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Kalyn's Kitchen

Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard

This Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard is simple and delicious and comforting! If you’d like a lower-carb soup just use less beans and more sausage and chard. Check out Soup Recipes for more tasty soups.

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Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard found on KalynsKitchen.com

Long before I ever started thinking about eating the South Beach Diet way, I was a big fan of turkey Italian Sausage, something I use in dishes like Italian Sausage and Zucchini Soup, Sausage and Basil Marinara Sauce with Fresh Tomatoes, and Spicy Cherry Tomato Sauce for Pasta. This soup also has Italian Sausage, but it’s very difference than those recipes, since there are no tomatoes. The combination of sausage, beans, and chard was inspired by one I saw in a cookbook somewhere, but I only jotted down “sausage, beans, and escarole, soup” so I can’t tell you where I found it.

However I can tell you it was a combination that really worked. When I created this recipe I had just picked the last of my swiss chard, and it was a bit chilly that day, so it seemed like this soup was a recipe whose time had come. Here are some highlights and step-by-step photos of how I made it.

Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard found on KalynsKitchen.com

Start chicken stock simmering in a large pot, with dried herbs added. Squeeze turkey sausage out of casing and saute, breaking into small pieces.  Then add the cooked sausage to the soup pot and continue simmering. For added flavor, saute onions in the same pan as you browned the sausage, scraping the bottom to remove any browned sausage bits.

Add beans, onion, and garlic to stock and continue to simmer. I originally created this recipe when I had garden chard, but this time I had to buy a bunch of Swiss chard, which looked like this. Cut them thick stems off the chard, then lay the leaves on top of each other and cut into ribbons that are about 1/2 inch wide.  (Sometimes I cut them in half the other way if the leaves are big because I don’t like long pieces of greens in my soup.)

After the soup has simmered about 30 minutes, add the chard and continue to simmer at least 10 minutes more, or until the chard is soft. Soup is done when greens are cooked and somewhat breaking apart and flavors are well blended. Serve with freshly grated parmesan cheese. And check out my Salute to Swiss Chard for more Swiss Chard ideas!

More Soups with Italian Sausage:

Spicy Sausage, Lentil, and Tomato Soup
Spicy Yellow Split Pea Soup with Italian Sausage and Green Pepper
Chard and Chickpea Soup with Sausage and Green Pepper
Crockpot Recipe for Sausage, Peppers, and Cannellini Bean Stew with Parmesan
Lentil and Sausage Soup with Cabbage

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard

This Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard is simple and delicious and comforting!


  • 8 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade, but you could use canned
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 tsp. ground fennel
  • 3-5 links turkey Italian Sausage (hot or mild, but I prefer hot)
  • 1-2 T olive oil (to brown sausage and saute onions)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 tsp. garlic puree or finely chopped garlic
  • 2 cans small white beans (with juice)
  • Swiss chard (or your favorite greens) – enough to make about 4 large handfuls of chard ribbons
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese for serving


  1. In large soup pot, put chicken stock (preferably homemade), dried basil, and ground fennel (affiliate link) and bring to a low simmer. Simmer broth and herbs while you prepare other ingredients.
  2. Squeeze sausage out of the casing and saute in small amount of olive oil until sausage is well browned, breaking up with the back of metal turner as it browns.
  3. Remove the browned sausage and add it to the simmering soup pot.In the same pan saute onions until they are softened, adding more olive oil if needed. Scrape browned sausage bits off bottom of the pan as the onions cook.
  4. When onions are soft, add garlic and saute 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add onions and garlic to the soup pot, then deglaze the pan with about 1/2 cup water, scrape off browned bits in the bottom of the pan, and add that to the soup pot.
  6. Add the beans with juice, rinsing out each can with about 1/4 cup water and continue to let the soup simmer.
  7. Wash chard well, cut off stems, lay about six leaves on top of each other, fold in half lengthwise, and cut into ribbons about 1/2 inch wide. I like to cut the ribbons into smaller lengths so you don’t get long pieces of chard which are hard to get into the spoon.
  8. When the soup has simmered at least 30 minutes, add chard ribbons and simmer about 10 minutes more, or until chard is softened and flavors are well blended.
  9. Serve soup hot, with freshly grated Parmesan cheese to add to each bowl.If you happen to have a Parmesan rind in the fridge, add it to the soup when you first start simmering for added flavor.


This soup freezes well, although you may not have any left!

Recipe created by Kalyn with inspiration from a cookbook which can’t be credited because I didn’t write down the name.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard is good for any low-glycemic diet, including any phase of the South Beach Diet. Soup with beans is too high in carbs for low-carb diets, but you could make a good soup with much less carbs by using less beans and more sausage and chard.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, you can sign up for a free membership with Yummly and use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information. (New recipes won’t show up in Yummly right away and information there is not always 100% accurate.) Another option is entering the recipe into this Recipe Nutrition Analyzer, which will calculate it for you.

Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard found on KalynsKitchen.com

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    39 Comments on “Italian Sausage and Bean Soup with Chard”

  1. I make a soup like this. I use spinich a lot of times as a green. Also, the sausage drippings, along with a little added olive oil is great to make croutons from some stale bread to top the soup with. A little feta or salata ricotta on top goes really well too.

  2. Just made and ate this wonderful soup, delicious!

  3. The soup sounds delish! I’m going to put the ingredients on my next shopping list and try to put a pot together.

  4. I love rustic Italian soups. This sounds perfect for this time of year.

    And I’m not doing any cooking, either. Just hanging out here in the desert, looking forward to the New Year.

    Health, peace and happiness to you in the New Year, Kalyn! xoxo

  5. By just looking at the soup, I feel warm already (what a cold house I’m in). Merry Christmas Kalyn.

  6. Wonderful recipe, Kalyn. It has so many of the things that I love. It would be just the thing to eat, with the cold weather we’re getting. Happy Holidays to you!

  7. Comments after this one are from 2007 when I updated this as a recipe favorite.

  8. Lucette, thanks for answering!! I am going to try growing it for sure next summer!!

  9. Kale has been no harder to grow for me than swiss chard. It is a crucifer, I think, so it can get eaten by those little moths like cabbage and broccoli though.

  10. Fall weather and soups are such a hearty combination.. Thanks. BTW,I did try ur steamed asparagus with olive oil and lemon juice nad really loved the flavors.

  11. Looks marvellous! I can see that being a warm and hearty bowl that goes well with a night in front of the telly 😀

  12. This is a nice fall weather soup…I love beans!

  13. mmm! i love italian beans and greens as my noni callied it!

  14. Yes! Bean soup with sausage. I’m in the mood for it, too. I like your addition of chard.

    Hey – Wheresmymind; use vegan sausage. It’ll work. 😉

  15. Alysha, I loved the combination of beans and greens.

    Bill (WMM), if she’s a good wife otherwise, I think you should still keep her!

    Christine, I discovered last winter how many types of greens I really do like, and chard is one of my favorite.

    Hi Bruno, it’s really cold here today!

    Lucette, I must try growing kale. Is it hard to grow?

  16. Hmmm–I don’t have swiss chard, but there’s still some kale in my garden.

  17. Sounds good Kalyn… especially w/ the cool weather on hand!

  18. Umm, sounds like a wonderful soup, Kalyn — spicy and warming all the way to your toes. I love swiss chard — just found out that our winter market is going to have it this year!!

  19. Great fall dish! I wish my wife wasn’t a veggie head…I’d so make this 😉

  20. Mmmmm…I’m adding that soup to my “to try” list. We recently tried an Italian Soup recipe that was super easy and very tasty. This one is different though – I like that it has beans and it’s another way for us to try swiss chard.