Here is a crockpot recipe that can’t go wrong! Zuppa Toscana Soup that tastes just like you are having soup, salad and breadsticks in the Olive Garden! You will absolutely love how this slow cooker recipe tastes!
Zuppa Toscana Soup
- 15 oz. laterally sliced russet potatoes
- 1 lb. browned Italian Sausage
- 5-½ cups chicken broth
- 2 cups chopped kale
- ⅓ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¾ cup frozen diced onions
- 2 teaspoon minced garlic
- ½ heavy whipping cream cream (substitute evaporated milk for a low-cal version)
Meal Preparation Statistics:
- Heat source: Crockpot
- Preparation Time: 6 minutes
- Cook Time: 6 minutes
- Total Time: 12 minutes
- Servings: 6 to 8
- Crock cooking time: 3-9 hours depending on setting
Prepare the ingredients as described, making sure of the following: If you have ingredients more cut before cooking, the sausage will have less texture. The thinner you cut the laterally sliced russet potatoes, the more that they melt away into the soup. If this is your preference, you will like the base to have a creamer texture. The same example goes for the sausage, because some people like the creamier texture and some like it more chunky. Combine the potatoes, uncooked Italian sausage, kale, red pepper flakes, onions and garlic into a freezer bag. When you are ready to cook, make sure that you thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Be certain that the uncooked sausage is browned so that it has less grease while cooking as you would like to control the amount of grease that is added as an ingredient in the soup, because the flavor will be altered if it is not browned, and not even withstanding that it will not be as healthy, but that it just will not taster right. Same slicing of your kale is the same situation as with the sausage. The more you cut, the less texture. Also, keep in mind that the longer the ingredients cook, the creamier and less coarse the texture will be. The optimal cooking temperature is 170° for at 4 hours. You can speed it up a little at best by increasing the temperature a little, but the warm, creamy and robust flavor attained at the Olive Garden can only be attained by following the directions explicitly. Stir well and place lid on. Leave this cook in the crock pot for the whole term of cooking. Add an extra 10-15 minutes of cooking time every time you open the lid and stir. You can cook on high for as little as 3 hours or lower setting for between 6-8 hours. This is a great item to cook on low and come home to after work. In preparation for serving, you need to add the cream (or evaporated milk) about 30 minutes before serving time. If you prefer, you can add more chopped kale into the soup for more texture and flavor. Let this cook for the half hour, and now you are almost ready. The optimal serving temperature is 170°, so if you cooked it at a higher temperature to speed the process, you need to make sure that the serving temperature is in that range to have it taste right, and for safety. Serve in your soup bowl or cup. The following ingredients are not only garnished but some people prefer more or less of these:
- Coarse pepper out of a grinder
- Romano cheese grater
Add the two items to your heart’s content! Salad and breadsticks, optional!!
You are ready to E-N-J-O-Y !!!
The Delicious Zuppa Toscana Soup Recipe
Disclosure: Even though I worked at the Olive Garden, I worked as a server; and did not have access to their proprietary recipe. This recipe was referred to me from a friend, and I made this to her specifications. I agreed with her that it tasted like it was made at the Olive Garden. The recipe may differ from theirs, but it sure does taste, in my opinion, like the real McCoy!