Kale and White Bean Soup – {Meatless Monday}

Kale and White Bean Soup Recipe, White Bean Soup Recipe, White Bean Soup with Kale Recipe,

Kale and White Bean Soup

Kale and White Bean Soup is so chock-full of wonderful vitamins, minerals and protein – all without any meat. Not only that, it is delicious and filling. This soup is the third in my Meatless Monday installments and it covers the third group of great meat substitutes: legumes, in this case, white beans.  

Thus far, I have used Portobello Mushrooms, Eggplant, and with this post Legumes. All three of those are excellent choices to add to any dish as a meat substitute:


Mushrooms: The value as a meat substitute is mainly in the texture; they also contain potassium, phosphorus and antioxidants.

Eggplant: Loaded with fiber, antioxidants, B vitamins, and potassium, eggplant also have a very sturdy, meaty texture.

Legumes: Full of protein (among the best levels of any plant, but still less than meat protein) and fiber, beans are an extremely inexpensive meat substitute.

Kale is a type of leafy cabbage and I always use it when I am making a big “mess o’ greens” in combination with turnip and collard greens. It is readily available in stores at this time of year, and they are wisely even packaging it washed and chopped. With that type of packaging, they are not nearly as picky as I am about removing large stems, so I always pick through the bags and pull large stem pieces, but it is still very convenient. Used in this soup, I add the kale at the very last-minute, and for just enough time to thoroughly wilt the kale in the stock.

I’ve also used a combination of sweet bell peppers; I have been finding packages of tiny multicoloured peppers of red, orange and yellow, which are being marketed as snacking peppers. They are a nice way of adding a lot of color, without buying larger individual peppers for a dish.

Also, while I used homemade vegetable stock, you could use water. I was tempted to use chicken stock I had in the freezer, but I was intent on keeping it “meat” free; you could certainly use it if you wish.

For this post, I am going to give you two versions, one using dried beans and then one using canned beans. This is just for those of you who would like a more convenient way of preparing it, but it really doesn’t take that much longer to use dried beans; it’s absolutely a less expensive method. While canned beans aren’t very costly, dried beans by comparison are much less, for those who are watching every penny. The final volume will be the same with both recipes, I will just adjust the amount of liquid for the canned beans which are already cooked soft. As a point of reference, one pound of dried beans equals about six cups of cooked beans. This recipe makes a lot of soup, but it freezes very well and it is even better for lunch the next day.

One last thing: This recipe contains tomatoes, which I never add to beans until the beans are completely soft. It is said the acid in the tomatoes will keep the dried beans from softening properly. This precaution is not necessary if you use canned beans, since the beans are already soft.

I was worried that Mr. Saucy might balk at this soup, but he really enjoyed it. I hope you’ll try it. It’s a really great meatless meal.

P~

Dry Bean version:

Kale and White Bean Soup - {Meatless Monday}
 
Kale and White Bean Soup is so chock-full of wonderful vitamins, minerals and protein - all without any meat. Not only that, it is colourful, delicious and filling
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Ingredients
  • 1 pound dried white beans (I used Great Northern, Cannellini "white kidney" beans would be great too), washed, picked and quick soaked.
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1½ cup onion, diced (This is about 1 large onion)
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1 cup sweet bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Italian herb seasoning blend
  • a shake of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 quarts of stock (I used vegetable, you could use water or any other stock also the amount of liquid may vary depending on the beans, so if they are absorbing a lot of the liquid, just add a bit more as needed)
  • 1 - 14 ounce can diced tomatoes, with the liquid
  • 1 pound kale, washed, stemmed, diced
  • Optional garnish: Shaved Parmesan Cheese
Instructions
  1. Place the washed and picked beans in a large stockpot and cover them completely, plus about 3 inches above them, with water.
  2. Cover the pot and bring to a boil.
  3. Once the water comes to a boil, remove from heat and allow to sit, covered for an hour (this is the quick soak method, you could soak the beans overnight in water too).
  4. Drain the beans in a colander and set aside.
  5. Using the same stockpot, over medium heat, melt the butter.
  6. Add the onion, celery, and peppers.
  7. Saute for about 5 minutes, or until tender.
  8. Add the garlic and continue to saute for another couple of minutes.
  9. Add the herbs, red pepper flakes, stock and beans.
  10. Simmer until the beans are soft, about 40 minutes.
  11. Add the tomatoes, liquid included, and stir.
  12. Add the kale to the stockpot and cover for about 5 minutes, this will allow the kale to steam.
  13. Remove the lid and stir the kale into the soup.
  14. Continue to simmer, with the lid off for a few minutes.
  15. Serve in hot bowls, garnish with shaved Parmesan cheese.

Canned Bean version (I always recommend Bush’s beans when using canned beans):

Kale and White Bean Soup - {Meatless Monday}
 
Kale and White Bean Soup is so chock-full of wonderful vitamins, minerals and protein - all without any meat. Not only that, it is colourful, delicious and filling.
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Ingredients
  • 3 - 15.5 ounce cans white beans (Great Northern or Cannellini "white kidney beans"), drained and rinsed.
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1½ cup onion, diced (This is about 1 large onion)
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1 cup sweet bell peppers, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Italian herb seasoning blend
  • a shake of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 quarts of stock (I used vegetable, you could use water or any other stock also the amount of liquid may vary depending on the beans, so if they are absorbing a lot of the liquid, just add a bit more as needed)
  • 1 - 14 ounce can diced tomatoes, with the liquid
  • 1 pound kale, washed, stemmed, diced
  • Optional garnish: Shaved Parmesan Cheese
Instructions
  1. In a large stockpot, over medium heat, melt the butter.
  2. Add the onion, celery, and peppers.
  3. Saute for about 5 minutes, or until tender.
  4. Add the garlic and continue to saute for another couple of minutes.
  5. Add the herbs, red pepper flakes, stock and beans and tomatoes and bring to a boil.
  6. Add the kale to the stockpot and cover for about 5 minutes, this will allow the kale to steam.
  7. Remove the lid and stir the kale into the soup.
  8. Continue to simmer, with the lid off for a few minutes.
  9. Serve in hot bowls, garnish with shaved Parmesan cheese.
 
This is just so colourful...

This is just so colourful…

Wilting the kale...

Wilting the kale…

 

About P ~ The Saucy Southerner

I started cooking when I was ten years old. For me, the process of cooking, from inception of a dish, to the execution, to the washing of the pots is sheer delight.

I am now retired from a business I still own, in partnership with my husband. I used to work six days a week and still cook every night. Now, I’m gardening, still cooking, always having fun and hoping to share my joy with you. Thank you for reading…and commenting! P~

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