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This 15-minute stracciatella soup is essentially an Italian take on egg drop soup. It’s incredibly simple to make and is perfect on chilly days.

Stracciatella soup

Leave it to the Italians to have beautiful words for even the most unglamorous of concepts. “Stracciatella” (strah-chi-ah-tay-lah) literally means “rags” in Italian. I first came across the word as a gelato flavor on my first trip to Italy (“I’ll take the stra…stra…that one!”). When it comes to gelato, the “rags” are bits of chocolate mixed throughout a creamy vanilla base. However, we were excited to learn that the concept of “stracciatella” also applies to soup. In this case, the rags are eggs – a kind of Italian egg drop soup.

Contrary to its fancy name, this stracciatella soup was one of the easiest we’ve ever made! It only takes about 15 minutes to put together, and it is a delicious way to enjoy your dark, leafy greens. (You could also substitute chard for the spinach.) The cheese and egg add a wonderful savory flavor – if you happen to have some Pecorino on hand, it’s a great option, though Parmesan works just as well.

Eggs make the "shreds" in stracietella soup

What is stracciatella soup?

Straccietella soup is an Italian soup with “shreds” or rags of eggs floating in a broth. It’s popular around Rome in central Italy, and was traditionally served around Easter. Some American versions of the soup include spinach. For our take below, we added white beans to up the plant-based protein and make the soup a little more filling.

Stracciatella soup ingredients

Our favorite part about this recipe is that we almost always have the ingredients on hand. So we can whip up a batch of stracciatella at a moment’s notice! For this easy stracciatella soup recipe, here’s what you’ll need:

Homemade vegetable broth

How to make stracciatella soup

To make this Italian soup, you first need to bring the vegetable broth to a boil. In a separate skillet, you’ll infuse garlic into olive oil: add the oil and place the whole garlic cloves in the pan, and heat for several minutes to infuse the oil. Once browned, remove and discard the garlic. Then add the spinach to the skillet and heat for a few minutes.

Now it’s time to make soup! Add the wilted spinach to the boiling broth and cook at a steady simmer. While that’s going, beat the cheese and eggs with a fork in a liquid measuring cup. Next, drizzle a small amount of the hot broth into the eggs to temper them. With a spoon, rapidly stir the hot broth and spinach mixture and slowly pour the egg mixture into the soup. Add the cannellini beans, then season with salt and pepper. And there you have it: tasty, cozy, and comforting stracciatella soup!

We adapted this recipe off of a version by Lynne Rossetto Kasper shared on The Splendid Table. Thanks for Lynne for the inspiration!

On tempering the eggs

When you’re making this soup, make sure to follow the instructions on adding the egg carefully. It’s important to heat the broth enough to get the “rags” of eggs to form: we know from experience! Tempering the eggs before adding them to the soup ensures that they scramble a little bit without completely seizing up. You want some rags, but not too many. Let us know if you give it a try – and enjoy the start of soup season!

This stracciatella soup recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

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Stracciatella Soup Recipe


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 to 6 1x

Description

This 15-minute stracciatella soup is essentially an Italian take on egg drop soup. It’s incredibly simple to make and is perfect on chilly days.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 8 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bunches spinach
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 15-ounce can cannellini beans
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup Parmesan or Pecorino cheese
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. In a large stock pot, bring 8 cups of vegetable broth to a boil.
  2. Clean, de-stem, and chop two bunches of spinach. Peel 2 cloves garlic. Drain and rinse the cannellini beans.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a large skillet, place the whole garlic cloves in the pan, and heat for several minutes to infuse the oil. When the garlic has browned, remove and discard it. Add the spinach to the skillet, stir to combine it with the oil, and heat, covered, for 3 minutes.
  4. When the broth has come to a boil, add the wilted spinach and cook for two minutes at a steady simmer.
  5. In a liquid measuring cup or small bowl, beat 3 eggs with a fork. Grate ½ cup of Parmesan or Pecorino cheese and add to the beaten eggs. Temper the eggs by drizzling a small amount of the hot broth into the eggs while beating the eggs.
  6. With a spoon, rapidly mix the soup broth to create a “whirlpool” and slowly pour the egg mixture into the soup (don’t stop stirring). The eggs should immediately form into “rags”. Make sure that that broth is at a steady simmer before you add the eggs; if the broth is not hot enough, the eggs may incorporate into the broth instead of forming rags.
  7. Add the cannellini beans. Season with about 1 teaspoon of kosher salt (to taste) and lots of fresh ground pepper. Serve immediately.

Notes

Inspired by The Splendid Table

  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: stracciatella soup, straciatella recipe

Looking for more easy soup recipes?

Outside of this stracciatella soup, here are a few more of our favorite easy soup recipes:

More quick Italian recipes

Italian recipes are kind of our thing. Here are a few more that we love to serve:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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22 Comments

    1. There are lots of greens or vegetables that you could use as a substitute in this soup. You can definitely use Chinese cabbage — while it would make the soup less “traditional Italian”, it would still be tasty! It just depends on how “traditional” you want to be. But feel free to make up your own variation – that’s the fun of cooking :)

  1. This sounds awesome. Like the Italian version of egg drop soup, and much heartier due to the spinach and beans! I like that that cheese is mixed with the eggs, I really can’t wait to try this.

  2. I always loved stracciatella!! I have never tried to make it with spinach –which would make it far more complete in nutrients! I printed your recipe for tonight’s dinner! :)

    1. Great – how did it turn out? Does your normal stracciatella only have eggs (with no spinach), or other ingredients too?

  3. I grew up on this stuff, although we made it with arugula instead of spinach, but I’ll have to swap them out and try this version. It’s such a warming, healthy meal that you can feel good about eating. Thanks for bringing me down memory lane!

  4. As an Italian-American I was secretly ashamed that I didn’t know why straciatella the soup and stracciatella the ice cream shared the same name. Thank you for clearing that up. :)

    This recipe looks delicious. I always order this at one of my favorite restaurants in LA (Little Dom’s) so it will be fun to give it a try at home. Glad to have stumbled across your blog through Tastespotting.

    1. Haha, I also was a bit fuzzy on the meaning of straciatella, so I was glad to have an excuse to brush up :) Let us know if you try it out, and how it compares to the restaurant version!

  5. Hi there, I discovered your website only yesterday while doing a web search for ‘stuffed poblano peppers’ and was extremely pleased with the recipes I found here. I made this soup yesterday to eat for lunch with purple kale and kidney beans (it’s what I had in the house) and was so in love with my soup that I ate the whole pot for lunch and dinner and only gave my husband a taste! I did chop up the garlic and leave it in the sauté pan and put in in the soup, but because I love garlic, it added a really nice dimension to the flavour. I will continue to let you know how we enjoy your recipes, and thank you for your wonderful website!

  6. How wonderful – I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

    Kale sounds like a great substitute — as does leaving the garlic in the soup…we are major garlic lovers too, so removing it here was a new technique to us :)

  7. Your brother, Andrew, recommended your blog. This is the first recipe I tried. it was fabulous! It is sometimes hard to find recipes that satisfy my vegetarian son and my omnivore son at the same time. So, I thank you! I can’t wait to try more.

    1. Oh, I’m so glad you enjoyed it, and your son did as well! Let us know if you try anything else! We just posted some Greek quesadillas that might go over well with vegetarians and omnivores alike :) Hope all is well and say hi to Andrew for us!

  8. I tried this recipe tonight, I just made half the recipe using 2 eggs; it was soo good!
    Thank you so much for sharing it.

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