It’s crazy how long it has been since I shared a new blog post! We have been really busy and I started some new things recently that have occupied a lot of space in my brain. I’m one of those people that can only handle so much floating up there at one time. Can anyone else relate?
Just to share a little bit about what I’ve been up to… In the fall I got my group fitness certification through AFAA. I found out I passed in December but decided to wait to apply for a job until the holidays were over. I applied in January and started teaching cycling two times a week in February. And just last week I got my PiYo certification. I would really love to teach that too so I’ll start looking for another gig here pretty soon. I have learned so much over the last several months. For one, starting something new at my age is tough! But I’ve powered through and am really beginning to enjoy it. Second, fitness instructors put so much more time into getting ready for classes than I realized. Phew…I had no idea! If you take classes regularly, thank your instructor today!
Ok, now on to today’s blog post. This soup is easy, delicious, and nutritious. And it makes a lot. I mean A LOT! It’s the perfect meal to make when you need to take food to another family because you can make some for your family at the same time. Send it with a loaf of french bread, salad, and a dessert and you have a well rounded and easy-to-put-together meal. Or if you are entertaining a large crowd this recipe would be perfect. I labeled the recipe as serving 10 – 12 but if you add bread and salad to the side I think you could easily serve 12 or more people.
Pasta e Fagioli is basically soup with pasta and beans. This recipe has ground beef (or turkey) and some veggies (carrots, celery, and tomatoes) as well. It’s full of protein, fiber, and lots of nutrients. It’s a great soup to serve to kids because pasta is familiar and a loved ingredient by most. I used whole wheat pasta but you can use whatever pasta your family prefers. Throw in some kale or spinach at the end if you want to up the nutrient profile. This soup is especially delicious when served with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese on top. I’m telling you, don’t skip that part!
This soup is also freezer friendly. Just pull it out to defrost when you are ready to eat it and warm it in a pan on the stove.
- 1 lb. ground beef or turkey (I used ½ beef and ½ turkey)
- 3 carrots, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 7 cups beef broth
- 3 14.5 oz cans tomatoes (I used one can crushed and two cans diced)
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ¾ tsp dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 can white beans (I used great northern)
- 1 can red kidney beans
- 6 oz. small pasta, about 1½ cups (I used whole wheat elbows)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Parmesan cheese for garnish
- Saute the meat over medium - medium/high heat until cooked through. Add in the carrots, celery, onion, and garlic and cook for 4-5 minutes.
- Add the meat mixture, broth, tomatoes, basil, oregano, thyme, and bay leaves to the crockpot.
- Cook on low for 8 hours.
- When you are about 45 minutes from serving, cook the pasta according to package instructions.
- Add the cooked pasta and beans to the slow cooker and cook for 20 - 30 minutes.
- Taste, add salt and pepper as needed.
- Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.