Olive Garden’s Zuppa Toscana Soup Recipe | Sin & Soul Food Blog

Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana soup


Take me to Olive Garden, and I can pretty much guarantee you that one of the things I will order is their Zuppa Toscana soup. I love it, it is one of my all time favorite soups. For a long time now, I’ve been meaning to make my own version of this delicious soup. Through a lot of recipe research, I finally tried my hand at it last night. I am pretty happy with the results! It’s rich and creamy just like OG’s and most importantly it has more substance than OG’s. I’ve learned that they have a lunch version and a supper version of Zuppa, now whether or not that is true I have yet to learn. However, I have noticed a distinguishable difference between the two when I visit, and I have to say that supper is a heartier soup with more potato & sausage.

Personally, I am going to keep playing with this because while it is so good, and delicious I am not quite sure I am there. In the meantime though, this will curb the cravings that have been haunting me.

I used hot italian sausage in my recipe, but if you can’t handle or don’t like spicy, I would recommend using a mild italian sausage. Especially if there are kids in the house. (That’s you, Annie!) Annie is one of my blog followers. Her husband Tim is a fellow lover of Zuppa, and they have 4 (beautiful) children in their home who might not share an appreciation for the bite of spice that hot sausage lends to this recipe. The same will probably hold true for your kiddos.

The nice thing about this recipe is it is incredibly easy and quick to throw together, not to mention inexpensive. It makes a huge pot of soup, with plenty for left overs. I served mine with Julia Child’s homemade bread that I made earlier in the week and it was the perfect accompaniment. If you have the time, and inclination I highly recommend making some homemade bread with this soup. You won’t be sorry!

Begin with your onion and garlic, chopping those both up finely. Or, if you have a garlic press you can press the garlic. I am lucky enough to own a garlic press from Pampered Chef that I love. Ask me about cleaning it though…totally different story.



Pampered Chef Garlic Press


Pampered Chef Garlic Press



Add the garlic and onion to a soup or stock pot, I used a dutch oven, along with your sausage over med-high heat. Proceed to brown the meat along with 2T. of butter. In the meantime, slice your potatoes. Honestly, I don’t think anyone cares how you cut them. You can do a dice, slice, whatever. I sliced mine, and that worked well for me. Plus, it looked pretty. I also left the skins on, after scrubbing the potatoes really well.



Beginning of Zuppa


Unique Recipes with Potatoes


Once the sausage has browned add chicken broth and potatoes. Bring to a rolling boil. Once broth is boiling, set your kitchen timer at 15 minutes and prepare your kale. With kale, you do not want the stem. I used a knife and slid it along the edge of the stem to remove all the greens. Cut those up in a large, rough chop. You want some bigger chunks in there.

Swanson's Chicken Broth Recipes


Uses & Recipes for Kale


Once the 15 minutes has elapsed, reduce heat to simmering and add kale to the soup. Just let the kale blanch slightly while retaining some of it’s texture and color.


Add cream after the kale has blanched, heat for 2 minutes and serve.

Picture of Zuppa Toscana


Voila! Low stress and a quick supper for the ones you love. T really liked this, which was a surprise to me since he doesn’t normally enjoy spicy foods, and especially isn’t a fan of soup being the sole thing for supper. So, that tells you this one is sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Let me know what you think, and if you have a recipe for Zuppa, please share it! I’d love to compare notes.

Zuppa Toscana


  • 1lb hot italian ground sausage
  • 1/2 cup Bacon (chopped)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 62oz chicken broth
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 2 cups kale (overflowing)
  • 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1 teaspoon italian seasoning


Step 1
Preheat a large soup pot with 2 T. butter.
Step 2
Add sausage and chopped onion. Brown sausage.
Step 3
When sausage is no longer pink, add garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add chicken broth and potatoes.
Step 4
Set kitchen timer for 15 minutes and allow soup to return to a rolling boil.
Step 5
In the meantime, prepare kale and bacon.
Step 6
Once potatoes are tender, add bacon and kale to the soup and blanch kale letting it retain the majority of it's color and texture. Reduce heat to med-low.
Step 7
Add cream and cook 2-3 minutes. Serve.



Chicken & Dumpling Soup | Food Blog


Brrrr….it is COLD out there! I live in Wisconsin, and even though we aren’t hitting record lows (we’re probably hitting record highs, in all honesty!) it is still pretty darn cold out there. Checking the temperature outside just now, we’re at 35 degrees which makes me feel like a baby for even complaining about how cold it is. But in my defense, it is still awfully gloomy. Which makes a great day for soup! Not just any soup though! A slightly smoky, rich & flavorful, dense & slightly creamy soup, with light & fluffy but slightly chewy inside; dumplings. Yep, that sounds perfect.

Except, I made it last night and today we ate leftovers. Don’t you fret your pretty little face though, I’m still going to share. Which brings me to my next thing. I’m a pretty good photographer. I spend a lot of time behind the camera. But food photography never ceases to successfully evade me. I’m not a food photographer as much as I may try to be. I’m working on it though! And I am going to master it, part of having a good blog is having GOOD pictures. I’ll get there, just be patient with me.

This recipe is slightly my own concoction, as mentioned earlier I am a fly by the seat of my pants type of girl when I’m in the kitchen. Little bit of this, little bit of that. I hardly ever write it down, and my boy: Travis, is always after me to “Write the stuff down!” I’m working on it. But for now, I’m slightly imperfect, but that will have to do. Hopefully you find the imperfections charming and endearing. (Yes, you’re allowed to laugh.)

So, I started this recipe with my Dutch oven. I like the flavors I get from it, and I have been using this thing non-stop since receiving it a couple of years ago. I want it to have that perfect flavor everyone raves about: seasoning. You don’t have to use one, you can use a plain old stock pot if you prefer.

Chicken Soup:2 cans low sodium Chicken Broth (Swanson)
1 can Cream of Chicken soup (I used Campbell’s)
left-over Rotisserie Chicken – I had about a half of one left.
roughly chopped
(include the gelatinous stuff.)
2 C. water
3 large carrots, sliced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
fresh green beans, cut
Rubbed sage to taste (no more than 1 t.)
Poultry Seasoning to taste (no more than 1 t.)
salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
In your pan, combine the broth, soup, and water. Stir until well combined over medium-high heat. If it starts to boil, turn it down to medium. If needed, add more than the recommended 2 C. of water. Once soup starts to simmer, add chicken, carrots, and onion. Save the green bean until the last few minutes of cooking so they still have some bite left to them. Also save the seasonings until last. Cook until onion is clear, and carrot is tender to the bite. Add green beans, and seasonings.
Dumplings (From Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook)
1 C. flour
1 T. fresh or 1/2 T. dried parsley
2 t. baking powder
1/4t. salt
1/4 t. dried oregano
1 beaten egg
1/4 c. milk or half & half (I used half & half)
2 T. cooking oil
Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well. Make a well in the dry bowl. Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl. Pour wet into dry, stir until just combined. Don’t over-stir. The BHG Cookbook says to make 6 dumplings. I made a bunch of small, teaspoon size ones. Use your discretion, either way works perfectly. Make sure you are adding the dumplings to simmering liquid.
Serve soup in bowls with sprigs of fresh parsley as garnish, or chives.

I hope you enjoy this soup recipe! It’s New Year’s Eve, let’s say good-bye to 2011 and Hello! to 2012. Thanks for tuning in to my food blog this year, I’ll see you guys again next year. Stay safe, & happy! Now go get your Midnight Kiss!


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