Savory sausage, perfectly cooked bowtie pasta and mouthwatering veggies combine in my Italian Sausage Soup recipe! It is flavorsome and versatile enough for family meals, friendly gatherings, appetizers, or main courses.
If you love Olive Garden’s Italian sausage soup, you’ll go bonkers for this one! Crumbled sausage is the star of this dish, but it packs all the flavor of your favorite sausage recipes, like Italian sausage and peppers, savory beer brats, or my baked mostaccioli.
Only for this soup, you get a one-two punch of yum from not only sausage but insanely flavorful beans and veggies as well!
Get ready for a taste of Florence in your kitchen. Let’s cook!
No matter the season, there’s something irresistible about a warm bowl of soup. And my Italian sausage soup is just the meal to make you cozy all over!
- Easy to make
- Makes a BUNCH — leftovers for days!
- Deep, rich flavors and loads of veggies
- Sausage savoriness to the max!
How To Make Italian Sausage Soup Recipe
To make your sausage soup, start by browning and crumbling (here’s my favorite tool) your sausage in an extra-large soup pot. Then soften the vegetables and combine all of the remaining ingredients except the zucchini and pasta, which are added in the last few minutes of cooking.
After tweaking the thickness and seasoning to your preference, you’re ready to serve! Top with shaved Parmesan and some more fresh basil. This recipe follows the standard soup pattern of meat, vegetables, aromatics, which means you get a delicious meal packed with flavor in no time at all!
New to the soup making world, or a seasoned veteran (pun intended)? No matter your level, it’s always good to keep our cooking knowledge sharp — I’ve got some tips for you!
The ingredients are, as always, simple and delicious, but here are some things you should know:
Parmesan Rind – Rinds are preferable to the body of the cheese due to the delectable ripening and flavor that are concentrated in them. Rinds also remain firm through the cooking process, meaning you can easily remove them from the broth before serving.
- You can also break them up into smaller bits for your diners to enjoy! My family loves when they get these little bits of delicious flavor bombs, so I always leave them in the soup, cut up.
- Most rinds (Parmesan included) are completely safe to eat; it’s just a matter of preference whether to fish them out or consume them. You’ll find that this old Italian secret does wonders for the complexity of your soup’s flavor profile.
De-casing Sausage – Some recipes use sliced sausage instead of removing the skin, but I prefer the crumbled texture and enhanced flavor of the fully browned meat. Just make a thin cut down the length of the sausage, and peel the skin back in one movement.
Beans – An unsung hero of this soup is the beans! I use three types: kidney, garbanzo, and cannellini, to get a fully rounded experience as you might find in pasta Fagioli soup. Kidney brings a distinct flavor, garbanzo a chewy texture, and cannellini a creamy finish. But feel free to experiment with your own favorite bean types!
Thinning the Soup – As with any soup that has pasta in it, this soup will thicken as it sits. You likely will need to thin it with either chicken broth or water.
Make it creamy – For a creamier take on this classic, supplement your broth with 2-3 cups of heavy cream. Add this when you add the pasta and zucchini. After the cream is added, make sure to moderate the heat so that the soup doesn’t boil, it only simmers.
Add heat – Some of you like your dishes with a little more kick. I suggest you use hot Italian sausage instead of the mild one listed here. You can also heat up the soup by adding a teaspoon (or more as you like) of red pepper flakes when you saute the aromatics (onion and other veggies).
Add spinach – For an even more veggie-rich soup, you can add fresh or frozen spinach in the last stage of cooking, along with the zucchini. I recommend using about 2 cups of fresh or 10 ounces frozen.
Tools to Make
All you need are:
- large soup pot
- ground meat chopper
Can You Freeze
This will keep in the freezer for 2-3 months. The vegetables and tomatoes will lose some of their texture, but the soup will remain tasty and of course safe to eat. I suggest that you hold the zucchini and pasta until you are ready to serve since the texture of these two ingredients is the most fragile.
The best way to freeze soup is to cool it, then pour it into a 1-gallon heavy-duty freezer resealable bag. Push out any air in the bag, seal it completely, then store it flat on your freezer shelf.
Make Ahead Tips
This soup will keep in the fridge for about 3 days. Just check the seasoning and consistency as you reheat it on the stove and thin it with broth.
You may also want to keep the zucchini and pasta out until you are warming it to serve if you want to avoid slightly mushy zucchini and achieve the traditional al dente pasta.
In general, crusty bread and side salads go great with soup.
From sausage to chicken to veggies, soup recipes have every flavor combination you could ask for!
Italian Sausage Soup
- 2 1/2 pounds Italian sausage mild
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 6 carrots chopped
- 6 large garlic cloves minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 (28-ounce) canned chopped tomatoes
- 10-12 cups chicken stock
- 4 cups tomato juice
- parmesan rind or chunk
- 1 (15-ounce) canned kidney beans rinsed and drained
- 1 (15-ounce) canned garbanzo beans rinsed and drained
- 1 (15-ounce) canned cannellini beans rinsed and drained
- 2 zucchini, diced
- 1 cup small pasta (ditalini, mini bows or elbow)
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1 cup parmesan, shaved
- fresh Basil, thinly sliced
- Remove casing from sausage. In an extra-large soup pot, brown the sausage, breaking it up into medium pieces, as it cooks. Cook until there is no longer any pink in the sausage. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
- Add olive oil to the pan then add onion, celery, and carrot. Cook about 10-12 minutes or until veggies are soft. Add garlic and continue to cook 2-3 minutes.
- Add salt, pepper, oregano, bay leaves, and sugar. Add tomatoes with their liquid, stock, tomato juice, Parmesan rind, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, cannellini beans, and cooked sausage. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, 45-60 minutes.
- Add zucchini and pasta and cook until zucchini is tender and pasta is firm to the bite. Add more stock if the soup has become too thick. Remove bay leaves. Stir in the basil. Taste for seasoning.
- Top individual soup bowls with shaved Parmesan and some fresh basil and serve.