I can’t say exactly why Italian Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup popped into my head. I was contemplating cold weather foods since I knew I might be stuck at home for the next few days. But, in all honesty, I’m not even sure when or where I’ve ever had Italian Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup. Surely I’ve eaten it somewhere, but I guess I can’t be certain.
So my thoughts were racing about what to eat and how in the world I should use all the homemade chicken broth stocked in my freezer.
Somehow my thoughts then navigated to meatballs. The mini meatballs in this Italian Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup are so perfect. They remind me of an adult version of spaghetti and meatballs without the noodles and tomato sauce. While traditional Italian Chicken Meatballs are made with a combination of meats and sausages, I thought I’d try them out with lean chicken breast. The greens in this soup are typically endive and escarole, but I had a massive bag of kale in my fridge that was dying to be added to a cozy winter soup.
The meatballs smelled amazing in this Italian Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup recipe because they were loaded with fresh garlic and lots of fragrant herbs. I put a few fresh chicken breasts in my food processor to make my own ground chicken, but that’s only because I didn’t have ground chicken on hand, and a trip to the grocery store was not happening. You can certainly use your own ground chicken, and lean ground turkey breast would work wonderfully as well.
While the meatballs cooked, I brought my homemade chicken broth to a boil. Homemade broth is always preferred, but nowadays, you can find some pretty delicious boxed broth at the store. Just be sure to read the ingredients to check for any added preservatives or chemicals. If you find something you can’t pronounce, put the box back on the shelf! And also, try to find something with the lowest amount of sodium. You can add your own salt at home.
I stirred fresh parsley, kale, and par-cooked meatballs into the boiling broth. This allowed the meatballs to finish cooking and the greens to slightly wilt. Now for my favorite part – the slurry.
I whisked together a decadent combo of eggs and parmesan cheese. It was thick like a paste but still thin enough to drizzle into the soup. With a large wooden spoon, I stirred the simmering broth into a fluid circular motion. Then I slowly poured in the slurry, which created strands of cheesy, savory goodness in the soup. I allowed everything to simmer together for a few minutes before serving. Soup for breakfast, you ask? Yes. And you can eat this Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup for lunch and dinner too.
Absolutely Amazing Italian Chicken Meatballs and Kale Soup
FOR THE MEATBALLS:
- 1 pound ground chicken (minced chicken) - chicken breast
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 medium eggs
FOR THE SOUP:
- 12 cups chicken stock (chicken broth or chicken bouillon)
- 2 tablespoons parsley - fresh, chopped
- 3 cups kale - chopped, large stems removed
- 2 medium eggs
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese - grated
- 1 pinch salt - to taste
- 1 pinch ground black pepper - to taste
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix all meatball ingredients.
- Mix well until all of the ingredients are evenly dispersed.
- Using a spoon or a cookie scoop, drop by rounded spoonful onto a lined cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.**
- Bring the broth to a boil.
- Add the meatballs, kale, and parsley to the boiling broth. Simmer until the kale is wilted and the meatballs are fully cooked – about 3-4 minutes.
- In the meantime, whisk together the eggs and parmesan cheese.
- Stir the soup in a fluid, circular motion and slowly drizzle in the egg mixture.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve with parmesan cheese if desired.