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Cheater?s Italian Wedding Soup
Cheater’s Italian Wedding Soup
Photo: Liz Andrew/Styling: Erin McDowell

We love a light, cucumber-avocado soup as much as the next gal, but sometimes we crave a hearty soup that’s packed with meat and cheese. And that’s why we love this cheater’s Italian wedding soup. In every single bite you’ll get Parmesan cheese, beans, pasta, kale and—best of all—juicy, bite-size meatballs made with Italian sausage (instead of ground meat and tons of spices).

RELATED: 7 Slow-Cooker Soups for Cozy Nights

6 to 8 servings

Meatballs

1 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup bread crumbs

¾ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Soup

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 sweet onion, diced

3 carrots, peeled and diced

4 stalks celery, diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

6 cups chicken broth

1 bay leaf

1 cup short pasta, such as ditalini

One 14-ounce can white beans

1 bunch kale, deveined and sliced

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Pesto, for serving

1. MAKE THE MEATBALLS: In a medium bowl, mix together the sausage, parsley, Parmesan, bread crumbs, salt and pepper.

2. Using a tablespoon, form the mixture into bite-size balls, about 1 inch in diameter. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the meatballs and cook until well browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.

3. MAKE THE SOUP: In a large saucepot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery; sauté until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.

4. Stir in the broth and bay leaf; bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Simmer for 15 minutes.

5. Stir in the pasta and beans. Cook until the pasta is al dente, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the kale and the meatballs. Continue to simmer until the greens are wilted, about 5 minutes.

6. Stir in the Parmesan and season with salt and pepper; garnish with the pesto.

510 calories

29g fat

42g carbs

22g protein

8g sugars

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Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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