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Sausage and Red Russian Kale Soup with Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Herbs

Kale, Sausage, and Garbanzo Soup
Sausage and Red Russian Kale Soup with Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Herbs will warm you up!

(Salt Lake is having a few weeks of below freezing temperatures, so a hearty and warming soup like this one seems perfect for A Month of Daily Phase One Recipes.  I’m trying to stay upbeat about the broken arm, and some hot soup like this could really help!)

I first made this soup when it snowed in Salt Lake and I was home sick with that coughing thing teachers get each year from being around too many small people with germs. I didn’t feel much like cooking, so I was very glad to have soup in the freezer that I’d made in August when my garden was overflowing with Red Russian Kale. In the soup I used Colosimo’s Tuscan Sausage, made by a local Utah company, and also added some fresh herbs from my garden. There must be a thousand variations on soups like this with sausage, kale, and beans, but I thought this version was delicious.

Start by sauteeing chopped onion in olive oil for a few minutes, then add garlic, finely chopped fresh rosemary, and sage and saute a few minutes more.

I squeezed the sausage out of the casings and browned well before adding it to the soup. Any type of flavorful sausage would work, but turkey sausage of some type is best for the South Beach Diet.

Red Russian Kale might have been my favorite garden crop this year. I don’t like long stringy pieces of greens in soup, so I chopped it fairly well. You could use any variety of kale, but some of the more curly types will require a bit longer cooking time.

The soup simmered for about 30 minutes with the onions, herbs, sausage, chicken stock, and tomatoes. Then I added the chopped kale and garbanzos and simmered for about 45 minutes more.

Sausage and Red Russian Kale Soup with Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Herbs
(Makes about 6 servings, recipe created by Kalyn)

1 large onion, chopped
2-3 tsp. olive oil (depending on your pan)
2 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary (or use 1 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed)
3 tsp. finely chopped fresh sage (or use 1 1/2 tsp. dried rubbed sage)
1 T finely minced garlic
12 oz. Colosimo’s Tuscan Sausage (3 links) or use other sausage type of your choice; turkey sausage is best for South Beach Diet
10 cups chicken stock (I use homemade chicken stock but you can use canned or bottled chicken broth)
2 cans diced tomatoes with juice (14.5 oz. can)
1/4 cup tomato sauce (freeze the rest if you’re opening a can)
1 tsp. Vegeta seasoning (optional, but good in soups like this)
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 large bunch Red Russian Kale or other type kale, washed well and finely chopped
2 cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed well (15 oz. can)
freshly grated parmesan for serving (optional)


Heat 2 tsp. olive oil in heavy frying pan over medium heat, then add chopped onion and saute 3-4 minutes, until onion is soft. Lower heat a little and add garlic, chopped rosemary, and chopped sage, and saute 2-3 minutes more. Put onion-herb mixture into large soup pot with 10 cups chicken stock and start to simmer.

Add 1 more tsp. olive oil to frying pan if needed and turn heat back to medium. Squeeze sausage out of casings and cook, breaking apart with metal turner, until sausage is browned and well broken apart. Add sausage to pot with simmering chicken stock. Add canned tomatoes and juice, tomato sauce, black pepper, and Vegeta seasoning if using. Simmer about 30 minutes over low heat.

While soup simmers, wash kale, spin or shake dry, and finely chop into ribbons, then turn cutting board and chop again going the opposite way. Drain chickpeas (garbanzos) into metal colander placed in the sink and rinse with cold water until no more foam appears.

After about 30 minutes, add kale and garbanzos to simmering soup mixture. Simmer about 45 minutes more, until kale is completely softened, and all flavors are well blended. Serve hot. This would be great with freshly grated Parmesan.

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South Beach Suggestions:

Every ingredient in this soup would be a great choice for the South Beach Diet or any other low-glycemic eating plan.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn’t have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

More Ideas for Cooking with Red Russian Kale:
(Recipes from other blogs may not always be South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Red Russian Kale and Red Cabbage Slaw
Red Russian Kale and Red Onion Savory Breakfast Squares
Red Kale and Cheese Omelet for Two
Autumn Harvest Soup with Kale, Butternut Squash and Farro
Rustic Red Kale and White Bean Soup from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen
Kale Pesto from I (heart) Kale
Kale Frittata from Too Many Chefs
Kale and Sweet Pea Soup with Mint from She’s in the Kitchen
(Find even more Red Russian Kale Recipes with Food Blog Search.)

