CARRABBA’S ITALIAN GRILL’S | Sicilian Chicken Soup

Mama Mandola's Spicy Sicilian Soup

by RRR

I have over 30 years of experience in the Hospitality  Industry, from privately-owned restaurants, large corporate chain restaurants, to owning my own catering company and restaurant consulting firm.  I am also married to a James Beard nominated Chef.  I have loved this industry and have made many friends and connections throughout the years.

Because of these experiences and contacts,  most of the recipes that I create on my YouTube Channel and in this website, are different from other copycat recipes found on the internet.  Often, the recipes that I present are the exact versions of the restaurant’s. This recipe is one of those.  A talented employee in my husband’s kitchen, has worked at Carrabba’s Italian Grill for 20 years, making the Mama Mandola’s Spicy Sicilian Chicken Soup.  If you watch the Video Tutorial, I show you pictures of the actual soup being made in a Carrabba’s kitchen.

This soup is a bit time intensive due to the fact that you need to boil a whole chicken for over two hours.  But, the flavor is unparalleled.  There is a reason that this soup is a favorite at Carrabba’s and the recipe is so popular on the internet.  It is good for the soul and anything else that ails you!

The soup  is slightly spicy and the spice comes from cracked black pepper.  Feel free to add as much or as little as you want, depending on your taste preference for spice.  Me?  Bring on the spice, baby!  And season to taste with salt, adding a little at a time.

I recommend boiling the ditalini separately and add the pasta to each bowl-full before serving.  I think the pasta gets too mushy if it is added to the soup while simmering.  Store the leftovers apart from the pasta, as well, and simply add to each serving.  This soup will make several quarts but it freezes very well.  Easy dinner for a busy night.  Just boil some fresh, al dente pasta and it’s on  your table in 7 minutes!

Mama Mandola's Sicilian Chicken Soup

Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 4.0/5
( 5 voted )


  • 4.5 LB whole chicken, giblets removed and rinsed well
  • 4 cups (3) Idaho potatoes, peeled and ¼” dice
  • 1 LB ditalini pasta (Barilla pref.)
  • 2 cups (3) carrots, peeled and ¼” dice
  • 2 cups celery, ¼” dice
  • 2 cups green pepper, ¼” dice
  • 28-oz can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cups Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 4 TBL EVOO
  • 2 TBL Kosher salt
  • Cracked black pepper to taste


Cook the ditalini pasta to al dente instructions in salted boiling water.  Drain, rinse with cold water and set aside.

In a very large stock pot, on a med-high heat, add the EVOO.  When the oil shimmers, add the onion and garlic.  Once the onion and garlic soften, add the celery, carrots, and peppers.  Stir well until the vegetables become fragrant.  Add the Kosher salt and cracked black pepper.  Carrabba’s Sicilian Soup is slightly spicy, and the spice comes from cracked black pepper.  Add as little or as much cracked pepper as is suited to your taste.

Place the entire chicken into the pot and add the potatoes.  Add fresh, cold water until the chicken is submerged by 1 ½” and bring to a boil.  Once the stock begins to boil, reduce heat to med-low, cover the pot by 2/3 and simmer until the chicken falls from the bone, about 2 ½ hours.  As the chicken simmers, remove and discard the foam that rises to the top, about every 20 minutes.

When the meat easily falls from the bones, transfer the whole chicken to a cutting board.  Pick through the chicken meat, discarding all bone, cartilage, and skin.  Chop any large pieces of chicken to about ¼” chunks.  Return the pulled and chopped chicken into the stock and vegetable soup base and keep the soup on low to reduce. Add the tomatoes and parsley.  Taste to add any additional salt and cracked black pepper.  Add the ditalini pasta right before serving and allow to the soup to come back up to temp, slightly, to warm the pasta.

Serve with Carrabba’s Mussels in White Wine and Carrabba’s Chicken Marsala and Enjoy!


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