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Zuppa Toscana - An Olive Garden Copycat

A super quick, easy and flavor packed weeknight soup that can be made in under 45 minutes. A copycat recipe of the favored Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana soup ; it's comforting and surprisingly hearty.


Who doesn’t love an Olive Garden soup… especially right at home when the restaurant is over an hour away. There are so many copycats of this recipe and it’s no secret why. Zuppa Toscana is so flavorful and when paired with fresh sourdough bread, you can’t beat it.

‘If this Zuppa Toscana soup is any indication of what is coming up on the soup series, I am really excited.’ - my husband.



Zuppa Toscana Meal Prep

To save time you could brown the sausage beforehand, and keep in the fridge until ready to make the Zuppa Toscana Soup.


Whenever I make a meal with potatoes, I peel and cut them several hours before when I have a free minute. You simply dice them up, throw in a large bowl, and cover with water until ready to use. Just drain the potatoes well, and add to the soup.


I also cut up several onions at once and keep them in the fridge until ready to use for whatever recipe I’m working on. Get all the tears in at once.



HOW TO MAKE ZUPPA TOSCANA

I start the recipe with my 4 quart enameled cast iron dutch oven. This way I get one pot dirty. Cook the sausage until browned and crispy. Scoop out on to a plate and set aside.


Keep the heat on medium and add in the butter and onions. Sauté until translucent, but I found extra flavor by caramelizing them a bit longer. Totally optional. Add in the garlic and sauté until fragrant, another minute tops.


Add in the chicken broth, potatoes and seasonings. If you’re making the chicken broth, have it piping hot and ready to go. Just cuts down the boiling time and gets dinner on the table faster. Boil until potatoes are tender but not mushy. If you cut them in small pieces it won’t take long, and they will still have time to cook.

Add in the spinach and heavy cream. I place my cream in the microwave for a minute to have this warm as well. This is an optional step.

Cook until warmed through, then add the sausage. Taste and add additional seasonings if necessary. Recipes with potatoes seem to need lots of salt.


Garnish with crunchy bacon (bonus points), fresh parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheeses.




ZUPPA TOSCANA ALTERNATIVES

The gluten free soup is rich and flavorful due to the heavy cream and sausage, however if you’re looking for a lighter, lower calorie option, you could replace with leaner meat like chicken or turkey and a can of coconut milk to replace the heavy cream. It won’t taste quite the same, but will still be delicious.


Spicy Italian sausage is great for my husband and I, but usually too much for our kids. As an alternative, I'll add in a tablespoon or two of my own Italian seasoning to some ground pork to cut out the ‘spicy’. On the other side of the spectrum, you could add a half teaspoon of red pepper flakes for an extra kick.


ZUPPA TOSCANA LEFTOVERS

I find that freezing anything with cooked potatoes tricky. They turn to mush easily; that being said I wouldn’t plan on freezing this particular soup. Zuppa Toscana leftovers will keep well in the fridge for several days. Just make sure you have extra crusty bread to pair with it!

 

Try Zuppa Toscana, snap a photo and tag #etenenvoeden on your Facebook or Instagram stories. I love seeing what you guys create!





 



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