Vegan Zuppa Toscana

Serves 4-6 | 35 minutes

“Zuppa” means soup in Italian. “Toscana” refers to the Tuscany region of Italy. This Zuppa Toscana is a healthy and delicious vegan version of a popular soup served at the Olive Garden restaurant. Instead of “meat sausages,” it uses plant-based vegan sausages and is loaded with Kale, a nutritional superstar. The fragrant herbs and spices will have you salivating in no time.


  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 medium (2 lbs) red or Yukon Gold potatoes, (quartered and sliced into 1/4” thick slices)
  • 1 cup cashews (soaked for 4 hours) + 1 cup water
  • 3 large meat alternative sausages (I prefer Beyond Meat Italian Sausages)
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½-1 tsp smoked paprika, or more to taste
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, ground fine in a mortar and pestle
  • 2 medium size bay leaves
  • 1 – 32 oz vegetarian broth (I prefer Imagine No-Chicken broth)
  • 2-3 tsp Better Than Bouillon No-Chicken base (or 2 not-chicken bouillons)
  • 2-3 cups water 
  • 1/3 cup organic white wine, optional (it adds such an elegant component; the alcohol boils    off), or add 1-2 tsp high-quality white wine vinegar
  • 1 bunch chopped curly kale (about 3 cups), stems removed, or baby spinach
  • Just a little salt and pepper to taste (the sausages are pretty salty)
  • fresh grated parmesan cheese


  1. Finely chop the onion and garlic.
  2. Quarter the potatoes and slice bite-size size slices.
  3. Heat up a large soup pot on medium heat. Add 1-2 Tbsp of olive oil. Saute the Beyond Meat sausages for several minutes until golden brown. Use a spatula to break up the sausages, remove them from heat and set aside in a bowl.
  4. Sauté the onions for 5 minutes, or until translucent and tender.
  5. Add the garlic and fennel and cook until it becomes fragrant
  6. Add 1/3 cup of white wine and deglaze the pan until the wine has evaporated and no alcohol is left.
  7. Add the oregano, thyme, bay leaves, paprika, and mix well with onions.
  8. Add in the potato slices.
  9. Add the 32 oz Imagine No-Chicken Broth and 3 cups of water and 1-2 no-chicken bouillon or no-chicken base.
  10. Cook soup on a low simmering boil until potatoes are fork tender, about 20-25 minutes.
  11. While the soup is cooking, Add 1 cup soaked cashews + 1 cup water to the blender. Blend on high to liquify (soak the cashews in water to cover for 4 hours or overnight). 
  12. Cover the soup pot halfway and bring to almost a boil
  13. Turn down the heat and add the chopped kale or spinach until wilted and tender.
  14. Then pour in the cashew cream and stir to combine. Give the soup a good stir. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  15. Pour the hot soup into bowls and top each bowl with the sautéed sausage, fresh thyme, and a little vegan parmesan.
  16. Serve with a crusty Artisan bread and a simple romaine salad.