One of the best things about 2020 was the fact that Banza released new pasta shapes. When I saw the alphabet shapes as an option in my regular Thrive box orders, I was like HECK YEAH – it was a need, not a want. It made me so nostalgic about my childhood, and I wanted to find a cozy way to use these, so an alphabet soup was most certainly in order. I was trying to figure out how to incorporate wild game into this soup, when I found some antelope Italian sausage in the freezer, and I had the idea to create an Italian-style alphabet soup.
A note before we dive into it – antelope is what we had, but any type of Italian sausage will do. We also have venison Italian sausage, which would be so good in adding some gamey richness, but if you don’t have or don’t cook with wild game, any store bought Italian sausage will also be delicious.
GET STARTED WITH A LARGE POT
The beauty of this soup is that you will only be using one pot to make it, so make sure to choose one where you can first cook up your Italian sausage, and then add into it to build your soup. This is a recipe where I highly recommend you prep your ingredients ahead of time and have them all out and at the ready, as it truly goes much smoother when you can just easily grab and dump.
GET YOUR BASE GOING
Like I mentioned, you’ll start by first cooking your sausage in the pot you are using. Once it is fully cooked through, you’ll want to remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside for later. You’ll want to drain any excess fat that rendered, but no need to make sure you get ALL of it, and definitely don’t drain any brown bits that are still in your pot. That is where most of the good flavor comes from! Once you’ve done this, you’ll then add your broth and your water to the pot, bring it to a boil, and cook your pasta. Remember – it will look like you have way too much liquid for your pasta, because you do. Once you add in the rest of the ingredients, it will even out!
ADD IN ALL THE FIXIN’S
When your pasta is *nearly* cooked, it is time to get started adding in the rest of the good stuff. I say nearly on the pasta, because it will continue to cook as we add in the rest of the ingredients, and we don’t want overcooked, soggy pasta! You’ll add your sausage back in, as well as your diced roasted red peppers and Italian seasoning. As your last step, you will add in your chopped kale, and let it all cook down and incorporate until the kale gets slightly wilted, and is a nice, bright green.
As a parting note, this soup will make a TON, and stores well in the fridge for leftovers. That being said, your kale will not remain that fresh, bright green, and will become dull and muted once it is stored in the fridge. Not to worry, it will still be just as delicious, just don’t be surprised when it doesn’t look as great as when it was fresh.
Italian Sausage Alphabet Soup
- Dutch Oven
- Large Pot
- 1 lb Italian sausage
- 1 box Banza alphabet pasta
- 1 jar Roasted red peppers, diced
- 1 bunch Kale, stemmed
- 4 cups Beef broth
- 1 tbsp. Italian seasoning
- Heat a dutch oven or a large pot over medium-high heat
- Add your Italian sausage and cook until browned, about 5-7 minutes
- Using a slotted spoon, remove your sausage and set aside, and drain the remaining fat
- Add your broth into the pot, and bring to a boil
- Add your pasta, and cook according to package directions until al dente
- Add the sausage back in, along with the roasted red peppers and Italian seasoning, and stir
- Add in the chopped kale, and stir to mix in evenly
- Continue cooking until kale is just wilted, about 5 minutes
- Remove from heat, and enjoy
- This soup will keep well in the fridge for up to 10 days