This is a classic and hearty soup that you will want to make over and over again. Skip the canned soup, and make homemade Italian wedding soup, or meatball soup today. However you call it, you will love this keto meatball soup that is loaded with hearty vegetables. A light but filling main dish recipe!
My friend Lisa posted a photo of her meatball soup on Facebook a few weeks ago, and since then I’ve been craving it. When I got a 1.5 lb pack of ground pork for $2.41 at Walmart yesterday I knew it was time to make some. We are also in the middle of a cold, rainy week here in the Northeast which always screams soup to me.
This soup is full of vegetables and meatballs in broth. It is light but filling. Even if you don’t get meat on clearance like I did it is budget-friendly. A huge pot shouldn’t cost more than $5-$8. Best of all, it makes a large amount so you will have leftovers to enjoy the next day.
The Best Italian Wedding Soup
This is the best Italian soup I've tried. The fresh ingredients paired with the bite-sized pork meatballs have comfort in every bite. It is one of our favorite cold-weather meals.
Why is it Called Italian Wedding Soup
You might think this soup is served at weddings. If you guessed that, you would be wrong. This soup is named after the way all the ingredients combine and "marry in flavor" as it cooks.
That is one of the best things about any soup in my opinion. When they are made well the flavors complement and enhance each other.
Do You Have To Use Pasta?
You do not have to use pasta when cooking keto meatball soup. In my recipe, I skip the pasta and use veggies like spinach and zucchini to replace the pasta with wholesome vegetables. It is a lighter version but still packs some incredible taste.
You don't need pasta as a filler when your soup has delicious broth, fresh veggies, and a protein!
What Other Ground Meats Can Be Used In This Soup Recipe
I reached for ground pork when making my meatballs. You are welcome to use ground chicken, turkey, or even turkey sausage.
All of these meats will work well with the other ingredients used in the meatball portion of the recipe.
How Do You Make Italian Wedding Soup
Start by prepping and cooking your meatballs as directed below. You want to make sure your meatballs reach at least 160 degrees to ensure they are cooked safely to be mixed with the soup.
Once your meatballs are done, go ahead and work on the stock of the soup. Add in some olive oil to your pot, and toss in your diced onion and garlic. Cook until soft and fragrant. Then stir in your zucchini and cover the pan. You want it to break down and cook for around five to ten minutes. Add in your stock, and heat until you see it begin to simmer. Add in your cooked meatballs, spinach, and top with parmesan cheese.
Can You Use Frozen Meatballs Instead Of Making Your Own
You sure can! If you don't want to mess with making homemade meatballs, buy your favorite brand of meatballs in the store. You can use frozen or look for pre-made meatballs in the refrigerator section at your meat market. Both work great in the recipe.
I prefer to make my own because the teeny tiny meatballs traditional to Meatball Soup aren't available in any freezer section I've seen.
Can You Freeze Keto Meatball Soup?
You are welcome to freeze any of your leftover Italian soup. I will say that your veggies will break down a bit more once you go to warm them up. But the flavors will be the same, and it tastes phenomenal.
Just place your soup in freezer bags or containers and toss in the fridge for one to two months. Thaw in the refrigerator the night before and then warm up on the stove.
I like to pour my soup into freezer bags and then lay them flat in the freezer. Once they are frozen, you can set them up, and it uses almost no room in the freezer. This is an excellent tip if you are a meal prepper who enjoys having a freezer full of meals.
What to Pair With Meatball Soup
Most of the time we eat soup alone and don't pair it with other sides. But if you are on the hunt for some tasty sides to match with this soup, let me share a few ideas below.
- Green Salad
- Low Carb Panini
- Keto Biscuits
If you are a fan of soup give my meatball soup recipe a try. It is simple to make, minimal ingredients required and can serve a crowd. Best of all it reheats beautifully for meals down the line.
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- 1.5 lb ground pork or other ground meat
- 1 egg
- ⅓ cup almond flour (or baking mix of your choice)
- ⅓ cup parmesan cheese
- ½ tablespoon EACH minced garlic, minced onion, basil, oregano, and parsley
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 onions chopped
- 3 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 large zucchini quartered lengthwise and sliced
- 5 oz fresh spinach cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 quart chicken or beef stock
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400. Mix all meatball ingredients together. Form into small balls. Put on a greased baking sheet (I line mine with foil). Bake for 10-15 until a meat thermometer reaches 160.
- Meanwhile, grease a stock pot with olive oil. Cook onions and garlic until they are softened. Add zucchini and cover. Cook 5 min until softened. Add stock and heat until simmering. Add cooked meatballs and spinach and serve with extra parmesan cheese.
Originally Published February 24, 2016. Revised and Republished January 27, 2020.
I was looking for keto recipe with ground pork and found this delicious soup. Used also some celery, kohlrabi and asparagus...
Such a good warming delight !!!
Thank you 😀
This soup is so delicious. It’s the second time I made it in a week. This is a keeper!
I will substitute some of the onion but add some cabbage as well as the spinach. Hopefully it will still be good. We use cabbage in a lot of soups anyway. I'm going to try this next week as we are getting into cool autumn weather.
Cynthia Amitrano says
If you don't like the spinach taste overpowering the flavor of the soup substitute curly endive. True Italian wedding soup uses curly endive, no carrots.
Very delicious! I made it with ground turkey, and Kale, and it was very tasty and easy to make.
Cynthia Amitrano says
No thanks. I make meatballs using Italian sausage and tweak the recipe accordingly. I also use curly endive instead of spinach. Kale is okay.
Hi, the blog post says "Then stir in your zucchini and cabbage and cover the pan."
But the recipe calls for spinach, not cabbage. Are they interchangeable? Which is the correct one?
You can use cabbage but we prefer spinach. I'll edit out the typo now.
Kale is also used interchangeably, and we quite like that.
Jennifer Farley says
Such great flavor! Will definitely be making again!
Jessica Formicola says
We made this soup for dinner last night and it was a total hit! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!
Northern Belle says
About how many meatballs does this make and about how much is a serving? Trying to figure nutritional value per serving but impossible to do without some idea how much this makes. If I knew the number and size of each serving (like 6 - 1 cup servings) and the number of small meatballs it makes, then I could figure. Thanks so much!
Honestly, I'm not sure. I'm sorry. It's been awhile since I made this one and this was before I started calculating nutrition info for all of my recipes. My guess would be 6 servings.
is it fresh herbs or dried
I normally just use dried herbs