This Italian sausage soup with orzo and kale is the epitome of comfort food. It’s easy to make, full of herby and garlic flavour and downright delicious!
The rich flavours of this Italian sausage soup with orzo and kale are just the perfect treat on a cold day.
There’s so much coziness and texture in this sausage soup, it will quickly become a family favourite.
I like to serve this soup with a bit of crusty bread on the side, but since it’s so rich, you can definitely get full by enjoying a bowl of it on its own.
This Italian sausage soup comes together in just over half an hour and you only need to use one pot to make it.
It’s super easy to make even if you haven’t made many soups before and it’s a definite crowd-pleaser.
What do you need to make Italian sausage soup?
Italian sausage — I used regular Italian pork sausages for this soup, but you can also use hot Italian sausage if you want the soup to have a bit of a kick. For a leaner option, substitute the pork sausages with chicken or turkey sausages.
Onion, carrot and celery — Together with the sausage, these veggies form the base of the soup. Make sure you dice them approximately the same size so they cook evenly.
Garlic — I use two large garlic cloves for this sausage soup recipe, but you can add more if you like things to be super garlicky.
Chilli flakes — I only add half a teaspoon of red chilli flakes to this soup to give it a bit of kick. If you want it to be spicier, you can increase the quantity.
Tomato paste — You’ll need two tablespoons of tomato paste, which is the most concentrated form of tomato puree. Make sure you allow it to cook for a minute before adding the stock to help release the flavour.
Orzo — Even though it looks just like rice, orzo is, in fact, pasta. The name means “barley” in Italian because of its resemblance to that grain, but orzo is a tiny pasta from the “pastina” category — that is, very small pasta often used in soups.
Kale — Cavolo nero (Tuscan kale) is what I use for this soup, but any other type of kale is perfect. If you don’t like kale, you can use spinach instead.
How to make it?
When the veggies have softened and the sausages have browned (go as crispy as you like), stir in the garlic, dried herbs and chilli flakes and continue to cook for another minute until fragrant.
Stir in the kale and cover the pot with a lid for 2-3 minutes to allow it to wilt.
Recipe notes and tips
- You can substitute orzo with any other type of small pasta, such as ditalini or stelline.
- This is quite a versatile soup, which means that you can add some other veggies if you want. Zucchini are a great choice — simply dice them into ½-inch cubes and add them to the pot with the orzo.
- This Italian sausage soup with pasta will keep well in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container. You can reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave. Since the orzo will continue to soak up the liquid, you may need to add some stock or water when reheating if it looks too thick.
If you liked this Italian sausage soup, you might also like some of my other easy soup recipes:
- Vegetarian Dumpling Soup
- Creamy Vegetarian Tortellini Soup
- Butter Bean Soup with Bacon
- Easy Creamy Taco Soup
- Easy Italian Meatball Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 Italian sausages, about 250 g (½ lb) , casings removed and cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon dried sage
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
- 100 g (3.5 oz) orzo
- 4-5 Tuscan kale leaves, stems removed, shredded
- 30 g (¼ cup) grated Parmesan
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottom pot like a Dutch oven. Add the sausage, onion, carrot and celery and cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- When the veggies have softened, and the sausages have browned (go as crispy as you like), stir in the garlic, dried herbs and chilli flakes and continue to cook for another minute until fragrant.
- Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring often, for 1-2 minutes. Next, add the chicken stock and bring it to a simmer.
- When the soup is bubbling, stir in the orzo and cook for 10 minutes on low-medium heat until the orzo is al dente.
- Stir in the kale and cover the pot with a lid for 2-3 minutes to allow it to wilt.
- Add the grated Parmesan, stir to combine and season to taste. Serve as is or with your favourite crusty bread and sprinkled with extra grated Parmesan, if you like.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 499Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 1106mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 5gSugar: 10gProtein: 27g
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.