Zuppa Toscana

Today’s ‘soup of the day’ at my house! I’ve never had this before, but the photo looked enticing, and the ingredient list wasn’t too difficult to conjure up since I had most of the ingredients already in my pantry and refrigerator. Thanks to my Instant Pot, the beans were ready from dried form in 25 minutes — and the sausages were ready in 4 minutes straight from the freezer!


  • 6 sliced bacon (or pancetta), diced
  • 1 pound Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 1 cup carrot, diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 potato, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 2 cups cooked kidney beans
  • 4 cups kale, shredded
  • 1 pound zucchini, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (parmesan cheese), grated
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped


 Cook the bacon in a large saucepan before setting it aside on paper towels to drain while reserving the bacon grease in the pan.

    Cook the sausage in the same pan, breaking it apart into bite sized pieces as it cooks, before setting aside.

    Add the onions, carrot and celery and cook over medium-high heat until tender, about 7-10 minutes.

    Add the ground fennel seeds, red pepper flakes and garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute.

    Add the broth and deglaze the the pan by scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon as the broth sizzles.

    Add the sausage, potatoes and beans, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to get a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 10-15 minutes.

    Add the kale, zucchini, parmesan and cream and cook until the zucchini and kale are tender and the cheese has melted into the soup, about 5 minutes.

    Mix in the lemon juice and parsley and enjoy topped with the crumbled bacon!

Option: Massage the kale to make it more tender!

Option: Add 2 tablespoons white miso paste!

Option: Add 1 (15 ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained in place of the kidney beans.

Recipe adapted from: https://www.closetcooking.com/zuppa-toscana/

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