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Lisa Faulkner’s Minestrone bean stew with smoky cheddar dumplings is a one-pot wonder of comfort food that’s perfect for this time of year.

Serves 4 Total Time 50 mins


Get the ingredients here

  • 2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1 onion, finely sliced 
  • 2 garlic cloves 
  • 2 sticks celery, finely sliced 
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes 
  • 1 jar tomato salsa 
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 500ml veg stock 
  • 400g kidney beans
  • 400g butter or cannellini beans
  • 70g of small macaroni or spaghetti,
    broken into small pieces 
  • 70g green beans, chopped to 1cm 

For the dumplings:

  • 150g self-raising flour 
  • 70g veg suet 
  • 1 pinch salt 
  • 1tsp smoked paprika  
  • approx. 120-150ml cold water
  • 30-40g grated cheddar


  1. Preheat oven to 200ºC/180ºC fan/Gas 6.
  2. Heat the oil in a casserole dish with a lid. Add the onion and fry over a low heat until soft.
  3. Add the garlic and fry for 1 min, then add the celery, tomatoes, salsa, paprika and stock till bubbling. 
  4. Drain and rinse the tinned beans and add them into the dish.
  5. Season and bring to the boil. Put the lid on and pop in the oven for 20 mins while you mix all the dumpling ingredients together in a bowl. 
  6. Please add as much water necessary to bind the dumpling mix together. This is typically between 120-150ml, but can be slightly different every time!
  7. After 20 mins are up, add the pasta and green beans and give it a good stir. Drop spoonfuls of the dumplings on top, cover and cook for a further 10 mins. 
  8. Take the lid off and cook for 10 mins until the dumplings are puffed and lovely.

Lisa’s Top Tip: To make it go further, add another tin of tomatoes and a tin of water. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

For more of Lisa Faulkner’s favourites check out her Feel Good Top Picks and her Indulgent Chocolate Cake.


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