This hearty Tuscan bean soup is perfect for lunch or filling enough for dinner, with kale, kidney beans, carrots and a bit of sausage.
I'm so glad it's soup season again. I could live on soup and honestly, in the Fall and Winter months, I practically do. I love it for dinner, with a great loaf of bread and left-overs are perfect for lunches.
This soup started with some left-over kale from a salad and a few links of sausage in the freezer that I needed to use up. I added fresh carrots and canned kidney beans, as well. A little chicken broth and 40 minutes, and a great pot of soup was born.
Cook's Notes for Tuscan Kale, Bean and Sausage Soup
Pre-sautéing the fresh sausage is necessary, if for no other reason than to render off the fat. The type of sausage you use is up to you. I like a spicy Italian, for the flavour and a bit of heat. If you're not a spice lover, a mild Italian would be fine. Of course, if you happen to have left-over cooked sausage, you're way ahead of the game. Just crumble and add to the soup near the end with the kale.
As with all soups, it's probably best not to add any additional salt until the end, as the amount needed will vary based on the saltiness of your chicken broth. Do be sure to taste at the end though and salt if necessary.
Tuscan Kale, Bean and Sausage Soup
- 3 fresh Italian sausage links (hot or mild)
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1/2 cup onion (diced)
- 2 Tbsp. tomato paste (optional, but nice for flavour)
- 2 large carrots (diced or sliced)
- 2 cups kale (leaves removed from stem and chopped)
- 1 5 oz kidney beans (red or white, canned, rinsed)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- Salt and pepper (as needed)
- Freshly grated Parmesan (for garnish)
- Heat a skillet over medium heat. Remove sausage from casing and crumble. Add crumbled sausage to hot skillet and cook, stirring often, until fully cooked through and browned. Remove to a piece of paper towel and pat it down well (to absorb any fat). Transfer to a bowl and set in the refrigerator until needed.
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, saute onion in olive oil over medium heat. Add 2 Tbsp. tomato paste, if using and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute. Add chicken broth and carrots. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until carrots are tender. Add cooked sausage, rinsed kidney beans and chopped kale. Continue cooking until kale is wilted and sausage is heated through. Taste and add salt and pepper, as needed and to taste. Top with freshly grated Parmesan.