Freezer Meal Recipes: Olive Garden Copycat Pasta e Fagioli Recipe

5 / 5 (2 reviews)

We love a good Olive Garden copycat recipe!

After enjoying the delicious homemade Olive Garden chicken alfredo recipe, I knew I needed more Olive Garden copycat recipes in my life! After trying a few different copycat recipes for the Olive Garden Pasta e Fagioli soup, I chose this one as my favorite. One of my neighbors/friends used to work at Olive Garden and this is the recipe she uses too. I’m not saying it is the Olive Garden recipe, but I do think it is a pretty good copycat! And either way it is a great soup recipe!

Olive Garden copycat recipe pasta e fagioli soup

Like many soup recipes, it is easy and quick to throw it all together, freezes well, and it is nice for feeding a large crowd too. The only ingredient that I don’t regularly have on hand is the V-8 juice. No problem though, it is easy to find at any grocery store.

easiest way to dice an onion

I recently learned about some cool shortcut techniques for chopping onions and how to julienne carrots.

How to Dice an Onion

  • Cut the onion in half through the root and stem ends.
  • Peel the onion.
  • Place one half cut-side-down on a cutting board.
  • Make fan-shaped cuts around the dome of the onion from the stem end to the root end, without cutting through the root end.
  • Then slice across the cuts and you have diced onion!

Of course, you can also peel and chop the onion into quarters, removing the stem and root ends, and place the pieces in a food processor. Then pulse a few times until the onion pieces reach the desired size. More dirty dishes though!

easiest way to julienne carrots

How to Julienne Carrots

  • Peel the carrot.
  • Slice the carrot at a sharp angle, making elongated oval discs.
  • Stack three or four of the ovals on top of one another.
  • Cut through the stack creating matchstick carrot pieces, or julienne.

ingredients for pasta e fagioli copycat soup

The ground beef is browned, the veggies are chopped, the seasonings are measured, and the cans are opened!

ground beef and veggies pasta e fagioli

Add the chopped veggies and minced garlic to the pot and saute for about 10 minutes.

boiling ditali pasta for fagioli

Then dump in all of the other ingredients, except the pasta, and let it simmer for an hour. Before the soup is done simmering, cook the ditali pasta according to the package instructions.

making pasta e fagioli soup

Stir in the drained, cooked pasta, let it all simmer a few more minutes and the soup is done! Enjoy for dinner and freeze the leftovers! Of if you are going to freeze it right away, I would skip the last few minutes of simmering and just let it cool.

To help give you an idea of the amount of soup in one batch, my red Dutch oven in the picture is 6.5 quarts. For my family of 2 adults and 3 small children, this recipe makes two entrees. So, I would make one batch to get two possible freezer meals.

See More Copycat Recipes!

olive garden zuppa toscana copycat recipe olive garden bread sticks homemade image

Thanks for sharing Peter Hertzmann’s methods on cutting onions and carrots, Food Gal!

Learn more about Freezer Meal Cooking:


Freezer Meal Recipes: Olive Garden Copycat Pasta e Fagioli Recipe

5 / 5 (2 reviews)
Prep Time: 15mins | Cook Time: 1hr
Serves: 8


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 small onion, diced (1 cup)
  • 1-2 carrots, julienned (1 cup)
  • 2-3 stalks celery, chopped (1 cup)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can red kidney beans, not drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can great northern beans, not drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (12 ounce) can V-8 vegetable juice
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 5 ounces ditali pasta


  1. Brown the ground beef in a large pot over medium heat. Drain off most of the fat.
  2. Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the pot and sauté for 10 minutes.
  3. Add remaining ingredients, except pasta, and simmer for 1 hour.
  4. About 45 minutes in to the simmer time, start cooking the pasta in boiling water. Cook according to the package directions until al dente. Drain the pasta, the add it to the large pot of soup. Simmer for 5 minutes and serve.
  5. Preparing For the Freezer:

  6. After adding the cooked pasta to the soup, remove from heat and let the soup cool. Portion into gallon-size resealable freezer bags or airtight containers. Freeze.
  7. Prepare after Freezing:

  8. Thaw. Reheat.

Recipe Adapted From:

Ingredients: Basil, Beans, Beef, Carrots, Celery, Garlic, Onion, Oregano, Pasta, Pepper, Salt, Thyme, Tomato, Vegetable Juice, White Vinegar
Meal Type: Main Dish, Fall, Super Bowl Party, Winter
Categories: Copycat, Soups and Chilis, Make Ahead/Freezer Meal, Stove Top

Comments & Reviews

Leave a Review/Reply

Want to see your picture by your comment? Get your custom avatar by registering for free at Gravatar.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: