Hearty, savory, and satisfying, this easy Slow Cooker Kale and White Bean Soup is the perfect no-fuss meal on a chilly autumn day. Italian flavors of garlic, basil, and thyme come together in slow cooker perfection, leaving you with a nutritious meal that feeds both your body and your soul. Top with parmesan and enjoy a meal that’s so easy to make and ready when you are!
October is here, and with it has come a chill in the air that accompanies most autumn days where I live. I’m switching my closet over to sweaters, packing up the grilling utensils, and stocking up on recipes that warm you to your bones. Since my schedule is pretty demanding this year, that also means I need quick and easy recipes for weeknight dinners.
Which is why I’m all about the slow cooker this season. To me, there’s no greater kitchen appliance out there. You can set it, forget it and come home to a hot meal at the end of a long day. Honestly, I swear that food just tastes better when it’s slow cooked.
This Slow Cooker White Bean and Kale soup definitely fits the criteria. The most work you’ll do for this recipe is opening a few cans. You’d never guess how easy it was to make by the rich, savory Italian flavors that come through in this recipe!
I may even love this recipe more than my Slow Cooker Chicken Soup, but I think I’d need a few more bowls to decide. It’s hard to beat the nostalgia involved with chicken soup, even if the contender is delicious.
It shouldn’t take more than 4 hours on high in the slow cooker to make this ridiculously easy kale and white bean soup, or 8 hours on the low setting. You’ll know that it’s done when the onions are cooked though and translucent-looking.
I love making this dish with kale or with spinach, they both come out fantastic. I do recommend using “dinosaur” kale, if you can find it. It looks very similar to spinach and is usually sold in bunches in the fresh produce section of the supermarket. I always cut the middle rib and stem out, as it can be a bit chewy when you get to the bigger stem-sections.
You can top this easy kale and white bean soup with parmesan, crumbled crackers or even some cut up fresh basil leaves. My family enjoyed this dinner with some garlic bread straight from the oven. I used Udi’s gluten free baguette, but the recipe below works for any bread.
Here’s how I make my garlic bread (it’s so easy!):
You cut the baguette lengthwise, butter both pieces, and add a sprinkle of garlic powder on both sides. Close the baguette and wrap completely in tinfoil. Add to oven set at 350°F and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until bread is crispy. Serve immediately. For a large baguette, cut in half first and repeat for each half.
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- 8 cups fresh kale or spinach leaves coarsely chopped
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- 1 can white beans 15oz, drained and rinsed
- 1 can tomato puree 15oz
- 1 parmesan rind
- 1 bunch green onions chopped
- 1/2 medium yellow onion chopped
- 1/2 cup uncooked white or brown rice
- 4 garlic cloves chopped
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt or to taste
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese to garnish
- Add vegetable broth, white beans, tomato puree, parmesan rind, green onion, yellow onion, rice, basil, thyme, garlic, salt, and pepper to slow cooker.
- Cook on LOW 7-8 hours or on HIGH 3-4 hours (until soup is hot and onions are cooked through).
- After soup is fully cooked, remove parmesan rind and stir in kale (or spinach) leaves.
- Top with extra parmesan cheese and serve