Italian wedding soup is a simple and healthy soup that can be served anytime, not just weddings. This low-sodium version cooks in the slow cooker to produce a flavorful soup that can be served as a starter or main course.
Cookbook recipe! This low-sodium Italian wedding soup recipe is another favorite recipe that made it into my latest cookbook. This one, you would never guess is low-sodium because it is packed with so much flavor. And it’s super easy with the meatballs and pasta cooking going into the slow cooker raw. No pre-cooking necessary.
I always assumed this was a traditional soup serve at Italian weddings. It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I learned this was not the case, it’s just a play on words. The term “wedding soup” comes from the Italian language phrase “minestra maritata” (“married soup”), which is a reference to the flavor produced by the combination/”marriage” of greens and the meat.
The meat in this case being the meatballs with the greens referring to the spinach. Italian wedding soup can also contain pasta in which I used orzo pasta but you can absolutely use a different shape pasta if that’s what you have. This is another recipe that you can modify to make work for you.
The meatballs cook in the soup most of the time with the spinach & orzo added the last few minutes of cook time.Print
- 1 lb lean ground meat (I used beef)
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp parsley
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 carrots, peeled & chopped
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 tbsp parsley
- 1 tsp oregano
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked orzo pasta
- 4 ounces fresh baby spinach
- To make meatballs: in a large bowl, combine all the ingredients and shape into 1-inch balls.
- To make the soup: put the meatballs and all the remaining ingredients in the slow cooker EXCEPT the orzo and spinach.
- Cook high 2-4 or low 5-7.
- Stir in the pasta & spinach & cook an additional 15 minutes or until the pasta is soft.
You can find full nutritional information in The Low Sodium Slow Cooker Cookbook.
I know I told you no pre-cooking was necessary for this recipe but as you can probably tell, I used frozen meatballs. One thing you can do to save time is pre-make your meatballs. I like to make mine ahead of time and then freeze them (I bake them first but you can freeze them raw) and then add them to the soup frozen. Again, this is not a necessary step, just optional.
Like this recipe? You’ll find more like this in The Low Sodium Slow Cooker Cookbook.
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