Italian wedding soup is a kid friendly, easy and delicious soup that everyone will love. The soup is made up of broth, veggies, pasta and the star of the recipe is cute mini meatballs. It is a perfect soup for a cold winter day.
This Neopolitan soup is originally called “minestra maritata”, which translates to “married soup” It is not served at Italian weddings but its meaning refers to how its flavors come together in a beautiful marriage!
Growing up this soup was a dish that my Grandpa made all the time. I can still remember helping him roll the mini meatballs. He taught me to sear the meatballs first. It adds such great flavor to the soup. The smell of it just brings me right back to his kitchen.
Italian Wedding Soup (Ingredients)
For the Meatballs
½ lb. Ground Pork
¼ lb. Ground Beef
¼ Cup Bread Crumbs
¼ Cup, Plus 2 Tbsp. Pecorino Romano
1 Egg- Beaten
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Pepper
¾ tsp. Garlic Powder
3 tbsp. Chopped Fresh Parsley
½ Cup Olive Oil
For the Soup
1 Onion (about 7 oz.)- Diced
6 Celery Stalks (about 6 oz)- Diced
3 Carrots (about ½ lb.)- Peeled and Diced
10 Cups – Low Sodium Chicken Broth
1 ½ Tsp Salt
1 tsp. Pepper
4 Cups Spinach
2 Pecorino Ends- These are cubed chunks of Pecorino Cheese
1 lb. Pasta- I used Acini Di Pepe
In a bowl, combine the pork and beef with the bread crumbs, Pecorino, beaten egg, salt, pepper, garlic powder and chopped fresh parsley. Form into mini meatballs (about 1 tsp. Or less each). In a soup pot over low/medium heat add a ½ cup of olive oil. Add in about 10 to 15 meatballs. Once browned on all sides (about 8 minutes), remove from the pan and add in more meatballs. Repeat this process until all the meatballs are cooked and removed from the pan. This oil has great flavor but you will need to remove half of it from the pan or else the soup will be too greasy.. Also, try to strain out most of the remaining brown bits from the pan.
Next add in the onion and cook until it becomes translucent and add the carrots and the celery. Cook on a low flame for about 10 minutes or until they become soft. Season with salt and the black pepper. Stir the mixture and cook for about 2 minutes. Add back the meatballs and then add in the broth. Raise the temperature to low/medium and bring to a simmer (about 10 minutes) Add in the Pecorino end. Cook for 20 more minutes, making sure the veggies are cooked, Then add the spinach. Cook until the spinach wilts. Taste for seasoning and add salt or pepper if needed.
Meanwhile, cook your pasta and drain and put in a bowl. You can add a small amount of olive oil to the pasta so that it does not stick together. I don’t like to cook the pasta in the soup because I find it becomes too soft. Serve with the pasta and top with grated Pecorino.