Zuppa Toscana Soup Recipe (Olive Garden Copycat)

This easy Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana soup recipe is simple to make when you’re short of time. It’s a rich and creamy soup that can be served as a quick yet filling meal, or as a starter or comfort food snack in colder weather (or whenever you want!)

dark bowl with zuppa toscana soup and bread

I come from an extended family that absolutely loves soup. We all have our favorites, and this Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana copycat soup is mine.

There’s just something about spicy sausage meat, a creamy broth, and comforting potatoes that I just can’t resist.

I think the biggest reason why is that it comes together so quickly and almost effortlessly, and you get a nutritious meal with oodles of flavor in no time!

Traditionally, this Italian Tuscan-style soup is made with a variety of vegetables including celery, carrots, zucchini, crushed tomatoes, potatoes, beans, chili powder, garlic and salt, and cured meats.

It’s typically served with toasted Tuscan bread lightly brushed with olive oil.

white bowl with zuppa toscana soup

More Comforting Soup Recipes

Mushroom Soup Without Cream

Zuppa Toscana Ingredients

  • spicy Italian ground sausage
  • salami
  • butter
  • onion
  • garlic
  • chicken broth
  • water
  • potatoes
  • heavy cream
  • kale
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • parmesan cheese
  • parsley (for garnishing)
dark bowl with zuppa toscana

How to make Zuppa Toscana

Making Zuppa Toscana isn’t complicated at all, and doesn’t require any special ingredients or cooking techniques.

The hardest thing you’ll have to do when preparing this soup is to remove the sausage from its casing.

As with many soup recipes, this Tuscan soup recipe is forgiving, so you don’t have to worry too much about quantities of ingredients – just use what you have.

The only thing to remember is to taste just before serving, and season accordingly. Often you’ll find that you don’t need to add as much salt as you think, if at all.

Tools you’ll need:

  • Sharp knife
  • Cutting board
  • Dish for setting aside prepared ingredients
  • Large pot
  • Wooden spoon
  • Serving dish
  • Slotted spoon
  • Soup ladle
  • Meal storage containers

Prepare the Zuppa Toscana ingredients

There’s really not very much preparation to be done, besides removing the sausage from its casing and chopping the salami, vegetables, and aromatics.

Here’s how:

Get the heavy cream and parmesan cheese out of the fridge so that they’re not very cold when you add them to your warm soup.

For the meat:

  • Dice the salami
  • Remove the sausage from its casing

For the vegetables:

  • Chop the onion
  • Chop the garlic
  • Cube the potatoes
  • Shred the kale
  • Chop the parsley
  • Grate the parmesan cheese

Fry the meats

  1. Salami – I like to start off by crisping up the salami bits in a lightly buttered large pot over medium heat, but this part is optional. I just like to add smoky, salty deli-style meat to my soups for extra flavor.
  2. Spicy Italian sausage – Add the sausage meat to the pot and allow it to brown noticeably. If the meat is fairly fatty, it’ll develop a good color while frying in its own oils. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
white bowl with Tuscan kale soup and croutons

Make the soup

As this is a convenient one-pot meal recipe, you can jump right into the next steps. And since your ingredients are all ready, you’re good to go.

  1. Onions and garlic – Using the same large pot you cooked the sausage, add the butter and onions, and fry until translucent and glossy. Add the garlic and fry for a further 2 minutes.
  2. Potatoes – I like to add the potatoes before adding any of the liquid ingredients to allow them to adopt some of the flavors from the fond and aromatics (onion and garlic) at the bottom of the pot. Those browned (not burned!) bits of food lend a ton of flavor to any dish, so I always try to incorporate them into my recipes when I can.
  3. Chicken broth – For convenience, I use store-bought chicken stock cubes and add them to boiled water to fully mix and form the broth. If you’re using stock in powder or cube form, be sure to dissolve it in water first before adding it to your pot, so that you can control the saltiness of your soup. Trust me, this way is easier than trying to fix a soup that’s too salty from too much stock powder!
  4. Water – I suggest starting off with one cup of water at first, and then adding more at any point if necessary.
  5. Black pepper – You don’t have to use any pepper in this Tuscan soup recipe, especially since the Italian sausage is spicy, but I prefer to. I think it works well with the creaminess of the soup and enhances the flavor of the vegetables.
white bowl with zuppa toscana kale soup with croutons

Combine the sausage, Kale, and soup, and serve

Since the sausage is already done, and the kale doesn’t require much cooking time, your Zuppa Toscana soup is almost ready to be eaten.

  1. Add the cooked spicy sausage, kale, and heavy cream, and stir to combine.
  2. Let the sausage heat through and the kale wilt for a few minutes.
  3. Taste, and stir in salt if necessary.
  4. Sprinkle with salami bits, grated parmesan, and chopped parsley if using, and you’re ready to serve. Enjoy!
white bowl with Tuscan soup and bread

What to serve with Zuppa Toscana

You don’t really need to serve this hearty soup with anything because it’s a meal by itself.

If you want though, you can enjoy your Toscana soup with any toasted Italian bread just like they do in Tuscany. Focaccia, baguettes, bruschetta and crostini are go well with this creamy soup.

Sometimes when I’m especially hungry, I grab any bread slices I have and toast them with garlic and parsley butter. I love the crunchiness of the toasted bread against the richness of the soup – it’s so satisfying!

You could opt for a salad or sauteed garlicky asparagus with a splash of lemon and a sprinkle of parmesan to brighten things up.

How to store Zuppa Toscana

If you’re making Zuppa Toscana ahead of time, or you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Just make sure to allow the soup to cool completely first, before putting it into the fridge.

I don’t recommend freezing this Zuppa Toscana soup because the vegetables and dairy won’t be at their best once they’ve defrosted, and the flavor just won’t be the same.

white bowl with creamy zuppa toscana soup

How to reheat Zuppa Toscana

You can heat up Zuppa Toscana on the stovetop or in the microwave. When reheating in the microwave, I recommend that you do so in smaller batches at a time to ensure all the liquid is heated through.

You only want to warm up only as much as you’ll need and leave the rest in the refrigerator. It really isn’t a good idea to heat all your soup, only to have to return those leftovers to the fridge. The dairy in this Tuscan soup won’t hold up well to repeated heating and cooling.

Olive Garden Copycat Zuppa Toscana

This easy Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana soup recipe is a super quick and simple copycat recipe with a rich, creamy flavor you can’t resist!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: Olive Garden Copycat Toscana, Olive Garden Copycat Tuscan Soup, Olive Garden Copycat Zuppa Toscana


  • 1 pound spicy Italian ground sausage
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ½ white onion – diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 4-5 yellow potatoes – cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 teaspoons salt – or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • chopped salami and grated parmesan cheese for topping – optional


  • In a large pot, saute the salami until browned. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  • In the same pot, fry the sausage until browned. Use a slotted spoon to transfer sausage to a plate and set aside.
  • Still using the same pot, add butter and saute onions over medium heat until translucent. Add garlic and saute for another minute until fragrant.
  • Add chicken broth, water, potatoes, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Boil until potatoes are tender.
  • Stir in kale, and heavy cream. Add sausage.
  • Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
  • Serve garnished with grated parmesan cheese if desired.


The sausage: if you have regular ground sausage, simply add 1 teaspoon of dried Italian herb seasoning or Herbs de Provence + a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes.

Once you’ve tried this copycat Olive Garden Tuscan Soup, you won’t have a reason not to have it anytime you want. It’ll save you a ton of time and money, and taste just as delicious as the restaurant recipe.

If you’ve made this creamy Tuscan soup, I’d love to know what you think!

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