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Rigatoni Meatball Soup


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  • Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • January 9, 2018 by Ingrid Beer 16 Comments
  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Something I personally find a lot of joy and fun in, is turning a familiar recipe into a soup version of itself, and that’s just what I did with this cheesy rigatoni meatball soup.
  • Wonderful, Irresistible Soup!
  • Ah, soup… it’s one of my favorite things to prepare and to eat.
  • What could be better? More soothing?
  • And while soup is certainly most cozy to enjoy in these colder months, a delicious bowl of savory, “liquid heaven” is something my husband and I eat all year long—spring, summer, fall or winter.
  • For us, soup is a complete meal, one that is so versatile and nourishing, one that thoroughly comforts us to our very cores.
  • Rigatoni and Meatballs are a Match Made in Soup Heaven
  • Pot of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Substitute another ground meat: You can also use dark meat chicken or turkey as a substitute for beef, for a leaner version—you can even use ground lamb or pork, if you prefer.
  • Feel free to leave out the wine: I add in only a very small amount of red wine into the soup, and that completely cooks out; but if you prefer not to add wine, simply omit it.
  • Vegetarian option: You can very easily prepare the soup on its own without any meatballs if you are looking for a vegetarian option, and substitute vegetable stock in place of the chicken.
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  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
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  • Recipe
  • Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • by Ingrid Beer
  • Print Friendly, PDF & EmailPrint Recipe
  • Bowl of Rigatoni Meatball Soup
  • Rich and hearty, this comforting rigatoni meatball soup is a fun take on one of our favorite pasta dishes, complete with creamy mozzarella cheese.
  • Yield: Serves 8
  • Nutrition Info: 455 calories
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 45 minutes
  • Meatball Ingredients:
  • • 1 pound ground beef (85/15 ratio, organic if possible)
  • • 1 French roll (2-3 ounces), processed for 20-30 seconds in food processor for breadcrumbs
  • • 1 egg, whisked
  • • 1 teaspoon salt
  • • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • • 4 cloves garlic, pressed through garlic press (Need a good garlic press? Here’s the link: Rowav Garlic Press)
  • • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • • Splash of milk or half & half (about 2 tablespoons)
  • Soup Ingredients:
  • • Olive oil (about 2 tablespoons)
  • • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • • Pinch salt
  • • Pinch black pepper
  • • Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
  • • 8 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • • 1/4 cup red wine (optional)
  • • 1 (28 ounce/ 793 gram) can organic whole, peeled tomatoes
  • • 6 cups warm chicken stock (I like Better Than Bouillon to make my stock)
  • • 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • • 8 ounces uncooked rigatoni, cooked according to package instructions
  • • Grated mozzarella cheese (about ¼ cup per serving, so about 2 cups total)



Step 1


-Prepare your meatballs by placing your ground beef into a large bowl, and then adding in the remainder of the meatball ingredients; gently mix together just until combined, and using a tablespoon, scoop portions of the mixture and roll between your palms to form meatballs.

-Place a large soup pot (non-stick is ideal, if you have it, you can give this one a try: Calphalon Unison Nonstick 4-Quart Soup Pot with Lid) over medium-high heat, and drizzle in about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil; once the pot is hot, add in the meatballs, working in a couple of batches, if necessary; if you have a non-stick pot, then you can leave your meatballs to brown on that first side, undisturbed, for about 2-3 minutes; if your pot is not non-stick, make sure to move it around vigorously for about 30 seconds when you add in the meatballs so they don’t stick to the bottom before the sear up.

-Once the meatballs are browned on all sides (about 4 minutes total per batch), transfer them to a plate or bowl to hold; then, drizzle in a touch more olive oil (if needed), and add in the chopped onion.

-Saute the onion, scraping up the good bits from the meatballs as much as possible; add in the dried basil, oregano, and parsley, plus a pinch of salt, pepper and red pepper flakes (if using), and stir for a couple minutes until things soften.

-Add in the garlic and stir that to combine, and once it becomes aromatic, add in the tomato paste, and stir to incorporate that in, about 30 seconds or so; add in the red wine to deglaze (if using), and after about 20 seconds, add in the whole tomatoes and the chicken stock.

-Simmer the soup for about 15 minutes; then, using a blender or a hand-held immersion blender (my personal favorite for soup, here’s the link: KitchenAid 3-Speed Hand Blender), puree the soup until smooth.

-Add the meatballs into the soup, and bring it back to a gentle simmer; simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes more until the meatballs are tender.

-To serve, add ½ cup of the cooked rigatoni to a bowl, and ladle in some of the soup (about 1 ½ cups) along with 4 meatballs; top with about ¼ cup grated mozzarella cheese, and either enjoy immediately, or place under the broiler for a minute to melt and slightly brown the cheese.
Believe it or not, we also turned Philly Cheesesteak into a stew! Check it out: Philly Cheesesteak Stew

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