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    Homemade Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

    Published January 1, 2020. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

    This super tasty wedding soup recipe is loaded with homemade meatballs, veggies, escarole and pasta that’s simmered in delicious chicken stock.

    bowl of wedding soup with meatballs, carrots and escarole

    It’s that time of year where soup is the main entrée.  Just like in my Scotch Broth Soup or my Tuscan Vegetable Soup, It’s comforting, it’s hearty, and perfect for those cold wintery days.

    What Is It

    Italian wedding soup is an Italian American dish, mush like Chicken Parmigiana or Cioppino, that has been adapted and popularized by Italians who immigrated to America.  It consists of:

    • Meatballs
    • Mirepoix
    • Chicken Stock
    • Acini di Pepe Pasta
    • Escarole

    Why Do They Call It Wedding Soup

    It originally stems from the Italian word “minestra mariata, which literally translates to “wedded broths.”  Italian Americans adapted it to wedding soup, however It’s more about the marrying of flavors in a broth as opposed to it being served at weddings in Italy, which it is not.

    How to Make Wedding Soup Meatballs

    Making meatballs is really easy to make.  Here’s a quick overview of how to make them:

    1. Add ground beef, ground pork, small diced yellow onions, finely minced garlic, finely minced parsley, grated parmesan cheese, eggs, and water-soaked and squeezed out Italian Bread, salt and pepper to a large bowl.
    making homemade meatballs in a bowl
    1. Mix with your hands until completely combined and form it into small ping pong sized balls.
    rolling meatballs to a ping pong size and frying them
    1. Place on a sheet tray and bake until browned and cooked through, or pan roast in some oil in a pan and cook through, finish in an oven, or simmer in the soup broth at the end.

    Set them aside until it’s time to serve up the soup

    This recipe makes quite a few meatballs, which I did on purpose so I could freeze half the batch.

    How to Make the Soup

    Once the meatballs are done cook, the soup is incredibly easy to prepare.

    • Add the mirepoix to a large-size pot with some oil on low heat to sweat the vegetables for about 15 minutes. Stir frequently.
    sweating vegetables in a large pot until tender
    • Add in the chicken stock and simmer on medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
    adding acini di pepe to a pot of boiling water
    • Cook the pasta in boiling salted water and set aside.
    • Once everything is done, it is then time to plate up your soup.

    Do not brown the vegetables.

    How to Serve It

    If you plan on serving this soup right away and finishing it on the same day, I advise you to add everything together in the pot and serve it.

    If you’re going to be grazing all day for a few days, then plate it like this so that the greens to wilt and the pasta doesn’t turn to mush:

    1. Add some of the soup broth with vegetables to a bowl.
    2. Place in some escarole (sub with baby spinach if you’d like).
    adding soup to a bowl along with escarole
    1. Add in some cooked acini di pepe.
    2. Place in some meatballs.
    adding cooked acini di pepe and meatballs to the soup
    1. Grate in Parmesan cheese and serve
    adding parmesan cheese to the wedding soup

    Make-Ahead and Reheat

    How to Make Ahead: Make the soup and keep the meatballs, broth with vegetables and acini di pepe separate until the day of serving it.

    How to Reheat: Place your desired amount of wedding soup into a small size pot and heat over low heat until hot. You can also simply heat in a microwave until hot.

    How to Store: Place in a container with a lid and keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

    How to Freeze: You can absolutely freeze it and it does so well. Once the soup is cool in the fridge in a container with a lid, place in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw it for 1 day in the refrigerator before reheating it.

    Chef Billy Parisi

    chef notes + tips

    • This recipe makes quite a few meatballs, which I did on purpose so I could freeze half the batch.
    a bowl of italian soup with meatballs and vegetables

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    Let's Cook - Chef Billy Parisi

    Video

    Homemade Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

    5 from 6 votes
    This super tasty wedding soup recipe is loaded with meatballs, veggies, escarole and pasta that’s simmered in a delicious chicken stock.
    Servings: 12
    Prep Time: 30 minutes
    Cook Time: 50 minutes
    Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

    Ingredients 

    For the Meatballs:

    • 2 pounds ground beef
    • 2 pounds ground pork
    • 1 peeled small diced yellow onion
    • 4 finely minced cloves of garlic
    • ¼ cup finely minced parsley
    • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
    • 1 loaf Italian bread soaked in water and squeezed
    • 5 eggs
    • Sea salt and pepper to taste

    For the Soup:

    • 1 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 peeled medium diced yellow onion
    • 3 finely minced cloves of garlic
    • 4 stalks medium diced celery
    • 4 peeled medium diced carrots
    • 128 ounces chicken stock
    • 2 heads escarole or 8 cups packed baby spinach
    • 1 pound cooked and cooled acini di pepe
    • Sea salt and pepper to taste

    Instructions

    • Preheat the oven to 400°.
    • Meatballs: Combine all of the ingredients together in a large bowl until thoroughly mixed in and form small ping pong sized meatballs and set them on sheet trays lined with parchment paper.
    • Bake in the oven at 400° for 22-25 minutes or until lightly browned and cooked through.
    • Freeze ½ of the meatballs and set the other ½ aside.
    • Soup: Add the olive oil to a large soup pot along with the onions, garlic, celery and carrots and sweat over low heat for 15 minutes. Do not brown them.
    • Add in the broth and simmer over low to medium heat for 15 more minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Season with salt and pepper.
    • To Plate: Place some of the broth and vegetables into a bowl. Add in some of the cooked and cooled acini di pepe along with a small handful of escarole, and 5-6 meatballs.
    • Grate on optional parmesan cheese.

    Notes

    Chef Notes:
    • How to Make Ahead: Make the soup and keep the meatballs, broth with vegetables and acini di pepe separate until the day of serving it.
    • How to Reheat: Place your desired amount of wedding soup into a small size pot and heat over low heat until hot. You can also simply heat in a microwave until hot.
    • How to Store: Place in a container with a lid and keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
    • How to Freeze: You can absolutely freeze it and it does so well. Once the soup is cool in the fridge in a container with a lid, place in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw it for 1 day in the refrigerator before reheating it.
    • This recipe makes quite a few meatballs, which I did on purpose so I could freeze half the batch.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 644kcalCarbohydrates: 58gProtein: 32gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 108mgSodium: 688mgPotassium: 965mgFiber: 6gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 5292IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 132mgIron: 4mg
    Course: Appetizer, Soup
    Cuisine: Italian
    Author: Chef Billy Parisi