Thursday, December 10, 2015

Meatball and Vegetable Bowtie Soup

A beef broth and tomato based, meatball and vegetable soup with bowtie pasta, made super easy with frozen Italian-style meatballs. 
A beef broth and tomato based, meatball and vegetable soup with bowtie pasta, made super easy with frozen Italian-style meatballs.

Meatball and Vegetable Bowtie Soup

Christmas is upon us y'all and once we slip past the Thanksgiving holiday, well... the days, they seem to come and go faster than ever, until before we know it, Christmas is here!

Shopping and wrapping, planning and decorating, and all the hustle and bustle take over, multiplying our already busy lives... and in the midst of it all, we still have to eat and sometimes there are house guests on top of the usual crew.

Those quick drive through windows can sure look tempting during this busy season, but something from home is on the way with a little help from a few common pantry items, and a bag of frozen meatballs.

Usually there are lots of different options to prepare them too - from oven to stove top to slow cooker.

Since this bag is a hefty 6-pounds, you've got options for multiple meals in this single over-sized resealable bag too. It was just one such night, when I'd had a super busy day and was especially tired, and just couldn't even think of a meal to start with, that I remembered I had these meatballs in the freezer. A quick defrost in the microwave and I browned them in the oven for about 15 minutes on the convection setting.

While those were in the oven, I made a simple brown gravy, and boiled the tail end of a bag of egg noodles out of the pantry, added a canned veggie and a simple salad and before I knew it I had a quick, easy and delicious meal. My husband aka The Cajun, loves to eat these meatballs straight out of the oven, but he also loves gravy, so it was a win-win for him, and super easy and stress free for me. Gotta love that!

Of course, I'm also a real fan of a quick, semi-homemade spaghetti sauce with meatballs, and with frozen meatballs, it's one of the fastest, tastiest meals you could ask for.

Next, I decided to do a soup, because with everybody coming and going at different times, and drop by holiday guests, it's a great meal to make and leave on low on the stovetop or hold in a slow cooker on warm. Loaded with flavor, it only gets better as it sits, as the meatballs continue to soak up juice and flavor from the vegetables and broth. I didn't brown the meatballs, which is another time saver, although you certainly could. The meatballs held up beautifully in the soup without browning though.

As with all soups, I prefer to prepare the pasta separately since we don't eat a full pot of soup between the two of us in one sitting and it tends to soak up a lot of the liquid otherwise, so have a covered bowl of already cooked pasta at the ready. Then everybody can add the pasta to their own individual bowls before spooning the soup on top.

Serve it with a good, crusty bread and offer a fresh chunk of Parmesan cheese and some extra green onion for garnish.

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Posted by on December 10, 2015

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Disclosure: This post has been revised from the original because it was part of a series for the 2015 Daily Chef – Casa di Bertacchi Meatballs Ambassadorship program to help show how to save time and prep making delicious, easily prepared meals using Daily Chef Casa di Bertacchi fully cooked meatballs from Sam's Club. Unfortunately, those meatballs are no longer available. Participation in this program was voluntary, however, Sam's Club and Casa did provide me with compensation for this post. Original recipe was developed by me and all opinions expressed herein are entirely my own.

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