Sausage and White Bean Soup with Kale

Who doesn’t like a big bowl of hot soup this time of year? In Nashville, this winter is starting out to be one of the coldest since my time here. Of course Nashville cold doesn’t compare to Buffalo NY or Washington D.C. cold, but by our standards it’s pretty frigid. On a cold afternoon, soup has a way of warming you from the inside out. Eating it is like getting the culinary equivalent of a big bear hug.

I added kale to this because I think kale and white beans have an affinity for each other. You could also try chard or spinach. If using spinach, remove from the heat and stir in the spinach and let it sit for about 5 minutes while the spinach wilts. I like to use Glory Kale Greens because they’re stemmed and ready to use.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon oil
1 small onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 15 oz cans white beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups vegetable broth
1/2 pound Italian sausage (sweet or hot)
1 cup canned diced tomatoes with basil, oregano, and garlic
4 cups kale greens, stems removed, washed, and chopped

Directions

1. Heat large sauce pan over medium heat and add oil.
2. Add Italian sausage and saute until browned. Remove from skillet.
3. Add onions to pan and saute until translucent. Add garlic and saute until fragrant ( about 3 minutes).
4. Add sausage back to pan along with beans, tomatoes, and broth.
5. Increase heat to medium high and bring soup to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
6. OPTIONAL – I like my soup to have a thicker consistency so I mash some of the beans with a potato masher to thicken it up.
7. Add kale greens and simmer for another 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

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