Fall Fest: Hearty Spinach and Sausage Soup Recipe

Spinach Soup

I’m thrilled that Fall is here.  The days here are still really warm but the nights have been cooling down nicely allowing for perfect brisk mornings that make me dream of pumpkin carving and apple pies.

But spinach?  I can’t say I dream of that often.  Well, spinach is the theme for this first week of Fall Fest so I pushed aside my thoughts of pumpkins and apples and decided to make a hearty soup chock-full of spinach and sausage, perfect for the cooler weather that seems to be on its way.

I bought spinach and sausage specifically for the soup, but the rest of the ingredients were just things hanging around my kitchen that needed to be used up.  Please just use the recipe as a jumping off point and feel free to throw in whatever you happen to have hanging around your kitchen.

I think this soup would be very good with white beans or pasta if you don’t want to use barley.  To tell you the truth, I had intended to use barley but accidentally threw wheat berries in there instead (this is one of the problems with buying grains in bulk and then forgetting to label the bags).  The wheat berries were fine, though they took longer to cook than the barley would have.  But I really wanted barley in the soup, so that’s what I listed on the ingredient list below.  Beans, barley, pasta, rice – do whatever you want!

Even with the accidental wheat berry addition, I adored this soup.  The spinach, sausage, and chunky potatoes were a great combination and I know that it will taste even better once it sits overnight.  Can you guess what I’ll be eating for lunch this week?

Spinach and Sausage Soup

Spinach and Sausage Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 stalks of celery, sliced
1 pound red potatoes, cut into bite size pieces
5 – 6 cups chicken stock (homemade, or low-sodium broth)
1/2 cup pearl barley
1 pound mild Italian sausage
1 large bunch of spinach, thick stems removed, roughly chopped (about 4 cups, packed)
salt, to taste
herbs or seasonings of your choice – I used some fresh thyme

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add onions, carrots, and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes or until onions are softened.  Add potatoes, 5 cups of stock, and barley.  Turn up heat, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30-45 minutes or until barley is tender.  Meanwhile, squeeze sausage from its casings, crumble and brown it in a skillet.  Drain fat and set the sausage aside.  When barley is tender, add spinach and sausage to the soup and fresh herbs if you are using them.  Add more stock if necessary or desired, bring soup back up to a simmer and let cook for another 15 minutes.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Serves six.

Fall Fest!

How You Can Join in Fall Fest 2010

Welcome to Fall Fest!  Have a recipe or tip that fits any of our weekly themes? You can contribute to our online recipe swap in various ways, big or small.

Contribute a whole post, or a comment—whatever you wish. It’s meant to be fun, viral, fluid. No pressure, just delicious. Simply leave your tip or recipe or favorite links in the comments below a Fall Fest post on my blog, and then go visit my collaborators and do the same.

The cross-blog event idea works best when you leave your recipe or favorite links (whether to your own blog or someone else’s) at all the host blogs. Yes, copy and paste them everywhere! That way, they are likely to be seen by the widest audience. Everyone benefits, and some pretty great dialog starts simmering.

Or think bigger: Publish entire posts of your own, if you wish, and grab the Fall Fest 2010 pumpkin badge (illustrated by Matt of Matt Bites).

Summer/Fall Fest 2010 Posting Schedule

7/28: Cukes and Zukes
8/4: Corn
8/11: Herbs, Greens, and Beans
8/18: Stone Fruit – I missed this one!
8/25: Tomatoes
9/1: Sweet and Spicy Peppers
9/8: Garlic
9/15: White (or colorful “white”…but not sweet) Potatoes
9/22: Spinach
9/29: Apples
10/6: Fall Salads
10/13: Pumpkin + Winter Squash
10/20: Pears
10/27: “Mad Stash” (as in what you’re shoving in freezer/jars/dehydrator, etc.)
11/3: Root veggies
11/10: Brassicas: incl. Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower, Cabbage or other
11/17: Sweet Potatoes
11/24: Bounty to Be Grateful For

Other Fall Fest Attendees Celebrating Spinach:

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  1. Simmer Till Done

    […] Nicole at Pinch My Salt: Spinach and Sausage Soup […]

    5:15 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  2. Susan @ SGCC

    Love this one! I make a similar version with escarole and beans. It’s a perfect “no fuss” weeknight meal.

