Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sausage, Butternut Squash, and Kale Minestrone

I have been making a fair amount of soup and soup stock these days just because all the right ingredients are arriving in the box (leeks, potatoes, carrots, onions). I've made a few batches of Leek and Potato soup loving the way that the potato can add that creaminess but without the heaviness.

Recently, I adapted a soup recipe that was included in the box. We had most of the ingredients on hand through recent deliveries. Then the other ingredients were just regular items that we keep in our pantry (squash, beans, and cans of diced tomatoes).

Now, as for the sausage. We don't eat meat but you can use your favorite meat sausage if you do. We have been enjoying the vegetarian Field Roast Italian Sausage in some dishes recently (they also have a blog). The sausage has a nice consistency with fennel seeds giving the sausage an authentic taste. It's nice to brown it in another skillet and add it to the soup during the last 15 minutes of cooking.

The way I adapted this recipe was to make it into a larger batch. The original recipe only called for 3 cups of broth but I've upped the carrots and celery and broth. It's the kind of soup that you can make without a timeline and you can tweak or improvise the ingredients. Start working on it on a weekend afternoon and just keep the heat down low. You will be able to enjoy this tasty soup for days (lunch for work or weeknight leftovers).

Sausage, Butternut Squash, and Kale Minestrone


  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3-4 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 3-4 carrots, sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. herb blend - like Italian or Fines Herbes
  • 28 oz. can diced tomatoes (preferably with seasoning)
  • 1 quart broth (veggie preferred)
  • 1 small or 1/2 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed (potato can be a substitute)
  • 1 19 oz. can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 19 oz. can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bunch kale (Lacinato or Dino kale preferred), stemmed and chopped
  • 2-4 sausages, sliced and browned in a skillet
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parmesan cheese (optional)


  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook until softened and beginning to get translucent (about 10-15 minutes).
  • Add celery and carrots and cook another 5-10 minutes.
  • Add the herb blend, diced tomatoes, broth, and squash cubes. Cover with a lid and cook over low for at least 30 minutes to soften the squash.
  • Add the kale and let it cook down.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Add the beans and browned sausage during the last 15-30 minutes.