Easy Italian Wedding Soup | Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Easy Italian Wedding Soup

I love this recipe for Easy Italian Wedding Soup! Just thinking about those tender little meatballs in the rich chicken broth with that fun shaped pasta, just makes my mouth water! Making this soup from scratch, can be quite labor intensive. That's why I've come up with this easy recipe that uses frozen mini meatballs, instead of making the meatballs from scratch! And, it's every bit as delicious as an Italian Wedding Soup made completely from scratch!

Overhead view of a bowl of Easy Italian Wedding Soup by Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Homemade soup is the best! Some of my favorite homemade soup recipes are Skinny Zuppa Toscana and Easy Vegetable Alphabet soup. Quick and easy homemade soup like this recipe for Easy Italian Wedding Soup is even better!

Italian Wedding Soup is a soup I really enjoy.  Making an authentic wedding soup recipe can be labor intensive though. It's a lot of work making all those mini meatballs by hand.  A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon a "new to me" product at the grocery store....Frozen Mini Meatballs.  I knew Italian Wedding Soup was going on the menu!

Using the frozen meatballs streamlines this classic recipe into a soup you can make in no time....even make on a weeknight!  I used Rosina Mini Meatballs in this recipe and they were great. They are the perfect size for this soup.  They are fully cooked so all you need to do is warm them through in the broth.  I have seen other brands out that make frozen mini meatballs since my discovery a few weeks back, so feel free to use any brand you can find.

(NOTE: Unfortunately, Rosina stopped making the mini meatballs, but this recipe will still work with the regular sized Rosina Italian Meatballs too.)

close up view of a bowl of Easy Italian Wedding Soup by Renee's Kitchen Adventures (one in the front and one behind it) with a pepper grinder to the side

This recipe is an original.  I used Acini de Pepe pasta in this soup, but any kind of small shaped pasta will do.  I like the acini de pepe because they start out very small and grow very big, and they don't seem to get too soggy sitting around in the broth like some pasta can get.  I also replaced the traditional escarole with spinach because spinach cooks up in minutes.

Italian Wedding Soup History

Many people believe that Italian wedding soup got its name from being served at Italian weddings, but this is not true. The term "wedding soup" comes from the Italian language phrase "minestra maritata" ("married soup").  This term refers to the "marriage" or combination of the green vegetables and the meat in the soup. Its history can be traced back to Spain, where it was a very hearty soup that was often the only meal eaten in the day. Today's Italian Wedding Soup recipes are much lighter than the original Spanish ones.

Close up image of a bowl of Easy Italian Wedding Soup by Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Can you freeze Italian wedding soup?

Yes! You can freeze Italian wedding soup. Like most soups, freezing is a great way to preserve the leftovers for another day. You may find that the pasta is a little softer after being frozen, but it's still perfectly edible.

Easy Italian Wedding Soup, Italian Wedding Soup with frozen meatballs, Soup, easy recipe for soup
Yield: 24 servings

Easy Italian Wedding Soup

Easy Italian Wedding Soup

prep time: 10 Mcook time: 30 Mtotal time: 40 M
Easy Italian Wedding Soup is ready in minutes thanks to frozen mini meatballs! The rich chicken soup base, veggies, acini de pepe pasta all work so well together.


  • 1 TBSP Olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. dried basil
  • 12 cups fat free, low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine (any kind you like)
  • 1 lb. Frozen Mini Meatballs (I used Rosina brand)
  • 3/4 cup acini de pepe pasta (dry)
  • 10 oz. fresh baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • juice of 1/2 lemon (optional)
  • salt and pepper, to taste


