This top-rated pasta soup features Italian sausage, chopped veggies, canned diced tomatoes, and cannellini beans. Serve with crusty bread for a hearty meal.
2 pounds hot or mild Italian sausages
3 carrots (12 oz. total), peeled and chopped
1 onion (12 oz.), peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3 quarts fat-skimmed chicken broth
2 cans (14 1/2 oz. each) diced tomatoes
2 cans (15 oz. each) cannellini (white) beans, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon dried basil
2 cups dried large shell-shaped pasta
4 quarts spinach leaves (about 12 oz.), rinsed
Salt and pepper
About 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
How to Make It
Squeeze sausages from casings into an 8- to 10-quart pan over high heat and stir often, breaking them apart with a spoon, until browned and crumbly, 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon out and discard all but 1 tablespoon fat from pan.
Add carrots, onion, and garlic; stir often until onion is limp, 5 to 7 minutes. Add broth, tomatoes (including juice), beans, and basil and bring to a boil.
Add pasta, reduce heat, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender to bite, about 10 minutes. Skim and discard fat. Stir in spinach and cook just until it is wilted, about 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve soup from the pan, or pour into a tureen. Offer parmesan cheese to add to taste.
You can prepare soup through step 2 up to 1 day ahead, but do not bring mixture to a boil; instead, cool, cover, and chill. To reheat, lift off and discard fat; bring soup to a boil.
We love hearty soups, whether it's hot or cold outside. This one is excellent. as well as very easy I used mild Italian sausage, but added crushed red pepper to taste. Also used small shells, which I cooked separately and added at the last minute. I served with French bread which made for a delicious complete meal.
Quite delish! Used turkey sausage and added some red wine (because that's how I roll!). Let it simmer for about 45 minutes. Prepared the shells separately and had the soup ladled over them. Served with warm roasted garlic bread. Will definitely make again!
This is a great soup, so much flavor. I would not use the large shells again and I also cook shells separately. My son in law & I had a similar soup at lunch the day I was making it at home and he like mine better than the restaurants and I had forgotten to add the cheese.
Very good & hearty soup. I used half mild Italian sausage & half Chicken Sicilian sausage and it worked quite well. I might use a medium-size shell pasta next time...the large get really large when they're cooked. I forgot to add the parmesan cheese at the end. I'm sure that would have been the finishing touch. Served with crusty bread on a cold winter's day, this is a complete meal in a pot.
Great recipe as-is and I love that you can add any other veggies you may have on hand (zucchini, cabbage, etc.) and it just gets better! I will definitely try the other reviewer's tip to pre-cook and cool the pasta, mine got mushy at the end, but still so yummy! Will definitely make again.
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