Warm up with a bowl of ribollita Toscana, a classic Tuscan vegetable soup with bread. This post has been sponsored by La Brea Bakery. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Italian, and Tuscan in particular, recipes are my favorite to share, so I can’t believe I haven’t shared my version of ribollita yet! If you haven’t explored the authentic and updated Italian recipes I learned while living in Tuscany, don’t miss these Pizza Dough, Simple Pizza Sauce, Papa al Pomodoro, Farro Vegetable Soup, Aperol Spritz, and Affogato recipes!
Ribollita is a classic Tuscan soup made with veggies, lots of cabbage and/or kale, white beans, and bread. La Brea Bakery Italian Round, which you can find at Vons in the bakery section, is perfect for this recipe as it has a caramelized crunchy golden crust, soft inside, rustic appearance, and fresh baked aroma. It would also be perfect with our Authentic Bruschetta recipe. In this recipe, the bread can either be torn into 1-inch pieces and simmered to create a thick and silky traditional Tuscan stew, or toasted and served on top for a chewier, crunchier texture.
I picked up all the ingredients I needed for this simple Italian veggie soup at my nearest grocery store, Vons. I was able to get most of the ingredients organic, and there’s even an app you can download for coupons.
You may already have most of these ingredients at home. You’ll need some good olive oil, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, cabbage, kale, cooked white beans, and a good crusty Italian bread like La Brea Bakery Italian Round. Like our Panzanella recipe, this is a great one for using up older loaves of bread. Similar to our Detox Cabbage Soup recipe, I love the cabbage here, but you can omit it and bump up the kale to 1 pound if you prefer. Fennel is another typical ingredient, so if you like it, feel free to add a shredded bulb in place of or in addition to the cabbage, or add a pinch of crushed fennel seeds.
How to Make Ribollita on the Stovetop or Pressure Cooker
Start by sautéing onion, carrot, celery, and garlic with a little salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes. I like to partially cover to help the veggies sweat a bit.
Add shredded cabbage and cook that in.
Then add a can of diced or chopped tomatoes, cooked beans, veggie broth, and herbs.
Add lots and lots of shredded kale and let that all simmer together into a thick stew.
Follow the same instructions, but once the veggies other than kale have been added and stirred in, lock the lid and cook on high pressure for 4 minutes. Naturally release for 5 minutes, then quick release any remaining pressure. Remove the lid and stir in the kale. Press saute and simmer for 5 minutes more.
Adding Bread to Your Ribollita Soup
Traditionally, the bread would be simmered into the soup. I personally prefer to toast up the bread, sometimes with a little cheese or garlic and olive oil, and either cut it into chunks like croutons, or slices for dunking. That way you can really enjoy the bread.
If you’d like a more authentic Tuscan ribollita experience, simply tear up about two handfuls of the bread, and stir it in with the kale. You may also need to add a little more broth or water.
- 4 slices Crusty Italian bread, such as La Brea Bakery Italian Round
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 celery sticks, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cups shredded green cabbage
- 15 oz. diced tomatoes
- 3-4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups cooked/canned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 10 oz. shredded kale
- Parmesan or nutritional yeast, for serving
- Cut the bread slices in halves or into 1-2 inch cubes. Toast until golden and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, pepper flakes, salt, and cabbage and cook another few minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, broth, beans, and herbs. Bring to a simmer and cook, partially covered for 20 minutes.
- Remove the herbs and stir in the kale. It will seem like a lot of kale, but it really cooks down. Continue to simmer until the kale has wilted, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve the soup in bowls and top with the toasted Italian bread, Parmesan, and/or a drizzle of olive oil.
Authentic Tuscan ribollita is usually simmered with the bread torn and added right into the soup. I prefer it toasted and added on top at the end, but feel free to make it either way.
I've used cabbage and kale here, but feel free to use kale only, increasing it to 1 pound, or cabbage only, increasing to 1 head.
If you have it, a drizzle of truffle oil is a tasty addition.
Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Instructions:
Though I personally prefer the flavors of this soup when made on the stovetop, it's easy to make in the Instant Pot. Heat the oil on sauté mode. Sauté onion, carrots, and celery until softened. Add the garlic, pepper flakes, salt, and cabbage and sauté another minute longer. Select cancel. Add the tomatoes, 3 cups broth, beans, thyme, and rosemary. Select manual/pressure cook (high) for 5 minutes. Naturally release the pressure 5 minutes, then carefully quick release the pressure. Carefully remove the lid and stir in the kale. Simmer for 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with the toasted bread.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 bowl
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 240Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 1881mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 9gSugar: 9gProtein: 11g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your favorite calculator.