LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — While traditional pasta and bean soups start by cooking dried beans for several hours, this one takes the easier route and uses canned beans and store-bought broth. Hearty from the spicy Italian sausage, it’s full of flavor and nutrition. Plus, it’s super easy and inexpensive to make.
Soup during these dry, cold months helps to keep us hydrated as well as full! The soup may be prepared in the Instant Pot or on the stovetop.
- 2 16-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 8 ounces hot Italian sausage (casings removed if using links, substitute frozen meatballs)
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes (substitute Rotel)
- 1 2-inch piece Parmesan rind, optional
- 1 cup ditalini or other small, tubular pasta, prepared and set aside
- Kosher salt
- Freshly cracked black pepper
- 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh basil (prepared pesto)
- 1 cup grated or shaved Parmesan
- Shredded kale or spinach, optional
- Puree 1 can of beans with 2 cups of broth in a food processor or blender; set aside.
- Cook sausage in a large pot over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Break up any large clumps. Drain.
- Add olive oil and onions to sausage fat in pot and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.
- Add garlic and rosemary; cook until fragrant.
- Add tomatoes, parmesan rind, remaining can of beans, remaining broth and pureed bean-broth mixture. Stir in cooked sausage, 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste) and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
- Bring to a slow boil; reduce heat to low and simmer until tomatoes and onions are soft, about 15 minutes.
- Cook pasta to al dente; drain and set aside.*
- When soup is done, stir in basil and grated Parmesan. Stir in cooked pasta.
- If desired, stir in 1- 1/2 cups shredded spinach or kale during the last 3-4 minutes of cooking.
- Serve topped with a dollop of prepared pesto and a sprinkle of grated or shaved Parmesan, if desired.
- Serve with a crusty garlic bread.
*The soup may be refrigerated for 3-4 days, but do not add pasta. Store the soup and pasta separately and combine just prior to serving.
Visit Dining with Debbie for multiple options for soup to tempt your palate, as well as many other recipes to try.