Zuppa Toscana literally means “Tuscan Soup”. It’s a rich, hearty meat and potato meal with plenty of greens and nourishing broth. So, let’s get to it! Here is my version of Zuppa Toscana (with Dairy Free Option).
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Zuppa Toscana (with Dairy Free Option):
This beautiful, traditional Zuppa Toscana is made with thick cut bacon, Italian Sausage, new potatoes, onion, curly kale, chicken broth and sweet organic cream…or for my dairy free friends, a non dairy option! If dairy does not agree with you I recommend subbing with coconut “cream” or almond milk “creamer”. Both are thick, creamy dairy alternatives that taste great in soups. Now notice I said coconut cream and almond cream, not coconut milk and almond milk. The natural non dairy creamers are much thicker than the “milks”, which will make a big difference to the recipe!
Keep it Mild or Heat it Up!
For those that prefer less heat, sweet or mild Italian sausage is a great choice. A pinch of red pepper flakes is all you need to strike the perfect balance. BUT if you like your soup with some heat, then using hot Italian Sausage is the way to go!
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The Recipe: Zuppa Toscana (with Dairy Free Option)
A traditional Tuscan meat and potato soup
- 5 strips thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 pound sweet, mild or hot Italian sausage, casings removed (the heat is up to you!)
- 2 pounds baby gold potatoes, unpeeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced or grated
- 1 medium white onion, diced
- Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (if using spicy sausage, please omit)
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper , to taste
- 6 cups good quality chicken broth
- 1 bunch curly kale, stems removed, leaves chopped (makes about 5-6 cups)
- 1 cup heavy cream (for dairy free use coconut cream or almond milk creamer)
- 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar (or champagne vinegar, or white balsamic)
- freshly grated parmesan for garnish (optional)
Cut bacon and squeeze sausage out of casings, set aside. Place a large Dutch oven or stock pot on medium heat and cook bacon until crispy (6-7 minutes) While bacon cooks prep potatoes and garlic.
Place bacon on a plate lined with paper towels. Add sausage to pot and cook using a spatula or wooden spoon to break into pieces. Cook until no longer pink (about 7 minutes) While sausage cooks, chop onions and kale.
When sausage is ready scoop out and place on paper towels with the bacon.
Add potatoes, garlic and onion to the pot with drippings and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly soft (6 to 8 minutes) Add a pinch of red pepper flakes (skip if using spicy sausage), add 2-3 pinches sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
Pour in chicken broth and bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer and cook until potatoes are just soft (about 10 minutes, check frequently, you don't want them to get mushy)
Add the kale, cream, bacon and sausage to pot and bring to a simmer. Cook until the kale is tender, stirring occasionally for another 5-6 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Ladle into bowls, garnish with freshly grated parmesan if desired.
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