MISSION: GET CRAFTY
Imitation is the
sincerest form of eatery
Who hasn't wished they could recreate the same delicious
foods you order in your favorite restaurants? Well,
"recipe detectives" have been busy researching,
experimenting and, in some cases, resorting to spy
tactics (or friends who work in the kitchen of these
restaurants) to find out the secret formulas.
One longtime recipe detective is Robbie Rice, author of
the cookbook A Way to the Heart and founder of the
copycat recipe website
Recipes. We asked her to dish the secret recipes of
three famous fall soups.
Read on to find out what she's says you need to do to
make Zuppa Toscana Soup like Olive Garden's, Tortilla
Soup like Cracker Barrel's and Creamy Onion Soup like
The Outback's. You'll be amazed at how much they taste
like the real thing!
Zuppa Toscana Soup like Olive Garden's
Fill your bowl with this hearty soup known for its spicy sausage and bacon, russet potatoes and
greens swimming in a creamy broth.
Prep. Time: 0:35
1 lb. spicy Italian sausage crumbled
1/2 lb. smoked bacon chopped
1 qt. water
(2) 14.5 oz. cans (about 3 2/3 cups) chicken broth
2 lg. russet potatoes - scrubbed clean, cubed
2 garlic cloves peeled, crushed
1 med. onion peeled, chopped
2 cups chopped kale OR Swiss chard
1 cup heavy whipping cream
salt and pepper to taste
In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown sausage,
breaking into small pieces as you fry it; drain, set
In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown bacon; drain,
Place water, broth, potatoes, garlic and onion in a
pot; simmer over medium heat until potatoes are tender.
Add sausage and bacon to pot; simmer for 10 minutes.
Add kale and cream to pot; season with salt and pepper;
Tortilla Soup like Cracker Barrel's
Tex-Mex soup is loaded with flavorful cilantro, tomatoes and cumin
served with chicken, tortilla strips, cheese and
Serves: 10 - 12
Prep. Time: 2:00
1 bunch cilantro stems trimmed, washed
4 cloves garlic peeled
1 sm. onion chopped
2 serrano chili peppers tops removed
10 oz. can
tomatoes and chilies
3 quarts (12 cups) chicken stock
8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 - 3 tsp. ground cumin
1 - 2 tsp. salt
2 Tbls. cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup water
Approx. 20 sm. corn tortillas cut into thin strips
Vegetable oil OR peanut oil for frying
2 cups shredded grilled OR poached chicken breast meat
1 - 1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 avocados peeled, pitted sliced
In a blender or food processor, puree cilantro, garlic,
onion, peppers and tomatoes with
pour into a large pot.
Add tomato sauce, cumin and salt to pot and bring to a
boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and
simmer for 1 hour.
Stir cornstarch/water mixture into pot and continue
heating over low heat, stirring occasionally.
Deep-fry tortilla strips in small batches in 350 degree
oil until crisp. Remove to a cooling rack to drain.
Place a handful of fried tortillas into each serving
Divide chicken into serving bowls, placing on top of
Pour soup into bowls, then sprinkle tops with cheese.
Garnish with 2 - 3 avocado slices.
Soup like The Outback's
A longtime favorite, this filling soup has a creamy
onion base and is topped with three varieties of cheese.
Prep. Time: 0:20
1 1/4 cups chicken broth
3 Tbls. cornstarch
1 tsp. ground sage
10.75 oz. can
Campbell's condensed cream of onion soup
10.75 oz. can condensed cream of chicken soup
10.75 oz. can condensed cream of celery soup
1/4 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup shredded Colby cheese
1/4 cup shredded Provolone cheese
In a blender, combine broth, cornstarch, and sage.
In the top pan of a double boiler over medium heat,
combine broth mixture with soups. Mix well.
When heated through, stir in cheese and heat until
Pour into oven-proof bowls.
Broil in oven until tops are lightly browned.
Notes: Use soup within 3 days; do not freeze.