Zuppa di Zucca e Spinaci – Squash and Spinach Soup

Zuppa di Zucca e Spinaci – Squash and Spinach Soup

I found this delicious recipe from Mary Ann Esposito on her website, Ciao Italia.  I had a ton of squash and was looking for something warm and cozy to cuddle up with on a cold Idaho winter night.  This soup fit the bill perfectly!

Ciao Italia
Zuppa di Zucca e Spinaci courtesy of Mary Ann Esposito


1 10-ounce bag fresh spinach, washed, drained, and stemmed

4 tablespoon (1/2 stick) butter

1 medium onion, peeled and diced

1 pound yellow summer squash (about 3 small), cubed

1 pound potatoes, peeled and cubed

3 cups water 1 cup milk

1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt, or more to taste

Freshly ground black pepper

1 cup ditalini or other soup pasta **Make sure you are using a small pasta**

Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving


Place the spinach in a 3-quart soup pot, cover, and cook without any additional water until limp, about 3 minutes. Drain the spinach in a colander and let cool. Press out the excess water with a wooden spoon, then coarsely chop the spinach. Set aside.

Italian recipes
Cooking the fresh spinach
Wipe out the soup pot, return it to the heat, and melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until soft. Add the squash and potatoes, and cook the vegetables together, stirring often, for about 5 minutes. Add the water, milk, salt, and pepper. Stir, combining ingredients well, cover the pot, and boil gently for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Turn off the heat.

squash and spinach soup
Cubed squash
squash spinach soup
Simmering squash with milk
In a skillet, heat the remaining butter. Add the spinach and cook for 3 or 4 minutes. Add the spinach to the soup and stir well to blend. In a food processor, puree the soup in batches until smooth. Return the soup to the soup pot and set aside.  (Make sure you puree until very smooth for the best texture)
In a medium saucepan, boil the pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain and add to the soup. To serve, reheat the soup and serve in individual bowls. Pass the cheese for sprinkling on top.
Variation: Use thin slices of uncooked yellow squash as a garnish.
This recipe is from NELLA CUCINA by Mary Ann Esposito, published by William Morrow and Company Inc., in 1993.

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About the author: Andi Brown

I am passionate about helping people create vacations that are perfect for them through personalized travel planning, itinerary review and small experience focused tours. My services put an emphasis on the experience of Italy, getting my clients away from the tourist crowds and into the heart and soul of the people. I believe in working with family run businesses at great locations with attention to the details. If you can dream it I can make it happen.

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  1. The Smart Cookie Cook - 2011-12-20 at 3:15 pm Reply

    Mmm this sounds wonderful! I love the squash/spinach combo. Not only would this be yummy, but it’s healthy too!

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