Make Olive Garden’s Delicious Pasta Fagioli at Home


Pasta Fagioli

You’ll love, love, love this rich, hearty, fiber packed soup! Perfect to make this weekend. It tastes very similar to the pasta e fagioli at Olive Garden.  It’s one of the lowest-fat items on the Olive Garden menu, with 2.5 of fat per serving.  My recipe actually contains more calories than theirs does because I’ve added more beans and veggies.  Each 1 cup serving has 156 calories, 2 grams fat, 6 grams of fiber and 5 Weight Watchers SmartPoints.  So flavorful, this recipe makes a TON of soup to stock your freezer with.  It’s great as a first course or make the serving size 1½ to 2 cups and it becomes a very filling main-course soup. You’ll want to add this satisfying dish to your soup repertoire.  It’s a keeper for sure!

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour


1 pound lean ground beef or ground turkey, see shopping tip

1 teaspoon olive oil

3 cups onions, chopped

4 carrots, chopped

4 celery stalks, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 (28oz) can tomatoes, diced

1 (16 oz) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 (16 oz) can white kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 (16 oz) can great northern beans, rinsed and drained

3 (10oz) cans reduced-sodium beef broth

1 (24 oz) jar marinara or pasta sauce, I used Prego’s Heart Smart pasta sauce

½ cup water

1 zucchini, chopped

2 tablespoons Italian seasoning

Fresh ground pepper, to taste

6 ounces whole wheat penne pasta

Grated Parmesan cheese to top each bowl with, optional


1. Brown beef in a large nonstick soup pot. Drain in a colander in sink.

2. In the same pot, heat olive oil.  Add onions, carrots, celery, and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes. Stir often.

3. Add drained beef back to pot.  Stir in canned tomatoes, beans, beef broth, pasta sauce, zucchini, water, Italian seasonings and pepper.

4. Bring soup up to a boil. Turn heat to a simmer, cover and let cook for 50 minutes.

5. Add pasta to soup.  Cover and cook for about 10 minutes longer until pasta is ready.  If you like a thinner soup, just add another ½ cup water or so.

6. Ladle soup into a small bowl or cup.  Top with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired

7. This soup freezes great!

Makes 20 cups (each serving, 1 cup)

Healthy Benefits

Beans are loaded with protein and fiber. They actually contain a wider variety of healthy nutrients than most foods.  These include calcium, potassium, vitamin B6, magnesium, folate, and alpha-linolenic acid.

Just by browning the beef and draining the fat before adding it to the soup, you’ll cut way down on the fat.  It’s a simple prep tip that makes browning any type of meat healthier.

Shopping Tips

Look for the leanest ground beef in your supermarket.  I bought mine at Trader Joe’s.

Storage Tip

Freeze leftover soup in pint size containers.  Stores like Smart and Final sell deli style plastic containers that are perfect to freeze in.  They’re very reasonably priced.

Weight Watchers SmartPoints
Weight Watchers POINTS PLUS
Weight Watchers
(old points) 2

SKINNY FACTS: for 1 cup (not including cheese)
156 calories, 2g fat, 1g sat. fat, 12mg chol, 12g protein, 25g carbs, 6g fiber, 438mg sodium, 6g sugar
FACTS: for 1 serving Olive Gardens Pasta E. Fagioli
130 calories, 2.5g fat, 17g carbs, 6g fiber, 680g sodium, 6g sugar

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68 Responses to “Make Olive Garden’s Delicious Pasta Fagioli at Home”

  1. Lissy Keller Says:

    Just added pasta and waiting for it to finish up. Tried a small sample and oh so good. I am wondering why you do not list Saturated Fat content? It would be very nice to have this nutritional information as well. Thanks

  2. admin Says:

    The space I have for my nutrition facts is limited. I did start including the chol a few months ago. But, I’ll see what I can do for new recipes Lissy.

  3. Kelly@Cateringsandiego Says:

    This looks so good! That’s one of my favorite soups at Olive Garden, as well.

  4. Chelley Says:

    This is one of my favorite soups from Olive Garden. I made this tonight and am in heaven!!! Soooo good!! And my husband said it was outstanding!! Win and a keeper!!!!

  5. admin Says:

    Yay Chelley. Thank for your wonderful feedback!
    My best,

  6. christine Says:

    Sounds like a warm, soul filling soup. I love the idea of all those healthy beans in there!

  7. admin Says:

    It’s one of the most satisfying meals in a bowl. Enjoy!

  8. Rena McDaniel Says:

    I haven’t tried it at Olive Garden, but I can’t wait to try this one! PInned and shared!

  9. admin Says:

    Thanks so much Rena!

  10. Haralee Says:

    Perfect. It is almost soup and stew weather and I am looking for something to use my left over from the garden not getting any fresher tomatoes. This would work well. Thanks

  11. April J Harris Says:

    Love this recipe, Nancy! Hearty, satisfying, wholesome and skinny too – it is so perfect for fall!

  12. admin Says:

    Especially yummy with veggies from your garden, Haralee!

  13. admin Says:

    It’s one of my favorites to make this time of year, April.
    Hope you get a chance to make it!

  14. Linda (Meal Planning Maven) Says:

    So tummy-warming, hearty and definitely a big bowlful of YUM Nancy!

  15. Scott Says:

    This was last night’s dinner and today’s lunch. SO GOOD!

  16. admin Says:

    I’m so happy to hear that, Scott. Thanks for letting me know!
    My best,

  17. Erica s Says:

    Love pasta fagiole! Your recipe sounds perfect!

  18. Linda (Meal Planning Maven) Says:

    We are going to have some cold weather coming our way this week and your soup will be perfect for dinner!

  19. April J Harris Says:

    Delicious, nutritious, warming and comforting – your Pasta Fagioli has it all, Nancy!

  20. admin Says:

    Thanks so much April!

  21. Linda (Meal Planning Maven) Says:

    It is so chilly and damp here in Florida and your soup would be the perfect choice for dinner tonight!

  22. Dave Says:

    Cooking up my second batch of this right now. I freeze this in plastic sandwich bags, 1 cup in each bag, and then take 2 bags with me to work every day (put them in the fridge the night before). Super hearty and healthy lunch every day. It’s been a savior to my diet. Thank you!

  23. admin Says:

    I LOVE your feedback Dave. Thanks so much sharing!
    With my best wishes,

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