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Italian Peasant Soup

My father shared this recipe with me, and I use it when I need a hearty, healthy meal. It's my sons' favorite. Loaded with sausage, chicken, beans and spinach, the quick soup is nice for special occasions, too. —Kim Knight Hamburg, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep/Total Time: 25 min.
  • Makes
    11 servings (2-3/4 quarts)


  • 1 pound Italian sausage links, casings removed and cut into 1-inch slices
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) chicken broth
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 6 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese, optional


  • In a Dutch oven, cook sausage and onions over medium heat until no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Drain. Add chicken; cook and stir until no longer pink.
  • Stir in the beans, broth, tomatoes, basil and oregano. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add the spinach and heat just until wilted. Serve with cheese if desired.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 169 calories, 7g fat (2g saturated fat), 39mg cholesterol, 471mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 3g fiber), 16g protein.

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  • DrArlene
    Jan 24, 2021

    My husband loves this soup. FYI - I make it in the slow cooker so that the onions get really cooked (my husband's preference). To do this I just brown the sausage on the stove and then toss everything (raw chicken) into the crock pot. I let it cook on low about 6-8 hours and viola!

  • Trish
    Jan 6, 2021

    No comment left

  • Vicky
    Jun 12, 2020

    Absolutely perfect! Didn’t change a thing. My husband said this was GREAT!!!

  • wwinco
    Feb 10, 2018

    Excellent as is but variations are endless. Had pork and Italian sausage to use up another time so used it and no chicken. Used both spinach and kale, added sliced carrots for more veggies. Definitely needs more broth IMO so I end up using about 64 oz. Healthy and easy to throw together.

  • browns19fan
    Jan 7, 2017

    I first saw a very similar recipe, which was titled Etruscan Peasant Soup, in a Taste of Home Cooking School publication at least 15 years ago. It has become one of our favorites.For the two of us, I prepare this recipe using 50% of the amounts listed. I omit the chicken and substitute cooked shell or other small pasta for the beans. Since even a half-recipe provides us with leftovers I cook enough pasta for the entire batch of soup, then add some of it to our bowls. I refrigerate the leftover pasta separately and finish it up when we eat the remaining soup.Note: I leave the casings on the sausage links and brown them before slicing. It just makes for a prettier presentation, IMO.

  • leosmaw
    Feb 13, 2014

    This is our favorite soup on a cold, snowy day like today.

  • Tom Brezzy
    Jan 4, 2013

    Wife and daughter LOVED this soup. I did add 32 oz of chicken broth, 2 bouillon cubes, about 1 1/2 lbs of chicken breasts and 6 FULL cups of fresh spinach. A keeper!

  • Tom Brezzy
    Jan 4, 2013

    Wife and daughter loved it. A keeper. Will make again on another cold winters day. I did add extra chicken broth (32 oz) and was a little heavier on the spinach, plus 2 cubes of chick broth.

  • catweber
    Oct 8, 2012

    Wow, my family loved this! If I could give it 10 stars I would. Easy to half since there's only three of us with leftovers for lunch the next day. Have passed this recipe on to several coworkers also

  • pdhughes
    Jan 17, 2012

    This is one of our favorite soups. I do use the ground Italian turkey sausage instead for a healthier version. I think it is a very attractive soup to serve with all the various colors.