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Meatball Soup

Zuppa di Polpettine
Meatball soup is one of my choices for weekend cooking. I make enough so that it can also make an appearance on the table mid-week served with melted mozzarella cheese sandwiches (See Mozzarella in Carrozza). Saving time: Keeping a container of grated cheese in the refrigerator eliminates a step in this recipe.

Serves 6 to 8


2 slices bread, crust removed

1/3 cup milk or ricotta cheese

1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino cheese

1 tablespoon minced parsley

1 tablespoon grated lemon zest

Salt to taste

Grinding black pepper

1/4 pound ground chuck

1/4 pound ground pork

1/4 pound ground veal

One 2-pound bag frozen ready to cook mixed vegetables

2 quarts low fat canned chicken or beef broth

One 28-ounce can diced plum tomatoeS


Shred the bread into small pieces and place them in a bowl. Pour the milk over the bread or stir in the ricotta cheese. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes. Stir in the grated cheese, parsley, lemon zest, salt and pepper and mix well. Add the meats and mix with your hands to blend the ingredients well.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Have a bowl of water handy to keep your hands wet while making the meatballs. Scoop up about 2 teaspoons of the mixture and roll it into a small ball with your hands. Place the meatballs on a lightly sprayed baking sheet. Continue making meatballs and place them on a baking sheet, spacing them so they do not touch one another. Bake the meatballs for about 12 minutes or until they begin to brown. Transfer them with a slotted spoon to a soup pot or crock pot. Stir in the vegetables, and the broth. If the tomatoes are whole and not pre-diced, use a kitchen scissors to cut the tomatoes into bits in the can and add them to the soup. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes.

Variation: Add 1 cup cooked small pasta like ditalini or elbows to the soup.

This recipe is featured on show 2014 – Meatballs? You Bet!



  1. Shelly's avatar


    Love the Show! Watch when ever I can.
  2. M. Stoltz's avatar

    M. Stoltz

    My husband and I enjoyed watching you make this recipe. We plan to prepare this meal for Christmas. You're such a wonderful teacher. And I love the fact that you consistently wash your hands.
  3. Phil Rowin's avatar

    Phil Rowin

    Mary Ann, I am so happy to see that they have finally added you to the line up of chefs on the Create! You should have been they a long time ago. I really enjoy watching your show!


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