White Bean and Kale Soup with Wild Rice and Tomatoes
This simple vegetarian soup is packed with wild rice, white beans, tomatoes, onions, carrots, and kale. It is both hearty and light, homey and filling without weighing you down.
Slow Cooking White Beans
You’ll see in the list of ingredients for this soup there is the option to use canned white beans or dried beans cooked in a slow cooker. If possible, I urge you to go with the dried bean option. Cooking dried beans in a slow cooker only takes about 5 minutes of prep time and allows you to infuse the beans with herbs and spices, which will add another layer of flavor to this soup.
For this soup, in addition to the herbs and spices listed in this recipe for slow cooker beans, I suggest adding 1 tbsp of Italian seasoning and 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes. Get the beans going in the slow cooker at least 4 hours before you plan to make this soup – or, cook the beans up to 5 days in advance, storing them in some of their cooking liquid in a covered container in the refrigerator.
Having said all that, using canned beans is perfectly acceptable and will still produce a richly flavorful soup.
Crouton it up!
I love topping soup with croutons. Especially homemade croutons. They are a simple way to add that little something extra to an already delicious meal. Making croutons is as simple as cutting up some bread, tossing it with olive oil and spices and putting them in the oven to bake. Plus, croutons are a great way to use up leftover bread. Here’s a short video to show you how.
Weekly Meal Plans that Include White Bean and Kale Soup with Wild Rice:Print
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
- 2 stalks of celery, ends trimmed and cut into thin slices
- 2 large carrots, peeled, ends trimmed and cut into thin slices
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 2 tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
- 1/4 – 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp each salt and ground black pepper (or more, to taste)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine or dry vermouth
- 2 cups diced fresh tomatoes
- 4 cups (32 oz) vegetable broth
- 3/4 cup wild rice (see note)
- 10 oz kale leaves, torn into pieces that are roughly 2 inches (5 heaping cups)
- 2 cups white beans, canned and drained or cooked in a slow cooker
- Croutons for serving (optional)
- Heat oil in a large, heavy bottom sauce pan or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the diced onion, sliced celery, and carrots and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 8 minutes.
- Add the garlic, rosemary, thyme, red pepper flakes, bay leaf, salt and pepper to the pan and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute longer.
- Pour in the white wine or dry vermouth and cook until nearly all the liquid has evaporated, about 3-4 minutes. Pour in the vegetable broth and diced tomatoes, turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil. Add the rice, turn the heat down to low, cover and simmer until the rice is tender, 15-20 minutes.
- Stir the kale into the soup and cook until completely wilted, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the beans. Taste and add more salt and pepper if desired, and serve with croutons on the side if desired.
If you’re making this as a part of Summer Meal Plan #5, you should already have between 2 – 2 & 1/2 cups of cooked wild rice in your refrigerator. At step #3, cover the pan and let the vegetable broth and tomatoes simmer for 10 minutes to blend the flavors. Then, add the cooked rice to the soup at the same time you add the beans.