This Zuppa Toscana Copycat Recipe is budget-friendly, incredibly easy to make, and tastes a million times better than the original!
It never fails. Every time my daughter comes home with an amazing report card, a competition ribbon, or any reason she can come up with to celebrate the first words out of her mouth are always, “Olive Garden!” For years this has been one of my families favorite restaurants to celebrate and my children are now more than just a little addicted to their heaping piles of Spaghetti and Meatballs that come on the kids menu…well that and the breadsticks – YUM!
For me, my favorite is their all you can eat soup and salad — especially the Zuppa Toscana. The creamy chunks of Italian sausage and potato slices that melt in your mouth. And you can’t forget the sweet kale, the cloves of garlic, and crunchy bacon. Every time I indulge on this soup I eat way more than I should, but it is just that good!
Now, while this is a Zuppa Toscana, it does have more spice and flavor than the Olive Garden version. If you are not one for spice there are only a couple of ingredients to leave out while you cook. This recipe can also be made in the crock pot, although it does loose some of it’s depth when you cook it all at once in one pot. If you plan on trying this in the crock pot you will use all the same ingredients as below and cook it on low for 4-6 hours.
- 4 slices of Bacon, diced
- 1 pound Spicy Italian Sausage
- 2 Cloves of Garlic, whole
- 1 Onion, diced
- 1/4 Bunch of Kale
- 3 Potatoes, diced
- 1½ tsp Crushed Red Peppers
- 5 Anise Stars
- 1 cup Heavy Cream
- 5 cubes of Chicken Bouillon
- 11 cups of Water
- Sauté Italian sausage and crushed red pepper in a large pot. Drain excess fat, refrigerate while you prepare other ingredients.
- In the same pan, sauté bacon, onions and garlic over low-medium heat for approximately 15 mins. or until the garlic and onions are soft.
- Add chicken bouillon and water to the pot and heat until it starts to boil.
- Add the diced potatoes and cook until soft.
- Add the heavy cream and just cook until thoroughly heated.
- In another pot boil 1 cup of water and the Anise Stars. Steep into the main pot of soup.
- Stir in the sausage and the kale, let all heat through and serve. Delicious!
- If you don't want the spice skip adding in the crushed red peppers to the soup. If you don't like rich soups, skip adding the Anise.
This is a fantastic soup for the upcoming fall weather and an easy way to sneak some of those healthy greens into your kids diet. I hope your family loves this as much as mine has and if you share don’t forget to tag us on Instagram or Facebook!