Nothing compliments a rainy day quite like a bowl of Zuppa Toscana from Olive Garden. Instead of paying $7 for the unlimited soup and salad lunch, though, why not make your own pot for the same price? This recipe calls for minimal cooking skills and flatters a tight budget. The rich, creamy base, with that hearty punch of Italian spices, is certain to leave your wallet full and your soul satisfied. Every time.
I began using a copycat recipe from Food.com but found their directions a bit unclear. After two or three attempts, and a few personal tweaks, at last the Zuppa Toscana recipe is perfected! In less than 3o minutes, you’ll have enough Zuppa Toscana to feed all of tua famiglia! But if you decide to keep it to yourself, don’t worry. I won’t tell.
1 lb. Italian sausage
2 large potatoes, diced
1 large onion, chopped
2 minced garlic cloves
3 cups of chopped kale
2 (8 oz.) cans of chicken broth
1 quart water
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1. Chop up the sausage and brown it in the bottom of a large soup pan over medium heat.
2. Once brown, add the chicken broth and water to the pot and bring to a boil.
3. Add the potatoes, garlic, and onions and cook until the potatoes are halfway done (roughly ten minutes).
4. Turn to low heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
5. Add kale and cream when ready to serve.
6. Salt and pepper to taste.
1. Do not substitute half and half or milk for heavy whipping cream, as the creams helps to thicken the base of the soup. If you’re cutting calories, try substituting the sausage for turkey sausage and adding an Italian spice blend, like this.
2. If, like me, you had never heard of Kale before this recipe, you can find it at most Wal-Marts and Homelands in the produce section.
3. Do not cook the soup after adding Kale, as the Kale will quickly turn limp.
4. For the maximum Olive Garden experience, enjoy with breadsticks over a little Frank Sinatra.
Questions? Receipe reviews? Feel free to drop a comment below, and be sure to follow my blog for more budget-friendly bites to come!