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Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana

Prep Time 15 mins
Total Time 4 hrs 15 mins
Servings 4 servings

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This easy Zuppa Toscana is a creamy soup full of Italian sausage, kale, potatoes and Parmesan. It’s hearty, creamy, and perfect for fall! Step by step recipe video down in the recipe card.

slow cooker zuppa toscana in metal ladle

I faintly remember those days when I used to go to Olive Garden.

And we’ve always lived at least an hour and a half away from an Olive Garden, so it’s not like it was a once a week thing, but still — every once in a while I think back to the days before Real Responsibilities (let’s call them “Kids” for short) and how we could go into a restaurant and just eat a relaxed meal.

But now I have two of the sweetest, cutest, funniest girls and I wouldn’t even trade them for a trip to Olive Garden (promise).

This means that I’ve learned to make more of our favorite restaurant meals at home, and this Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana is one of our favorite things to dip large chunks of bread into in the fall.

(What is soup without large chunks of bread??)

two bowls of zuppa toscana on white background with bread

Why we love this Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana:

  • The Italian sausage is loaded with herbs and spices, which cuts down on the extra ingredients required!
  • It’s got just the right amount of spice and sweetness (again, thanks Italian sausage!)
  • Aside from browning the meat, I can just dump it and go, which is perfect for busy weeknights
overhead image of one bowl of zuppa toscana with bread

Variations on this Zuppa Toscana recipe:

  • Lots of recipes for Zuppa Toscana include bacon, but I find it an unnecessary addition. If that’s your thing, feel free to cook some up in the same pan you fry your sausage and add it to the slow cooker (or save it to sprinkle on top later).
  • We prefer the texture of kale after it has softened in the slow cooker along with the vegetables. If you prefer it with more bite, you can leave it out until you add the cream to the slow cooker near the end.
  • You can swap the kale for spinach if that’s what you have on hand, but spinach isn’t as tough as kale and I would add it right before serving.
  • If you want to use a lighter dairy option, you can swap the heavy cream for evaporated milk. I don’t recommend low fat milk as it can curdle when added alone to hot liquid.
close up image of bowl of zuppa toscana soup
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Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana

5 from 4 votes
This Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana is a hearty potato soup made with Italian sausage and kale!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 15 mins
Cuisine American
Course Main Course, Soup
Servings 4 servings
Calories 579cal

Ingredients

  • 375 g Italian sausage meat without casings, mild or spicy (3/4 lb)
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1.5 lbs Russet or gold potatoes peeled and diced (about 4 medium)
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 cup cream (10-30% will work fine)
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes optional, for extra spice

Instructions

  • In a large frying pan, brown the Italian sausage with the onion over medium-high heat (4-5 minutes). Add minced garlic and cook 1 minute.
  • Add sausage mixture, broth, potatoes, kale (or save to add with the cream if you prefer more texture), salt and pepper to the Slow Cooker (4-6 quarts) and cook on low for 4-5 hours or high for about 2 hours (cooking times vary by slow cooker). You can also reserve the kale to add at the end if you prefer it to have more texture.
  • Once potatoes are tender, stir in cream, Parmesan and red pepper flakes if using (optional for extra heat!). Let heat through before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 579cal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 1170mg | Potassium: 1303mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 3445IU | Vitamin C: 55mg | Calcium: 172mg | Iron: 4mg

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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Comments

  1. [email protected] says

    Made this tonight @ x1 1/2. Was outstanding. Followed recipe putting kale in for duration – turned out fine. Like this recipe with potatoes cubed instead of large slices – easier for us old folks to eat. Also, used Jenny-O turkey Italian sausage – both sweet and hot. Nice.
    Great recipe Ashley, thanks for sharing.
    Rick

  2. Janet Bradley says

    I love your recipes, but have a small request. Could you please also convert grams to pounds when it comes to meats?

    Thanks a million ;o}

    • Ashley Fehr says

      Thanks Janet! I try to include as much information in a recipe as possible, but sometimes I forget. If in doubt, Google is helpful at converting grams to pounds if I have missed something.

  3. Mary B. Milne says

    I would wash them, and put them in a bowl with olive oil and garlic salt and then cook in microwave for about 10 minutes and then thread them on wooden screwers and grill on the BBQ. Then serve with sour cream. out of this world.

    • Ashley Fehr says

      I really can’t say as I’ve never used almond flour. If you’re looking to substitute something for the flour that’s gluten free I would using a mixture of equal parts corn starch and water — start with a small amount and add gradually. Hope that helps!

  4. Dawn Neal says

    I would lI’ve to try this recipe.

    Besides using the potatoes for this recipe, I love to make New England boiled dinners and beef stews with the creamer potatoes.

  5. Akika Coston says

    I love the recipe you have posted. It was also one of my favorites from the Garden. LOL
    I would make Ultimate smashed potatoes. My family loves smashed potatoes with the garlic, bacon and cheese! Love your blog!

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