Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

This Italian Wedding Soup just hits the right on a raining and cool day in October. This is a hearty, healthy, and delicious soup recipe! This homemade soup is brothy, flavorful, light, and simmered to perfection. The whole family will love this cozy and comforting meal!

Italian Wedding Soup using chicken meatballs.

Italian Wedding Soup History

Some people believe that Italian wedding soup got its name from being served at Italian weddings, that’s not true. The term “wedding soup” comes from the Italian language phrase “minestra maritata” (“married soup”).  This term refers to the “marriage” or combination of the green vegetables and the meat in the soup. Its history can be traced back to Spain, where it was a very hearty soup that was often the only meal eaten in the day.

Italian Wedding soup
Italian Wedding soup

Ingredients

This chicken soup is made with your classic chicken noodle soup ingredients! Plus, bite-sized mini chicken meatballs and some Italian flavors. It is a fun and delicious spin!

Ingredient Notes

Meatballs:

  • Ground Chicken: You will need 1 lb. of ground chicken.
  • Egg: Add an egg to the meatballs to bind them together!
  • Breadcrumbs: Add 1/2 cup GF breadcrumbs also help with the binding.
  • Parmesan Cheese:  It adds so much incredible flavor that it is just a must have ingredient.
  • Seasonings: You will need garlic and onion powder, salt, Italian seasoning and black pepper.

Step By Step Instructions

Step 1: Start by preparing the meatballs.  Add the ground chicken, egg, gf breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning and salt to a large bowl.  Combine thoroughly.

Step 2: Roll the chicken mixture into small meatballs, about 1/2 tbsp in size.

Step 3: Next add 2 tbsp olive oil or 1/2 stick to the bottom of a large pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. Fry them up or you can bake them at 400 F for 15 to 20 minutes.

Soup

  • Vegetables: The base of this flavorful soup is the classic aromatic soup veggies – onion, celery, and carrot. Add 4 cloves of fresh garlic. You will need 1 yellow onion, 4 garlic cloves,1 cup chopped each of carrot and celery and 1/2 cup of frozen spinach.
  • Olive Oil: 3 tbsp of olive oil or 1/2 stick of butter is used the brown the meatballs and sauté the veggies.
  • Seasonings: Add Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Chicken Broth: Chicken broth provides the soup portion of this soup if you know what I mean. You will need 6 to 8 cups. You can use replace some of it with water.
  • Rice: I didn’t have any orzo in my pantry and used rice as my alternative.
  • Parmesan Cheese: 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese is stirred into this soup at the end but this optional. It is a great final touch.

How To Make This Recipe

This chicken meatball vegetable soup is quite easy to make!

Step by Step Instructions

Step 4: Add the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot to the same pot.  Add in Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and the remaining olive oil as well.  Sauté for a few minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Step 5: Next add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.

Step 6: Add the rice and the browned meatballs to the soup.  Combine.  Cook for 15 minutes. Add 1 cup of water if you feel the soup needs more liquid.  

Step 7: Add in the baby spinach and parmesan cheese.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Combine and let it simmer for a few more minutes.

Step 8: Serve and enjoy!

Substitutions & Additions

There are a few substitutions and additions you could make to this cozy soup for it to meet your personal preferences, tastes, or needs!

Meat: An easy way to switch up this recipe would be to substitute in a different meat for the ground chicken in the meatballs. Perhaps ground turkey or ground beef!

Pasta: You can use orzo or any kind of small pasta.

Seasonings & Spices: The seasonings and spices here quite simple, but you could add whatever you’d like in. Red pepper flakes, a bay leaf or two, thyme, rosemary, or oregano are all great options.

Fresh Herbs: Fresh herbs would elevate this soup to a whole new level. I personally would add fresh parsley or fresh basil. Delicious!

Fresh Spinach: You will need three large handfuls of fresh baby spinach.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to serve meatball soup?

I like to top a big bowl of this soup with tons of parmesan cheese and serve with a nice slice of thick, crusty bread on the side. A dinner roll or garlic knot works great too!

How to best store this recipe?

Store this recipe in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a week. To reheat, warm up on the stovetop or pop in the microwave for about 60 seconds.

Can I freeze chicken soup with meatballs?

Yes! This soup is definitely freezer friendly. Simply transfer to a freezer safe container and place in the freezer. It should keep for a couple of months.

Italian Wedding Soup

Recipe by Lucy ChesnaCourse: Dinner, LunchCuisine: Italian
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

30

minutes
Calories

300

kcal
Total time

1

hour 

Italian Wedding Soup is a hearty, healthy, and delicious soup recipe! Made with tiny bite-sized chicken meatballs, rice, spinach, and vegetables … this homemade soup is brothy, flavorful, light, and simmered to perfection. The whole family will love this cozy and comforting meal!

Ingredients

  • Chicken Meatballs
  • 1 lb ground chicken

  • 1 egg

  • 1/2 cup GF breadcrumbs

  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 2 tbsp italian seasoning

  • 1 tsp onion powder

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/8 tsp pepper

  • Soup
  • 1 yellow onion, diced

  • 4 fresh garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 cup celery, chopped

  • 1 cup carrots, chopped

  • 3 tbsp olive oil or 1/2 stick of butter.

  • 3 tsp Italian seasoning

  • 1 tsp garlic powder

  • 4 to 6 cups chicken broth or stock

  • 1/2 cup rice

  • 1/2 cup frozen spinach or 3 large handfuls fresh baby spinach

  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

  • Salt & pepper

Directions

  • Start by preparing the meatballs. Add the ground chicken, egg, GF breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper to a large bowl. Combine thoroughly.
  • Roll the chicken mixture into small meatballs, about 1/2 tbsp in size. I like to then place the chicken balls on a sheet pan while I prepare to brown them.
  • Next add 2 tbsp olive oil or 1/2 stick of butter to the bottom of a large pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the meatballs in a single layer. Brown on one side, flip, then brown on the other. Since the meatballs are small, this should only take about 2-3 minutes. Then remove them and set aside. You may have to do multiple batches depending on the size of your soup pot.
  • Add the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot to the same pot. Add in Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and the remaining olive oil as well. Sauté for a few minutes until soft and fragrant. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Next add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
  • Then add the rice and the browned meatballs to the soup. Combine. Cook for 15 minutes or until the rice and veggies are done. You can add 1 cup of water if you need to add more liquid to the soup.
  • Turn the heat to low then add the spinach and parmesan cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Combine and let simmer for another few minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy!

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