This Italian wedding soup is so filling and comforting. The soup is loaded with small Italian pasta, vegetables, and homemade Italian meatballs. You can serve it with a side of bread and add parmesan cheese as a topping. It's pretty healthy and light enough to enjoy all year round. It is also just delicious!
Here's another easy soup recipe that you can try to make at home. This Italian wedding soup is a hearty soup that offers an abundance of Italian taste and comfort. If you're a beginner chef in the kitchen this recipe is fine as there are no difficult steps. It makes great leftovers, too.
What's inside the Italian Wedding Soup
This Italian wedding soup (also called "minestra maritata" in Italian language) is made of ground beef, pork sausage, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, parmesan cheese, acini de pepper pasta, breadcrumbs, dry white wine, chicken broth, and parley.
Acini de pepper pasta is just another form of Italian pasta that is commonly used in salad and soups and is commonly known for being in Italian wedding soup. The Acini de pepper pasta holds its shape well after cooking. You can find this tiny round pasta at any grocery market or online for around $2 per pound.
If you can't find acini de pepper pasta in your area, feel free to use orzo or Israeli couscous.
Breadcrumbs. I used panko breadcrumbs to work as a binder for meatballs. It's my favorite type of breadcrumb and I use them in a wide variety of recipes. Alternatively, you can use a traditional breadcrumb or make your own breadcrumbs from a loaf of French bread (wheat or white).
Dry white wine. A dry white wine is used to add acidity to food which in turn brings out other flavors. Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, or Pinot Gris are some of the dry white wines you can use in this recipe.
Broth. In this recipe, I used chicken broth. A combination of chicken broth and beef broth or water with bouillon will work as well.
The best kind of ground meat for meatballs. For these homemade Italian meatballs, I used a combination of ground beef and Italian pork sausage. Store-bought Italian sausage is packed with seasoning that makes for a perfect addition when making flavorful meatballs.
One of the best things about this Italian wedding soup recipe is that you can alter the ingredients based on your preferences. That means you can make the meatballs using any type of ground meat that you like.
Greens. The traditional Italian wedding soup commonly uses escarole or curly endives. Unfortunately, both greens aren't available in my area at this time so I chose spinach instead.
Kale is also another perfect green to use in Italian wedding soup. I love for me and my family to eat more greens any chance we can, and they go quite well in this soup.
How to Make Italian Wedding Soup
This Italian wedding soup requires a little extra preparation but the cooking process is still easy to follow. The extra steps are required because you're going to make the meatballs from scratch. Trust me, it's all worth it!
Step 1. Make the Homemade Meatballs
- Combine all of the meatballs ingredients. To make Italian meatballs from scratch you'll need to combine ground beef, Italian pork sausage, garlic, salt, black pepper, panko breadcrumbs, parsley, and parmesan cheese in a large bowl.
- Do not overmix. When it comes to meatballs, you want to make sure not to overmix. So use your hands or fork to mix the ingredients just until combined for the most tender meatballs.
- Shape and cook the meatballs. After that, you want to shape the mixture into bite-sized meatballs and brown them in a skillet or oven. I personally prefer to cook the meatballs using a skillet because it's faster, easier, and tastier.
Please note, you only need to brown the meatballs. It's okay if the meatballs aren't cooked through.
Step 2. Prepare the Broth
Once the meatballs are fully cooked, start preparing the broth in a traditional way by making the flavor base first.
- Cook the Mirepoix. Brown the onion, carrots, and celery in a large Dutch oven or soup pot for 6 minutes over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the liquid. Pour in dry white wine and chicken broth into the broth. Bring to a rapid boil over high heat.
Step 3. Cook the Pasta
- Add the pasta into the pot then cook, uncovered, at a gentle boil over medium for 5 minutes.
- Adjust the seasoning. Taste the broth and season with salt and black pepper if necessary.
Step 4. Add the Meatballs and Spinach
- Add the meatballs into the soup then simmer for 5 minutes or longer, until the meatballs are heated through and the pasta is al-dente.
- Add spinach into the soup and cook just until the spinach is wilted.
FAQ and Cooking Tips
First, let the soup cool down at room temperature, but do not leave it out for more than 2 hours. Then, store it in an airtight container. Properly stored, the leftover soup will last 3-4 days in the fridge or up to 6 months in the freezer.
To reheat, transfer the refrigerated or thawed soup to a pot and cook on the stove over medium heat, stirring occasionally until hot. Alternatively, you can reheat the soup in a microwave. Do not reheat the soup more than once. With that in mind only take out a portion that you'll eat.
Check Out More Delicous Soup Recipes
- Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Instant Pot Greek Chicken Lemon Rice Soup
- French Onion Soup
- Great Northern Bean Soup (White Bean Soup)
- Albondigas Soup (Mexican Caldo De Albondigas)
- Tomato Potato Soup
- Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
- Italian Bean Soup
- Creamy Ravioli Soup
- Chicken and Dumpling Soup
Italian Wedding Soup
- 8 oz ground beef
- 8 oz Italian pork sausage, (casings removed)
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoon minced garlic
- ⅓ cup freshly shredded parmesan cheese
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs, (finely crushed)
- ¼ cup freshly chopped parsley
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1½ cups diced yellow onion
- 1¼ cups diced carrots
- ¾ cup diced celery
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 8 cups chicken broth
- ¾ cup Acini de pepper pasta
- 12 oz fresh spinach, (roughly chopped)
- 4 tablespoon oil, (divided)
- Meatballs. In a large bowl, combine all of the meatballs ingredients. Gently mix with a fork or hands until combined then shape into small meatballs. Heat 2 tablespoon of oil in a large pot, working in batches, brown the meatballs for 3-4 minutes. Set aside.
- In a large dutch oven, heat the 2 tablespoon of oil over medium-low heat. Cook the onion, carrots, celery for 6 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. Add garlic, cook just until fragrant about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add white wine and broth. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add pasta then lower the heat to medium. Cook the pasta, uncovered, for 5 minutes then add meatballs. Continue cooking for about 5 minutes or until the pasta is al-dente and the meatballs are cooked through. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with salt and black pepper.
- Add chopped spinach and continue simmering until the spinach is wilted, about 1 minute.