This delicious recipe for Tuscan Chicken Soup is chock full of soul warming Italian flavors in a rich tomato broth – all ladled over crispy and tender chicken meat balls.
Even though it’s officially not winter yet, it really feels like it. And that says to me, “Bring on the Soup!” It just makes everything cozier. And when I make soup, especially in the winter, I like a soup with substance. A soup that substitutes happily for a full meal, like this Tuscan Chicken Soup.
This recipe is kind of a cross between an Italian Wedding Soup, where meatballs are added and a wonderfully rich vegetable soup.
I’ve been making variations of this vegetable soup for, like…ever. Just because I really love vegetables. But I thought the addition of the meatballs…chicken meatballs…would really make this soup perfect.
And yes, it’s one more step to make the meatballs, but they’re really easy to make and they only take about 10 minutes in the oven.
There’s really three ways to make this soup. Super fast in an Instant Pot, about 12 minutes. Or on the stove, which takes 20 minutes. Or the way I did in a Crockpot. Low and slow. So the ingredients really marry together deliciously.
Ingredients for Tuscan Chicken Soup
Ground chicken: The star of this soup
Parmesan Panko: This deliciously and lightly binds the meatball together
Parmesan Cheese: For total flavor
Egg: This aids binding along with the Panko
Oregano: For true Italian flavor
Thyme: Also a prominent Mediterranean spice
Garlic Salt: I used Jane’s Chunky Mixed Up Garlic Seasoning
Pepper: I used Jane’s Mixed Up Steakhouse Seasoning
Olive oil: Can’t have an Italian dish without olive oil
Onions: The beginning of a mirepoix, along with the celery and carrots.
Garlic: Always a must-have with Italian dishes
Canneloni beans: These hold up well, but you can substitute Great Northern
Diced tomatoes: I used the Cento brand petite diced tomatoes
Spinach: For Health
Basil: For true Mediterranean flavor
Chicken Andouille Sausage: To add extra spiciness (this certainly is optional)
Chicken stock: Manischewitz Low Soldium Chicken is my favorite because of it’s richness
How to make Tuscan Chicken Soup
A lot of ingredients, I know, but 8 of them is the meatball recipe. And these are totally easy to make. Just combine the ground chicken, Panko, Parmesan Cheese, beaten egg, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper in a medium mixing bowl.
Add some Parmesan Panko to a shallow dish. Then scoop up a tablespoon-size amount of the chicken mixture and roll it in a ball. Then dredge each chicken meatball in the Panko and place it on a parchment lined sheet pan.
You should have around 12 meat balls. Bake them at 425 for 12 minutes. And set them aside to cool.
For the soup, just sauté the onions, celery, carrots and the garlic in some olive oil over medium heat until the vegetables begin to caramelize.
Then add the vegetables to a Crockpot, along with the drained beans, tomatoes, spinach, basil, Sausage and the chicken broth. Set the Crockpot on low and let it simmer for at least 4 hours.
Add the cooled meatballs to a zip lock bag and refrigerate until the soup is finished.
Then, when you’re ready to serve, place the meatballs in the microwave for 1 minute. Add 3 meatballs to each serving bowl and ladle the soup over the top. Garnish with a little Parmesan cheese and basil, if desired.
Tuscan Chicken Soup
- 1/2 Lb Ground chicken
- 1/2 Cup Panko Parmesan Panko
- 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese Grated
- 1 Egg Beaten
- 1/4 Tsp Oregano Dried
- 1/2 Tsp Thyme
- 1/4 Tsp Garlic salt
- 1/4 Tsp Pepper
- 1 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1/2 Cup Onions Diced
- 1/2 Cup Celery Diced
- 1/2 Cup Carrots Diced
- 3 Cloves Garlic Minced finely
- 1 14 oz can White beans Northern or Cannelloni
- 1 14 oz can Tomatoes Diced
- 1 Cup Spinach
- 1 Cup Basil leaves
- 1 Link Chicken andouille sausage Sliced thin (Trader Joe's)
- 1 Qt Chicken stock Manischewitz preferred
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F
- Chicken meatballs: Combine ground chicken, 1/4 cup Panko, Parmesan cheese, egg, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper and mix lightly.
- Add remaining 1/4 Panko to a shallow dish.
- Using a Tbsp, scoop the mixture into balls and roll in the Panko mixture on all sides. Place each meatball on a parchment covered sheet pan.
- Place the pan into the oven and bake 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- In a saute pan over medium high heat, add olive oil and then add the onions, celery, carrots and garlic. Continue to stir for 5 minutes until caramelized.
- Add the vegetables into a slow cooker. Add beans, tomatoes, spinach, basil and the sausage.
- Finally add in the chicken broth. Mix lightly and cook on low heat for 4 hours.
- Add the cooled cooked chicken meatballs into a zip lock bag and refrigerate until soup is finished.
- To serve: Place meatballs on a microwave proof plate and cook on high for 1 minute. Add 3 meat balls to each serving bowl. Ladle hot soup over the top. Then garnish with Parmesan cheese and chopped Basil, if desired.
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