Pasta e Fagioli - Tasty Italian soup recipe made with pasta and beans. Secret flavor booster takes this recipe to next level deliciousness!
Incredibly delicious with our secret flavor booster and totally dunk-able with some buttery garlic breadsticks. Make this delicious Italian soup with pantry staples and common vegetables you probably already have in house for an easy weeknight dinner your whole family will love.
Looking for more dunkable, hearty soup recipes? Don't miss our Cheesy Potato Soup. It's one of our most popular recipes here at Seanna's Kitchen. It's so good.
Food is Love
When we were first married, my husband and I would get a quart of this Classic Italian Soup every weekend from the Italian restaurant around the corner from us in Chicago. It always came with a small loaf of warm, crusty Italian bread that we would dip into the soup as we devoured it. We would set out placemats on the coffee table in front of the tv and sit on the floor enjoying these delicious, simple meals together as newlyweds.
This is my re-creation of the Pasta e Fagioli we shared together back in the day. And when I make this soup, the aroma of its savory flavors always takes me back to those happy days.
Watch How to Make It
Why You'll Love This Recipe
This tasty soup recipe is made with simple pantry ingredients and common vegetables you probably already have in the house.
Secret to Flavor Booster... is found in simmering the soup with a small piece of Parmesan Rind. This is the end of the piece of Parmesan that has the writing on it. Putting some Parmesan Rind into a pot of simmering soup will bring a beautiful depth of flavor to soups.
Here's What You Need
All you need to make tasty Italian soup recipe are some pantry staples and fresh vegetables.
Notes on Ingredients
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil - Use a high quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil, as it will infuse its beautiful aromatic qualities into what you are cooking.
- Onion - Use yellow onion for this soup recipe. Substitute Red onion, or Italian Cipollini.
- Garlic - Garlic should be minced with a knife and not pressed through a garlic press. Using a garlic press will release too much of a pungent flavor from the garlic.
- Carrots - Fresh, diced, and delicious.
- Celery - Choose the tender, small ribs from the center of the bunch. They will soften quickly as you cook.
- Potatoes - I use Russet Potatoes for this recipe. Any yellow, white, or red potato will work fine, as well.
- Kosher Salt - Build the flavor layers of the soup by adding a sprinkle or two of salt at each step of the cooking process.
- Ground Pepper
- Cannellini Beans - Use canned or dried beans. Substitute: Cranberry Beans or Borlotti, Great Northern Beans, or Kidney Beans.
- Tomatoes - Fresh or canned tomatoes can be used.
- Water - Fresh, cold tap water.
- Beef Broth - Some Pasta e Fagioli recipes use a piece of prosciutto rind, or ground beef to add flavor. I prefer beef broth, as I do not like to run into pieces of meat in this soup.
- Parmesan Rind - This is the special flavor enhancer of this tasty soup.
- Ditalini Pasta - or Elbow Macaroni are the traditional pasta to use in Pasta e Fagioli.
- Butter - A cold tablespoon of butter adds a nice finishing touch to this delicious soup recipe.
- Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano - Always adds the perfect finishing touch. Buy the highest quality Parmigiano-Reggiano you can find from your local grocery store or Italian grocer. Authentic Parmigiano-Reggiano is imported from Italy and has its name stamped name on the rind.
How to Make It
Building the Flavor Base
1. Sweat Onion and Garlic. Sauté until just translucent.
2. Add Carrots, Celery, and Potatoes.
3. Add the Tomatoes, Beans, Water, Beef Broth, and Salt and Pepper.
4. Simmer with Parmesan Rind.
5. Remove Parmesan Rind and Blend. Remove the Parmesan Rind and partially blend the soup with an immersion blender.
Add the Pasta
6. Cook the Pasta in the Soup. Cook the pasta in the soup according to the time specified on the box of pasta.
7. Finishing Touches. Stir in the Butter and some Parmigiano-Reggiano.
- Using Dried Beans - If using dried beans, make sure you soak them overnight in unsalted water. Cover the dried beans enough water (about 2 inches above the beans) to keep the beans covered once they expand in the water. Drain them in a colander the next day. Measure out 1 cup of soaked beans for use in this recipe.
- Meatless, or Vegetarian Option - More often than not, I omit the beef broth altogether and just use water. It's just as good.
- Parmesan Rind - Parmesan Rind adds a savory depth of flavor that is just incredibly tasty.
- Add more water or broth if necessary - Sometimes, evaporation during the cooking process or absorption of the liquid by the pasta causes the soup to become too thick. Just add a little more liquid if this happens.
Pasta Fagioli is a soup whose main focus is on pasta and beans and is generally thicker than Minestrone. Minestrone soup has an emphasis on the vegetables.
