disclosure: This post contains links to my Amazon affiliate page. Any revenue made from sales through these links helps to support this blog. Thank you!
I added a pound of sweet Italian sausage (sliced) and used 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning instead of 2 Tablespoons. This was delicious and a keeper.❤️
Reading other reviews about thickening I decided to add dry pasta without cooking first. also added leftover shredded chicken for more protein. Lovely soup. i might add celery to the garlic and onion saute the next time.
YUM. Absolutely delicious soup & perfect for the cold snap we're having in Michigan right now. I made a few changes--I threw in some leftover carrots with the onions, added some red pepper flakes, and thickened the soup a bit with a cornstarch/water slurry--but the base recipe is SO good.
Love this recipe. We also make mini meatballs and add them to the soup and they make the sauce even tastier. We use shell pasta as that is what my Grandma used for years. I always try to duplicate what she made and this is by far the closest and best receipe. Great taste, super easy and we love it.
Made it this evening...wonderful. I thickened it a bit by using an immersion blender to purée about half the beans. Going to need company over the weekend to help eat the huge pan full. Thanks for the recipe.
It's one of our favorites here, too!
That's the most ultimate comfort food ever... makes me wish I wasn't traveling so I can be in my kitchen and making this 😉
Justine | Cooking and Beer
Pasta e Fagioli is one of my all time favorite comfort foods. Your version looks spectacular! Yum!
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet
That looks wonderful and is getting me excited for the cooler weather!
Becky Hardin | The Cookie Rookie
What a pretty dish. Perfect comfort food for sure. I am looking forward to dishes like this.
Liz @ The Lemon Bowl
Ahhh thank you so much my friend! I am so thrilled your boys loved it and you have me itching to make this again soon for my boys!! xoxo
Amy @ Little Dairy on the Prairie
Pasta e Fagioli is one of my favorite soups! I'm always on the search for the perfect recipe! This one looks tasty!
Amy | The Cook Report
I've already started thinking about all the things I'll be making once the temperature drops and this looks perfect for an autumn evening!
I'll definitely be adding it to my list of things to be made soon 🙂