Italian Wedding Soup #SundaySupper

Upon request of my friend, Marianne, I am making my best (echem), well- first version of Italian wedding soup for you all today! And I have to say…It is awesome! I make soup all the time, and there is always a simple strategy once you start making it: veggies, broth, meat, and maybe pasta or beans. Italian Wedding Soup is no different. Basically Italian Wedding Soup has some main components that you can change up:

  • green vegetables: kale, spinach, cabbage, endive, or escarole
  • meat: meatballs made with chicken, beef, or pork
  • broth: chicken or vegetable
  • pasta: small stars, mini-tubes, balls, or orzo
  • optional add ins: shredded chicken, lentils, parmesan cheese

Italian Wedding Soup | Hardly A Goddess
Of course, never having made it before, I looked up the short-list of the best italian cook’s recipes that I could think of: Lidia Bastianich, Giada De Laurentiis, Mary Ann Esposito, and Mario Batali. To say these inspired my recipe is kind of an understatement. They are so different  as some use turkey, prociutto, or escarole, while others add basil, kale, and sausage.Italian Wedding Soup | Hardly A Goddess

Inspired to make a few new variations in search of the best version of this staple soup, I am starting with a beef meatball version that is pared down to be able to make easily any night after work. You can use any other substituions to ramp up your meatballs, like adding prociutto, or sausage, or using your own homemade stock if you happen to have it on hand. I am sharing with you a quicker, weeknight-meal kind of version here, using chicken stock from the carton (or can), a one pound package of ground grass-fed lean beef, and dried ditalini pasta.

Italian Wedding Soup #SundaySupper

Italian Wedding Soup #SundaySupper

This is a comforting and easy soup to make for a great weeknight meal. It gets better after a day, so make it ahead and serve with a crusty loaf of bread~ yum!


    For the meatballs
  • 16oz package of ground beef
  • 1 cup of seasoned bread crumb
  • 1/4 cup of milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup fresh grated parmesean or romano
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon zest
  • 1 salt
  • 2 Tbsp. minced fresh parsely
  • 1/2 grated onion
  • For the soup
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 carrots peeled and diced
  • 2 ribs of celery diced
  • 1/2 an onion diced
  • 2 cartons (8 cups) of chicken stock or broth
  • 8 cups of chopped kale


  1. You need one large stock pot, and two smaller pots (one for pasta, one for meatballs)
  2. To make the meatballs
  3. Mix the ingredients in a large bowl until thoroughly combined.
  4. Scoop 1/2 tsp.of the meat mixture and roll into round balls. Continue rolling until all the meat is rolled.
  5. Drop the balls into rolling, boiling, salted water. Do this in stages to avoid over crowding. The meatballs will sink at first and then float. Once they float, continue to cook for 3 minutes and then remove with a slotted spoon to a separate bowl.Set aside.
  6. Make the pasta
  7. Make according to package directions. Strain and set aside.
  8. Make the soup
  9. To a large pot, heat the oil until hot. Add the onion, celery, and carrot and cook until translucent.
  10. Add the broth and kale and simmer for 15 minutes.
  11. Add the meatballs to the soup.
  12. To serve
  13. Add cooked pasta to individual bowls before ladling the soup over the top.
  14. Garnish with fresh grated parmesan and parsley.


I boiled (poached) the meatballs separately from the soup, as I do this with matzo balls as well- it helps keep the broth clear and makes more of it- I like adding the pasta separately too, so it doesn't absorb the broth as it sits and get mushy. If you are eating this right away, you can poach the meatballs and the pasta directly in the soup, making this a one pot meal- easily!

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Italian Wedding Soup | Hardly A GoddessThanks to our host for this week’s link-up, Sarah from Chef Next Door!

Appetizers, Soups, and Salads

Lean Ground Beef Recipes


Sandwiches and Wraps


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5 thoughts on “Italian Wedding Soup #SundaySupper

  1. Wendy Klik

    I just made Italian Meatball soup for my first time a couple of weeks ago too. Yours looks wonderful and you’re right it is a great, quick and easy weeknight dinner.

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