Hearty Italian White Bean and Sausage Soup that’s packed with lean ground chicken sausage, white beans, and veggies. It has a flavorful broth, tender kale, and is perfect served with plenty of parmesan and crusty bread.
Ground Chicken Sausage: traditionally this style of soup uses ground pork sausage but we’re lightening things up a bit by using ground Italian chicken sausage instead. It’s packed with protein, flavor, and has less fat that ground pork.
Veggies: a combination of celery, onion, and garlic are cooked along with the ground sausage for extra flavor.
Diced Tomatoes: you’ll need one can of diced tomatoes for this recipe.
White Beans: cannelini beans, or white kidney beans, are tender flavorful beans that work perfectly in this soup. Rinse and drain your beans before using to get rid of any excess starch.
Herbs: a combination of fresh thyme, dried oregano, and dried bay leaves help to build this soup’s flavor.
Chicken Broth: go with low-sodium chicken broth if you can find it so that you can better control the amount of salt in the soup.
Parmesan Rinds: this is an optional ingredient but parmesan rinds add so much delicious flavor to the soup!
Kale: this is the perfect hearty green veggie to stir into the soup. The kale wilts and becomes perfectly tender in the soup.
Ingredients Swaps and Frequently Asked Questions
Sausage – if you don’t love or just can’t find Italian chicken sausage, feel free to use regular pork Italian sausage or regular ground chicken instead.
Kale – this recipe uses the more flat tuscan kale but you could also use curly kale if you prefer! if you don’t love the flavor of kale you could also swap it out for spinach instead.
Parmesan Rinds – skip the parmesan rinds altogether if you need to keep this soup dairy free.
How to Make Sausage Kale and White Bean Soup
Step One: First start by browning the chicken sausage in a little olive oil, breaking it up as it cooks in a large soup pot or dutch oven.
Step Two: Next, you’ll add the garlic, onion, and celery to the pot and continue to cook for a few minutes until the onion starts to become translucent and the garlic is fragrant. This is the perfect time to season with salt and pepper to help build those layers of flavor.
Step Three: Next, add the diced tomatoes, white beans, herbs, chicken broth, lemon juice, and parmesan rinds to the pot.
Step Four: Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and let the soup simmer for 25-30 minutes.
Step Five: After the soup has simmered, give the soup a taste and adjust the seasoning to taste. Next, add the kale to the pot. Stir until everything is well combined and then let the soup simmer for a few minutes until the kale has wilted.
Step Six: Serve the soup with plenty of shredded parmesan or pecorino Romano on top and some crusty bread.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
Make it creamy – If you want a creamier, richer soup you can add a splash of cream or full fat coconut milk to the soup.
Make it spicy – you can use hot Italian chicken sausage instead of mild or add in 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes to make the soup a bit more spicy.
Freeze it – I love to make a big batch of this soup and freeze it for later. If you do freeze the soup, I recommend adding the kale when you reheat it.
Add extra veggies – this is a great base recipe to add a few extra veggies to. Carrots, mushrooms, or even bell pepper would all be great options.
I hope you give this Italian Sausage and White Bean Soup a try! It’s hearty, full of flavor, and I know you’ll love it!
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Outstanding and easy! Made this soup for dinner tonight from ingredients on hand. Used ground chicken, fresh lime juice, and baby spinach. Added ground chipotle chile for a little kick, and left out the bay leaves. Next time will use hot chicken sausage. Going to add this to my list of favorite soups. Thanks a bunch!
We made the creamy version and it was delightful! Thanks for this recipe.
My husband said this was phenomenal after only one bite. It’s very delicious! I cook a lot of soup and this is definitely a top five favorite!
This soup is everything! Cozy and hearty and so warming. Obsessed with it!
So, so good! Perfect for a snowy night!
I am OBSESSED with this soup. I made it for a neighbor, and she asked me for the recipe that night – even her picky daughter ate it and loved it. So healthy and flavorful. I literally made a second batch a week later because I was sad we had finished our servings!
This soup was a hit with the family! I liked that it was full of flavor and was healthy. Using chicken sausage was the perfect touch, instead of greasy pork. I did leave out the rind bc all I had on hand was shaved parm. I topped it with that which added good flavor. I make a soup each week and this one has been added to my list of favorites.
Delicious – my husband and eleven year old devoured it. Definitely a keeper here! We had it with crusty buttered bread on the side.
So delicious!! The perfect combo of textures, flavors and colors – paired perfect with some grilled sourdough!
Had this tonight. So good. Flavor rich and so good!. I added fresh carrots and red pepper. I used chicken Italian sausage. Will definitely make this again.