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Better Than Olive Garden: Pasta Fagioli

Step into the realm of hearty Italian comfort food with this tantalizing recipe for Pasta e Fagioli.

pasta e fagioli

Move over, Olive Garden, because once you taste this homemade version, you'll never look back. Are you ready to embark on a culinary journey through rustic flavors and wholesome ingredients?

Let's go!

Pasta Fagioli Ingredients

- 1 pound of lean ground beef and pork mix (or opt for plain ground beef or sausage)

- 1 medium onion, diced

- 3 sticks of celery, diced

- 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced

- 4 cloves of garlic, minced

- 1 can of diced tomatoes with juices

- 1 can of crushed tomatoes

- 1 can of red kidney beans, drained

- 1 can of cannellini beans or great northern beans, drained

- 4 cups of chicken broth

- 1/2 tablespoon of red wine vinegar

- 1/2 tablespoon of Italian seasoning

- 1 tablespoon of dried oregano

- 1 tablespoon of dried basil

- 1 tablespoon of crushed red pepper flakes (optional, adjust to taste)

- 3/4 cup of uncooked ditalini pasta

- Salt and pepper to taste


1. Begin by adding the ground meat to a soup pot or Dutch oven. Season it with salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder to your liking. Cook over medium-high heat until it browns, ensuring to break it up with a spoon as it cooks. No need to drain the fat for added flavor.

2. Stir in the diced onion, celery, carrots, and minced garlic. Let them cook for another 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they soften and release their aromatic essence.

3. Now, it's time to introduce the star ingredients. Add the diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, canned beans, chicken broth, red wine vinegar, sugar, Italian seasoning, oregano, basil, and red pepper flakes to the pot. Bring the mixture to a vigorous boil over high heat.

4. Once the soup reaches a boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer gently, covered with the lid slightly ajar, for 15-20 minutes. This slow simmer allows the flavors to meld and deepen, creating a symphony of taste.

5. Add the ditalini pasta to the pot and continue to simmer until it reaches the desired tenderness, approximately 15-20 minutes. Remember to stir the soup occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

6. For those planning on leftovers, it's advisable to cook the pasta separately and add it to individual portions as needed to maintain its texture.

7. Let the soup simmer for an additional 15 minutes to ensure all the flavors harmonize beautifully.

8. Before serving, season the soup with salt and pepper to your taste preferences. Garnish each bowl with fresh parsley and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese for a finishing touch that elevates every spoonful. Serve with breadsticks or garlic knots.

With each savory bite, savor the rich combination of tender meat, hearty beans, and al dente pasta, all bathed in a flavorful broth infused with aromatic herbs and spices. Whether enjoyed as a soul-warming dinner or a comforting lunch, this homemade Pasta e Fagioli is sure to become a cherished favorite in your culinary repertoire.

So, what are you waiting for? Gather your ingredients and immerse yourself in the culinary magic of Italian tradition right in your own kitchen tonight. Buon appetito!

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