Italian Wedding Soup is beloved for its simplicity and comforting satisfaction. In this version, the meatballs are made with ground chicken (or turkey) and some chicken sausage, which keeps them lean yet flavorful, and orzo replaces the traditional acini de pepe. The soup actually comes together quite easily and can be made on a weeknight, but special enough for guests.
For the meatballs
12 oz. ground meat (chicken or turkey)
4 oz. Italian sweet chicken sausage, casings removed
3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 Tbs. Worchestershire sauce
3 Tbs. milk
1 large egg
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the soup
2 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup sliced leeks
1 cup diced carrots
10 cups homemade or good-quality chicken stock
1 cup orzo
6 cups torn greens, such as escarole or spinach
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving
Lemon wedges for serving
Make the meatballs: Combine the ground meat, sausage, panko, garlic, parsley, Parmigiano, egg, milk, 1/2 tsp. each salt and pepper. Using a teaspoon, drop 1 1/4-inch meatballs onto a baking sheet lined with parchment and roughly shape into balls. Bake until cooked through and lightly browned, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, leeks and carrots and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 7 minutes. Stir in the stock and bring to a simmer. Stir in the orzo and cook for 6 minutes. Add the meatballs and the greens and simmer 1 to 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Ladle the soup into serving bowls. Top with grated cheese and serve with lemon wedges.
Keywords: Italian wedding soup recipe, meatball soup, soup, Italian Wedding Soup with Orzo, orzo soup,