This is the BEST Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup – my version of Zuppa Toscana. It is hearty, delicious and so simple to make in one pot. It just might quickly become your new favorite soup. Full of veggies and rich in flavor, everyone in the family will be asking for seconds!
As soon as we get a cool fall day here in Southern California, I immediately start to crave soup. And then I continue to make all kinds of soups and stews (like this Beef Stew), throughout the fall and winter. Making my homemade bone broth helps a ton because I always have broth ready to go for alllll the soups!
This Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup MIGHT just be my family’s new favorite soup. It is SO good. My kids even cleaned their bowls. I wish I had a picture of this, but my son was actually drinking the rest of the broth out of the bowl after he had eaten everything in it. And let me tell you, this boy of mine is a picky eater. I was shocked. But also not, because I was doing the same thing! It is that good!!
Filled with tons of veggies, cannellini beans, rosemary, some freshly squeezed lemon juice, parmesan, cream and Italian Sausage, it is so savory and rich in flavor. This soup is truly so satisfying while being equally nourishing. It is easy to double if you are cooking for a large group and makes a great meal to bring to a new mom. Serve by itself or with a side of crusty sourdough bread.
This is a soup I will be making multiple times this season! If you are a soup lover like me, you do not want to miss out on this one.
Tools you may need:
- Soup Pot or Cast Iron Dutch Oven
- Chef’s Knife – I like this one, it’s super affordable and works great. A good knife makes a huge difference in the cooking experience, in my opinion!
- Cutting Board
- Citrus Juicer
Let’s talk about the ingredients for Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup…
This Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup calls for many fresh ingredients, which I absolutely love. It is a great way to get a wide variety of fresh foods with minimal effort!
The essential beginning of any good soup- mirepoix! (pronounced meer-pwa) It is a flavor base of chopped onion, carrots and celery. Sautéed in butter or oil before adding other ingredients makes the veggies tender and flavorful. After cooking for a bit, I add in minced garlic as well and I promise- as soon as you start sautéeing these veggies, your fam is going to start sniffing around the kitchen to see what deliciousness you are whipping up!
I typically choose mild Italian Sausage, but have also made it with half spicy Italian Sausage, half mild or sweet Italian Sausage. Whichever Italian Sausage you choose is totally your preference. I have even used just plain ground pork and made up my own “Italian Sausage” seasoning to go with it.
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As I mentioned earlier, I always use my instant pot homemade bone broth for soups. Any kind of broth or stock will work for this recipe, but I highly recommend making your own broth as the health benefits are so great and you can practically make it for free! Store bought broth can be expensive when you are buying the quality stuff!!
Potatoes give this soup extra heartiness and add delicious, creamy texture. I like using golden Yukon potatoes for this recipe because their skin is so thin I just leave it on. You can definitely use other types of potatoes like creamer potatoes, red potatoes, purple, whatever you like!
Cannellini beans are the perfect, mild and creamy bean for this creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup recipe. I like to purchase dry cannellini beans, soak them in water, and then cook them in my instant pot. But you can absolutely buy two 15 oz. cans of cannellini beans, drain and use that. Great Northern Beans are also good for this recipe as they are very similar to cannellini in flavor and texture.
Dino Kale (Lacinato Kale) is what I use when I can for soup, but sometimes it isn’t available. Curly Kale is also good for soup and is usually easy to find. Chard or Spinach would also be a great substitution.
When cooking with kale, remove the main stem in the center by folding the kale leaves away from the stem with one hand. Hold the stem with the other hand and pull the leaves down the length of the stem. They should easily slide away and off of the stem. You can roll the leaves and chop to your desired size.
I love cooking with fresh herbs! Rosemary is a fragrant and warm herb to add into this Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup. Don’t have fresh rosemary? No problem. Reduce the amount mentioned in the recipe by half and use dried rosemary.
Other herbs you could substitute or add in are thyme, oregano, or parsley. Adding herbs is a great way to take your soup to another level of delicious flavor!
Heavy Cream & Parmesan
Heavy cream and parmesan are the exact ingredients that add the cream to this Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup. The creaminess in this soup is the perfect amount and not too heavy or overpowering.