    5:50 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  3. Eggs Florentine, brunch of champions | UK Food Network Blog – Locally Sourced

    […] Nicole at Pinch My Salt: Spinach and Sausage Soup […]

    6:07 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  4. Ranjani

    Looks like a great fall soup. I love making a pot of soup over the weekend and splitting it up into lunch portions.
    This week for fall fest I made spinach pasta:

    6:49 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  5. Prerna@IndianSimmer

    I’m so so bad at making soups. I’m not really sure why. maybe because while growing up soup was not exactly what we were used to eating at home but I really want to try new recipes so that my li’l one is familiar with it. Thanks for sharing this new idea with us!
    Here’s something I did with spinach a while back http://www.indiansimmer.com/2010/07/palak-paneer-for-my-birthday.html

    7:27 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  6. Roxan

    Nicole, this soup looks wonderful and hearty. Regardless of whether there’s wheat berries or barley in there (or both!) I could definitely sit in front of a huge bowl.

    7:42 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  7. The FN Dish » Archive » Spinach: Giada’s Great Italian Takes

    […] Nicole at Pinch My Salt: Spinach and Sausage Soup […]

    7:47 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  8. nancy@skinnykitchen

    This soup looks delish. To make it skinny I’d use a reduced-fat sausage and reduced-sodium chicken broth.Can’t wait to try it!

    8:32 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  9. Marilyn

    Falling leaves and pumpkins aside (for the moment), nothing says autumn like hearty soup. This looks lovely!

    8:40 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  10. sandhya/vegetarianirvana

    Please visit me at

    9:33 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  11. Florentina

    It looks so yummy and comforting. I find that the most delicious creations come out of the need to use what you already have in your pantry.

    9:49 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  12. zestycook

    Nicole, This looks amazing. I love the broth as well as the spinach and sausage combination. I can’t wait to try this.

    10:56 am  Sep 22nd, 2010
  13. Amanda

    This looks so good. Might substitute the potatoes with sweet potatoes. The carrots look divine!

    1:03 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  14. napa farmhouse 1885/diane

    i planted spinach for the first time this fall…and posted a recipe for mixed vegetable fritters on fresh spinach tossed in a honey mustard vinaigrette. http://napafarmhouse1885.blogspot.com/2010/09/so-now-it-is-spinach-weekwhat-would.html

    1:32 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  15. Kathleen

    Spinach and sausage, perfect sounding soup. Spinach is good with just about everything. Will be making this soon, thanks. I posted a page of spinach recipes for the reader to choose from for ‘Fall Fest’: http://dejavucook.wordpress.com/2010/09/22/spinach-spinach-and-more-spinach/

    2:00 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  16. HPD

    there are so many simple soups that can be whipped up on a weeknight, but never too many that there isn’t room for one more. THANKS!

    2:42 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  17. Steph

    Looks really good…I am definitely going to try this. Probably with the white beans…just sounds really good:)

    4:07 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  18. Amy

    I’m excited to participate in Fall Fest. I made a spinach and artichoke pizza: http://savorymomentsblog.blogspot.com/2010/09/spinach-and-artichoke-pizza.html

    6:13 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  19. Betty @ scrambled hen fruit

    I eat soup for lunch every day in the winter! I’d like to try this once the weather gets a little cooler!

    9:54 pm  Sep 22nd, 2010
  20. Michelle

    I love hearty soup recipes and this one sounds great. I do a similar version with kale, but I love spinach and we would devour this.

    6:35 am  Sep 23rd, 2010
  21. Heather @ The Single Dish

    Fall Fest sounds amazing, I am going to join!

    7:07 am  Sep 23rd, 2010
  22. Kulsum at JourneyKitchen

    That soups amazing. Reminds me of a similar soup My mom used to make and we never use to taste it. Only because it was all vegetarian. And now I love spinach.

    This is my contribution for the theme

    1:55 pm  Sep 23rd, 2010
  23. Ellen @ I Am Gluten Free

    I love Fall Fest 2010! I love hearty soup recipes as well, especially the ones that are versatile and allow you to change up the ingredients. I made Curried Coconut, Spinach, and Mushroom Soup (gluten free, dairy, free, vegan).

