Kale and Roasted Vegetable Soup

A hearty winter soup recipe with kale, white beans, and roasted carrots, butternut squash, tomatoes, onions, and garlic.

  • Yield: Serves six.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and quartered lenthwise
  • 2 large tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 large onion, cut into 8 wedges or 4 or 5 slices
  • 1/2 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut lengthwise into 1/2 inch thick wedges
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 6 cups or more of vegetable broth*
  • 4 cups of finely chopped kale
  • 3 large fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 15 oz can of Great Northern white beans, drained

If cooking gluten-free, use gluten-free broth.

Method

1 Preheat oven to 400°F (reduce heat by 25°F if using convection oven). Brush rimmed baking sheet with a thin coat of olive oil. Arrange carrots, squash, tomatoes, onion, and garlic on sheet. Drizzle with more olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast vegetables until they are brown and tender, stirring occassionally, about 45 minutes.

2 Cut squash and carrots into 1/2 inch pieces; set aside. Peel garlic cloves; place in food processor. Add tomatoes and onion; puree until almost smooth. Pour 1/2 cup broth onto the baking sheet; scrape up any browned bits. Transfer broth and vegetable puree to large pot. Add 5 1/2 cups broth, kale, thyme and bay leaf to pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer uncovered until kale is tender, about 30 minutes.

3 Add carrots, beans, and squash to soup. Simmer 8 minutes to blend flavors, adding more broth to thin soup if necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Discard thyme sprigs and bay leaf.

Can be made a day ahead.

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Comments

  1. Carly

    This soup was incredible… just the perfect amount of sweet from the squash. Roasting all the vegetables adds such a depth of flavor! I added red pepper flakes for some heat, too. I’ll definitely make this again, when I chance upon more squash and kale.

  2. farmgirl

    That photo is positively scrumptious! The soup sounds delish, especially as I sit here with yet another ‘no accumulation’ snowstorm accumulating outside. ; )

    I never think to roast vegetables for soup, but the flavor is so amazing when you do. I mean, garlic becomes a whole different thing when it’s roasted. Mmmmm. Okay, now I’m craving roasted garlic and it isn’t even 8am.

    As for kale being bitter – Elise, have you ever tried growing kale? It’s one of the mainstays in my kitchen garden and is both heat and cold tolerant. I’ve grown several different varieties from seed, and the flavor is so pleasant and mild I always toss the smaller leaves in salads. Red Russian kale is especially beautiful; the baby leaves are downright adorable. It isn’t as cold tolerant as other kales, but that wouldn’t be a problem for you out there in California. Watch out, though – the deer love the stuff even more than I do! : )

  3. Deb C

    This soup sounds wonderful and I plan on making it next week. Elise, could I substitute canned for the 2 whole tomatoes? Tomatoes here in the northeast have absolutely no taste whatsoever.

    Yes, I think that would be a sensible substitution. ~Elise

  4. Elena

    This looks great, as usual, Elise. One note in defense of Kale. I finally learned to cook and like it from a Greek woman. You boil it until tender (which takes a bit of time) then dress it with good virgin olive oil, lemon and feta cheese. It’s now one of my favorites!

  5. Lydia (The Perfect Pantry)

    This has been my winter for making soups with dark leafy greens — I find most of them (including kale) too bitter to eat on their own, but in soup they really mellow.

  6. Jodi

    You mention you are not fond of kale, have you tried it roasted? wash, de-stem, coat with olive oil, salt & pepper, garlic optional. place in a single layer on a cookie sheet. roast for 10 minutes at 425 then turn and roast about another 10 minutes until it is crispy. yum! better than chips.

  7. Stephen

    Here are a couple of ways we cook kale and almost always enjoy great–not bitter–flavor: Remove and discard the tough outer leaves and the stalk. Then steam the inner leaves for about 5 minutes until they are tender on the outside and slightly firm inside. OR: Boil the leaves, but only for 5 minutes in a little salted water. ~ ~ Either way don’t let kale cook for more than 7 minutes or so otherwise it will begin to absorb water and become mushy and develop that strong smell. The longer kale cooks the more intense the flavor and smell and that can be a turn off for many of the people at the table.