If you cannot tolerate dairy, this soup is also wonderful without the cream/parmesan. If you still want some creaminess, you could substitute the heavy cream with canned coconut cream. I purchase my coconut cream and spices through Thrive Market. If you want to try Thrive Market, feel free to use this link to get 30% off of your first order!
Lemon is something I always try to keep in the fridge. Fresh squeezed lemon juice is where it is at. You just cannot get the same fresh tart but slighty sweet citrus flavor without using fresh squeezed lemon. Lemons keep great in the fridge for a while, so if you are still using bottled lemon juice in your recipes, this is your sign. Grab a couple of lemons next time you’re at the store and taste the difference! You won’t regret it!
This juicer is awesome and I use it anytime I am juicing lemons, limes or oranges. It makes it so easy to get the juice out and keeps the seeds from getting in my food.
Let’s make Creamy Tuscan Sausage and Kale Soup, my version of Zuppa Toscana
Start by heating olive oil or butter over medium heat in a soup pot or cast iron dutch oven. Once oil is warm, add in the mirepoix – onions, carrots and celery. Saute the veggies for about 10 minutes until they are getting tender and the onions are translucent. Next, add in the garlic and stir about 30 seconds until fragrant.
Scoot your veggies to one side of the pot and add in the ground Italian Sausage (remove casing if applicable). Let the sausage sit on side for about two minutes until the bottom is looking cooked. Flip the ground Italian Sausage and cook the other side for a minute or two before breaking up the sausage into smaller pieces. (This meat chopper helps a lot when splitting up ground meat! Thank you to my husband for buying it for me after my many complaints while trying to chop up ground meats into that perfect size!)
Once the meat is more than halfway cooked through, you can mix it in with the veggies and finish cooking the meat.
Add the salt and black pepper to the meat/veggie mixture. Once the meat is fully cooked, add in the broth, lemon juice, rosemary sprigs, potatoes and beans. Bring the soup to a boil and then lower the heat, allowing the soup to simmer for 30 minutes to an hour and until the potatoes are fork soft.
Once the soup has simmered and the potatoes are soft, stir in the heavy cream and parmesan. Remove rosemary stem. Add the chopped kale and simmer for about 5 minutes until the kale looks bright green and has softened up.
Serve immediately by itself or with a slice of crusty sourdough bread!
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Other recipes you might like:
- 3 Tbs Olive Oil or Unsalted Butter
- 1 Large Onion, diced
- 4 Carrots, sliced
- 6 ribs Celery, sliced
- 4 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 lb Italian Sausage, ground
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 6 Cups Bone Broth
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 2 sprigs fresh Rosemary
- 4-5 medium potatoes, Yukon golden
- Two 15 oz. cans of Cannellini Beans
- 1 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1/2 Cup Parmesan, grated
- 2 Bunches Dino Kale, stem removed and chopped
- Heat olive oil or butter over medium heat in a soup pot or cast iron dutch oven.
- Once oil is hot, add in the mirepoix - onions, carrots and celery. Saute the veggies for about 10 minutes until they are getting tender and the onions are translucent.
- Add in the garlic and stir about 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Scoot your veggies to one side of the pot and add in the ground Italian Sausage (remove casing if applicable). Let the sausage sit on side for about two minutes until the bottom is looking cooked. Flip the ground Italian Sausage and cook the other side for a minute or two before breaking up the sausage into smaller pieces.
- Once the meat is more than halfway cooked through, you can mix it in with the veggies and finish cooking the meat.
- Add the salt and black pepper to the meat/veggie mixture.
- Once the meat is fully cooked, add in the broth, lemon juice, rosemary sprigs, potatoes and beans. Bring the soup to a boil and then lower the heat, allowing the soup to simmer for 30 minutes to an hour and until the potatoes are fork soft.
- Stir in the heavy cream and parmesan. Remove rosemary stem.
- Add the chopped kale and simmer for about 5 minutes until the kale looks bright green and has softened up.
- Serve immediately by itself or with a slice of crusty sourdough bread!
This soup makes great leftovers! The potatoes and beans may absorb some of the liquid, so to reheat, place over medium-low heat in soup pot on stove and add a cup or two of broth or water.