    5:25 pm  Sep 23rd, 2010
  24. Ellen @ I Am Gluten Free

    I love Fall Fest 2010! I love hearty soup recipes as well, especially the ones that are versatile and allow you to change up the ingredients. I made Curried Coconut, Spinach, and Mushroom Soup (gluten free, dairy, free, vegan). http://iamglutenfree.blogspot.com/2010/09/fall-fest-2010-curried-coconut-spinach.html

    5:34 pm  Sep 23rd, 2010
  25. Rebecca

    This recipe looks great, healthy and full of protein to keep you going. I’ll be trying it tomorrow.

    3:47 pm  Sep 26th, 2010
  26. Mary

    When I first looked at this photo, it looked almost like Zuppa Toscana soup to me (something I’ve wanted to recreate for a long time) but it has spinach instead of kale. It’s too hot right now to think about soup though, but this reminded me I want to make some when the weather gets cooler again (hopefully soon!).

    11:41 pm  Sep 26th, 2010
  27. Anne Marie

    I also love a hearty Sausage and Spinach Soup (http://themessyapron.blogspot.com/2010/07/camping-soup.html), and I posted a Spinach and Feta Souffle recipe in the spring (http://themessyapron.blogspot.com/2010/05/celebrating-spinach.html), but my favorite for fall is spinach salad with apples and maple vinaigrette (http://themessyapron.blogspot.com/2009/12/maple-walnut-vinaigrette.html)

    7:48 am  Sep 27th, 2010
  28. Chef Chuck

    ~So hearty, and so good~

    5:29 pm  Sep 27th, 2010
  29. HungryCook

    This looks warm and tasty! I had to mention it in my latest blog post: http://www.hungrycook.com/2010/09/28/fall-feasting/. Can’t wait to try it!

    7:31 pm  Sep 28th, 2010
  30. First bowl « GuFf

    […] Sausage and spinach soup Adapted from Pinch My Salt […]

    11:10 pm  Sep 28th, 2010
  31. Menu Plan for 9/26/10 and Raw Honey Giveaway | Food for My Family

    […] with Butter Fish Tuesday – Tuna Bruschetta with Spinach Wednesday – Fish Tacos Thursday – Spinach and Sausage Soup Friday – Potato Pizza with Garlic and […]

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  32. Gwyn

    I’m making this soup right now. My house smells so good. I can’t wait to taste it.

    10:21 am  Sep 30th, 2010
  33. Elise Lowerison

    I just came across your health and fitness blog. Your article about the spinach and sausage soup was especially interesting. I especially liked your comments about staying healthy by using what ingredients you have in your kitchen already. I am adding you to my favorites. We’re in the same industry, the business of encouraging health and fitness. We market a product called The AbStand: http://www.theabstand.net. We would love for you and your readers to check out our ab workout product. Any feedback would be appreciated as well. Thanks!

    3:06 pm  Oct 1st, 2010
  34. Janet

    Mmmmmm just finished making this for dinner!!! I added leeks and mushrooms. I love soups! Can’t wait to eat it! Next… its that time of the year again to start making pumpkin spice cake with pumpkin cream cheese spread!!!! Thanks for all your yummy recipes!

    4:45 pm  Oct 4th, 2010
  35. Fall Feasting | The Hungry Cook

    […] nice warm bowl of Hearty Spinach and Sausage Soup from Pinch My […]

    8:06 pm  Oct 21st, 2010
  36. Gwyn

    This soup was so good and froze well. So good in fact, I’m making it again. Thanks for this great recipe.

    6:15 am  Nov 6th, 2010
  37. Aquascoop

    The days here are still really warm but the nights have been cooling down nicely allowing for perfect brisk mornings that make me dream of pumpkin carving and apple pies.

    3:49 am  Oct 15th, 2011
  38. Srabua

    I learned to make it work, while Madame like to make it in a pressure cooker. It is also a favorite winter soups.

    8:54 pm  Feb 5th, 2013
  39. Soup season is here! 10 easy recipes for fall | Richmond American Homes

    […] Hearty Spinach & Sausage Soup via Pinch My Salt Potatoes, sausage, barley, spinach—what could be more filling on a chilly autumn day? […]

    1:47 pm  Dec 24th, 2014
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