home cooked dinners by the season

Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup with Kale

Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup with Kale

Spring is getting close, but for now, wintery soup will still grace my table.

I am a lover of beans and especially when they are in a soup. I’m so happy when I remember ahead of time to soak the dried ones. But I forget just as much as I remember and so I use the canned ones too. A little helpful fact for you is that one half cup of dried beans when cooked is the same as one 15-ounce can.

There are four different herbs in the soup broth. Apologies. But the beans need to be flavored up in a soup and together these all make a wonderful savory flavor.

Ah kale. I’m kind of saving the best for last here. I have always loved kale, but honestly I’ve not cooked with it much. It’s the popular vegetable right now too. With good reason as I just read that it rates at the top for healthiest vegetable. You are probably most familiar with the curly leaf kale, but I like using “lacinato” kale which is also called Tuscan kale. It has a flat more delicate like leaf than the curly kale you might be more familiar with.

Yup, all in one again with this recipe – protein, carbohydrates and vegetable. But that doesn’t stop me from warming up a chewy artisan style loaf of bread to serve with it.

Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup with Kale
Serves: 4
  • 1 cup dried white beans, such as great northern, cannelini or navy (2 15-ounce cans, drained, can be substituted: see note)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 8 cups chicken broth or stock
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon dried sage
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound Italian style chicken sausage
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 3 cups thinly sliced (stems removed), "lacinato" (also called Tuscan or dinosaur) kale
  • ½ teaspoon oregano leaves
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Put the beans in a soup pot; cover with cold water by one or two inches. Bring to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes; turn off heat and cover the pot. Let the beans soak at least one hour and up to two hours. Drain beans and set aside.
  2. In the same soup pot, heat olive oil over medium high heat; add onions and garlic and cook and stir until softened, about 3-5 minutes. Add chicken broth, drained beans, salt, thyme, sage and bay leaf; bring to a simmer; cover and simmer until beans are tender, about 1-1/2 hours.
  3. While beans are simmering, remove sausage from casing. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat; add sausage and cook and stir breaking up into pieces until browned and cooked through, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Add tomatoes, kale, cooked sausage, oregano and fennel to the beans; simmer 15-20 minutes. Season with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Serve with grated Parmesan sprinkled on top.
If substituting canned beans for dried beans, add drained, canned beans to the onions, along with the chicken broth and herbs. Simmer 15 minutes, then add tomatoes, kale, cooked sausage, garlic, oregano and fennel and follow the reminder of the recipe.


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4 thoughts on “Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup with Kale”

  • This was absolutely delicious and perfect for today’s crazy weather–cold, windy, snowy, rainy, sunny, snowy, unpredictable. Note: I didn’t add any salt to the beans until they had cooked for 45 mins.

  • This is tasty and a snap to make! The fennel and sage give this soup a delicious and unexpected flavor. I am all about one pot meals that I can eat all week, and freeze some for later. thank you!

  • This is a winner for sure! Living in the Arizona, however, I needed to add a little heat, so I threw in some crushed red pepper for some zip. Really easy, great tasting recipe that holds up really well for leftovers. Mmm.

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