Pasta Fagioli is what this classic Italian soup is called in Italy. It is commonly called Pasta Fazool in the U.S.
Pasta Fagioli is delicious served with a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and some freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano on top. Don't forget some crusty Italian bread or garlic breadsticks to dip into this thick soup.
Serve this tasty Italian soup:
- With a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Homemade Garlic Breadsticks
- Even better the next day.
Freezing and Storage
This Pasta e Fagioli Recipe can be easily made ahead and frozen in restaurant storage containers for an easy weeknight dinner.
There you have it. Delicious Pasta e Fagioli. It's as easy as that! We hope you enjoy our super simple, super tasty soup recipe. Try it and let us know how you like it. We'd love to hear from you!
xo ~ Seanna
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Pasta e Fagioli Soup
- soup ladle
- ½ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil Divided. ¼ Cup for Cooking, and ¼ Cup Reserved for Serving.
- 1 Cup Onion Diced.
- 2 Cloves Garlic Minced.
- 1 Cup Carrots Diced.
- 1 Cup Celery Diced.
- 1 Cup Potatoes Diced.
- 1 Tablespoon Kosher Salt to be sprinkled in bit by bit during each cooking step.
- 1 Can of Cannellini Beans Drained.
- 1 Can of Diced Tomatoes Drained.
- 1 Quart Cold Water.
- 1 Quart Beef Broth.
- Small Parmesan Rind.
- 8 Ounces Ditalini Pasta or Elbow Macaroni.
- 1 Tablespoon Butter.
- 1 Cup Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Divided. ¼ Cup for Cooking and ¾ Cup Reserved for Serving.
- Sauté Onion and Garlic. Sauté Onion and Garlic in Extra Virgin Olive Oil, until just translucent. Seasoning with a sprinkle of salt as they sauté.
- Add Vegetables. Add Carrots, Celery, and Potatoes and sauté for 10 minutes, until vegetables are softened. Seasoning again with another sprinkle of salt as they sauté.
- Add Tomatoes, Beans and Cold Water, Broth, and Remaining Salt and Pepper. Add the Diced Tomatoes, Cannellini Beans, Cold Water, Beef Broth, and remaining Salt and Pepper to the pot and stir until combined.
- Simmer with Parmesan Rind. Bring the soup up to a low boil then reduce the heat to a simmer. Add the Parmesan Rind and simmer the soup for 45 - 60 Minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove Parmesan Rind and Blend. Remove the Parmesan Rind and partially blend the soup with an immersion blender, leaving some chunks of vegetable throughout.
- Cook the Pasta in the Soup. Bring the soup back up to a low boil and add the uncooked pasta to the soup. Cook the pasta in the soup according to the time specified on the box of pasta, for approximately 10 minutes.
- Finishing Touches. Once the pasta is al denté or just soft enough to eat, turn off the heat. Stir in the Butter and some Parmigiano-Reggiano until both are completely dissolved into the soup.
- Serve. Serve with a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and a sprinkling of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano over the top. Enjoy!
Using Dried BeansIf using dried beans, make sure you soak them overnight in unsalted water. Cover the dried beans enough water (about 2 inches above the beans) to keep the beans covered once they expand in the water. Drain them in a colander the next day. Measure out 1 cup of soaked beans for use in this recipe.
Meatless, or Vegetarian OptionMore often than not, I omit the beef broth altogether and just use water. It's just as good.
Parmesan RindThis is the secret flavor booster of this tasty soup. Parmesan Rind adds a savory depth of flavor that is just incredibly tasty.
Add more water or broth if necessary.Sometimes, evaporation during the cooking process or absorption of the liquid by the pasta causes the soup to become too thick. Just add a little more liquid if this happens.
Did you love this recipe? If you make this recipe and love it, stop back and give it a 5-star rating ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ and leave a comment. THANK YOU!! Follow Seanna's Kitchen and share this recipe with your friends on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest and subscribe my Newsletter for ALL the latest recipes! We'd love to hear from you!
I could eat pasta every night of the week. This looks hearty and delicious. Perfect for batch cooking too.
Thanks so much Gloria. I feel same!
This is great! Thanks for including the vegetarian option as well - we made it with vegetable stock which worked really well!
Thanks Maya! So glad to hear!
I've been making all the soups this winter and this one is definitely my fave! (There's something about tiny pasta!) But, seriously...it's hearty, umami packed, but also feels like I'm fueling up right with this soup!
Thanks so much Linda! I've been making all the soups as well! So hearty and satisfying on cold winter nights.
Love this soup. Flavors are amazing and it reminds me of Rudi's in Chicago!!
Great memories. I'm so glad you like it!