Zuppa Toscana is a favorite soup. A creamy broth is filled with zesty Italian sausage, potatoes, smoky bacon, and kale or spinach.

Serve it with crusty bread and a fresh Italian salad for a meal everyone will love!

top view of Zuppa Toscana in bowls with a spoon

Ingredients in Zuppa Toscana Soup

This is a copycat Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana soup recipe, or “Tuscan Soup” and it’s easy to make.

Bacon/Sausage – Bacon adds a smoky salty flavor while the sausage is hearty and adds lots of flavor, if needed you can make your own Italian sausage blend at home.

Potatoes – I use russet potatoes when making this soup because they break down a little bit which helps to thicken the broth slightly. Be sure to peel them as the skins can be tough. If using a waxy thin skinned potato (like baby potatoes or Yukon gold), they do not need to be peeled.

Kale (or not!) – Kale is great in this soup and needs to simmer a little bit. Other greens can be substituted. If using spinach, add it right at the end as it needs just a couple of minutes to wilt.

Broth – Chicken stock or broth is the base of this soup recipe while a bit of heavy cream adds richness and makes the soup creamy without being too heavy.

ingredients to make Zuppa Toscana with labels


  • Add white beans (like cannellini beans), orzo, or other veggies to your liking.
  • Cut some carbs by replacing potatoes with cauliflower florets.
  • Red pepper flakes are optional but we love them in this recipe. ½ teaspoon of Italian seasoning another great addition!

Time Saving Tips

  • Skip the chopping and check your grocery store for frozen chopped onion or pre-chopped onion and/or pre-washed kale or spinach.
  • Real bacon bits (or pre-cooked bacon) save the step of cooking bacon. If you use bacon bits, crisp them in the microwave for a few minutes before adding them to the soup.

How to Make Zuppa Toscana Soup

  1. Crisp the Bacon: Cook bacon until crisp. Set aside.
  2. Brown Sausage: Brown sausage and onion per the recipe below.
  3. Add Ingredients: Add the remaining ingredients except for the cream.
  4. Simmer Until Tender: Simmer until the potatoes are tender. Add cream and simmer for a few minutes more. Garnish with crumbled bacon.
pot of Zuppa Toscana

How to Thicken Soup

Choose one of the following to thicken creamy soups.

  • For a thicker soup, make a slurry. Whisk 1 tablespoon each of cornstarch and water. Add to the simmering soup while stirring.
  • A second option is to add potato flakes a little bit at a time to reach the desired consistency.

Storing and Freezing Leftovers

  • Zuppa Toscana will keep in the refrigerator for about 4 days and can easily be reheated on the stovetop or in the microwave. Garnish with grated parmesan cheese and it’s just like new again!
  • Diary doesn’t always freeze well so if you’d like to freeze this soup, scoop some out before adding the cream. Once thawed, stir in the cream after heating.

More Hearty Soup Recipes

This zuppa toscana recipe is just one of many soups that benefit from the flavor of Italian sausage. Here are some more favorites.

Rate This Recipe

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a bowl of zuppa toscana topped with bacon next to a baguette
5 from 66 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Zuppa Toscana

Zuppa Toscana is an easy Italian soup loaded with sausage, potatoes, and greens in a rich, creamy broth.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 6 slices bacon diced
  • 4 cups potatoes peeled and cut into ½" cubes
  • 1 ½ cups kale chopped, or fresh spinach
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red peppers (optional)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • In a large soup pot or dutch oven, cook bacon medium heat until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate. Set aside.
  • Add sausage and onion to the bacon grease and cook until no pink remains. Drain fat.
  • Add potatoes, kale, chicken broth, garlic, and crushed peppers (if using) to the pot.
  • Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered 12-14 minutes or until potatoes are soft.
  • Stir in heavy cream and pepper and let simmer 1 minute. Taste and season with salt & pepper if desired.
  • Garnish with bacon.