  8. Jenny

    I was so excited when I saw this post. I have recently come to discover how wonderful Kale is. I look forward to making it. Thank you!!!

  9. Susan

    This looks like a wonderful soup. It reminds me of a Caldo Verde, but without the chourico. I just bought some beautiful kale the other day at a local farm. It must be fate!

  10. Greg B

    It must be fate indeed! I bought some kale two weeks ago and checked your site for recipes. I made the hearty winter soup as directed and it was WONDERFUL! Everyone at the office asked where I got it. I told them simplyrecipes.com :) Thanks again Elise!

  11. Christine

    I’ve made this delicious soup twice. The second time I didn’t bother pureeing anything, I just roughly chopped all of the veggies after roasting and I liked it even better.

  12. epimortum

    Thank you Elise, again for a wonderful recipe.
    I love kale and am getting my wife to enjoy it but had run out of ideas with it.

    Will be doing this tonight or tomorrow
    Thanks again, and keep up the great work.

  13. pearl

    This soup was delicious!!! I’m so glad that only some of the vegetables were pureed since having junks of the squash added a lot of variety.

    (And thanks to all the commenters who offered kale cooking tips! I love kale — it stays crisp in the refrigerator for so long so it’s a perfect staple veggie.)

  14. CeeBee

    I made this yesterday with a few tweaks to allow for personal preference (and for what I had on-hand). It was delicious! I think it’s one of the best soups I have ever made. I used grape tomatoes because those were the only ones that looked decent when I went shopping. I used frozen butternut squash because I had a bag in the freezer. I pureed all the veggies because I love really thick soups. Added some extra chopped carrots, some corn, some peas, the kale and a can of kidney beans (I thought I had Great Notherns but didn’t). I also added a small handful of grated parmesan because it seemed like a good idea. Everything was great except the kidney beans, I just didn’t care for the texture of them in this. I think next time I’ll make sure I have the Great Northerns.
    This is soooo going into my repeat pile! Thanks for a new favorite recipe. I will be sharing with friends!

  15. Cam

    Ironic that I ran across this tonight. We had kale for dinner. I get approx. 4-5 gallons of fresh kale 3-4 times per year. I clean, blanch and freeze it. Tonights meal was simply boiled w/chicken buillion, minced onion, a dash of red pepper flakes,a bit of bacon grease and a tablespoon of bacon pieces. Very southern and very good.

    My favorite way to fix it is to mince a couple of slices of bacon and cook it with a tablespoon of minced onion. Then, add the kale to the skillet and wilt it down. Season with salt & pepper and it is ready.

    Now, I plan to try the soup. It sounds very good.

  16. Alyssa

    I just made this soup tonight and had it with garlic cheddar biscuits. Yum! I am trying to incorporate more vegetables into my diet and salads can get boring after a while. What a great hearty and healthy soup!

  17. Grace

    My parents always told me that kale had to be left in the garden at least until the first hard frost. They claimed that took the bitterness out. They always boiled the kale, then finely chopped it and added it to hot, buttery mashed potatoes, and served it with a boiled farmers sausage. Delicious!

  18. Anonymous

    Thanks for the great recipe, Elise! This soup was wonderful. The roasted vegetables added a great flavor. This was my first time eating kale and it was lovely. My fiance has told me several times since I made this yesterday that he would REALLY like me to make it again.

  19. Karen

    Thank you for another amazing recipe, Elise. This soup took quite a lot of time to make, but it was worth it. I made the soup with some defrosted roasted vegetable stock I had previously made (Mark Bittman’s Roasted Vegetable Stock from his How to Cook Everything
    Vegetarian cookbook – a fantastic rich stock, BTW). I doubled the recipe (after learning by now how great all your recipes are!) and the only thing I did differently was to use dried thyme in place of the fresh (the store was all out) and to use four cups of water in place of all vegetable stock (I only had 8 cups frozen).

