Italian-Style Pepperoni and Spinach Soup With Meatballs
- 1 lb lean ground beef, (shaped in tiny meatballs)
- 1 12 cups spicy pepperoni, chopped or 1 12 cups turkey pepperoni
- 2 -4 tablespoons oil
- 2 cups mushrooms, fresh, sliced
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped, seeded and
- 1 large onion, chopped,
- 3 tablespoons garlic, fresh, minced, (or to taste)
- 1 tablespoon chili pepper flakes, dried, (or to taste)
- 1 -2 teaspoon basil, dried
- 1 -2 teaspoon oregano, dried
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 can (28 ounce) crushed tomatoes
- 1 can (10 ounce) condensed tomato soup, undiluted
- 3 -5 cups chicken broth, (use less amount of broth for a thicker soup)
- 1 package (10 ounce) spinach, chopped, frozen
- seasoning salt, (or use white salt to taste)
- black pepper, (lots!)
- 1 tablespoon sugar, (optional or to taste)
- cooked spaghetti, (broken into small pieces or use other pasta)
- parmesan cheese, grated
DirectionsShape the ground beef into tiny meatballs using you favorite recipe.
Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat; brown the meatballs with pepperoni until browned (the meatballs do not have to cook completely) remove to a bowl.
Add in sliced mushrooms, onion, garlic, green bell pepper, chili flakes, basil and oregano; saute for about 3-4 minutes.
Add in the tomato paste and cook, stirring for 1 minute.
Add in the undiluted soup, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth and chopped spinach, then add in the meatballs and pepperoni back to the pot; bring to a boil, season with seasoned salt, lots black pepper and sugar (if using).
Reduce heat and simmer covered for about 2 hours or less (uncover and simmer the last 30 minutes of cooking, the soup will thicken more if simmer uncovered for a longer time! ).
Add in the cooked spaghetti.
Ladle into bowls and top with grated Parmesan cheese, serve with garlic bread or crostini on the side.