Healthy Slow Cooker Pasta e Fagioli soup is a lightened up and hearty stick-to-your-ribs dish perfect for a chilly day. Best of all, this copycat recipe & video Olive Garden’s Pasta e Fagioli soup is healthier with gluten free options.
During the winter months, I have soup and stews on my mind non-stop. Now that my oldest is in school full-time, it seems like every week he’s coming home with a different cold.
A hot bowl of soup is the best way to ensure that he’s getting in those extra nutrients to fight off those sickies.
One of his favorites is the Pasta e Fagioli soup from The Olive Garden. It’s been forever since the hubs and I ate there. It was our go-to chain restaurant when we were dating, so a few months ago we decided it would be fun to take the whole family there. Both of the kiddos couldn’t get enough of all the soups and bread there.
This lightened-up version clocks in at less than 300 calories per a generous size serving and is just as comforting and hearty as the one we had. It’s got a ton of healthy veggies like carrots, celery and zucchini. Making it in the slow cooker makes this even more perfect for busy weeknights.
Now, there is a little bit of prep time involved. It’s not hard at all though. You just have to brown the meat in a skillet before adding it into the slow cooker. I used extra-lean ground turkey and a pinch of red pepper flakes (totally optional) to give it that extra bump of flavor.
Everything else except for the beans, zucchini and pasta get added to the crock-pot to cook low and slow.
35-45 minutes before serving, you add in those remaining ingredients and cook on high, until the pasta is tender.
Make Ahead Tips for this Pasta e Fagioli Soup:
- Cut the carrots, celery and zucchini the night before and store into zip-top bags in the fridge
- Brown the meat the night before and store in an air-tight container in the fridge
This recipe is one of those dishes that tastes even better the next day once the flavors have had a chance to meld together. It’s healthy comfort food at it’s best.
The leftovers make a perfectly filling lunch for the week and always hits the spot on a chilly winter day.
More slow cooker winter favorites: