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Italian Wedding SoupItalian Wedding Soup

Jami Nolen, Nutrition Program Associate

January 22, 2012


Italian Wedding Soup not only tastes good and keeps you warm, but it also contains a nutritional powerhouse. Dark leafy greens are well-known for their many health benefits, including preventing cancer. Radicchio, spinach, kale, romaine and leaf lettuce, collard greens, chicory and Swiss chard are the dark leafy greens that get the most attention, but escarole is another green to consider — it's a cousin of the curly endive and can be found in the grocery store, near the other lettuces and greens.



6 servings



  • 1/2 pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons shredded fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups finely sliced escarole
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1/2 cup orzo (rice-shaped pasta), uncooked
  • grated Parmesan cheese for topping



  1. Mix together the meat, egg, bread crumbs, garlic, cheese, basil, parsley and green onions; shape into 3/4-inch balls.
  2. Pour broth into a large saucepan over high heat. When boiling, drop in meatballs. Stir in escarole, lemon zest and orzo. Return to a boil; reduce heat to medium. Cook at a slow boil for 10 minutes or until orzo is tender, stirring frequently. Serve sprinkled with cheese.


Nutrition Information

(Amount Per Serving)
Calories: 159
Total fat: 5.6 g
Cholesterol: 60 mg
Sodium: 99 mg
Total carbs: 15.4 g
Dietary fiber: 1.4 g
Protein: 11.5 g


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