Italian-Style White Bean & Kale Soup

Last week I bought a bag of kale at the farmer’s market. I buy vegetables every week and I struggle to eat them. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s just that alone they aren’t all that delicious raw. A personal challenge I have this year is to find different and delicious ways to cook vegetables so that someone like me who’s motivated but unimpressed, will eat more plants.

Until I learned how to properly cook brussel sprouts, I didn’t eat them. Now I can barely finish cooking dinner before they’re all eaten. I think a lot of vegetables are like this; a bit of a disgusting mystery until discovered by the right technique.

The story about this soup is a long-winded way of saying it’s a tasty way to use up that damn kale using just pantry ingredients. This soup isn’t based on anyone’s recipe, just one I made up using a series of techniques I’ve previously applied while making soups.

On a side note, the technique of caramelizing the onions and garlic slowly with S&P and Italian seasoning, then mixed with the Italian stewed tomatoes was a really, really tasty sauce before I added broth. This is a note for the future if I’m ever out of pasta sauce and need some in a pinch, that I could make it relatively quickly using these pantry ingredients.

For future me, here’s the ingredients and recipe.


  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 medium-sized garlic cloves, finely diced
  • Italian seasoning, enough to coat the onion/to taste
  • Olive oil
  • 1.5 bay leaves
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 15oz. can of cannelloni beans
  • 1 15oz. can of Italian stewed tomatoes
  • 2 cups of purple/green (bitter) kale, chopped
  • S&P to taste


  1. Slow saute the onions, along with S&P and Italian seasoning over low-medium heat in the olive oil. Add the garlic when the onions are almost done caramelizing. Avoid burning the onions and garlic.
  2. Stir in the Italian stewed tomatoes and allow to reach a boil. Turn down and simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broth, beans, bay leaves and stir. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes. 
  4. Scoop out about two cups worth avoiding the tomatoes and blenderize using a stick blender. Return mixture to soup and stir in.
  5. Add the kale and bring to a boil. 
  6. Take off the heat and enjoy!