Italian Sausage and Potato Soup with Spinach

After the Pasta Fagioli post last week, I feel compelled to post my modified version of the super popular Zuppa Toscana.  Why don't I call it Zuppa Toscana, you ask?  Because I make it a little differently than most.  Not better, just different.  So if I called it Zuppa Toscana, the purists would say, "Hey, that's not right." So why don't I just make it like the Garden does and every other internet recipe in existence?  Well because I have a problem with ground meat in cream soups. I wanted to make it through November without posting about my numerous food issues and why I do what I do. But posting a recipe with no story? Where's the fun in that? Unfortunately, the story of this modification could be misconstrued by a certain food blogger's mom as making fun of said mom.  So Mom, if you're reading, stop. The recipe is in your email without incriminating story that you will think is making fun of you even though it is really making fun of me. Okay?

One of my favorite things to eat when I was growing up was biscuits and gravy. I would eat it until my stomach hurt. In fact, we all loved biscuits and gravy, especially my dad, who I think had lots of food issues of his own. Because we all loved it, my mom sometimes made it for dinner.  Except that she'd use hamburger. And then leave it in the gravy. And serve it over rice. Am I the only one with heebie jeebies right now? I don't know why that particular combination was so distasteful to me but it was.  My mom didn't understand. "You love gravy. You love hamburger. You love rice," she would say. Just because I love them, doesn't mean I love them together. Why couldn't she understand that? I love chocolate cake. I love mashed potatoes. I love pepperoni pizza. That doesn't mean I want them all smashed up together on one plate now does it? So now any kind of ground meat in any kind of cream sauce is out. Banished forever. Yes I do know that the sausage links are the same minus the casing and please let's not discuss casing, okay? I am running out of unbanned foods as it is. Just continue to play along and act like I make sense. Oh and the kale? No story there.  I just prefer spinach.

Italian Sausage and Potato Soup with Spinach
Recipe by Michelle's Dinner Bell

1 lb Italian sausage links - I like spicy but you can use mild.
1 tbs canola oil
32 oz chicken broth
3 small red potatoes, sliced
1 cup whipping cream
6 oz fresh baby spinach
Pinch red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
  1. In large pot, brown sausage in canola oil.  When sausages are browned on all sides, drain fat and add chicken broth.
  2. Bring to boil and then reduce heat and allow to simmer for one hour. This step is not necessary but I believe it gives the soup more flavor and the sausage a better texture.
  3. In a separate pot - okay, you could do it in the same pot but it makes the soup cloudier and starchier and just not quite as good - boil potatoes until just fork tender - about 15 minutes.
  4. Remove sausage links and slice into rounds.
  5. Add sausage and potatoes back to the broth and stir in cream.  Heat through and add a pinch of red pepper flakes (if desired) and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. To serve, place a handful of spinach in each bowl and ladle hot soup over it. This way, your spinach won't get slimy - especially in the leftover soup.


  1. I could have a hearty soup, like this, as dinner with a salad. You have everything in it, meat, potatoes and a green vegetable. I love it.

  2. One of my favorite soups! You treated us with this delicious soup in one of your unforgettable cooking demonstrations. I have made "The Garden's" version of this soup with soy creamer to make it non-dairy for my husband. It is still just as delicious (though I prefer the sinful whipping cream version)...and your recipe my dear is simply mah-velous.