You’re going to love my Pasta Fagioli soup, loaded with ditalini pasta, cannellini beans, pancetta, vegetables and a deliciously flavorful tomato broth this hearty soup is the perfect addition to your dinner table!
May thanks to my Friends at Sprouts Farmers Market for sponsoring this post and for providing such an amazing shopping experience.
If you’ve never heard of this Classic Italian Soup, let me start by sharing how to pronounce its name correctly. Can you say Pasta Fazool?
This easy to make traditional Italian soup is a satisfying dish that will warm your body and your soul, it’s the ultimate comfort food.
There are as many pasta Fagioli soup recipes as there are Italian grandmothers and each one will have its own special touch, so feel free to adjust the recipe.
One of my great joys in life is grocery shopping. And nothing is worse than having to settle for less than desirable produce and groceries….sigh. And that my friends is why I love shopping at Sprouts Farmers Market!
If you’ve never experienced the joy of Sprouts, you don’t know what you’re missing. As a chef, I know sourcing good ingredients makes all the difference in cooking up delicious dishes. Knowing that you’re buying the best available products makes life so much easier and so much more delicious!
Sprouts is all that and more. Their produce is second to none and when it comes to bulk items, the choices are limitless.
They feature hundreds of bins and barrels brimming with freshly roasted coffee beans, rice, nuts, dried fruits, granolas, trail mixes, baking essentials, spices and sweets. You can indulge in irresistible treats like dark chocolate cashew clusters or good-for-you items like rolled oats.
They carry a great assortment of products to meet your healthy lifestyle and dietary needs, including no sugar added, sugar-free, organic and natural items.
Are you ready to start shopping at Sprouts Farmers Market? Click on the link to find a Sprouts near you.
What ingredients do I need to make Pasta Fagioli?
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Pasta Fagioli. In Chef Speak this is called the “Mise en Place” which translates to “Everything in its Place”.
Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
I use whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes (crushing them by hand or with an immersion blender) for all my cooking, but you can substitute your favorite crushed tomatoes, or even tomato sauce (not pasta sauce).
*If you’re not a fan of heat, leave out the red pepper flakes.
Can I add meat to pasta Fagioli?
Yes, you can. The Olive Garden version has meat in it. You can use ground beef, ground turkey, sweet, or spicy sausage in your soup.
Bacon can also be substituted for the pancetta.
How do I make Pasta Fagioli?
- In a large stockpot over medium heat, add the olive oil and the pancetta. Cook until the pancetta is beginning to crisp. Remove the pancetta and place it on a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Save until needed.
- Add the celery., carrot, onion, and leek to the pot. Allow the veggies to cook until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
- Add the pancetta back into the pot along with the minced garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the hand-crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, red pepper flakes, bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper to the soup pot. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes
- Add the cannellini beans and al dente pasta to the soup and continue to simmer for another 10 minutes
- Reduce the heat to low, add the thinly sliced chard (or greens of your choice) and Romano cheese (or freshly grated parmesan cheese) to the soup and simmer for 10 minutes.
*If you want to keep the soup vegetarian substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.
The soup is finished except for one final taste to make sure the seasonings are good. Adjust the seasonings as needed.
*If you aren’t going to use all the soup at one setting, or intend to freeze some of the soup, DO NOT ADD all the pasta to the pot. Instead, place the pasta in the serving bowls and ladle the very hot soup over it.
Garnish the Pasta Fagioli with ribbons of chard, grated Romano cheese and freshly ground black pepper.
This soup is the perfect light dinner, lunch or starter for an Italian feast!
No, you don’t. Cannellini or Borlotti Beans are the usual choices for pasta Fagioli, but you can use great northern beans or garbanzo beans (which makes it pasta e ceci), navy beans and even pinto beans.
No, you don’t. Different regions make this classic Italian soup differently. Some recipes don’t call for tomatoes. Just add extra broth to make up for the tomatoes.
Ditalini is the preferred pasta for this Italian soup, but you can use any small pasta shape such as Tubetti, Anelli, small macaroni, or small shells can be used as a substitute.