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Italy is the home of this legendary, thick pasta and bean soup.

Ingredients

 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste

 4 cups water

 ½ tablespoon olive oil

 2 garlic cloves, minced

 2 tablespoons crumbled dry basil

 ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

 Salt to taste

 5 cups cooked Great Northern beans 3 (15-ounce cans), drained

 8 ounces uncooked pasta shells or small mostaccioli (similar to penne pasta)*

* For a gluten-free version, select your pasta accordingly.

Instructions

1) Combine all ingredients except beans and pasta in a large pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer covered for 30 minutes.

2) Add beans and simmer an additional 30 minutes.

3) Just before serving, prepare pasta according to package instructions. Drain and add to pot. Serve hot in bowls.

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This high protein soup makes a delicious meal during any season.

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