How to cook Easy Italian Wedding Soup

  1. In a large stock pot, heat the oil on med/high heat until it begins to shimmer. Add in the onion, celery and carrots. Cook until they begin to soften, approx 5-6 minutes. Add in the garlic and allow to cook for another minute or so until it becomes fragrant. ( I do season the veg at this point with salt and pepper, but it's your choice when and how much you add those seasonings)
  2. Add the dried basil to the vegetables and stir. Allow to cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add in the chicken broth. Let the soup come to a boil and then turn down to simmer.
  3. Add in the wine and allow the mixture to come back up to simmer.
  4. Add in the frozen meatballs and stir. Allow the meatballs to heat through and the soup to come back up to a simmer. Turn heat up just a bit, so the soup comes to a gentle boil.
  5. Add in the acini de pepe. Cook at a gentle boil until the pasta is tender, approx. 15-20 minutes, while occasionally stirring.
  6. When the pasta is tender, turn the soup back down to a simmer and add in the spinach and the Parmesan cheese. Stir well. Cook until spinach is wilted. (1 - 2 minutes)
  7. Add in the lemon juice, if using. Test for salt and pepper, and add as you like. Serve immediately.


As the soup sits, the acini de pepe will continue to absorb the broth and grow bigger and more tender
Nutrition information is an estimate.
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Nutritional Information is an estimate.

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Overhead view of a bowl of Easy Italian Wedding Soup by Renee's Kitchen Adventures with text overlay for Pinterest

My family gave this soup 2 thumbs up. As I mentioned, if you have leftovers, you will find the pasta will absorb quite a bit of the broth. You can reduce the amount of pasta you use in the recipe if you like, or add more broth when reheating. You can also adjust the seasonings and the cheese as you like. I really didn't measure, so the amounts given are more of a guideline than anything. I did use the given amounts of pasta, meatballs, and spinach when I made it.

More easy homemade soups to love!

*This post first appeared on Renee's Kitchen Adventures in January, 2014. It's been updated with better directions, nutritional information, tips, and new images to help you make the best Italian Wedding Soup around! Enjoy!

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  1. Oh no! I'm so glad you're feeling better. Soup always seems to do the trick! When I make meatballs, I try to make extra to freeze so I can make this soup! Its definitely one of our favorites

    1. that's a great idea about freezing the extra meatballs!

  2. Mmm, I love Italian wedding soup and I never make it because of the work factor. Who knew about frozen mini meatballs? That's wonderful! They would be great in some homemade spaghettios, too.

    1. I really liked the Rosina brand ones. Very tender and tasty. You are right, they would be perfect in homemade spaghettios!

  3. Looks like a nice easy soup recipe Renee. Sorry you have been sick - what a terrible way to start the new year. Hope you are back to normal real soon. Happy New Year!

  4. I've heard of so many people being sick over the holidays, especially New Year's! Glad you are feeling better, and since I really don't like making meatballs (or anything that has to be rolled!) I will be on the lookout for the mini meatballs. This soup has been on my mind recently, so I need to make it soon. Your lemon chicken soup with orzo has become a favorite of mine, my sister AND my dad! I don't know if I commented and told you it was one of the only things he enjoyed eating while going through chemo (4 years ago), so I am thankful for that post!

  5. Renee! I'm making this soon :) Going to use it for Grumpy's new soup thermos and start feeding him something other than a sandwich at lunch lol This look SOOO good!

  6. This soup was incredibly easy and SO looking forward to eating it tonight! Thanks, Renee!!!

  7. I know this is an older post, but stumbled on it today while looking for something to make for my family for dinner. Half my family is sick and half is well... makes for tricky meal planning.
    Is that accurate-- 12 cups of broth?! That's a lot!!

    1. Hello! I am happy you stumbled here.I am so sorry to hear part of your family is not well. That does present a challenge. I hope everyone feels better soon!

      No matter when the post was written, the recipe is still very relevant. :) As for the 12 cups, yes, that is accurate. A box of chicken stock contains 32 ounces. I used 2 boxes plus 4 cups. The extra stock is there for the pasta to absorb and still leave enough broth for the soup. If you feel it's excess, you can reduce it by 4 cups (total of 8 cups, or 2 boxes of stock), but you'd end up with less broth in the soup. Hope this helps.


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