Lighter {Olive Garden} Zuppa Toscana Soup for TWO!

Since we started our real food journey (which basically means eating unprocessed foods in efforts to maintain our health and energy) we rarely eat dinner out. Even more rare are our dinners at larger chain restaurants.

I miss eating out at times, simply for the convenience. I don't miss the stomach aches or weird MSG headaches, or the cost. Let's be real - it's expensive to get a good meal at a restaurant, sometimes more than a whole cart of groceries for a small family.

This is why I spend a considerable amount of time cracking my favorite restaurant recipes. It allows me to eat my favorite meals, but at a better price point and with our health in mind.

Baby. I cracked another recipe. It's a good one.

Ever go to the Olive Garden? Every time I go (or went) there I get a bowl of their zuppa toscana soup. It's a rich, creamy, meat and potatoes soup that I've never been able to make at home.

Until now.

I was reading the HyVee Seasons magazine, which featured a zuppa Italiana soup that looked pretty similar to Olive Garden's version. I modified it a bit, in order to make it closer to the OG favorite. The very best thing about this soup is that is doesn't use any fancy ingredients. Everything in this recipe we have at home, and I'm sure you do too.

Here's the recipe: 
1/2 pound of pork sausage (you can use Italian sausage for extra spice)
1/2 chopped onion
2 cloves of minced garlic
a few pinches of red pepper flakes
3 cups of homemade chicken broth
(Just make your own chicken broth the next time you have a carcass layin' around, would ya? You'll thank me.)
1 large potato, thinly sliced
salt, to taste
1/2 cup of milk
1 cup (or so) of trimmed and chopped kale

This soup can be made in one pot - so make sure you grab one big enough!

Cook your sausage, garlic, onion and red pepper flakes in a large pot over medium-high heat until the sausage is cooked thoroughly.

Then, add the broth, potatoes and a bit of salt. Bring the soup to boiling, then reduce the heat and cover. Let this simmer for about 20 minutes, or until your potatoes are tender. Add the cream. Just before serving, add the kale.

And that's it.

Seriously! Grab yuh-self a spoon 'n git after it!


  1. I am going to make this next week! Thanks for the idea :-)

    1. So, I am just making it tonight. It was AMAZING! I LOVED it. This recipe will save me tons of money when I am craving soup, salad, and breadsticks. Because it's the soup I really crave.

  2. Looks great! I have made a copycat Olive Garden recipe for this too, and it came out sooo good! Great way to use kale from the garden :)

  3. I love this soup. I make it often for my family. If I don't have the heavy cream I just use milk. IT is thinner soup but still yummy.
    I have also found I LOVE this soup with yellow potatoes. It is not exactly the same but it has a nice buttery flavor...

    1. I'll keep this in mind - it's good to know all of these variations.

  4. As an OG insider, it needs bacon, and the Italian sausage should have fennel seed. But your version sounds pretty good.

    1. Bacon...the fairy dust of foods. I WILL be adding a bit of bacon to the Italian sausage step to give it a shot. And yep, this particular recipe of Italian sausage does have fennel seed.

  5. Replies
    1. I'm not sure - I haven't tried. If you do, let me know how it turns out!

  6. I'd say freeze it without the cream. It'd probably freeze fine that way. Also - I made this tonight, buuuut with a few minor tweaks to fit my pantry contents. ;-) It was really good!!

    1. Tweaking, twerking - do whatever floats your boat :) Glad you liked it!

  7. I love this soup! I'll have to try to make it sometime since I don't get to Olive Garden very much

  8. Tried hyvee version with coconut milk, and real bacon bits. Folks loved it. Came looking about freezing, will try it.


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