  20. Lori

    Elise,
    Thank you… another great recipe. I added a chunk of Parmesean rind for an added depth of flavor and enjoyed this wonderful soup with my friends for lunch. We accompanied it with a loaf of crusty bread and a mixed greens salad with a simple vinagarette. It was the perfect lunch for a chilly fall day.

  21. Hannah

    I LOVED this recipe!
    It’s one of the best soups I ever made.
    I’m supposed to make it again for a vegan couple, and boy am I looking forward to it.

  22. Liz

    This soup was delicious! I plan to roast the second half of the squash tomorrow in the same way as for the soup and eat it plain. We kept snacking on the squash when it came out of the oven!

    I did find the taste improved after letting the soup sit so the flavors could meld; recommend making it the night before.

    Thanks for running such a great site! I’ve made a bunch of recipes from it, and am very rarely disappointed!

  23. Barb

    I have been making this soup for a couple of years now. It has become my daughter’s favorite. I took it to a soup party and it was the hit of the party. I hate cutting up the butternut squash so I pierce it, put it on a baking tray and bake it. After it cools I scoop it out and add it to the finished soup.

  24. ryanna

    Very very good, and I am picky. Reminded me a bit of ribollita served in Tuscany, except that has bread soaked in it. I wish I hadn’t added some shredded chicken – it is best as a veggie dish. I’m thinking next time I will also add less broth, or else make more of the puree mixture. I love a chunky thick soup. Perfect with a glass of pinot noir and some crusty italian bread. I will make again and pass on! Thank you.

  25. GentlyFeral

    I discovered this recipe this afternoon while looking for something to do with a big batch of homegrown kale.

    My daughter’s allergic to all squashes, so I substituted roasted potato slices, which I laid on each bowl as a garnish. Absolutely fabulous – we all had seconds. We’ll be making this again.

  26. Sko

    Wow, this is amazing! I just made it today and it’s perfect. I added sweet potatoes too, and it adds a nice sweetness to it. Doubled the recipe to feed 10 people, I’m sure they’ll love it when I serve it tomorrow! I also substituted kale for another vegetable, since I misread the labels. I love thick soups, everyone needs to try this!

  27. Minh from Alberta

    Absolutely loved this soup. It was so good and nutritious that the dietitian in me was singing with happiness. Roasting the vegetables added so much flavour. My fiance who had referred to my other kale-soups as “seaweed soups” loved it too.

  28. Sarah R

    We love this soup! I made it about a month ago for my mother-in-law and I think she’s made it every week since then. I like to add some potato to mellow out the sweetness a little. Even my husband, who doesn’t like kale, didn’t have a bad thing to say about it. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

  29. Melissa

    Hi Elise! It’s starting to get cold here in Los Angeles and I made this soup last night for the family… it was a hit!! Thanks for another great recipe! I made double and served with roasted garlic french bread… YUM!

  30. Liz

    I made this soup last night….it was easy to make, and tasted so warm, healthy and hearty. I added a little un-peeled, red potato with my roasting vegetables, and some lemon juice and chili flake, during the final seasoning, to lift the flavors (and I love spicy!). I also pureed a little extra of the soup and veg before serving to create a richer broth. Your recipes are always something I can count on coming out beautifully. My family loved it.

  31. Jenna

    Wow Elise thank you for posting this great recipe! I happened across a gigantic bag of kale on sale at the supermarket, and while I had no idea of what to do with it at the time I thought to myself “I’ll just go to SimplyRecipes – Elise will have something great” and I was right. This soup is fantastic and is the perfect fall/winter soup.

    I also happened to have some turnips left over so I roasted them with the other veggies in the recipe – roasting makes all the difference in the world. And I definitely recommend pureeing the garlic, onion and tomato as stated in the recipe – it provides a base for the soup that’s a bit creamy to give you the fullness of a cream based soup without the fat. I love how crunchy the kale stayed a bit crunchy even after being cooked for the full 30 minutes.

