New York Times best-selling author, slow cooking expert, mom of three
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A Year of Slow Cooking

Monday, August 24, 2009

End of Summer Harvest Soup Slow Cooker Recipe


This is a great soup to put on in the early morning, and let it simmer all day long---it took 9 hours on low for my beans to get tender, and I liked it even more 3 hours later when the beans finally split and the zucchini turned translucent.

The flavors are hearty and rich, but this is still light enough to eat with a beautiful garden salad out in the yard.

The Ingredients.
serves 8

4 cups chicken broth (vegetable stock is fine!)
1 cup prepared pasta sauce
1 cup water
1 medium yellow onion, diced
4 zucchini, washed well and sliced in 1/4-inch rounds
2 yellow summer squash, washed well and sliced in 1/4-inch rounds
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (depending on size)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/3 cup dry white Cannellini beans (this doesn't sound like a lot, but they swell!)
1/2 cup pasta (to add 20 minutes before serving)
salt and pepper to taste
garnish with Parmesan and Romano cheeses

The Directions.

I used a 6-quart slow cooker. Wash squashes well, and slice in rounds. Place into slow cooker, with diced onion and tomato wedges. Rinse your beans in hot water, and add to cooker. Add broth, pasta sauce, and water. Stir in Italian seasoning.

Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours, or until beans have reached desired tenderness. 20 minutes before serving, stir in raw pasta. Serve with grated Parmesan and Romano cheese.

The Verdict.

Delicious. I loved how the tomatoes burst completely while slow cooked, and how the squash practically disappeared, so there was no need to chew it---the squash provided an awesome texture and flavor, and since it was so translucent, the kids ate it without fuss. I liked how the prepared pasta sauce gave the broth an oomph sometimes missing in homemade soups, and provided a rich color.
We had salad and homemade garlic bread sticks with our meal (bread sticks made from Pamela's Amazing Wheat-Free bread mix).

One more week until school starts! (I'm kind of excited. shhhhh.)
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61 comments:

Christina said...

Mmm this looks delicious! I love putting beans in summer soups with tons of veggies. It seems more light fare and simple.

Nowheymama said...

I have all of these ingredients on hand right now! How do you think it would do with canned beans?

Stephanie O'Dea said...

Hi Nowheymama,

canned beans would be just fine. Rinse and add the whole can.

xoxo steph

Lizzard said...

This sounds yummy! I had a crockpot pasta disaster this weekend (pasta ended up mushy and inedible after 20 minutes). Any suggestions?

divacolbert said...

This sounds great -- I'm a little short on squash BUT I have a small eggplant hanging about from last week's CSA share. I don't use eggplant much...do you think I could incorporate that into this soup in place of some of the squash (if you even think it would be good)?

Thanks! :)

$5 Dinner Mom said...

DELISH! Gonna have to try this out SOON! Def a $5 Dinner!!!

TJ said...

I've been looking for ways to use all the free zucchini I keep receiving. I made a similar soup last year, but this sounds much better! YUM! Now I'm hungry.

Maris said...

I love fall and am so excited that the summer is ending. You probably don't hear that so often but I'm not in grade school so summer, to me, just means bad hair and excessive humidiity!

Tracey said...

Do you think it would work with red beans instead? I have some of those and have no clue what to do with them.

Tania said...

Yummy! Definitely going to have to try that one! thanks!

squawmama said...

Wow this sounds so good... I love the ingredients and ease of making it... I'll be all over this one as soon as I go shopping for the squash & zuchinni☺ Thanks!

(((HUGS)))
Donna

Melissa Henning said...

Yum! Looks and sounds great! I will probably use canned beans too (washed and rinsed of course--you taught me to do that!). Hope all is well! Just noticed you changed your picture. I miss the crockpots and big cheese smile. lol (just teasing you).

Stephanie O'Dea said...

Hi Lizzard, hmm. Was it whole wheat? Maybe some of the softer (fresher) pasta would soften and disinigrate faster than the harder stuff. Or it could be that your soup was crazy-hot. You can certainly just stir in the dry pasta a few minutes before serving.

Divacolbert, absolutely. Eggplant would be lovely.

Erin, it's definitely under $5---especially if the veggies are home grown! ;-)

Tracey, yes. You can use dried red beans, but please bring them to a rolling boil on the stovetop for a full 10 minute before adding to the slow cooker. Red beans and red kidneys have the potential to be toxic if they aren't fully cooked.

lol, Melissa! I like that picture, too. ;-)

xoxo steph

Lizzard said...

Thanks, Stephanie! I think the soup was probably crazy-hot because it wasn't whole wheat pasta--just regular old pasta. I will try adding it in just a few minutes before. (You'd think mushy pasta would taste alright, but it absolutely does not.)

Raquel Webb said...

I preordered mine! Can't wait!

Beth said...

