20 mins


1 hour


  • 1 tablespoon olive or other cooking oil
  • 1 or 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 rasher bacon or a small piece of ham, finely sliced (optional)
  • 3 sticks celery, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 large carrot, chopped into small pieces
  • 400g can butter, cannellini or other white beans
  • 6 cups stock (you can make it up with
    beef or chicken cubes)
  • 400g can tomatoes
  • ½ a small cabbage or 10 spinach leaves,
    sliced or 2 zucchinis, chopped into small
    pieces or about 12 chopped green beans
  • ⅓ cup pasta: macaroni or broken up


To make the soup tastier and more nutritious, you can add one or both:

  • Red pepper/capsicum, chopped
  • Parsley, thyme, basil or other herb, chopped

To serve

Crusty or toasted bread

Let’s get cooking

Step 1

Put the oil in a large saucepan and place over the stove on low heat. Add the garlic, onion and ham/bacon.

Step 2

Stir them around until they are slightly cooked and beginning to brown a little.

Step 3

Drain the can of beans.

Step 4

Add the canned beans, celery and carrot into the saucepan and stir them all around with the onion, ham and garlic for two minutes.

Step 5

Add the stock and the can of tomatoes and stir around.

Step 6

Put the lid on the saucepan and turn the heat down to a slow simmer for about one hour.

Step 7

After 40 minutes, add the cabbage or other vegetable (spinach, green beans, zucchinis etc), as well as the pasta. Bring back to the boil and cook slowly for another 20 minutes.

Step 8

Test the flavour. Add some salt and pepper, to your taste.

Serve with the crusty or toasted bread.

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