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Zuppa Toscana Soup

It is so easy to make Olive Garden’s classic Zuppa Toscana Soup at home! This incredible copycat recipe is even better than the restaurant version and can be made on the stove top or in the crock pot! Bonus: It’s Stove Top and Crock Pot friendly!

Be sure to pair this with my crusty, airy, No Knead Bread for dipping!

A white bowl of Zuppa Toscana Soup with bacon on top.

Zuppa Toscana Soup

There is nothing cozier than a warm bowl of Zuppa Toscana Soup made right in your own kitchen. Olive Garden’s version is great, but I really do find this homemade version to be even better!

Maybe it’s the incredible combination of simple seasonings, or my trusty flavor enhancers, or just the simple fact that you can hand pick your own ingredients and use any variety of sausage that you want (hot, mild, regular). Either way, you and your family are going to love this.

Don’t miss my PRO TIPS below!

How to Make It

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Cook and crumble the sausage over medium heat. Reserve 1 Tbsp. drippings and set aside. Sauté the onions in butter and the reserved drippings until softened. Add garlic, hot sauce, soy sauce, and seasonings and cook for 1 more minute. Add the flour and cook for 2 minutes.

Cooked sausage in a pot next to a pot of softened onions and seasonings.

Add the chicken broth and heavy cream in small splashes. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.

Adding chicken broth and cream to a pot of soup.

Add the potatoes and the cooked sausage.

Adding potatoes and cooked sausage to a soup pot with broth.

Cook until the potatoes are nearly fork tender, then add the kale until softened/wilted. Garnish with red pepper flakes, grated Parmesan, and/or chopped bacon and serve!

Adding kale to soup to make Zuppa Toscana Soup.

Pro Tips

  • Flavor Enhancers: The mustard powder, hot sauce, and soy sauce are flavor enhancers and can’t be tasted outright in this recipe. The hot sauce doesn’t make this soup hot/spicy. I usually use Frank’s hot sauce.
  • Sausage: Hot Italian Sausage is typically used in Zuppa Toscana, but mild Italian works if you are heat averse. My personal preference is Jimmy Dean Original Pork Sausage.
  • The sausage in this recipe is cooked over medium heat as opposed to medium-high, this keeps it extra juicy and gives you enough drippings to make the roux, which also adds a lot of flavor.
  • Cheese Garnish: I like to garnish bowls of this soup with freshly grated Belgioioso Parmesan cheese.
  • Spinach can be used instead of kale if preferred or needed.
  • Crock Pot method: See notes section of the recipe card.

Storage

  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. 
  • Cream based sauces don’t reheat exactly back to their original consistency after being frozen/reheated, but this one comes close. Be sure not to overcook the potatoes if you plan on freezing.

Zuppa Toscana Soup in a white bowl with a spoon on the side.

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Zuppa Toscana Soup in a white bowl with sausage, potatoes, and kale.

Zuppa Toscana Soup

4.99 from 52 ratings
It is so easy to make Olive Garden's classic Zuppa Toscana Soup at home! This incredible copycat recipe is even better than the restaurant version and can be made on the stove top or in the crock pot!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground Italian sausage, hot or mild
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce, can sub Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3-4 small russet potatoes, about 1 lb.
  • 3 cups kale, roughly chopped

Seasonings

  • 1 teaspoon EACH: mustard powder, dried parsley
  • ½ teaspoon EACH: dried oregano, dried basil
  • 1 Pinch of red pepper flakes, optional

For Serving

  • Grated Parmesan
  • Roughly Chopped Bacon

Instructions

  • Cook and crumble the sausage in a large soup pot over medium heat until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Reserve 1 tablespoon drippings and set the sausage aside. (1 additional tbsp. butter can be used if you don’t have drippings.)
  • Add the drippings and butter to the soup pot and add the onions. Cook over medium heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, hot sauce, soy sauce, and seasonings and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Add the flour and stir continuously for 2 minutes, until the raw flour smell is gone.
  • Add the chicken broth in small splashes, stirring continuously. Add the heavy cream in the same manner. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Clean the potatoes and pat them dry. Cut them in half lengthwise, then cut into 1/4-inch slices. Add the the potatoes to the soup along with the cooked sausage.
  • Simmer for 10 more minutes, or until the potatoes are nearly fork tender. Stir in the kale and simmer for 5 more minutes.
  • Transfer to serving bowls and garnish with red pepper flakes, grated Parmesan, and/or chopped bacon. Serve!

