Italian White Bean and Pancetta Soup


This soup is similar to a minestrone, but contains no tomatoes. Garnish with freshly grated cheese.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 5 mins
8 servings


  • 6 ounces pancetta bacon, finely diced

  • ¼ cup olive oil

  • 1 cup red onion, chopped

  • 1 cup chopped celery

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 6 cups chicken stock

  • 4 (19 ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

  • 2 cups seashell pasta

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley


  1. In an 8-quart pot, saute pancetta in the olive oil until soft, about 10 minutes. Add onion and celery; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with sage, 1 teaspoon salt, and black pepper. Pour in the chicken stock, cover, and bring to a boil. Stir in the drained beans, cover, and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in 4 quarts boiling water with 1 teaspoon salt until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain and add to the soup.

  3. Stir in minced parsley before serving, and sprinkle with grated cheese.

Cook's Notes

You can use 1 pound of dried white beans in place of the canned beans. To substitute dried beans, soak them overnight in 5 cups of water. Drain beans and place in a large pot. Add 10 cups cold water, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer beans until tender, at least 1 hour. Drain the beans and proceed with the recipe.

If pancetta is unavailable, use lean bacon instead. You may also use 1 teaspoon crumbled dried sage in place of the fresh sage.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

572 Calories
18g Fat
80g Carbs
26g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 572
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 4g 22%
Cholesterol 14mg 5%
Sodium 785mg 34%
Total Carbohydrate 80g 29%
Dietary Fiber 14g 51%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 26g
Vitamin C 3mg 17%
Calcium 216mg 17%
Iron 9mg 51%
Potassium 1383mg 29%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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