The Best Pizza Soup

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
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This delicious Italian-style Pizza Soup is full of flavor. Made with hearty meatballs, pepperoni, bell peppers, and marinara, it’s a big bowl of yumminess – especially when you add the melting mozzarella and croutons!

Mouthwatering Soup with Meatballs, Pepperoni, and Melted Cheese!

If you have any anti-soup people in your house, this is the recipe for you! It will make a believer out of anyone, because it is inspired by everyone’s favorite food: pizza. With real marinara sauce in the soup broth, savory meatballs, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese, it’s a beefy dinner idea that’s rich and flavorful.

My pizza soup recipe also includes garlicky croutons made with store-bought garlic toast, and yummy pizza restaurant toppings – crushed red pepper flakes, chopped parsley, and a bit of parmesan as well. Best of all, this recipe is incredibly easy to make. You don’t need to know any special cooking techniques or do much prep, so it’s great for a weeknight dinner.

Ingredients for pizza soup arranged in dishes on a work surface.

Ingredients

So what exactly is in this pizza soup? It’s actually a beef broth-based recipe, with a hearty flavor and uncomplicated ingredients. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Olive Oil: Extra-virgin olive oil, or light olive oil if you prefer.
  • Vegetables: Onion, green pepper, and minced garlic.
  • Beef Broth: Homemade or store-bought is fine. Bone broth is great, too!
  • Marinara Sauce: Again, a good store-bought version is good, or you can use Homemade Marinara if you have it.
  • Tomato Paste: Make sure to use paste, not sauce, for an extra depth of flavor.
  • Sugar: Just a bit, to cut the acidity of the sauce.
  • Italian Seasoning: This versatile seasoning blend is great with everything, but especially in Italian-inspired dishes like this one. If you don’t have it on hand, you can use a blend of basil and oregano for a quick substitute.
  • Frozen Meatballs: Thaw the frozen meatballs overnight in the refrigerator before adding them to the soup.
  • Pepperoni: Cut the pepperoni into quarters.
  • Mozzarella: Shredded, for topping the soup.
  • Garlic Toast: To make croutons for topping the soup. They really are one of the best parts! Don’t skip these!
  • Crushed Red Pepper, Chopped Parsley, and Shredded Parmesan: As a garnish.
A bowl of soup with croutons and cheese.

Let’s Make Pizza Soup!

Other than a quick saute of the veggies, this soup is about combining the ingredients and letting them simmer. You can even make it in the slow cooker if you like – see the Helpful Hints section below.

  • Saute the Vegetables. Heat the olive oil in a large pan, and cook the onions, green bell pepper, and garlic for about 3 minutes.
  • Add the Remaining Ingredients. Next, stir in the beef broth, marinara sauce, tomato paste, sugar, and Italian seasoning until well combined. Add the meatballs and the pepperoni pieces.
  • Simmer. Cook the soup on medium heat for 30 minutes.
  • Make the Croutons. While the soup cooks, heat the oven to 350°F and place the cubed toast on a greased cookie sheet. Bake them for 10 to 15 minutes, flipping halfway through for even cooking.
  • Enjoy! Serve the soup with a sprinkle of crushed red pepper, mozzarella and parmesan, chopped parsley, and croutons.

Can You Simmer Meatballs Too Long?

Yes, it’s important to understand that meatballs can overcook and develop a bad texture. If you overcook them, they’ll turn tough. If you keep overcooking them, they will turn soggy! I recommend cooking them until they reach a safe internal temperature (usually 160°F).

Ladling pizza soup out of a pot.

Helpful Hints

In addition to cooking the meatballs for the right amount of time, these helpful recipe tips will ensure that your soup turns out just right. Happy cooking!

