This delicious Pastina soup takes just 10 minutes to make start to finish and requires only 6 simple ingredients, it truly could not be any quicker or easier to make. There is a reason it’s often referred to as Italian Penicillin Soup, it’s the perfect comforting bowl of soup to make when you are feeling under the weather or simply short on time and in need of a quick meal. Pastina Soup (Italian Penicillin Soup)This Pastina soup is a family recipe that my Mom made for me whenever I was sick, and I now make it regularly when I’m feeling under the weather or I’m just short on time and need something quick to make for dinner. My mom used to make this delicious soup with tortellini, but I prefer it with any type of pastina (aka small pasta). Recently I have found pastina harder and harder to find in the grocery store, so I have been using orzo in its place which is usually easier to buy. This pastina recipe is an incredibly simple recipe that results in the most comforting, creamy and delicious soup. 

Pastina Soup



Why You Are Going To Love This Pastina Soup

  • Italian Penicillin Soup is the perfect nickname for this comforting soup. This is one of my absolute favorite recipes to make when I (or someone in my family) isn’t feeling well, it’s the ultimate comfort food and always makes me feel better
  • If you are looking for an easy soup recipe, this is it! 6 ingredients and 10 minutes, it doesn’t get any easier than this. This is such a simple dish that is surprisingly delicious
  • This pastina soup recipe is very versatile, you can use any type of small-shaped pasta you prefer, add in veggies, chicken, or make it gluten or grain free. 
  • The egg gives the broth a wonderful creaminess that’s absolutely delicious


Pastina Soup (Italian Penicillin Soup)

What is Pastina Soup

Pastina soup is a traditional Italian soup that features small pasta shapes called “pastina.” Pastina refers to little pasta shapes, often in the form of little stars, tiny alphabet letters, or tiny circles. The name “pastina” itself translates to “small pasta” in Italian.  The soup is typically made by cooking these small pasta in a broth and sometimes other ingredients such as vegetables or chicken are also added to the soup. It’s a simple and comforting dish and is often referred to as italian penicillin soup for its ability to make people feel better when sick. 


Pastina Soup (Italian Penicillin Soup)


What You Need To Make This Pastina Soup

  • Chicken Stock: homemade chicken broth is best, but let’s be honest, who has the time?! If you have time to boil chicken bones to make a rich chicken broth then by all means, go for it. If like me you are short on time then use any store bought chicken broth that you prefer. Vegetable broth or bone broth can also be used.  
  • Pastina Pasta: Any tiny pasta shape or orzo can be used in this soup. 
  • Eggs: Eggs might seem like an odd addition to this soup, but it makes the broth incredibly creamy and rich and is an ingredient that you can’t skip! 
  • Scallions or Green Onions: They add a nice kick of extra flavor to the soup. 
  • Black Pepper: I’m always amazed by the big impact on flavour just a small amount of fresh cracked black pepper has on this italian pastina soup
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese: Be sure to use finely grated parmigiano reggiano rather than shredded cheese.


Pastina Soup


How To Make This Pastina Soup

  1. In a large pot on medium high heat bring the chicken broth to a boil and then add the pasta to the hot broth and cook until the pasta is al dente (the cooking time may vary from anywhere from 3-4 minutes to 6-7 minutes depending on the size and type of pasta). 
  2. In a spouted measuring cup crack the eggs and whisk together until broken up. With a whisk, stir the soup quickly in a circular motion and then very slowly pour the raw egg in where you are whisking so that it completely breaks up the egg. 
  3. Next stir in the chopped green onions and black pepper and ladle into bowls. Top each soup bowl with finely grated parmesan cheese. This soup is best eaten right away, if it sits for 10+ minutes the pasta will begin to absorb the broth in which case i would recommend adding in more chicken stock.



What To Do If You Aren’t Planning On Eating This Pastina Soup Immediately

I recommend eating this Italian Penicillin Soup right after making, but if you want to make it and then let your family serve themselves over an hour or two, I recommend cooking the pastina of choice separately for the best results. Cook the pasta in the broth and then use a slotted spoon to remove it all from the broth and set it aside in a bowl. Continue with the remaining steps in the recipe card, adding the egg, green onions and pepper and then leave the soup on low heat. When it’s time to eat, place a few spoonfuls of the cooked pastina in a bowl and then ladle the soup overtop and finally sprinkle with some grated parmesan.  


Pastina Soup (Italian Penicillin Soup)

What Type Of Pasta Can I Use

As mentioned above, pastina refers to any small shaped pasta including alphabet pasta, tiny star-shaped pasta or circles. If you are unable to find pastina, than orzo is a great substitute which I usually use. Other types of pasta that can also be used in this pastina soup include tortellini, ravioli, cavatelli, gemelli or macaroni. 



Ways To Modify This Pastina Soup Recipe

  • Add in vegetables: Start with 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large pot. Add in finely chopped celery, carrots or onion and saute until tender before adding in the broth and continuing with the recipe. 
  • Add in chicken: If I have leftover rotisserie chicken in my fridge, I sometimes add shredded chicken to make it an Italian spin on chicken noodle soup. 
  • If you are on a diet such as the specific carbohydrate diet, Whole30 or Paleo, the pasta can be substituted for cauliflower rice and you can omit the parmesan. 
  • Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. 
  • Add in a handful of fresh spinach or some chopped fresh herbs such as parsley or chives.


Pastina Soup (Italian Penicillin Soup)

Can I Make This Soup Vegetarian

Absolutely! Simply swap the chicken stock for vegetable stock and this pastina soup is vegetarian. 



Can I Make This Soup Gluten Free or Grain Free

You can! Simply use any type of your favorite gluten free pasta, or to make it grain free with a pasta such a Jovial Cassava orzo. 




What To Do With Leftover Pastina Soup

If you are making this pastina soup with the hopes of having leftovers to enjoy over a few days than I recommend using a slotted spoon to remove the cooked pasta from the soup and storing it in a separate airtight container to the soup. This will prevent the pasta from absorbing all of the broth while it sits in the fridge, otherwise you will end up with a container of mushy pasta with no broth. Combine the pasta and leftover soup in a bowl and microwave until warmed through or alternatively heat it in a pot on the stove on medium heat. When stored separately leftovers will last for 3-4 days in the fridge. 


Pastina Soup

Here are a few more delicious soup recipes that you might enjoy: 

If you make this recipe let me know in the comment section below, I would love to hear what you think or take a photo and tag me (@everylastbite_) on Instagram, I love seeing your photos!

10-Minute Pastina Soup Recipe

Every Last Bite
This delicious Pastina soup takes just 10 minutes to make start to finish and requires only 6 simple ingredients, it truly could not be any quicker or easier to make. It's a comforting soup that I make throughout the winter when i'm feeling under the weather or simply short on time and in need of a quick meal. 
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 4


  • 8 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 1/4 cups pastina or orzo (or any gluten or grain free pasta of choice)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 bunch scallions/green onions chopped
  • ½ tsp fresh black pepper
  • ½ -1 tbsp finely grated parmesan per bowl


  • Bring chicken stock to a boil on medium high in a large pot. Add in pastina or orzo and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Crack the eggs into a measuring cup with a lip and whisk them until broken up.
  • Bring the soup to a rolling boil, whisk the soup while you very very slowly drizzle in the egg, ensuring that you whisk continuously through the egg as it hits the soup.
  • Continue to cook the sop until the pasta is tender and then stir in the black pepper and scallions.
  • Divide the soup between the bowls and top each bowl with the parmesan
Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below and let us know how it was!

Italian Penicillin Soup