Blogger Disclosures:



This soup was first posted for Weekend Herb Blogging, sponsored by Haalo from Cook (almost) Anything At Least Once, and hosted that week by Wiffy from Noob Cook.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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44 comments on “Sausage and Red Russian Kale Soup with Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Herbs”

  1. Pingback: Schi: Russian Beef & Cabbage Soup - Fearless Fresh

  2. We made your recipe in Culinary School. We toured Elementary Schools with a variety of foods and this soup came out on top! Delicious! Thank you very much!

  3. I looked up the sodium for Vegeta and it is 700 mg. of sodium in a soup that makes six servings, which doesn't seem unreasonable to me. And I said the Vegeta was optional, so I don't enjoy the feeling that you're lecturing me about using it. I hesitate to recommend other seasonings, because I'm not sure my choices are going to fit your standards as far as sodium, but any kind of all-purpose seasoning that you like can probably be used in this.

  4. Going to try this today but will not use the Vegeta seasoning. Guess I was a little surprised when I saw that in the ingredients since it has such high sodium content. I focus on keeping at the 1500 mg sodium recommendation per day. Do you have any other suggestions for seasoning besides the Vegeta? Thanks!

  5. This sounds like such a perfect, hearty combination of vegetables and sausage and beans. I may have to make a big batch and stash some in my freezer for emergency meals!

  6. This type of kale doesn't have thick ribs, but I usually don't use them.

  7. Have been craving a sausage and kale soup and this fits the bill. It is very snowy and freezing here in London and this would be perfect. Kaylyn, do you use the ribs of the kale in your recipes? I usually give mine to my dog as she loves them.

  8. What a perfect soup! This will be the very first recipe I make as soon as I can eat tomatoes, onions, and garlic. I'm so sorry about your arm:( May the healing gods be with you – and no need to reply.

  9. Roanne, I don't mind constructive feedback, but in this case I would have to say you are not following the recipes that closely. Here's the list from today of the ten latest recipes (from the bottom of the blog):

    Sausage and Red Russian Kale Soup Recipe with Tomatoes, Chickpeas, and Herbs

    Recipe for Shrimp Salad Cabbage Cups

    Recipe for Mexican Baked Eggs with Black Beans, Tomatoes, Green Chiles, and Cilantro

    Recipe for "Breaded" Pork Chops with Mustard Sauce (Gluten-Free)

    Recipe for Ottolenghi's Perfect Lettuce Salad with Radicchio, Radishes, Tomatoes, and Capers

    Twenty Favorite Slow Cooker (CrockPot) Recipes to Enjoy, Suitable for The South Beach Diet Phase One!

    Recipe for Stir-Fried Marinated Tofu and Mushrooms

    Slow Cooker Bavarian Pork Sirloin Tip Roast with Sour Cream Gravy

    Recipe for Chicken, Black Bean, and Cilantro Soup

    Recipe for Broccoli, Ham, and Mozzarella Baked with Eggs

    No sausage or kale in any of those, except in some of the slow cooker dishes, which was a collection of 20 recipes.

  10. Too many sausages and kale lately. Boring compared to your other recipes.

  11. Kristi, so glad you liked it!

  12. YUM! Did a websearch of russian red kale and came across this-had all ingredients on hand- and turned out GREAT!! Thanks so much!!

  13. Jacquie, so glad you liked the soup and have found a way to enjoy kale. Have to admit, it took a while to grow on me too, but I really like it now!

  14. Kalyn,

    First, Thank you for such a wonderful blog. This the second time I’m doing a “Phase 1”. While seeking a source of South Beach friendly recipes that let me use fresh veggies from the CSA and my herb garden. Wow! Your site is a one stop shop.

    Second, I just received my box of veggies and had the dreaded kale. While others rave about this veggie, I feel like rookie in an Iron Chef competition. No more! This soup is awesome. Believe it or not, it is a balmy 76 degree in Miami and I just ate two bowls.

    Just a little modification…I had beautiful Italian chicken sausage (from a real butcher) with onions and pepper. It didn’t miss a beat.

    Thanks again,


  15. Anonymous, both are 14.5 or 15 oz. cans. Thanks for catching that, will edit it in the recipe.

  16. Hey Kalyn,
    just a question–in your recipe you say add ‘2 cans of chickpeas’ and ‘2 cans diced tomatoes’. What size can? I can buy either 15 oz or 28 oz–I generally get the 28 oz cans of tomatoes.

