Fall has arrived and that makes it easy to justify making soup every week. I usually stick with a slow cooker soup, so that it cooks all day and is ready to eat when we get home. No effort required. With the exception of cooking up some egg noodles before serving, this soup is meal prep friendly, make-ahead and a real time saver if you don’t have a lot of hands-on time to cook dinner.
Meal Prep Friendly
The best advantage to this soup is that it’s meal prep friendly. If you have all your prep done, it will literally take you 5 minutes to throw together in the slow cooker before heading to work in the morning. Even better, if you have room in your fridge, throw it all together the night before you need it, and put in on to cook before you leave in the morning.
Here is a list of all the prep you could do ahead of time, if you choose.
- Make Slow Cooker Vegetable Broth (I always have some in the freezer, so if you do too, defrost some.)
- Cook italian sausage (I also like to cook up a whole bunch at once, and freeze them, so if you do too, you can toss it directly in the slow cooker frozen.)
- Rinse and drain beans.
- Chop carrots, celery, onion, garlic.
I know not everyone makes their own broth like I do (but seriously, once you try it, you’ll never go back!) So a few time-saving shortcuts are to use store-bought broth and pre-cut julienned carrots to save a little prep time.
Set it and Forget it
Once you’ve got it going in the slow cooker, the only thing you have left to do is to cook up some broad egg noodles to add to each bowl before serving. If you don’t have egg noodles, you can use any pasta you want. I like to freeze the leftovers, so that’s why I add the noodles just before serving. Leaving the pasta in the soup when freezing will soak up all the broth and it will just be gross. So don’t do it.
Garnish and serve
I love topping it with a sprinkle of parm but it really is just fine without it. Serve with crusty bread and you’ve got a full meal. I really wish this post was longer, but it’s really that simple, that there’s no need!
Easiest slow cooker italian sausage and white bean soup
- 5 links hot or mild italian sausage casings removed, then cooked.
- 1 1/2 cups diced carrots
- 1 1/2 cups diced celery
- 1 diced onion
- 4 cloves chopped garlic
- 1 can white kidney beans (canellini), rinsed and drained (14 oz)
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tbsp. chicken bouillon concentrate
- 2 tsp. thyme
- 1/2 cup cooked egg noodles per serving of soup
Remove casings from sausages, break into small pieces and sauté until cooked.
Remove from pan and blot grease with a paper towel.
Add sausage to slow cooker, along with beans.
Chop all remaining vegetables and add to slow cooker.
Add broth, bouillon concentrate and thyme.
Cook on low for 8 hours.
Add 1/2 cooked egg noodles to each bowl before serving soup.