Italian Wedding Soup


“Soup is the song of the earth… and the home.” – Louis Pullig De Gouy

Italian Wedding Soup in a white bowl with a napkin on the side.

Frost on the grass, cold wind blowing, and smoke rising from the chimneys… Sure signs that winter is here. After a long cold day of work on the farm, there is nothing better than to come inside to a fire in the hearth and hot Italian Wedding Soup on the stove. 

My Italian Wedding Soup Secrets

According to, this soup originated in Naples and its original Italian name is really minestra maritata, which means “married soup” in relation to the “marriage” or unity of all the delicious ingredients.

The marriage of rich chicken broth, juicy meatballs, and fresh vegetables in Italian Wedding soup is a match made in heaven. Some recipes call for cooking the meatballs and the pasta in the soup. However, I prefer baking the meatballs in the oven to ensure they are thoroughly cooked and beautifully brown.  I also prefer to cook the pasta separately, unlike some people.  It has been my experience that cooking the pasta in the soup makes the broth too starchy and the noodles too soggy, but it’s all about personal preference.

My final secret is that I typically double the meatballs. Since ground meat usually comes in one-pound packages, I use a full pound of ground beef and pork. I use half the meatballs in the soup and the other half I save for later in the week to throw in my red sauce for spaghetti and meatballs. What a time saver!

Meatballs after baking on a baking sheet lined with parchment.

Soup that Satisfies

The beauty of soup is that it’s incredibly easy to make your own. Add the vegetables you like best, switch up the meat, substitute rice for pasta… Just to name a few variations. With endless options, this soup can be an incredibly fun way to get creative in the kitchen.

Italian Wedding Soup is an easy, delicious, and satisfying recipe that is sure to be a family favorite. We love it here on the farm and my hope is that after trying it, it will become one of your favorites too. The juicy meatballs, fresh vegetables, and hearty broth warms the belly and feeds the soul. It pairs perfectly with some warm bread and butter. This is truly comfort food at its finest. 

If you love this recipe, try some of my other delicious and easy soup recipes.

Mexican Chicken Soup

Butternut Squash and Ginger Soup 

Decadent Lobster Bisque

Check out my “Recipes” highlight on Instagram and you can Pin this recipe for later too. 

Happy National Soup Month!

Italian Wedding Soup in a white bowl with a napkin on the side.
Yield: 8 servings

Italian Wedding Soup

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

In winter, a favorite soup in the farmhouse is Italian Wedding Soup. The juicy meatballs, fresh vegetables, and hearty broth warms the belly and feeds the soul. It pairs perfectly with some warm bread with butter. This is comfort food at it's finest. 


  • 1 small onion, grated
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2/3 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces ground beef
  • 8 ounces ground pork
  • Sprinkle of salt and fresh ground pepper

For the soup:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 2 carrots cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 2 stalks celery cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 12 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup or more of small pasta (ditalini or stars)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1- 5 ounce bag of baby spinach (stems removed)
  • 5-6 ounces chopped escarole or swiss chard


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. For the meatballs, place the onion, parsley, egg, garlic, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, ground beef, ground pork in a bowl and combine gently with a fork. With a tablespoon, drop 1 to 1 1/4-inch meatballs onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. (You should have about 25-30 meatballs. They don't have to be perfectly round.) Bake for 20 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned. Set aside.
  3. In the meantime, for the soup, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the minced garlic clove and saute for 30 seconds. Next, add the chicken stock and cooked meatballs, bring the soup to a simmer. Simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  4. While the soup is simmering, bring a medium pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook for about 9 minutes until the pasta is 'al dente.' Once the pasta is done, drain it in a colander.
  5. Taste the soup for salt and pepper. Stir in the fresh spinach and escarole (or swiss chard) and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach and escarole/swiss chard is just wilted.
  6. To serve, spoon about 1/3 cup of pasta into the bottom of the bowl. Ladle the soup over the pasta and sprinkle each serving with Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley.
Pinterest Pin for Italian Wedding Soup in a white bowl with a napkin on the side.


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