  17. Wanted to tell you, I made this tonight! Amazing!! I used regular ground pork Italian sausage (rinsed and well drained to remove fat… turkey sausage would be healthier). When I got the pot started I realized this would be a TON of soup (my kids are not soup-lovers) so I halved the chicken stock, tomatoes, and beans. Everything else the same. I also pureed the tomatoes in their juice because my kids “hate chunks.” It turned out lovely 🙂


  18. This is excellent – I used Italian style bison sausage (from http://www.wildideabuffalo.com/) and cannellini beans. I didn’t have a full 10 cups of chicken stock, so I used chicken stock, veggie stock and 2 cups of water.

  19. MMmmmmmm….and it’s such perfect soup weather right now in southwest MO. Looks wonderful!

  20. Lynn, this is really good soup, if I can say that without sounding like I’m bragging. I do love making soup, maybe more than any other single type of food! Thanks for letting me know people said nice things about me at the Quaker party. I was thinking of you guys while I was eating my Peanut Butter Oatmeal (thanks Alanna for teaching me to make that!)

  21. That looks fantastic. I want it. Will look for kale at the farmers market tomorrow so I can make this! Thank you Kalyn, and BTW your name was raised during dinner at our little Quaker jaunt, and only good things could be said 🙂

  22. Now this is some kind of soup! I love the dark greens and sausage combo.

  23. Jen, thanks for reporting back. So happy to hear you liked it!

  24. I made this soup tonight and we love love loved it!

  25. This soup sounds delicious and so satisfying. I have some sage and pork sausage in my refrigerator, and have been thinking of different ways to use it. Now I know what I’ll do!

  26. Hi Kalyn’s ! It’s my first time here and it is great ! The soup sounds quite delicious and I will try it quite soon. Since you like kale so much, do not miss the Italian recipe “Ribollita” straight from Tuscany !
    Greetings from sunny Italy !

  27. Awesome soup. I think I will use cannelini beans. And I too love kale. It was a recent discovery and I added it to minestrone. It doesn’t get too soggy and soggy is gross.

    Nice soup. Can’t wait to try it!

  28. Oh Kalyn – how did you know I need a hug in a bowl tonight?? This looks like it fits the bill – pure comfort!

  29. Kalyn, this soup is so colourful, chock’full of good ingredients and tasty sounding. You really put a good spin on Kale (must be your name)!

  30. I love this type of hearty soup that’s got tomatoes and chickpeas and then some sort of veg 🙂 I like mine with cabbage…probably because I haven’t got Red Russian Kale around here! What a fantastic name for a vegetable 🙂

  31. I just want to dive in to that bowl of soup. Can you ship to MI? I too love any form of beans and greens soup. Looks great!

  32. What a lovely combination. I love Red Russian Kale — and I happen to have a bit left from the garden. We might have to try this.

    Hope you’re on the mend! If nothing else, I hope the soup helped!

  33. What a wonderful soup, I hope it made you feel better!

  34. Like I said in my column, I am not a big soup lover but I think I enjoy the one you’ve made here.

  35. This sounds wonderful, Kalyn. And congratulations on your Red Russian kale crop – I just love the stuff! So versatile, and the baby leaves make the most adorable salad greens ever.

  36. I hope you’re well now Kalyn! I was unwell for about 10 days myself… I know how comforting soup can be!

  37. Oh I bet you were so glad you had that in the freezer! Even food bloggers can’t cook when ill! I hope you get better soon – your soup certainly looks like it would drive out the sickness, very hearty and warming.

  38. I love soup. When the weather gets cold it is such a perfect excuse – not that i need one, to prepare a good bowl. Sorry to hear you are not in top form. Hope you get better fairly soon.

  39. Glad to read you are feeling better… and hope you get well soon Kalyn! Love the step by step photos… this is such a nourishing soup with so many nice ingredients. Thanks for sharing with whb this week =)

  40. Karina, thanks. I am definitely better than I was!

    Genie, yaay for chickpeas. My favorite bean for sure, although I do love those white Cannellini beans too. The Colosimo’s sausage is fabulous.

  41. That looks amazing, Kalyn! Love that you found locally-made sausage to add to it, as well.

    I should let you know — because of your inspiration, I finally made a batch of chickpeas today! It’s a bean I’ve never cooked up myself. Can’t wait to use them this week in recipes and salads!

  42. What a beautiful bowl of soup! I bet it tasted good when you were under the weather. Hope you’re back to your old self again!

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