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

Variations

  • 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
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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
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Ingredients  

  • 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

Instructions 

  • 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.

Notes

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 72 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
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bowl of Zuppa Toscana with writing
pot of Zuppa Toscana with writing

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Holly Nilsson is the creator of Spend With Pennies, where she creates easy, comforting recipes made for real life. With a passion for nostalgic flavors and simplified techniques, Holly helps busy home cooks create delicious meals that always work. She is also the author of “Everyday Comfort,” which promises to inspire even more hearty, home-cooked meals.
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