Spaghetti and Meatball Soup

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If you need back to school dinner ideas, what can be more kid friendly than a bowl of Spaghetti and Meatball Soup made with turkey meatballs cooked in a light tomato broth!

Spaghetti and Meatball Soup
Spaghetti and Meatball Soup

This Spaghetti and Turkey Meatball Soup is a one pot meal my whole family loves and leftovers are great for lunch! I first shared this back in 2011, I used to make this all the time when Madison was little. It’s a perfect back to school dinner! I finally got a chance to rephotograph it, which I have wanted to do for a while. It’s very popular in my home, and I’m sure it will be in yours too. More kid-friendly dinner ideas your family might enjoy are Instant Pot Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs, Crock Pot Turkey Chili, and Madison’s Favorite Beef Tacos.

Spaghetti and Meatball Soup

I have always tried to make one meal for the whole family. When Madison was a toddler just learning to eat solid foods, I would give her less broth, and she would eat the spaghetti soup with her messy hands. I never made separate meals, no frozen chicken nuggets. And now that she’s a pre-teen she’s such a great eater. I prefer to use 93% lean ground turkey, but if you want to reduce the fat more 99% will work.

Can you cook spaghetti directly in the soup?

Although you can cook pasta separate in water, I always cook spaghetti right in the soup so there’s less dishes to wash.

How to Freeze

Freeze leftover spaghetti soup and meatball in small containers so you can pull it out on busy nights when you need something fast to feed your kids. The soup will last in the fridge for about 4 days and in the freezer for 3 months. You can thaw it overnight in the refrigerator or reheat it in the microwave or on the stove straight from frozen.


  • Meatballs: Swap ground turkey for lean ground chicken or beef.
  • Pasta: Substitute spaghetti for another pasta shape, like elbow macaroni or rotini. You can also use whole-wheat noodles.
  • Liquid: Since the pasta expands, you can add more broth if necessary.
  • Vegetables: Feel free to add some vegetables like spinach or chopped carrots and celery.

turkey meatballspot of meatball and spaghetti soupturkey meatball soup

More Soup Recipes You’ll Love:

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Spaghetti and Meatball Soup
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5 from 14 votes
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Spaghetti and Meatball Soup

213 Cals 22 Protein 27.5 Carbs 3 Fats
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Yield: 6 servings
COURSE: Dinner, Soup
CUISINE: American
Kid friendly, one-pot Spaghetti and Meatball Soup made with turkey meatballs simmered in a light tomato broth!


For the soup:

  • 5 cups low sodium, chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped and divided
  • 4 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, divided
  • 1/2 onion, chopped, divided
  • 3-4 tbsp tomato sauce, I use my quick marinara sauce
  • pinch crushed red pepper flakes, optional
  • kosher salt and fresh pepper
  • 6 oz dry cut up spaghetti

For the meatballs:

  • 16 oz 93% lean ground turkey, or 99% lean
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped basil


  • Heat a large pot over high heat and add chicken broth, water, 1 clove crushed garlic, 2 tbsp chopped parsley, 1/4 of the chopped onion, tomato sauce, crushed red pepper flakes and fresh black pepper to a boil, When it comes to a boil simmer about 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the meatballs by combining ground turkey, Parmesan cheese, egg, remaining garlic, remaining onion, remaining parsley, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Form into little 1 inch meatballs (about 36).
    turkey meatballs
  • Drop meatballs into the broth, cook about 3 minutes; add pasta and cook according to package directions.
  • Add fresh basil, adjust salt and pepper to taste and serve with grated Parmesan cheese.



Serving: 11/2 cups, Calories: 213kcal, Carbohydrates: 27.5g, Protein: 22g, Fat: 3g, Sodium: 739mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 2g
WW Points Plus: 5
Keywords: kid-friendly soup, kids lunch box, one pot spaghetti and meatball soup, spaghetti and meatball soup

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  1. My whole family lives this soup! And, it was quick and easy to make.

  2. Followed other’s suggestions and baked the meatballs before adding them to the soup. I also substituted the 2 c. water with 2 c. of Rao’s marinara sauce and used fresh basil instead of parsley. Forgot to add spinach as other suggested but will do so with left-overs. Was very good as all Gina’s recipes are.

  3. I found it easier to do all the prep first, so the meatballs were ready to go into the soup when I needed them. Great flavor and picky-kid approved! Perfect for dinner on a rainy night like this one. Will make again for sure. 

  4. Gina, 
    Thank you so much for taking the time to post all of these recipes with exact quantities. I love every recipe, you take so much care to provide the appropriate measurements. Thank you SOOOO much. My kitchen only knows skinny taste recipes! This was amazing! I used RAO’s arrabbiata, and left out the red pepper flakes. Just perfect. 

  5. It’s supposed to be 115 degrees in Northern California today so I’m going to wait a few weeks for soup weather, but I really like how this sounds. I’m looking forward to it. It should be easy to adjust for gluten free.

  6. Looking at pictures it looks like u put a lot more marinara sauce in? I found it quite watery I will add more sauce and see

  7. Gina, I love your recipes. I make almost exclusively all your recipes. You do a great job of being thorough in your directions. I do have a question and it might seem silly that I don’t know this. I usually only buy large eggs. Not sure I want to buy small eggs just for this recipe. Can I use a large egg or would I need to add more breadcrumbs? (I also read thru the comments to see if anyone else asked this but didn’t see it.) Thanks!

  8. My family loves this soup! It’s a go to recipe now!

  9. I love this soup! Its hearty and wholesome and versatile. My whole family loves it and I make it when I have company. I’m following points plus and am so happy you still leave all the different points on your recipes!

  10. Love this soup the only change I made was instead I used my homemade spaghetti sauce. I used about 50/50 between broth and sauce and didn’t add water. I also added mushrooms and served with garlic croutons.

  11. My family (including 2 toddlers) LOVED this soup!! Going into meal rotation for sure :). Thanks, Gina! 

  12. This is delicious, warm, filling, and fun. I added two more TBS of tomato sauce and doubled the garlic. 

  13. I made this soup today and it is fabulous.  I used frozen turkey meatballs and substituted spaghetti squash for the pasta.  Delish!!!  ***** stars.  Thank you.  

  14. Pingback: March 2017 Meal Plan 2 – St. Patty’s Day Edition – Home Well Managed

  15. The meatballs cook enough in three minutes and the boiling of noodles?  You don’t need to cook them first?

    • I was wondering the same thing! 3minutes of cooking and they’d still be raw. I’m going to cook mine first.

    • I just read the directions again. They cook in there 3 minutes, then you put in the spaghetti and cook according to package directions so the meatballs end up cooking at least 10 minutes. I’ll probably still cook mine first, but at least 10 minutes is better than 3.

    • If you make the small one inch meatballs it’s plenty of time. Remember you still are cooking after.

  16. Hello-

    I love your recipes. We are fans of your picadillo. A while back you posted your go to recipe for ground beef. We made it and it was delicious . Can you share recipe with me. I can’t find my copy.

  17. Gina strikes again!!!! I made this a few days ago and it was awesome!! 

  18. Fantastic dish! This is definitely a keeper. I added garlic and onion powder to the meatballs. My entire family was impressed. Thank you!

  19. This was fantastic and super hearty. Thanks for a great recipe!

  20. would pesto work subs. for fresh basil?