by Olena

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

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Olena Osipov
5 from 17 votes

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Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana is famous Olive Garden’s copycat soup recipe with Italian sausage, potatoes and kale. We make it lighter without heavy cream but still full of flavor, creamy and hearty.

It is our family favorite along with Instant Pot minestrone, pasta e fagioli and turkey meatball soup.

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

This Instant Pot zuppa toscana is such a welcome change to hearty pressure cooker taco soup and pressure cooker stuffed pepper soup we have been eating a lot lately. Broth based zuppa toscana reminds me grandma’s chicken noodle soup. It is liquid-y and loaded with meat and veggies. And it is pretty healthy too. Instead of traditionally added heavy cream, I used whole milk.

I am sure everyone has seen or tried zuppa toscana at Olive garden restaurant. It means “Tuscan soup”. It has literally 5-6 pretty healthy ingredients and requires 10 minutes prep. Instant Pot does the rest for you.

That is why I love Instant Pot so-so-so much. It is a true dinner workhorse of our household! Beef stew or chicken wild rice soup take minutes instead of hours to cook.

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana on a ladle

Ingredients for Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

Zuppa Toscana soup in Instant Pot reminds me of an Italian restaurant experience at fraction of the cost. Just like this healthy chicken Parmesan and lemon chicken recipe.

  • Sausage: Uncooked sausage in casing like Italian. Pick mild, medium or hot as per your taste. You can also use chicken or turkey sausage to make Zuppa Toscana soup more lean.
  • Veggies: Onion, potatoes and carrots are added at the beginning to add soup volume.
  • Kale: Dinosaur or green kale, stalks removed and chopped. It adds volume to the soup and stays firm. I freeze chopped kale to add to soups and green smoothies.
  • Milk and broth: I used whole milk to keep soup light yet creamy. Feel free to use heavy cream or half and half. A few readers have added plant-based milk. For broth, I use low sodium organic bouillon cubes.
ingredients for Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

How to Make Zuppa Toscana in Instant Pot

  • Prep: Cut sausage into pieces, no need to remove casing. You can also use ground sausage meat.
  • Saute sausage: Make sure to wait until display says Hot which takes 3-5 minutes. For pork or beef no need to add oil. Brown for 3 minutes just until some brown spots appear.
  • Add veggies, spice and stock. In this case, order of ingredients doesn’t matter and as always no need to stir. But if you stirred by accident, it is fine.
  • Cook: On High Pressure for 10 minutes. Then release pressure using Quick Release method – turn pressure valve to Venting. With soups, I like to do so outside.
  • Add kale, milk and remaining garlic. Don’t pressure cook dairy as it curdles. Fresh garlic at the end rather than before cooking adds another layer of flavor. Yum!

Tips for Best Tuscan Soup

  • More veggies: I added chopped zucchini just to add more veggies and because it had to be used up. Any veggie soup or minestrone is perfect for that.
  • Bacon: You can saute bacon as well, just for me sausage was enough. If you do so, make sure to deglaze the pot with broth before cooking to avoid Burn.
  • For 3 quart Instant Pot: Cut Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana recipe ingredients in half and keep same cooking time. Or you can still cook 1/2 recipe in larger Instant Pot.
  • Double the recipe? Pictured is full recipe made in 6 quart. You can multiply ingredients by 1.5 and cook recipe in 8 quart pressure cooker, same time. For 6 quart, 1.5 ingredients will be too much.
  • Spinach instead of kale: Fresh or frozen spinach will work instead of kale. Whenever I see spinach on sale, I buy pre-washed baby kale in a box and freeze it like that. Then add to soups frozen like lentil spinach soup and Instant Pot veggie soup.
  • Why no sauteing? We saute sausage and I believe it adds enough flavor. Plus, food cooked under pressure comes out more flavorful. Pressure cooker is meant to save time with its technology, but you can saute onion and garlic in sausage drippings.
Zuppa Toscana in Instant Pot

Serving, Storing and Make Ahead Tips

Serving: Serve with crusty bread or fresh baguette, with a side of lemon kale salad or easy lettuce salad. So simple and good! And have you given these low carb breadsticks a try yet?!

