Warm up with a bowl of this Easy Creamy Meatball Soup. This homemade soup is a delicious blend of savory Italian sausage meatballs, hearty tomatoes, and a creamy broth. Simple to make and bursting with deliciousness, this homemade soup is a go-to when you are craving a cozy dinner or a warm, hearty pasta dish.
Why Make this Pasta Meatball Soup
- Comforting and Convenient: This Easy Creamy Meatball Soup is perfect for cozy nights or chilly evenings. It’s the perfect bowl of goodness to serve on a weeknight.
- Simple Yet Flavorful: With straightforward instructions and easily accessible ingredients, this soup guarantees a deliciously satisfying meal.
- Versatile and Family-Friendly: Whether for a quick family dinner or a casual gathering, this Italian Sausage Meatball Soup with a Creamy Tomato Base can be customized to yours and your family’s liking.
Ingredients for Easy Creamy Meatball Soup
This Hearty Soup recipe calls for a number of ingredients you probably already have in your pantry, or fridge. Feel free to use whatever pasta shape you have on hand.
- Italian Sausage: Use mild, sweet or hot Italian sausage. Ground beef, ground pork or even ground chicken or turkey are great substitutions. If using an alternative, season well to mimic the flavorful sausage. (Store-bought meatballs can also be used for a quicker preparation).
- Pasta: Any small pasta shape, tortellini or small ravioli will make for great substitutions.
- Crushed Tomatoes: Substitute with whole tomatoes that you can crush before adding to the soup. Diced tomatoes will also work well in this family-friendly soup recipe.
- Parmesan Cheese: Freshly grated Parmesan cheese adds a rich and savory taste. You can substitute it with Pecorino Romano or Grana Padano for a similar nutty, and sharp flavor.
- Tomato Paste: Tomato paste enhances the depth of the soup’s flavor. If needed, you can substitute it with an equal amount of tomato sauce, although the concentration of flavor might be slightly different.
- Chicken Stock: Chicken stock serves as the base of the soup. Vegetable broth or stock is a great substitution.
- Heavy Whipping Cream: The heavy cream provides richness and creaminess to the soup. If desired, you can substitute it with half-and-half for a slightly lighter option, or choose a dairy-free alternative.
- Baby Spinach: Fresh baby spinach adds a pop of color and nutrients to the soup. If preferred, you can use chopped kale or Swiss chard as substitutes for spinach.
- Fresh Basil and Parsley: Fresh herbs like basil and parsley contribute to the soup’s freshness and aroma. In place of fresh herbs, you can use dried ones, adjusting the quantity (usually 1 teaspoon of dried herbs for every tablespoon of fresh herbs).
How to Make Meatball Soup
Crafting this Easy Creamy Meatball Soup is a breeze, requiring simple steps and basic ingredients:
- Combine all of the ingredients for the meatballs in a bowl. Do not over mix. Shape into 1″ meatballs.
- In a deep pot, heat the olive oil. Add the meatballs in batches, browning them on all sides until cooked through. Once all of the meatballs have been cooked, reserve on a plate.
- Drain all but a tablespoon of the grease from the pot.
- Add minced celery, carrot, onion and garlic to the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté for a few minutes to soften.
- Stir in the tomato paste. Toast for a minute.
- Add in the crushed tomatoes, stock, bay leaves, Italian seasoning and Parmesan rind (if you have one). Season with just a pinch of salt.
- Bring the mixture almost to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
- Once simmered, remove and discard the bay leaves and Parmesan rind.
- Turn up the heat, add in the dried pasta. Cook the pasta just before al dente, stirring often to ensure the pasta does not stick to the bottom.
- Reduce the heat. Pour in the heavy whipping cream. Add in the Parmesan cheese. Stir. Cook for another minute.
- Add in the reserved meatballs, fresh spinach, basil and parsley.
- Cook just long enough to wilt the spinach and warm up the meatballs.
- Ladle into bowls sprinkled with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Tips on Making the Best Pasta Meatball Soup
- When preparing the meatballs, avoid over mixing to maintain their tenderness and texture.
- If substituting with ground meat of your choice, season the meat well. Also, add 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs and a beaten egg to bind.
- Yes, you can use store-bought meatballs instead of making your own.
- Cook the meatballs in batches to ensure even browning and to develop a flavorful crust.
- Sauté celery, carrots, onions, and garlic before adding liquids to enhance the overall flavor of the soup.
- Toasting the tomato paste intensifies the flavor.
- Allow the soup to simmer after adding tomatoes, stock, and seasonings to blend the flavors together.
- You can use any pasta variety you have on hand, such as penne, fusilli, or shells, adjusting cooking times as needed.
- If you don’t have crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce or diced tomatoes can be a great alternative, adjusting the texture by blending or simmering longer.
- For added protein and texture, consider adding cannellini beans to the soup for a heartier dish, stirring them in towards the end of cooking.
- Add fresh spinach, basil, and parsley at the end of cooking to retain their color, flavor, and nutrients.
How to Serve and Store Meatball Soup
This hearty meatball soup can be served alone, or pair with any of the following for a complete meal:
- Bread or Rolls
- Mixed Green or Light Side Salad.
- Grilled Cheese
- Bruschetta or Crostini
- Vegetable Platter
- Allow the soup to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- If freezing, considering not adding the pasta to the soup as the texture of the pasta can change significantly upon freezing.
- Portion the cooled soup into freezer-safe containers, leaving some space for expansion. Freeze for up to 2-3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
More Soup Recipes to Love
- Creamy Sausage Potato Soup
- Italian Sausage Orecchiette Soup
- Sausage Tortellini Soup
- Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup
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