Before all this quarantine stuff, I came home from the gym to find Jon-Michael standing over the stove making some secret concoction. Earlier that day he told me he was going to make chicken tortilla soup but what I’m looking at isn’t that. He surprised me with Italian Sausage Soup instead! It was so good it quickly became our household staple and my favorite.
JM is into making soup stove top, while I am all about the Instant Pot (ease of use, don’t have to pay attention to it, quick and easy). For this tomato based, hearty soup – I have followed his footsteps and ditched the IP. All you’ll need is a stove and a pot, *and an extra skillet if you’re feeling fancy.
I have made multiple versions of the soup based off of the flavors from JM’s first soup. Depending on what you have in your pantry and your preference, you can make modifications to it as well. The soup is very forgiving and ultimately I’m just giving you the base – you, as the chef, will be giving it life! Let’s get started below.
Italian Sausage Soup with Spinach
Description: Spicy tomato based broth filled with Italian flavors in every bite. The sausage bring so much flavor into the soup and the pasta turns this into a hearty meal.
I N G R E D I E N T S:
- 5-8 Cloves Garlic, roughly minced
- 1/2 Large Onion Chopped
- 2 Tsp Olive Oil
- 1.5 lb Spicy Italian Sausage W/O Casing (Spice Level of Your Choice)
- You can get sausage with the casing just add an extra step to remove.
- If you want to be fancy, this will be divided
- 2 Tbsp Tomato Paste
- 1 28 Oz Can Organic Fire Roasted Tomatoes, Diced (My favorite brand is Muir Glen)
- 64 oz Low-Sodium Chicken Broth (2 – 32 oz Cartons)
- 1/4 Tsp Chili Flakes
- 1 Tsp Italian Seasoning
- 1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
- Salt to taste* about 1/2 Tsp to start
- 2 Cups Uncooked, Pasta of your Choice
- JM used Tortellini when he made me this soup and it was SO good – I would recommend.
- I’ve used whatever I had in the pantry: Banza cavatappi and Garofalo Lumachine Semolina Pasta and they were both great.
- Cheese: grated Parmesan or Mozzarella are my go-to
- Italian Sausage Crumble
- Chili Flakes
I N S T R U C T I O N S:
- Add oil to a large pot on medium heat; wait until it heats up to add garlic and onion. Cook until fragrant and onion is translucent and starting to caramelize.
- Section off bite size pieces of the Italian sausage and add to the pot. Cook until the sausage browns and some pieces have developed a nice crust. *If you want to save some for toppings later, leave 1/4th of the meat uncooked for now.
- Mix in the tomato paste and combine with all ingredients. Once tomato paste is combined, up the heat to high and add in the can of fire roasted tomatoes and the chicken broth, chili flakes, pepper, Italian seasoning. Let the soup come to a gentle boil. Taste the soup and determine if it needs more salt.
- Let soup simmer to draw out flavors while you boil your pasta and prep your Italian sausage crumble. Cook pasta per package instructions.
- For the sausage topping, bring a skillet to medium high heat and add in small chunks of sausage. You will not need extra oil for this as the sausage will be releasing a lot of natural fat. Cook until crispy.
- When ready to eat: throw 1 handful (per serving) of spinach into the simmering soup, wait one minute for spinach to wilt. Add one serving of pasta to a bowl, ladle in the soup, then add with toppings if choosing to use.
As I’ve mentioned before, I have created this soup multiple times and sometimes with different ingredients. Here are some #Nganstoptips below to share:
- I prefer to cook the pasta separately from the soup to avoid sogginess. We usually have leftovers and nothing is worse than overcooked/soggy pasta. This way the soup will taste just as good the next day – make sure you store soup and pasta separately.
- If you have, and want to add an extra ingredient – bacon crumble would also be delicious as a topping.
- I have used regular sausages (like hot links) in addition to the Italian sausage because I did not have enough Italian sausage. Feel free to mix and match with whatever you have available.
- The cheese topping is optional, but it’s pretty much a staple for me. It makes such a delicious difference! I love the texture that the melted mozzarella cheese adds to the soup, all that stringy goodness!
- If you’re tasting the soup and it’s lacking a little something, most of the time it is salt! Add in a little salt, stir the pot, try it again. Don’t add too much at a time but a little pinch or two. If the soup for some reason is tasting too acidic (depends on your tomatoes) – sometimes a drizzle of honey does the trick.
- TSA Approved?: Don’t bring with your carry-on, you’ll be at risk to be late for your flight cause security will definitely pull you over. No liquids more than 3oz, no home made soup to bring to vacation.