If using spinach in place of kale, add in the last 2 minutes of cooking.
If you’d like a thicker soup, combine 2 tablespoons cornstarch with 2 tablespoons water. Drizzle into the boiling soup while stirring until soup reaches desired consistency. You may not need all of the cornstarch mixture.
Zuppa Toscana will keep up to 4 days in the fridge and can easily be reheated on the stovetop or in the microwave. 
5 from 66 votes

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1.25cup | Calories: 520 | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 48g | Saturated Fat: 21g | Cholesterol: 126mg | Sodium: 1438mg | Potassium: 546mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2256IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 85mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Appetizer, Dinner, Entree, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine American, Italian
Zuppa Toscana with bacon and a title
plated Zuppa Toscana with writing
bowl of Zuppa Toscana with writing
pot of Zuppa Toscana with writing


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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. This soup is delicious. I’ve also made it substituting a small cauliflower for the potatoes making it Keto acceptable.5 stars

  2. Hi again,
    Follow up from earlier day’s post…
    Definitely 5 stars!!
    Made and my family (some picky eaters) absolutely loved it!
    Followed recipe using spinach and wow, so good!
    Thank you for another delicious recipe5 stars

  3. Had to download the app because it has the best recipes for any dish. They’re not difficult to make. Sometimes I’ll already have most of the ingredients in my cupboard. Been following you for a couple of years now! Love you, Love it, Love all the recipes!5 stars

      1. Can the sausage be replaced by ground beef as none of my kidslike sausage..

      2. Yes, it can, you’ll want to add some extra seasoning (a bit of Italian seasoning will work!) and a bit of extra garlic.

  4. I love recipes from this site in part because they usually don’t have 42 ingredients and this Grandma appreciates that! I have made this several times with only a few subs such as subbing evaporated milk (prefer brothy to thicker) and spinach. Also use bulk hot Italian sausage. I may omit the spinach when serving the “Grands” as none of them like it (what’s that GREEN stuff?) but can always add it to the leftovers. My approach to recipes is “keep it simple” so thanks, this is YUMMY.5 stars

  5. I’ve used a lot of recipes from this site mainly because they use common ingredients I usually have on hand so there’s no need for many substitutes and this old school Mom/Grandma appreciates that. I used bulk hot Italian sausage, spinach and subbed evaporated milk for the heavy cream and husband and I both thought it was delicious. ! “grand’ would not touch the spinach though. Ha,Ha! Will make again for sure.5 stars

  6. I recently made this and my wife thought it was great!! Only a few minor variations (I used Italian sausage in the casing and then sliced it into 5 pieces per link). I found a crusty bread recipe on another site and it went great with this soup. The soup is well worth the effort and I will make it again.5 stars

  7. Delicious! Used hot Italian sausage and omitted the pepper flakes and used spinach. Omitted onions because I am so sick of chopping them! (Didn’t have pre-chopped frozen ones) I threw in chopped green onions instead. Wonderful flavor!5 stars

  8. I make this quite often, and will freeze the leftovers. The potatoes come out mealy on the reheating though, so I will use less on the initial preparation next time. I currently use 2 cans of diced potatoes, so I’m thinking one can in the future. LOVE kale and spinach in this, so I think I’ll increase that next time. This stuff is so stinking good, it’s kind of amazing!5 stars

  9. When I’m in a pinch, I use box augratin potatoes (like 3 boxes without the seasoning packet) with breakfast sausage, and frozen kale. Plus chicken stock, cream, sage and red pepper for seasoning. But yours makes me want to try a new take.

  10. I made this the other night and it was perfect . I have celiac disease so I made sure to buy gluten free sausage and chicken broth and we prefer kale over spinach but it turned out great. Nothing left after our family of 4 devoured it. 5 stars

    1. I would yes! That is how I have had it-I get the links. It doesn’t specify whether you dice the garlic either? I would assume so!

  11. I love Zuppa Toscana! I use hot Italian sausage, so no need for crushed red peppers. I usually use kale, but have used spinach. I have not used bacon. Does that change the taste? This is getting me hungry for some, especially since it is starting to get colder now!

    1. The bacon adds a little bit of smokiness to the soup. I love the idea of using the hot Italian sausage, thank you for sharing!