Weekly Recipes

Sopa Rustica

Sopa Rustica

Sopa Rustica is a hearty, satisfying soup full of potatoes, sausage, bacon, kale and chiles. Easy to make and a guaranteed hit with everyone.

Sopa Rustica is an easy, robust cream, potato and sausage soup made even yummier with green chiles. This version has a lot of substance to it with lots of potatoes and sausage, but it’s guaranteed to also be really good if you want it more liquid with additional chicken broth and milk or half an half. It’s definitely richer with half and half, but I’m very happy with it made with milk instead. Also it would be good with twice the kale if you want it more vegetably.

This is loosely based on the Zuppa Toscana soup from Olive Garden – a favorite of mine for years. But theirs has far more liquid with just a small amount of potatoes, sausage, and kale. My version here is basically a meal in itself. It would be really good with a salad on the side, and that would basically make a complete meal.

There are other variations that work. I used a mild Italian sausage, but a hot Italian sausage would also be really good. Also, I used a medium green chile (Big Jim), and you end up with a hint of heat and some added flavor. Most people would not realize there are green chiles in this. I’m likely to add more chiles where they stand out more, but I do like this flavor combination where it works really well without any specifc flavor dominating.

All in all, I see this as a recipe where you can vary just about any part of it and count on it still being really good. I love recipes like this. It’s like every time you make it you can add your own creative touches and still count on it being really good. Hope you like it!

Sopa Rustica
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A simple robust soup that's a meal in itself
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Southwestern
Serves: 4 servings
  • ½ lb Italian sausage (bulk or casings removed)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 5 small new potatoes (about the size of limes), sliced into ¼ inch slices
  • 2 cups curly kale, leaves stripped and chopped (~ 1 bunch)
  • 1 cup half and half or milk
  • 2 slices bacon
  • ¼ cup diced medium hot green chiles
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. In a large pot over medium heat, brown the sausage while breaking it up into small bits with the back of a wooden spoon, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer to a plate to drain.
  2. In the same pot, brown the bacon and remove to the plate with the sausage, leaving the bacon and sausage fat in the pot.
  3. Add the onion to the pot and cook until soft, about 5 minutes, then add chicken broth and potatoes. Cover and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 25 minutes.
  4. Stir in kale and let cook until tender and bright green, about 3 minutes, then stir in the half and half, green chiles, sausage, and crumble in the bacon. Simmer 5 more minutes.
  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Sprinkle Parmesan on top and serve.
  7. Enjoy!


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