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Italian Wedding Soup
with turkey meatballs / orzo pasta

Active: 30 Total: 30

This clean, vegetable-packed soup is a twist on a classic Cook Smarts recipe that was first featured back in December 2014. We think this refreshed version will be as much of a hit as the original.
Smarts: The orzo will expand as it sits, so if serving this soup as leftovers, you may want to add a splash more stock or water for balance.



Italian-Style Meatballs:
  • Turkey, ground and lean - 1 lb (sub any ground meat)
  • Milk - 1/4 cup
  • Italian seasoning - 2 tsp
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • Panko breadcrumbs - 1/4 cup
  • Cheese, parmesan (opt) - 2 Tbsp , grated
Italian Wedding Soup with Turkey Meatballs:
  • Onions, medium - 1 , diced
  • Carrots - 8 oz , chopped
  • Celery - 2 stalks , chopped
  • Swiss chard - 6 oz , leaves and stems chopped and separate
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
  • Tomato paste - 1 Tbsp
  • Italian seasoning - 1 tsp
  • Stock, any type - 5 cups
  • Parmesan rind (opt) - 1
  • Pasta, orzo - 1/2 cup (sub Israeli couscous)
  • Turkey meatballs (ingredients listed separately) - ~12
  • Lemon juice - 1 tsp
  • Cheese, parmesan (opt) - 2 Tbsp , grated


  1. Make meatballs - (Skip if meatballs were made ahead for Tuesday.) Heat oven to 375F / 191C degrees. Mix ground turkey, milk, Italian seasoning (portion for the meatballs), salt, panko and cheese (portion for the meatballs). Brush or spray a sheet pan with some oil. Roll meatball mixture into small 1” / 2.5 cm wide meatballs and place onto sheet pan. Bake until just cooked through, 15 to 18 minutes. (Can be done up to 4 days ahead)

  2. Onions / Carrots / Celery - Prep as directed and combine. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  3. Swiss chard - Chop Swiss chard, keeping leaves and stems separate. (Can be done up to 2 days ahead)

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  1. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add cooking oil and then onions, carrots, celery and chard stems to heated oil with a pinch of salt. Saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes.

  2. Stir in tomato paste and Italian seasoning (portion for the soup) until fragrant, ~1 minute more.

  3. Add stock and parmesan rind (if using) and bring to a simmer. Stir in orzo and simmer until orzo is nearly tender, 6 to 8 minutes.

  4. Add meatballs and chard leaves. Continue to simmer soup until orzo is tender and meatballs are warmed through.

  5. Move soup off heat and stir in lemon juice. Taste and season with some salt and pepper.

  6. Serve soup with parmesan (portion for the soup) sprinkled over top if you’d like. Enjoy!



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