Store: Refrigerate leftover zuppa toscana for up to 5 days. Since there are no soggy vegetables, it keeps and reheats well. I refrigerate soup right in the stainless steel insert pot covered with silicone lid. To reheat, simmer in a small pot desired amount.

Do not freeze: Zuppa contains dairy and potatoes that do not thaw well. Good thing is you can eat leftovers for up to 5 days. Or like mentioned above, cut recipe in half.

Make ahead: By sauteing sausage and adding veggies and broth (not kale and milk) to the inner pot. Cover with silicone or glass lid, refrigerate for up to 24 hours and cook following the recipe.

More Favorite Recipes

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana closeup
Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana {No Cream Olive Garden Soup}

Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana is famous Olive Garden's copycat soup recipe with Italian sausage, potatoes and kale. We make it lighter without heavy cream but still full of flavor, creamy and hearty.
5 from 17 votes
Print Save Rate
Course: Soup and Stew
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 217kcal
Author: Olena Osipov

Ingredients

  • 3 large raw sausage links sliced
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 6 medium potatoes cubed
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 1 zucchini diced (optional)
  • 2 grated large garlic cloves divided
  • 6 cups water or low sodium broth
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 5 large kale leaves stems removed and chopped
  • 2 cups whole milk

Instructions

  • On 6 or 8 quart Instant Pot, press Saute and wait until display says Hot. Takes 3-5 mins.
  • Add sausage. If it is raw chicken/turkey or any cooked sausage, you will need some oil. Brown for 3 minutes. Sausage will not really brown but rather cook a bit. It’s fine, we just want a bit flavor.
    Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana
  • Press Cancel. Add onion, potatoes, carrots, zucchini (if using), 1 garlic clove, broth, salt, red pepper flakes and pepper. No need to stir.
    Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana
  • Close the lid, move pressure valve to Sealing and press Pressure Cook on High for 10 minutes.
  • Release pressure using Quick Release method – turn pressure valve to Venting.
  • Add kale, milk and remaining garlic.
    Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana
  • Stir and serve hot with a slice of fresh bread.
    Instant Pot Zuppa Toscana

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container or inner Instant Pot pot with a silicone lid for up to 5 days. To reheat, simmer in a small pot desired amount. Do not freeze.

    Make Ahead: Saute sausage and add veggies and broth (not kale and milk) to the inner pot. Cover with silicone or glass lid, refrigerate for up to 24 hours and cook following the recipe.

      Video

      Notes

      • More veggies: I added chopped zucchini just to add more veggies and because it had to be used up.
      • Bacon: You can saute bacon as well, just for me sausage was enough. If you do so, make sure to deglaze the pot with broth before cooking to avoid Burn.
      • For 3 quart Instant Pot: Cut recipe ingredients in half and keep same cooking time. Or you can still cook 1/2 recipe in larger Instant Pot.
      • Double the recipe? Pictured is full recipe made in 6 quart. You can multiply ingredients by 1.5 and cook recipe in 8 quart pressure cooker, same time. For 6 quart, 1.5 ingredients will be too much.
      • Spinach instead of kale: Fresh or frozen spinach will work instead of kale. Whenever I see spinach on sale, I buy pre-washed baby kale in a box and freeze it like that. Then add to soup frozen.
      • Why no sauteing? We saute sausage and I believe it adds enough flavor. Plus, food cooked under pressure comes out more flavorful. Pressure cooker is meant to save time with its technology, but you can saute onion and garlic in sausage drippings.

      Nutrition

      Serving: 1.5cup | Calories: 217kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 329mg | Potassium: 1077mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 6288IU | Vitamin C: 81mg | Calcium: 153mg | Iron: 2mg
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      olena osipov in the studio

      Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

      My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys, a wife to Alex and we reside on magical Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. This is our healthy family recipes blog. Originally from Ukraine, I grew up on real food. As an adult, I struggled with diets for years because none worked long-term. Now for over 10 years, I cook easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

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