kale and kielbasa soup

By Rachel L.
from Burke, VA

This was a dupe for an Olive Garden soup recipe that I tinkered with over the years. My family loves it and I make it quite often. I've made it with the pasta and without. For a while we were watching carbs and I omitted both the pasta and potatoes and substituted another veg such as green beans. I was able to make this recipe weight watcher compliant for points by cutting in half the kielbasa and sausage, so it really is versatile.

serves 6
prep time 20 Min
cook time 1 Hr
method Stove Top

Ingredients For kale and kielbasa soup

  • 2 Tbsp
    olive oil
  • 1
    onion, chopped
  • 3 clove
    garlic, chopped or squeezed through a garlic press
  • 1 pkg
    kielbasa (16 oz) sliced, or mild pork sausage
  • 3 md
    potatoes, waxy type (red or 'new')
  • 4 c
    chicken broth or vegetable broth, chicken preferred
  • 1-2 c
    water
  • 1 can
    dark red kidney beans
  • 4
    carrots, chopped
  • 2-3
    stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1 bunch
    kale leaves, sliced into ribbons (note that frozen chopped kales works extremely well)
  • 1 c
    elbow macaroni or small pasta (optional)
  • grated parmesan cheese (to taste)
  • salt and pepper

How To Make kale and kielbasa soup

  • 1
    In a stock pot over medium heat, add your olive oil (your can use another such as rapeseed if desired). Once hot, add the chopped onion and garlic and cook until translucent. I prefer a finer dice of onion rather than a larger dice. Add the kielbasa or pork sausage as well as the finely diced celery and cook until browned. If using sausage, use your spoon or spatula to ensure the pieces are broken up and there are no pink bits.
  • 2
    Once the meat is cooked, add the potatoes and ensure they brown a bit. Add some salt and pepper at this point. A good pinch of each should be enough. After the potatoes have browned, around 3-5 minutes, add the chicken broth and one cup of the water.
  • 3
    Once the broth comes to a boil, add the kidney beans, the carrots and the kale. If you are using frozen pre-cut kale, about half a bag should be enough. If using fresh kale, it will take a while for the kale to cook down. Once this entire mixture comes to a boil, lower the temperature to medium low or just enough to simmer. Keep the soup at this simmer for about 40 minutes. I find there isn't much difference if I keep a lid on or off in regards to taste, however some of the liquid will boil away if the lid is off.
  • 4
    If you desire to add the macaroni or other small pasta, add another cup of water (or two depending on how much liquid is in the pot) and bring it back to a boil. Add the pasta and boil another 15 minutes. The pasta will soak up a lot of the cooking liquid. Check seasoning. When serving add parmesan to the top of the soup. Our family likes a lot of cheese, but 2 tablespoons is good too.
  • 5
    Note for Instapot usage. Follow the above up to step 2. Place the lid on the instapot and pressure cook the soup for about 5 minutes and allow it to naturally release (about 20 minutes). This will make the kielbasa slices 'puffy', but the sausage will be as normal. After natural release add the cup of water or two, the macaroni, and put it on the soup function, medium, and allow it to simmer for the 15 minutes.
  • 6
    When storing leftovers: the liquid will really be soaked up by the veg and pasta. When you reheat you will need to add about a 1/2 cup of water to each serving to make it more like soup instead of stew. Don't worry, the broth taste will still be there.
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