Bless you for posting a recipe I can use to consume some of the summer squash and tomatoes that are threatening to take over my house. You bet I'll be putting this in my crock pot first thing in the morning!

Kitty Valerie said...

yummy soup!!!
greetings from south america :)
val

Spryte said...

Yum! That looks delish!

Anonymous said...

Hi Steph....the soup looks delicious. How about precooking the pasta then adding it just before you serve the soup? I use the Fasta Pasta Micro cooker that I got from QVC (lots of stores carry it now) and it works wonderfully. The pasta cooks up perfect and no more boiling a big pot of water anymore. You can cook up to 4 servings in it.
Hope your pregnancy is going well.

Barb

Anonymous said...

We start school crazy-early here (both date and time), so the wee ones and I have been hard at it since the 17th (and I start teaching at 6:30.... want to place a bet on how awake my first class of Juniors is?)

This looks wonderful, and the whole deal is sitting in the crock in the fridge waiting for 4:30 to roll around. Perhaps I'll see if the dh can turn the crock on at a decent hour....hmmm... I love that I was able to use the left over spaghetti sauce from today's dinner, and I'll probably just throw the lo noodles in at the table as well....

I miss being able to make fussy food, like eggplant parmesan, or the days we spent canning.... And not once all summer did I think to myself, " I miss grading pretentious essays." hmmm...

Does anyone have a spare independently wealthy patron to spare? lol

Tami B. said...

You're always right on target with the recipes, Stephenie. I'm drowning in squash and tomatoes. Thank you for a yummy new way to serve them. I'm putting it in the crock now.

Juice said...

Great and very timely post. I was wondering about the eggplant too. Glad to see you think it will work. I'm going to try this one very very soon!

Beth said...

Ooh, this was so yummy! But my beans just never ever got cooked through. I'm talking 13 hours later, they're still a little pingy. My sister made this today and she used canned garbanzo beans, which I think would work well - already fully cooked, but they hold up really well to extended cooking in soups and stuff.

Horse Filled Days said...

This looks like a really great recipe. I am going to try it ASAP, Lord knows I have plenty of squash and zucchini for it, LOL....

http://horsefilleddays.blogspot.com/

mbsings said...

This looks absolutely fabulous! I'm not sure about soup during the summer heat, but it looks too good to resist and we are at the end of the farmer's market season. Thanks for the great idea!

Rev Kim said...

I put a call out on my own blog for slow cooker recipes, and a few of my commenters referred me here. Your site is addicting! So many delicious recipes! I'm looking forward to trying many of them, and I'll be checking back often.

Amy said...

Great soup!!!! What a great way to use up all the squash that I have from the farm stand and that which was given to me. Started it this morning and had it for dinner. Little to no trouble to make and my husband loves it as well as my 17 1/2 month old!

Jennifer said...

I made this tonight, and it was quite nice! I too had a problem with my beans not getting soft enough. Next time I might add canned beans towards the end of the cooking (or just get better dried beans!) It was really nice with some garlic toast.

Jamie (Suddenly Stay @ Home) said...

Hi Stephanie! I was wondering if I needed to presoak the beans... I think that I am going to based on some of the comments here... My store also had no cannelli beans, so we will be making a go of it with Great Northern! I will actually be blending this soup for my 11 month old son- LOVE all the veggies for him! Thanks.

Amy said...

I used great northern beans and it worked out great. My 17 month old loved the soup. I think I will try blending it for my 7 month old twins!

Michelle said...

Steph this looks so good thanks.

DrSteggy said...

I made this the other night (the 9 hour cooking time attracted me!) and I thought it was great. I used dried black beans since I had no white beans and instead of dried herbs I used fresh basil, marjoram and flat leaf parsely from the garden. I REALLY liked it.

shannon said...

I made this using canned garbanzos beans and after 10 hours of cooking they kind of disintegrated and it made a nice thick broth. we added shredded mozzarella on top as well as some salt and pepper. loved it.

Frogmama said...

Hi! I just blogged about something I made in the crockpot. Do you like Stuffed Green Peppers? I just thought I'd share :)

Frogmama's Findings - Stuffed Green Peppers

Princess Mommy said...

This was so good! I couldn't feed my 1 year old fast enough, and my husband (who is a huge meat lover) had 3 bowl fulls! The 3 year old was a little harder sell, but we still were able to convince her to eat about half her portion. Thanks for the great recipe!

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Oh, this one looks and sounds fabulous, Steph! I'll definitely add it to my list. :-)

Thanks so much,
Shirley

Six Feet Under Blog said...

Great cookbook!

Tami B. said...

Hopping back on to tell you that this was an amazing soup even in summer. I subbed mushrooms for the zucchini and it smelled so good that my mouth watered waiting for it. Love the rich italian spiciness of this one. Thank you for another timely recipe.

Amy @ Finer Things said...