  • Extra Flavor: While definitely optional, adding fresh cherry tomatoes and basil to the soup adds extra brightness and flavor.
  • Crockpot Option: You can also make this in the crockpot – just cook for 2 hours on HIGH or 4 hours on LOW.
  • Garlic Toast: As an alternative to making garlic toast croutons, feel free to buy a bag of ready-made croutons instead.
  • Pepperoni: Replace the full-sized, quartered pepperoni with mini pepperoni (or any meat you want).
  • Green Pepper: Substitute with red bell pepper for a milder, sweeter bell pepper flavor.
Three bowls of soup on a table decorated with leaves, tomatoes, and croutons.

What to Serve with Pizza Soup

Serve this soup with your favorite vegetable side dishes, like salad, green beans, or even crispy potatoes. Here are a few recipes for starters:

  • Salad: Give each person a serving of mixed baby salad greens drizzled with oil and sprinkled with vinegar and salt – or go big and make this mouthwatering Copycat Maggiano’s Chopped Salad! The layers of prosciutto, avocado, and other yummy ingredients are fresh and have a great texture.
  • Green Beans: For a creative way to serve green beans, you can’t beat fresh Green Bean Salad. This pretty, colorful dish pops with flavor and color!
  • Garlic Bread: If you decide to skip the garlic bread croutons, you could always do some garlic bread on the side. If you want to change it up, try my very favorite Goat Cheese Garlic Bread!
Spooning soup with pepperoni out of a bowl.

Storing the Leftovers

If you have leftovers of this delicious soup, lucky you! It tastes even better after the flavors have had time to meld. Store pizza soup in an airtight container in your refrigerator for up to 7 days.

Can I Freeze This?

Sure! You can freeze the soup for up to three months. Store in an airtight container without the toppings – it’s best to add those to each bowl individually and avoid freezing them. Thaw the soup overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Overhead shot of pizza soup with meatballs.
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Recipe
Yield: 6 Servings

The Best Pizza Soup

Made with hearty meatballs, pepperoni, marinara and bell peppers, this decadent Italian-style Pizza Soup is packed with flavor! It’s a big bowl of comfort, especially when you add the melting mozzarella and garlic bread croutons on top!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 2 16 oz jars marinara sauce (or homemade marinara)
  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 26 oz bag frozen meatballs, thawed
  • 1 6 oz package pepperoni, quartered
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 3 garlic toasts, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon freshly shredded parmesan

Instructions 

  • Heat the olive oil in a large pan. Cook the onions, green pepper and garlic for 3 minutes.
  • Stir in the beef broth, marinara sauce, tomato paste, sugar and Italian seasoning until well combined.
  • Stir in the meatballs and pepperoni and cook on medium heat for 30 minutes.
  • While the soup cooks, heat the oven to 350°F and place the cubed toast on a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, flipping half way through.
  • Serve the soup with a sprinkle of crushed red pepper, mozzarella cheese, parsley, croutons and some fresh parmesan cheese.

Notes

  • Storing and Freezing: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
  • Extra Flavor: While definitely optional, adding fresh cherry tomatoes and basil to the soup adds extra brightness and flavor.
  • Crockpot Option: You can also make this in the crocpot – just cook for 2 hours on HIGH or 4 hours on LOW.
  • Garlic Toast: As an alternative to making the garlic toast croutons, feel free to buy a bag of ready-made croutons instead.
  • Pepperoni: Replace the full-sized, quartered pepperoni with mini pepperoni (or any meat you want).
  • Green Pepper: Substitute with red bell pepper for a milder, sweeter bell pepper flavor.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 268kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 22mg, Sodium: 1025mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 8g

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2 Responses
  1. Jennifer

    Made it! Loved it! But I found it SUPER sweet! It was probably the marinara sauce I bought but I had to add another 4 cups of water and probably another 4 tablespoons of tomato paste just to cut the sweetness as I didn’t add the sugar! I will make again though, I’ll just play around with the recipe a bit.

Welcome!

Jessica
I'm a trial & error, self taught, sugar addict who thankfully learned how to survive in the kitchen! I am also a wife, mama of 3.