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White Bean + Kale Soup

Active Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 75 minutes
  • Vegetarian
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Why we love it:

If you’re up for it, make veggie stock! This is the ultimate Sunday afternoon meal prep. If not though, check substitutions for a quicker version using store bought stock. One of the easiest ways to reduce food waste is to gather veggie scraps as you cook (store in a tupperware in the freezer - then they’re ready to go when you have time).


  • 4 cups Assorted Vegetables (scraps - onion peels, broccoli stems, corn cob, carrot and celery trimmings, mushroom tops, etc.)
  • 8 cups Water (give or take... see instructions)
  • 3 Carrots
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 2 ribs Celery
  • 4 cloves Garlic
  • 4 Roma Tomatos
  • 1 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 12 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 bunch Green Kale (or other dark leafy green)
  • 1 Baguette
  • 1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder (optional)
  • 2 15-ounce cans White Beans
  • 12 Lemon (zest and juice)
  • 14 teaspoon Nutmeg (freshly grated)

Cooking Instructions


    In a large pot, place the veggie scraps. (I love to use some combo of: onion, carrot trimmings, mushroom stems, corn cobs in summer, tomato tops, celery leaves or ends, broccoli stems, herb stems - or anything you should have eaten a few days ago. AVOID: peppers, asparagus, potatoes). Cover with at least 1 inch of water. Turn on the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, you can turn it down to maintain a few bubbles here and there, a steady simmer. Cook for about 35 - 45 minutes or until its dark golden and tastes good.

    *If you have an instant pot, this is a great time to pull it out. Add the veggies and water to it. If you have any herbs (like parsley, oregano or thyme) you can add some of them, too. Turn on high pressure for about 20 minutes.

  • 2. SOUP

    Meanwhile, dice the carrot, onion and celery, and mince the garlic. Dice the tomatoes.

    Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat and melt the butter. Add the diced veggies and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add the salt and pepper.

  • 3. KALE

    Wash the kale and chop into 1” squares. I usually leave the stems attached and slice through them, then cut perpendicular to the center to form squares. Set aside in a bowl for now.


    If your bread is really fresh and soft, perhaps you just slice it and serve it as is. If not, slice into rounds, drizzle with olive oil and garlic powder and a pinch of salt. Bake at 400 until golden brown, about 7 minutes.

  • 5. STOCK PART 2

    When the stock is ready, set up a large pot or bowl in the sink and place a colander in it. Very carefully, drain the stock through the colander catching the broth below and the scraps in the colander. Lift it out slowly to allow for drainage.

    Pour the stock into the soup pot (you may decide to use it all or reserve a few cups for another purpose - it’s up to you). Return soup to a simmer, then add the kale.

  • 6. BEANS

    Open the beans and add them to the soup. I usually add the liquid too, but be cautious if you don’t have low-sodium beans. You can drain the beans if you prefer.


    Taste the soup and perhaps you’ll need another pinch of salt and pepper. Add the zest and juice of ½ of the lemon and the nutmeg.

  • 8. SERVING

    Serve soup in large bowls with bread on the edges for dunking.

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    if you don’t want to make stock, use 8 cups of store bought stock. The soup only takes about 20 minutes this way!
  • KALE:
    chard, escarole, spinach, frozen spinach
    garbanzo beans, kidney beans, or omit beans if allergic
    this would be great with zucchini, peas, corn, green beans, potatoes, yams

Kid Friendly Version

How to Tweak This Recipe for Kids:

  • my kids love broth but not the whole soup. I ladle them a clear bowl of broth, serve the cooked carrots, beans and kale - all separately. And of course, some of the garlic bread. You could also add pasta or noodles to the cooking soup which they’ll enjoy

Prep Ahead & Use It Up

  1. If you’re inspired to make a scratch broth – this will be a great use for it. But if you skip this part of the recipe, use store bought stock
  2. Wash and prep your kale – can sit in the fridge for up to 2 – 3 days
  3. Make this entirely ahead and even consider freezing some for later
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