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Italian Bean Soup with Mini-Meatballs {Pasta e fagioli inspired}

Libby with Lemony Thyme
I'm delivering Italian Bean Soup with Mini-Meatballs, inspired by Pasta e fagioli AND delicious Italian Meatballs.
5 from 1 vote
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

For the meatballs...

  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons milk or cream
  • 1 Tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 handful fresh parsley finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper

For the soup...

  • 1 Tbl. olive oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 2 celery ribs chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 tsp. Mrs. Dash garlic & herb seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 30-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup Marinara or tomato sauce
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 15-ounce cans white beans such as Cannellini or Great Northern, drained and rinsed.
  • 1/2 pound Ditalini dried pasta or other small pasta

To serve...

  • freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • fresh parsley
  • drizzle olive oil

Instructions
 

For the meatballs...

  • Line a shallow baking pan with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl combine all meatball ingredients, except meat. Add meat and gently mix until just combined. Form into small (3/4-inch diameter) meatballs, arrange on baking sheet. Should make 60 - 70 meatballs. Bake for 10 minutes and reserve. Meatballs will complete their cooking in the soup.

For the soup...

  • Prepare pasta according to package instructions. Drain and reserve.
  • In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add in onion, carrots and celery; sauté until tender about 10 minutes. Add in garlic and seasoning and cook an additional minute.
  • Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and broth and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Add in drained beans and return to a simmer. Gently add meatballs to soup pot and simmer for 10 minutes.

To serve...

  • Add a generous scoop of warm pasta to individual bowls, then cover with hot soup. Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese, fresh parsley and a drizzle of olive oil