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One Pot Pasta Fagioli

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Pasta Fagioli is like a warm, cozy bowl of deliciousness. It’s the ultimate Italian comfort food. This soup-like pasta is loaded with cannellini beans, pasta and a thick tomato base. I love the simplicity of this One Pot Pasta Fagioli. After the base of the soup has time to simmer, the pasta is cooked directly in the pot. The starchiness from the pasta adds the perfect amount of thickness. Believe me, you will be making this traditional Italian “stoup, ” (a word often used by Rachel Ray) over and over again during these cold weather months.

a white bowl filled with one pot pasta fagioli garnished with Parmesan cheese and drizzled with a finishing oil with a plate of focaccia in the background

WHAT IS PASTA FAGIOLI?

Pasta Fagioli is a traditional Italian peasant dish. The ingredients to prepare this hearty soup are relatively inexpensive. Depending on the region, some Italians will prepare this as a thickened stew, while others enjoy as a brothy soup. Pancetta or bacon will often be used to flavor the fagioli. Alternatively, some preparations are vegetarian.

What kind of pasta to use in this One Pot Pasta Fagioli recipe?

This Pasta Fagioli recipe calls for the pasta to cook in the soup broth. So, it’s best to use a small pasta shape. Ditalini is a great choice. However, feel free to use elbow macaroni, or a mezze pasta of your choice.

Also, I have seen many One Pot Pasta Fagioli recipes use up pasta from the pantry. You know what I’m talking about. All of those nearly empty boxes we somehow hold on to. Break up the pasta and use in the fagioli! It’s a great way to use up pantry items.

OTHER INGREDIENTS TO MAKE ONE POT PASTA FAGIOLI

It’s likely you have all of the ingredients in your pantry and fridge to whip up this hearty Italian soup.

  • vegetables (I loved using the combination of onions, carrots, celery and garlic) Chop them yourself, or use a food processor!
  • cannellini beans (always a pantry staple in my house)
  • crushed tomatoes (buy them already crushed, or crush whole tomatoes)
  • chicken broth (just need a little over a cup)
  • fresh herbs (rosemary and a bay leaf)
  • good olive oil for garnish
  • pancetta or bacon (skip if you want to prepare a vegetarian Pasta Fagioli)

Dried vs. Canned Beans

Dried beans can be used instead of canned. Using dried beans to make this Italian pasta soup will require a bit more prep as the beans should soak overnight in salt water. Alternatively, cook dried beans prior to incorporating them into the Pasta Fagioli.

Additionally, dried beans will require additional broth or water, and will take a bit longer to cook in the soup. So, once you add them to the pot, keep checking the liquid levels as they simmer. Add more, as needed.

As with canned, remove a ladle of the beans into a bowl and pulse to thicken the soup.

TIPS ON MAKING THE BEST PASTA FAGIOLI

Preparing a delicious and healthy Pasta Fagioli is so easy! It does, however, require time to prep the vegetables, and simmer to marry all of these delicious flavor elements. Honestly, this One Pot Pasta Fagioli can be on your dinner table in about an hour!

  • prep the ingredients first (if using dried beans, allot time for soaking overnight)
  • cannellini beans can be substituted with navy or great northern beans
  • dried herbs can be used instead of fresh (cut the amount in half if using dried)
  • water can replace the broth
  • adding a Parmesan rind to the broth will enhance the flavor, but is not necessary
  • fresh spinach, escarole or other leafy greens are also great additions and should be added at the end

Can One Pot Pasta Fagioli be made in a crock pot or Instant Pot?

Yes. However, I would not really recommend either as the consistency of the Fagioli will be quite different than preparing on the stove top.

STORING PASTA FAGIOLI

This yummy Italian soup will last up to 4 days in the fridge. Reheat on the stovetop or microwave. The pasta will soak up a majority of the broth as its stored. So, add a touch of liquid as you are reheating for a soup-like texture. Honestly, my Husband loved how thick it was the following day!

This pasta soup can be frozen. However, the pasta and beans will become a bit mushy. Store up to 2 months in the freezer!

Print
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a white bowl filled with one pot pasta fagioli garnished with Parmesan cheese and drizzled with a finishing oil with a plate of focaccia in the background

One Pot Pasta Fagioli


Description

Pasta Fagioli is like a warm, cozy bowl of deliciousness. It’s the ultimate Italian comfort food. This soup-like pasta is loaded with cannellini beans, pasta and a thick tomato base. I love the simplicity of this One Pot Pasta Fagioli. After the base of the soup has time to simmer, the pasta is cooked directly in the pot. The starchiness from the pasta adds the perfect thickness. Believe me, you will be making this traditional Italian “stoup, ” (a word often used by Rachel Rae) over and over again during these cold weather months.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 12 ounces ditalini pasta, uncooked
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 strips bacon, diced
  • 1 carrot, minced
  • 1 celery stock, minced
  • 1/2 white onion, minced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus more for taste
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 cans cannellini beans (one can drained and rinsed)
  • 2 cans water
  • 14 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup chicken stock or water
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley (optional)
  • Parmesan cheese for garnish
  • olive oil for garnish

Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven
  2. Add the bacon, carrots, celery, onion and rosemary.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Cook for about 5 minutes to soften the vegetables and render the bacon.
  5. Add the garlic. Cook for another minute.
  6. Add two cans of the cannellini beans right from the can.
  7. Fill both cans with water and add to the pot.
  8. Add the crushed tomatoes and bay leaf.
  9. Season again with salt and pepper.
  10. Add the cup of chicken stock or water (more, more as needed)
  11. Bring almost to a boil. Reduce heat and allow to simmer hard with the lid on for about 30 to 40 minutes (stir often and continue checking the liquid levels).
  12. Drain and rinse the remaining can of cannellini beans.
  13. Add to a food processor or bowl (if using an immersion blender) with a spoonful of the broth. Pulse until thickened.
  14. Pour and mix into the soup.
  15. Stir in the uncooked pasta.
  16. Add the fresh parsley.
  17. Cook until the pasta is al dente.
  18. Taste for salt.
  19. Ladle into soup bowls.
  20. Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil
  21. ENJOY!

Notes

SEE POST FOR NOTES, TIPS AND SUBSTITUTIONS!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Category: Soup, Bisque
  • Method: Easy
  • Cuisine: Italian

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 bowl

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