    My plan was to make it and let it sit overnight in the pot, but I already stole two bowls of it. I’m sure it’ll be even tastier tomorrow. I love the fact that it’s so hearty and filling, plus so tasty – yet it’s also so healthy. Yum Yum Yum. Thank you for all you do!

  32. jamie

    THIS WAS AMMMMMAAAAZZIIINGGG!!!!!! i used a sweet onion threw in a sweet potato and subed quinoa for the beans. roasted all the veggies ex the kale and pureed all the tomatoes and half the other veggies cause i wanted some chunks.

  33. Elly S

    Awesome is all I can say! Even my hardcore meat and potato boyfriend went gaga over it, and putting veggies in his mouth is like making a fish do circus pony tricks!!

  34. Yvonne

    I would like to add another comment.
    This soup is wonderful. I used flowering kale which I surteed before mixing it into the broth. Pureed everything except for the kale and beans. ( Misread the recipe). I am vegan and this is a great recipe which I will be using again. I think in future when I make soup I will roast all my veges beforehand, as it really improves on the flavour. Thank you for a wonderful recipe.

  35. Toni

    Made this tonight. Although time consuming (I actually enjoy the prep/chopping part!), it was worth it. The smell of the roasted veggies alone was worth it!! One thing I would change next time is to maybe double the tomato/onion/garlic ratio to have a thicker soup. Also, I would most definitely use chicken stock instead of vegetable stock simply because I like the flavor more. But a great recipe! I liked that the carrots and squash were pieces and not blended like so many other soup recipes :) Thanks, Elise!!

    PS – When’s that cookbook coming out?!! :D

  36. theo

    Delicious! But I am wondering how long it will keep. I have much too much to eat in the next couple days.

    No idea. We usually eat this soup up within a few days. ~Elise

  37. Kathy

    This was delicious! I made it on a snow day and the only ingredient I was missing was the fresh tomatoes, so I used a can of roasted tomatoes with adobe seasoning. It was the perfect snow day soup, and the whole house smelled of roasted veggies. I highly recommend this recipe.

  38. sharon ray

    Loved this soup, soo rich and wonderful flavor. Took a long time to get everything together, but really worth it for the flavor from roasting all the veggies. Added a couple of potatoes, cause I needed to get rid of them,a sweet potato, cause I thought the extra sweetness would go with the sourness of the kale, I only used a potato masher to mash some of the veggies to make the broth a little thicker. Thanks for the great recipe. Highly recommend it to all my friends.

  39. Kat Nski

    I tried this soup last winter and immediately fell in love with it. It is now my favorite. Since winter tomatoes leave much to be desired, I add a can of Muir Glen fire roasted tomatoes to the onions in the food processor and it works fine. With a loaf of homemade bread as accompaniment, even the unreconstructed meat-and-potato eaters in the family find this soup a more than sufficient meal, requesting only that an extra can of the beans be added. I’ve even used the roasted veggies, sans broth, as a side dish or mixed with brown rice/barley/quinoa as a main dish. Very versatile, but the soup is still the best way to enjoy this. Thanks, Elise!

  40. Beth

    I just made this soup and it is delicious. I was looking for a low-carb recipe with kale and this is great. I used a can of fire-roasted tomatoes instead of roasting regular tomatoes, and that plus some crushed red pepper flakes really gave it some heat that my husband enjoyed.
    I would recommend chopping the carrots small before roasting, and roasting them and the squash separately so you don’t have to try to separate them out after cooking; that was a pain.
    Thanks for a terrific recipe!

  41. Amy

    I just made this and had to come back to tell you how much I enjoyed it! I decided to make a bigger batch so I could freeze some (I am pregnant and due within the next month, so starting to stockpile my freezer) I added half of the squash and carrots to the food processor to thicken things up a little more. Cannot wait to make this again and again! Thank you. :)