Recipe Review

I Tried Giada De Laurentiis’ “Comforting” Tuscan Soup and It’s the Perfect Cozy Dinner

published Jan 20, 2024
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Turkey soup in a bow with bread.
Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

Everybody knows that winter means comfort food. A warm meal makes a cold body feel good, it’s just science, and we don’t need to argue about it. What I love most about winter is bringing out the slow cooker or Dutch oven, and finding a new soup or stew recipe. On a day when I’m feeling under the weather or it’s just extra cold outside, nothing quite hits the spot like a homemade soup. 

Over the years, I’ve come across some pretty incredible soup recipes, so I’m always on the lookout for something new that I haven’t tried before. I recently recreated Kris Jenner’s chicken soup and loved it so much that I’ve already remade it a handful of times. So when I spotted Giada De Laurentiis’ recipe for a Tuscan turkey soup the other day, being that I was already anxious to find something new, I took the plunge and decided to give it a try. Here’s how it went.

How to Make Giada’s Tuscan Turkey Soup

This is a fairly intensive recipe, so prepping ahead of time by dicing your vegetables before you start will make the 50-minute cook time a breeze. Start by adding 1 drained can of cannellini beans and 1/2 cup of chicken broth into a blender. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, cover and blend until completely smooth, then set aside. 

Use olive oil to grease a large Dutch oven heated over medium-high heat. Add the ground turkey to the Dutch oven and season it with chili powder and salt. Cook the turkey, stirring occasionally, and break up the meat into bite-sized chunks. Once the turkey is evenly browned, about 7 minutes, turn off the heat and remove the cooked turkey using a slotted spoon. Plate and set aside. 

When ready, bring the Dutch oven back up to medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, as well as the diced onion, carrots, celery, and fennel. Make sure to season the vegetables with salt and red pepper flakes, and continue to cook, stirring as you go until the vegetables soften. At this point you can add the grated garlic and fresh thyme, cooking until you can smell their fragrance. Now add the blended bean mixture, remaining chicken broth, cherry tomatoes, Parmesan rind, and a bay leaf, bringing the whole pot to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes, giving the flavors of the vegetables time to blend together. 

Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

After 10 minutes or so, turn the heat up to medium and add the remaining ingredients: cooked turkey, the second can of beans, butternut squash, and kale. Cook with the pot uncovered, until the squash and kale are both tender. This should take about 15 to 20 minutes. Once you’re satisfied with the results, remove the Parmesan rind and the bay leaf, then season as needed before serving. Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and enjoy! You can find the full recipe here.

My Honest Opinion of Giada’s Tuscan Turkey Soup

From prep to leaving my bowl clean, this is one soup recipe that I thoroughly enjoyed the entire process of making. The aroma of soup fills up the entire apartment, and with the week of snow days I had, this soup sure did give my home the pick-me-up it needed. 

Giada’s Tuscan turkey soup has a homey flavor to it, and it was somehow a robust, stick-to-your-bones type of experience while also being nutrient-packed. The blended cannellini beans and chicken stock gave the soup a velvety cream-like texture, and the added bonus of a Parmesan rind gave it an elevated flavor that went beyond savory. 

I will definitely be adding this soup into my “winter dinner” file and can already hear my family going crazy over how jam-packed with flavor this incredible recipe is. I recommend that if you’re in the same situation as me — cold and needing ways to warm up this winter — consider Giada’s Tuscan turkey soup and thank me later. 

Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

2 Tips for Making Giada’s Tuscan Turkey Soup

  1. Take your time and prep. For a smooth experience in the kitchen, make sure to get all of your veggies diced, turkey cooked, and beans blended before starting with the main part of the recipe. A proper preparation will help the cook time keep under an hour. 
  2. It’s ok if you run short on chicken broth. In my case, I was about 2 cups short on chicken stock. As a substitute, I opted for adding in 2 cups of water instead and still felt that my soup was jam-packed with flavor. The risk was worth it in the end.