Healthy One Pot Meal: Kale Soup
About Kale and Chorizo
Low in calories, kale contains vitamins, protein, and fiber. It's wonderful in salads, and it's even better when cooked. Kale soup is a healthful, tasty, easy one-pot meal option. The chorizo (Mexican pork sausage) is what gives the soup its mildly spicy flavor. However, an even milder option is linguica, which is a Portuguese sausage. Most supermarkets carry at least one or the other.
If you can't find it anywhere, skip it. I've made this a vegetarian meal before, and it's just as delicious; all you have to do is add some spices to make up for the flavor. The best thing about this dish is that it's basically just tossing a bunch of nutritious ingredients into a pot, so there's not really an exact method to it; you can play around with it quite a bit.
- 2 bunches or 1 bag kale, (washed & chopped, if using bunches)
- 1 bag carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 large Onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 cans great northern beans, drained but not rinsed
- 1 package chorizo or linguica, casings removed
- 3 cups vegetable stock
Making your own veggie stock is a smart way to save money and cut sodium.
4 Easy Steps
- Peel and chop the onion and carrots.
- Wash and chop the kale.
- Remove sausage casings and discard. Chop into bite size pieces.
- Add all ingredients to stock pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for at least an hour or until kale and carrots are desired consistency.
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1. Peel and chop the carrots and onion.
If you don't have an onion on hand, add about half a tablespoon of onion powder to the soup as it cooks instead. Chopping the vegetables the night before saves you time in the kitchen on a busy weeknight.
2. Wash and chop the kale.
You can wash a few leaves at a time in a bowl of veggie wash, or soak the whole bunch in a clean sink full of room-temperature water, and then rinse. No need to pat dry prior to chopping; it's going directly into a pot of liquid. The easiest option though is to buy the kale already washed and chopped. They have this where I shop, and it can be found near the bagged salad mixes. When it's on sale, it doesn't cost much more than buying it by the bunch.
I use the whole bag, when I buy it that way. If this option isn't available to you, and you're not used to cooking with kale, check out the video below. It's a very brief tutorial on cutting this leafy vegetable, and it's very easy to follow. You'll notice the narrator removes the entire stem. I usually leave some of it in, and the pre-washed and bagged kale comes with some stems in it also. Eating the stems isn't harmful; it's simply a matter of preference.
How to Chop Kale
Vegetarian Soup Recipe
Skip step three - omit the sausage, and add some herbs and spices for flavor. Ground black pepper, garlic powder, seasoned salt and a little cayenne are a good start.
3. Remove the casings from the sausages, and chop into bite size pieces.
I've also used chorizo that comes packaged like ground beef; there are no casings to fuss with, so it's easier to use. The only difference is instead of large chunks of meat, it will be evenly distributed throughout the soup. (Like the ground beef in chili). There's no difference in taste; it's a matter of preference (and what's available where you shop).
You can also brown the sausage in a stock pot prior to adding the rest of the ingredients, but I rarely ever bother. It's an extra step that makes very little difference unless you want to crumble larger chunks of meat while they brown. Otherwise, it will cook all the way through as it blends with the rest of the ingredients.
4. Add all ingredients to a large stock pot.
For the liquid, use 2 teaspoons vegetable bouillon in 2 1/2 cups of water, or use 2 1/2 cups veggie stock or broth. (As the kale cooks down, adjust the level of liquid according to how much broth you like in your soup by stirring in water 1/2 cup at a time). Add all ingredients to a pot and bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for at least an hour, or until carrots and kale are done to desired consistency. You can also make this soup in a crock pot; use the low setting for about six hours.
© 2017 Sara Krentz