Just added this to next week's menu plan. I've got everything (zucchini, squash ,tomatoes) in my garden!

Heather said...

Hi there! I just found your blog from a link on the Midwest Mama's blog. So glad I stopped by. This recipe looks delicious and reminds me of a soup I used to make in college. I love cooking with my crock pot, but unfortunately don't always know what to make or remember to use it. I can't wait to read more, sample your recipes and buy the cookbook. I'm inspired to use my crock pot more!

MeesterMama said...

We made this and it was awesome! Even better the second time around!!!

Thanks!! Keep them coming!

Together We Save said...

Yummy!!

Violet and Thomas said...

I just found your blog! I am so excited!!!!! I'm also really bummed that I just got back from the grocery store. I would have loved to make this soup tomorrow. I'll have to put it on next week’s menu.

I can't wait for your book to come out.

toby said...

That looks delicious - I am totally going to try it! Thanks!

Ashley said...

I made this last night! By coincidence, a neighbor gave us her home grown vegetables, so I was excited to be able to make this recipe! It came out great, everyone in my family had some, which is rare :] and it made a ton of soup, so we're all still eating leftovers since it was so good! Thanks

Building Materials & Supplies said...

That is making me hungry!

What a lovely dish.

Anonymous said...

We made this the other day and the kids kept coming to the kitchen,"just to smell it some more". My 3 girls (10, 8, & 6) loved it. My husband raved. My 3 yr. old son had to be bribed to take one bite. But, that's normal for him. Thanks for the great recipe!
Tina

avharris said...

this was so good but I had to make it without the beans. I could not find them anywhere.

Barbara Hedman said...

I'm definitely going to add this to my menus planning for next week. BTW: I just discovered your blog and will be a frequent visitor. Like you, I'm in love with my crock pot. Not everyone understands this. When I blogged about how heart broken I was when my favorite (I have more than two) crock pot cracked, my husband thought it was a low point, creatively speaking. Ha - I'm glad to have found a someone who would understand how truly tragic that was.

Laurie said...

This smells SO delicious while it's cooking! I switched it up a bit to go with what I had- I had frozen tomato juice from last years tomato boom (this years tomatoes all got blight!) so I used that instead of the broth and spaghetti sauce. I upped the italian seasoning a bit to compensate. I started mine a bit late to have a full 9 hours so I did presoak my beans (a bean soup mix- all I had) and they seem to be softening up wonderfully. The kids will love the pasta and I love that it can just cook until my FIL gets here. Many a meal was ruined since he gets running behind and arrives late- so this will be perfect. I will be making this a lot this fall and next summer. Yummy- thanks!

Anonymous said...

Your recipe looks deliciious and I could not wait to try it! I have it in the slow cooker now on high, given that this family never wakes up early enough to cook ALL DAY....do you think it will still work out right? Planning for a six hour cook time! Thanks again.

Kim said...

Just had this for dinner tonight. My husband and I loved it!! It smelled so good while cooking. Definitely will make this again :)

Can't wait for the book!

Ruby's Beauty said...

I'm in the process of making this right now (am eating a tiny "sample" bowl as I type this). I didn't have the beans so I substituted pork sausage. This stuff is so good and makes use of the things I have on hand! I have a ton of zucchini and fresh tomatoes in my garden and this is just perfect! :)

Ashley said...

This sounds delicious! Would it freeze well?

Stephanie said...

I made this mostly because I had ever ingredient already in my fridge (thanks to the CSA) or pantry. It was awesome and my toddler loved it. (I did, however, use canned beans, so I didn't have to worry about the beans not being done). Thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

I made this with canned beans, and lots more spaghetti sauce. I added one sweet red pepper cut into eighths. I would add another pepper next time. Cooked it 5 hours on high. Loved it - renamed it Ratatouille Soup!

Laura said...

I made this soup today. I think that if you use canned beans that it may be better to remove the cup of water from the recipe. (Soup was a little thin so I added more tomato sauce.) I also didn't have enough squash so I added some mushrooms.

pixiedreams8 said...

So Yummy! A hit with my family everyone cleaned their bowls!

Shelleyn said...

Verry very delicious! I added some ground beef and a little extra broth and pasta sauce to it to make it into our hearty dinner! My husband & I loved it! I will definitely make again!

Jamiffer said...

I made this the other night and needed to add more than 1/2 cup of pasta (added maybe 2 cups of dry pasta). Also had to add more seasoning to the mix. Not sure if it was a little bland because I used low salt chicken broth, but once I added some more seasoning it was much better. Really nice meal!

Ebony, Ivy & Thyme said...

I have had your site in my favs for a year. My daughter learned about this site at work during lunch. We have been following it. She has already gone through two crockpots. The first one had a glitch and she had to send it back. I have used a crockpot for well over 35 years. It is a life saver. Thank you for sharing your cooking knowledge with the world.

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