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Favorite Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

Favorite Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

I enjoyed a similar soup for lunch at work one day and decided to re-create it at home. I love the combination of meatballs, vegetables and pasta.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Cook: 45 min. YIELD:10 servings


  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced
  • 3 celery ribs, diced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4-1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) beef broth
  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh basil
  • 1 envelope onion soup mix
  • 4-1/2 teaspoons ketchup
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1-1/2 cups uncooked penne pasta


  • 1. In a large bowl, combine eggs and bread crumbs. Crumble beef and sausage over mixture and mix well. Shape into 3/4-in. balls.
  • 2. Place meatballs on a greased rack in a foil-lined 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 15-18 minutes or until no longer pink.
  • 3. Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven, saute the carrots, celery and onion in oil until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, spinach, basil, soup mix, ketchup, thyme and bay leaves.
  • 4. Drain meatballs on paper towels. Bring soup to a boil; add meatballs. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Add pasta; cook 13-15 minutes longer or until pasta is tender, stirring occasionally. Discard bay leaves. Yield: 10 servings (2-1/2 quarts).

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 379 calories, 24g fat (8g saturated fat), 107mg cholesterol, 1016mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 3g fiber), 21g protein

Reviews for Favorite Italian Wedding Soup

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Reviewed Jan. 2, 2016

"My family and I really loved this soup! So hearty and flavorful!"

Reviewed Sep. 24, 2015

"Delicious! I added 4 c water and 2 cups shredded cooked turkey. I substituted pre-made mini meatballs from my local grocer for the homemade meatballs (faaster) and 8 oz star-shaped pasta instead of penne."

Reviewed May. 18, 2015

"So delicious! I followed the recipe mostly. The only thing I did differently was that I used fresh baby spinach and about five cloves of garlic (personal preference). Best soup ever!"

Reviewed Dec. 2, 2014

"This has been one of my family's favorite TOH recipes since it first came out a few years ago. I have made it for our annual soup and sandwich Halloween party for the past few years and am asked for the recipe every year. I have seen several other Italian Wedding Soup recipes grace the magazine's pages over the years, but this one is so perfect that I just can't bear to try any of the others. I can't imagine anything can top this keeper!"

Reviewed Nov. 22, 2014

"I've made the soup several times now and everyone loves it!! For a short cut, I bought a 2lb bag of mini frozen meatballs before and it worked great. Throwing in some tortellini, also great for a change."

Reviewed Feb. 22, 2014

"This soup is delicious!!! Best wedding soup I have tasted and my family loves it too. I have used the penne pasta but have also made it using acini di pepe also. The meatballs are awesome and worth it. This has definitely become one of my regular recipes that I will be making many times in the future."

Reviewed Jan. 5, 2014 Edited Nov. 2, 2014

"Used Acini di pepe instead of the penne and it was awesome! My boyfriend loved it!

Also use the meatballs for pasta, love the mix if beef and pork."

Reviewed Jan. 5, 2013

"My family loves Italian wedding soup. Thanks for providing this delicious recipe. This was enough for my family of 6 to have 2 bowls each"

Reviewed Nov. 7, 2012

"Delicious. I am already looking forward to making it again and for the years to come."

Reviewed Feb. 10, 2012

"This soup is absolutely delicious.Even my picky husband liked it. It does take a LOT longer than 30 minutes to prepare. It takes at least that to roll out all of the little meatballs. I did not have fresh basil so I used about a Tablespoon of dried. I had fresh spinach on hand and used that and I had fresh sliced fresh mushrooms that needed to be used so I added those. I also did not have penne pasta so I used a cup of ditalani instead and it was plenty because pasta swells so in the cooking. It is well worth the trouble. SJS9"

Reviewed Jan. 17, 2012

"Excellent. Had fun making the little meatballs with my daughter and everyone loved the soup! Will definitely be making it again!"

Reviewed Jan. 15, 2012

"soup was wonderful very flavorable and definitly would make again...and again!"

Reviewed Oct. 25, 2011

"I used small shell pasta instead. They acted like little individual bowls to hold the broth. Yummy!"

Reviewed Jul. 18, 2011

"delicious - my family loved it!"

Reviewed Feb. 13, 2011

"Excellent! Just excellent!"

Reviewed Jan. 20, 2011

"Looked a long time for a great wedding soup that was similar to the soup we used to enjoy in New Castle, Pa. where this soup is common.

This one is darned close! Love it."

Reviewed Nov. 8, 2010

"Excellent soup! Very tasty! I added cooked chicken. Great flavors!!!"

Reviewed Nov. 4, 2010

"This soup ROCKS!!!! Very Easy to make..While the meatballs are cooking prep the soup...Saves time."

Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"Tasty broth & soup, but would be just as good with all chicken broth (my preference)."

Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"very good. I had no fresh basil so i used 2 tsp of dried. turned out great!"

Reviewed Mar. 14, 2010

"Great recipe. I make it with turkey for the meatballs. The broth is so flavorful, you won't miss the fat from the meatballs."

Reviewed Jan. 21, 2010

"This was a BIG hit with my family. We fought over the leftovers. I used fresh spinach instead of frozen. For the meat, I used 1 pound hot sausage and one pound regular because I didn't have any Italian sausage. Next time I'll do as the recipe suggests and see if we like it as well. We probably will."

Reviewed Jan. 18, 2010

"Fantastic soup. I make it often and receive rave reviews every time. My favorite soup, EVER! Meatballs take some time to roll, but so worth the effort. I usually make double batch of meatballs, since I'm already spending the time to roll them, and freeze the extra batch so next time the soup is really quick! Recommend this recipe highly."

Reviewed Oct. 6, 2009

"This soup is great. My husband and my mother are both picky eaters and they love this. Making the meatballs can be labor intense, but so worth it."

Reviewed Sep. 14, 2009 Edited Mar. 14, 2010

"This soup is the best! My husband just loves it. We make it frequently."

Reviewed May. 3, 2009

"this is my husband's all time favorite soup recipe! Making the meatballs can be labor intensive, but so worth it! I sometimes use ground chicken instead of beef and turkey sausages. I reserve some meatballs for spaghetti and meatball....just pop them in a freezer bag!"

Reviewed Dec. 27, 2008

"Wonderful soup we had this for Christmas and everyone loved it except I used about a pound of fresh Spinach instead of frozen."

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