This easy Zuppa Toscana Soup recipe combines mild Italian sausage, tender potatoes, bacon and kale in a delicious creamy broth. A copycat recipe even better than Olive Garden!
I used to love the Olive Garden's soup, salad and breadsticks lunch, and I almost always got the Zuppa Toscana. I loved this hearty soup so much, that I started making a copycat version at home to save money. It's definitely a family favorite!
So when we visited the restaurant last, the soup was different. Still delicious, but not as meaty and hardly any kale! Or, maybe I'm just used to my homemade version of Zuppa Toscana. So, if you're looking for a Tuscan soup that has plenty of sausage and veggies in a delicious cream sauce, this one's for you!
Pair this delicious soup with a copycat Olive Garden Salad and breadsticks or crusty bread or homemade garlic bread for a hearty meal the whole family will love. If you have a pressure cooker, try my Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana.
There are just a few simple ingredients in this creamy potato soup recipe. You can find them in your grocery store. Full ingredient list is in the printable recipe card below.
- Italian sausage -- I use mild sausage, but use spicy Italian sausage if you like more heat.
- Potatoes -- I use Yukon gold, but russet potatoes will work. If you use gold potatoes, you don't have to peel them.
- Chicken broth or stock -- the base of the soup.
- Onion and garlic -- for flavor. If you're in a hurry, onion flakes or powder and garlic powder will work.
- Butter -- to sauté the onion. You can use olive oil or avocado oil instead.
- Heavy Cream -- to make the soup nice and creamy. You can sub half and half
- Fresh Kale -- fresh spinach or baby spinach is a good substitute
- Seasonings -- sea salt, black pepper, Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes
- Bacon -- I use leftover cooked crispy bacon to save a step and add it at the end. You can start with fresh bacon if you prefer.
How to Make Zuppa Toscana Soup Recipe
First, sauté the onion in butter until soft. Then, cook the sausage, and add the dried seasonings and garlic.
Toss in the potatoes and chicken stock. Give everything a good stir, and let the soup come to a boil. Then, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.
When the potatoes are done, stir in the heavy cream. When the soup reaches a simmer, stir in the chopped kale leaves. They only take a few minutes to cook, and you can serve the soup right away.
I like to add chopped bacon and a little grated Parmesan cheese when I serve the soup. Sometimes, I toss in a little fresh parsley for even more color and flavor.
How to Store Leftover Tuscan Potato Soup
Refrigerate leftover soup in an airtight container for 3-5 days. I like to reheat soup in the microwave or on the stove. You can freeze this creamy soup in smaller portions in a freezer safe container for up to 3 months. It may separate a little, but I find that stirring the soup well after reheating works fine.
For meal planning, cook bacon on the weekend, and save leftovers to use in the soup during the week. If you are using fresh bacon, you'll need about 4-5 slices of bacon -- thick slices work best.
Cut potatoes in roughly 1-inch cubes so they will cook faster. Alternately, you can slice the potatoes in thin slices.
For a thicker soup, I mash some of the potatoes with a potato masher before adding the heavy cream.
Tear or chop kale in smaller pieces so it is easier to eat. Be sure to add it at the end of the cooking time so it stays nice and green.
Zuppa Toscana Soup
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ½ yellow onion about 1 cup
- 1 pound mild Italian sausage casings removed
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 4 medium Yukon potatoes cubed, about 4 cups
- 32 oz chicken stock
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 4 cups chopped fresh kale leaves
- ¼ bacon cooked and chopped
- In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, melt butter, and cook onion until soft over medium heat
- Add sausage and cook until no longer pink, breaking with wooden spoon or spatula up as you go
- Stir in minced garlic, and cook until soft
- Stir in the Italian seasoning, salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper flakes
- Add the potatoes and chicken stock
- Cover, and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes can be pierced with a fork
- Stir in heavy cream. When soup starts to simmer, add kale and cook until just wilted
- Serve with chopped bacon and grated Parmesan cheese if desired
Nutrition information is estimated. Please do your own calculation to fit special diets.
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