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Prep 15 mins
Cook 6 hrs 30 mins
I always love to find a new way to use frozen meatballs--either commercial or homemade and frozen. This is a particularly good (and hearty) soup. I think you will enjoy it. I found a tiny elbow macaroni in the Mexican section of the ethnic aisle of the supermarket; I thought it worked very well in this recipe. It's name is Pasta Alimenticia (La Moderna brand). I also substituted Navy beans for the kidneys since we like them best. The recipe comes from "Slow Cooker Magic" by Rehberg and Conway.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 lb frozen meatballs
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 5 cups beef broth (or 5 bouillon cubes and 5 cups water)
- 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can diced tomatoes, Italian-style
- 1 cup peeled and sliced carrot, about 1/8-inch thick
- 1 cup sliced celery, about 1/4-inch thick
- 1⁄2 cup chopped green pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 1 cup elbow macaroni
- 1 (16 ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- grated parmesan cheese (to garnish)
- In a nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add meatballs and brown on all sides. Just before they are completely browned, add the onion to the skillet and reduce heat to medium-low. Continue cooking about 2 more minutes or until the onions are soft.
- Add 1 cup of the beef broth to the pan, stirring up all the browned particles from the bottom of the pan. Carefully pour contents of skillet into your crock pot. I used a 4-quart sized crock pot.
- Add the rest of the beef broth, tomatoes, carrots, celery, green pepper, oregano, basil and parsley to the crock pot. Cover and cook on LO for 6 to 8 hours.
- Turn the heat to HI. Add the macaroni and rinsed and drained beans; stir. Cover and cook about 30 minutes until the macaroni is fully cooked.
- Taste before serving. If necessary, adjust seasoning. Serve in soup bowls with grated Parmesan cheese on top.
Great recipe! My family loved it. Only change I made was to eliminate the oregano and add three cloves of crushed garlic. I was pressed for time and cooked it for 4 hours on high rather than 6 hours on low.I also substituted whole wheat penni pasta for macaroni. Next time I would add another half cup of pasta.