My family loves to go to Olive Garden, mostly for their soup and salad! I was thrilled to find some of their soup recipes, tailored for the crockpot, online. The restaurant serves 4 different soups. Chicken and Gnocchi is a creamy soup made with roasted chicken, dumplings and spinach. Their Pasta e Fagiolo consists of 2 kinds of beans, ground beef, tomatoes and pasta. Minestrone (my fave!) is the vegetarian soup with fresh vegetables, beans and pasta in a light tomato broth. Zuppa Toscana is a spicy sausage, fresh kale and potatoes in a creamy broth.
Zuppa Toscana is the most asked for soup at Olive Garden. This particular recipe comes from MyRecipes and claims to be better than the original.
Zuppa Toscana Soup
- 1 pound Italian sausage (spicy)
- 4-6 russet potatoes, cut into bite-sized cubes
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp garlic, minced
- 32 ounces chicken broth (I used low sodium)
- 1/2 bunch kale (or swiss chard), destemmed and cut/torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cayenne pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup bacon, cooked and chopped
- Brown sausage links in a sauté pan.
- Cut links in half lengthwise, then cut slices.
- Place sausage, chicken broth, garlic, potatoes and onion in slow cooker. Add just enough water to cover the vegetables and meat.
- Cook on high 3-4 hours (low 5-6 hours) until potatoes are soft.
30 minutes before serving:
- Mix flour into cream removing lumps.
- Add cream and kale to the crock pot, stir.
- Cook on high 30 minutes or until broth thickens slightly.
- Add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.
- Top with bacon immediately before serving.