Pasta e Fagioli is basically pasta, vegetables, and beans together along with tomatoes in a flavorful Italian dish.
For years I've been eating Pasta e Fagioli at restaurants. Usually it's pretty soupy with more broth than actual pasta or beans. While it's good, it's not really what I'm looking for.
Five or six years ago we went to visit our friends in Portland. While there they made a hearty Pasta e Fagioli which was exactly what I was looking for. I was determined to try to and make my own once I got home.
Since it was summer the farmer's market has been in full swing and fresh fruits and vegetables are everywhere. Since I was looking to make Pasta e Fagioli I went to the market looking for specific vegetables.
- olive oil
- garlic cloves
- cannellini beans
- crushed tomatoes
- black pepper
- vegetable broth
- small pasta
- parmesan cheese
To make the soup base: Heat the olive oil in a large pot and add the onion and garlic. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Add in the spinach, carrots, beans, tomatoes, spices, vegetable broth, and water. Simmer for 30 minutes.
To cook the pasta: Increase the heat and add the pasta. Boil for 10-15 minutes or until the pasta is tender.
The vegetables and broth are made first. Then the spices are added to the pot. While my recipe includes the spices that I enjoy in the pasta dish you can add in whatever spices your family enjoys.
I also prefer to use ditalini as my pasta because it absorbs the flavors from this dish and little bits of veggies get stuck in the pasta. That's what I used the first time I made this dish but unfortunately they were out of it at the store so I used small elbow noodles this time.
What is Pasta e Fagioli?
It's a traditional Italian dish that translates to pasta and beans which are the main ingredients in this dish. Generally it is made with cannellini beans or navy beans and small pasta. It also has carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and some type of tomatoes in it.
What shape of pasta should I use?
You can use any small shaped pasta noodles in this dish. My preference is ditalini but I can't always get it. Other small shaped pasta like elbow noodles, small shells, or stars work well too.
Can I add other vegetables?
You can add whatever vegetables you'd like to add to this dish. I added in spinach in addition to the vegetables that are usually in this dish but you can really add in anything.
Can I freeze Pasta e Fagioli?
Yes you can! I would freeze it before you put the pasta in the soup. Simply let the soup cool and store in an air tight container or freezer bags for up to 3 months. When ready to serve heat the soup to boiling, add the pasta, and cook for 15 minutes.
I love pasta so this Pasta e Fagioli dish was a hearty and comforting meal that was perfect for winter. A bowl of this will fill you up.
The broth is very flavorful and each bite is full of pasta and veggies which makes it filling enough for the winter but still light enough to eat in the summer. I had no idea this was one of my husbands favorite soups and he thoroughly enjoyed it as well.
You can serve this dish with Italian bread or salads. It's also good with breadsticks or cheesy bread.
More Pasta Recipes:
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- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- ½ onion, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 c. fresh spinach, stems removed
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans
- 1 (15 oz) can crushed tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons fresh parsley, minced
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1-2 teaspoon black pepper
- 4 c. vegetable broth
- 2 c. water
- 8 oz. small pasta (I used Ditalini)
- ¼ c. fresh grated Parmesan cheese
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add in the onion and garlic and saute for 3-4 minutes or until the onion turns translucent.
- Add the spinach, carrots, beans, tomatoes, parsley, oregano, thyme, pepper, vegetable broth, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add in the pasta and cook for 10-12 minutes or until it is cooked
through. Remove from heat, ladle into bowls, and top with fresh Parmesan cheese.
Recipe adapted from Skinnytaste