Notes

Pro Tips:
  • Flavor Enhancers: The mustard powder, hot sauce, and soy sauce are flavor enhancers and can't be tasted outright in this recipe. The hot sauce doesn't make this soup hot/spicy. I usually use Frank's hot sauce.
  • Sausage: Hot Italian Sausage is typically used in Zuppa Toscana, but mild Italian works if you are heat averse. My personal preference is Jimmy Dean Original Pork Sausage.
  • The sausage in this recipe is cooked over medium heat as opposed to medium-high, this keeps it extra juicy and gives you enough drippings to make the roux, which also adds a lot of flavor.
  • Cheese Garnish: I like to garnish bowls of this soup with freshly grated Belgioioso Parmesan cheese.
  • Spinach can be used instead of kale if preferred or needed.
  • Be sure to pair this with my crusty, airy, No Knead Bread for dipping!

Slow Cooker Method:
  • Note: Flour is not used for the slow cooker method.
  • Follow steps 1 & 2 as outlined in stove top method. Transfer everything to the Crock Pot except for the heavy cream, potatoes, and kale.
  • Cook on LOW for 5-6 hours or on HIGH for 3-4.
  • Add the potatoes during the last 45 minutes. Cook until fork tender but not overcooked.
  • Flip heat to low, if not it’s not already. Slowly stir in the heavy cream, followed by the kale. Let it heat through for 5 minutes, then serve!

Storage:
  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. 
  • Cream based sauces don't reheat exactly back to their original consistency after being frozen/reheated, but this one comes close. Be sure not to overcook the potatoes if you plan on freezing.

Nutritional information is an estimate and is per serving. There are 6 servings in this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 537kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Protein: 17g, Fat: 41g, Saturated Fat: 19g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 15g, Trans Fat: 0.1g, Cholesterol: 111mg, Sodium: 1402mg, Potassium: 821mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 4003IU, Vitamin C: 41mg, Calcium: 157mg, Iron: 3mg
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125 comments on “Zuppa Toscana Soup”

  1. I made this soup and it was sooo delicious! I added a tsp of Lawry’s seasoning salt after tasting…and did the trick for us! This recipe is the best. Thank you!

  2. This soup is my go to from OG when sick.  Woke up to my teenager sick and I knew what I wanted to make her. This turned out so delicious.  I am never ordering it again from OG.  It was not a long prep process nor cooking process.  Thank you for sharing! 

  3. Can I use whole milk? I do not have heavy cream 
    🙁

  4. I made this the other night as this is my husbands favorite soup at OG. He couldn’t stop raving about how delicious it was. Even my 6 year old devoured it without even questioning the kale in it. Reheated well too which saved this mama from another meal prep 👏🏻

    • Hi Shelby! I’m SOOOO happy that it was a hit with your husband and your little one! And even better that it saved you from making another meal- I love these leftovers too! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review!!

  5. when do I put the sausage into the soup?

  6. I had been wanting to make this soup for a long time. I finally decided to spend the time and make it. After gathering up all of the ingredients, I chose this particular recipe (there are dozens of Zuppa Toscana soup recipes online) and made it. All I can say is WOW, it turned out better than I had imagined. This recipe was easy to follow and did not disappoint with either flavor or heartiness. I will definitely be preparing this soup again!!

  7. I love this recipe!! It’s my husband’s current favorite. It’s incredibly tasty. I’ve noticed on a lot of your recipes you add hot sauce and soy sauce/Worcestershire sauce and I thought it was weird when I first read that – but it really is the key to making these recipe flavors pop.

    • Thanks so much for the great comments Katy! I love that you appreciate the subtle flavor enhancers. I know what you mean, they sound weird but make such a difference in building the overall flavor. Thanks again!😃

  8. This was SO good. Thank you for sharing your wonderful recipe. Keep up the good work!

  9. This recipe is great and better than Olive Garden. I tweaked it a bit but that’s to my taste. I used frozen diced hasbrown potatoes as a shortcut (so worth it). I added mushrooms because…I added more butter, more soy sauce and worchestershire too. I also added Turmeric powder for a healthy benefit and color, chili powder and ancho chili powder. This would be delicious with any added vegetables you like and/or without the kale. So yummy! Thank you for the recipe.

  10. Substitute chopped cauliflour instead of potatoes

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