By Ashleigh Evans of dashofevans.com

Pasta fagioli, or pasta with beans, is just as traditional and popular a piece of Italian cuisine as pizza. Like pizza, pasta fagioli rose to popularity as a meal of common folk. Consisting of easily obtainable ingredients, the recipe created a filling and tasty dish that became a favorite of the masses.

You know it’s a winning combination when they give it its own name.

Years later, chefs and home cooks alike have continued to prepare this delicious course. Some have put different twists on it, like eliminating the broth base in this recipe or using tomato broth or juice as the base of the broth in this recipe. This recipe from our food blogger Ashleigh sticks close to the classic routes of the recipe while giving it a modern twist.

Like the traditional preparation, this dish uses chicken stock as the broth base, but uses your favorite marinara sauce to give it color and extra tomato flavor. The marinara helps give the pasta fagioli a thicker broth and, depending on what brand or style of sauce you choose to use, a bevy of extra flavors to enjoy.

Also classically prepared with beef or sausage, this recipe calls for ground turkey as the meat of choice. Lean, healthy and packed with flavor, turkey has become a popular and delicious protein alternative in lots of recipes. Ashleigh also prepared this dish with Randall Beans Mixed Beans instead of just great northern beans or kidney beans. Mixed beans inject a little more excitement in flavor variety. Who doesn’t like a little variety with their food?

Pasta Fagioli with Mixed Beans

Pasta Fagioli with Mixed Beans

Ingredients

  • 1.25 lbs Lean Ground Turkey
  • 2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 carrots, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 celery sticks, chopped
  • 1-cup onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can Italian-style diced tomatoes (14.5 oz)
  • 1 jar marinara sauce (2 cups)
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 Tbsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1 (24 oz) jar of Randall Beans Mixed Beans, rinsed
  • 1 cup elbow noodles (or any short cut pasta)
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste
  • Garnish: Parmesan cheese or pesto

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta to al dente (slightly firm) bite. Set aside.
  2. In a large soup pot, add extra virgin olive oil. Heat over medium-high heat. Add turkey. Crumble with a flat spoon or spatula as it cooks. Season with Italian seasoning.
  3. Add all veggies and garlic, allowing to cook for 5-6 minutes to soften.
  4. Toss in drained beans, marinara and diced tomatoes. Stir. Slowly pour in chicken stock. Turn heat to low and allow to bubble for 20 minutes. Taste and season with salt & pepper.
  5. To serve, ladle over pasta in a bowl. Top with parmesan cheese and a dollop of pesto.
  6. Store in refrigerator for up to a week, or freeze for up to 6 months.
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