Simple Sausage and White Bean Soup
I regret to inform you that last week, Chateau Logena was struck by the man flu plague. It was gross.
I can’t really complain because honestly, we were due. Neither Logan nor I have been really good and sick for a long time, and since we’ve both been exhausted and traveling a lot, it was bound to happen. We agree to disagree re: who’s responsible for contracting the original bug and infecting the other one, but it should be noted that one of us works in an office and had been on 8 planes in a two week period, and the other works mostly solo and consumes excessive amounts of fluids, kale, and Vitamin C on the daily. Sooooo, I suppose we’ll never know…
Anyhoo, my roommate and I felt very icky for a solid four days, which was a rather jarring reminder that it is significantly less fun to be sick as an adult than as a kid. Weirdly, my childhood cold/flu memories are quite happy ones. Sure, I didn’t feel well, but I also got to stay in my pajamas all day, watch The Price Is Right, and eat buttered bagels and Chicken and Stars. I didn’t have to do my homework, and my mom would rub my back. Joy of joys!
Given my self-employment, I did in fact rock pajamas for most of last week, but that was the extent of the sick person perks. As I wasn’t deathly ill, I couldn’t justify canceling meetings or pushing pre-existing deadlines, which was very unfortunate. Plus, there were no back rubs, and—let’s be real, people—Drew Carey is no match for Bob Barker.
With that said, my sickness did have a serious silver lining, as it motivated me to resurrect a couple delightful soup recipes, starting with my favorite Choose Your Own Adventure Chicken Soup (recipe coming soon), and followed by this Super Easy Sausage and White Bean Soup. It ended up being unofficial Soup Week on Instagram Stories, and the written recipe demand was so high that I figured we’d bring the fun here.
Whether you’re sick as a dog or at your physical peak, this sausage and white bean soup is a quick, easy, and satisfying meal that’s perfect for both busy weeknights and sassy desk lunching. And while the ingredient list is modest and mostly pantry staples, the soup packs a serious flavor (and nutritional!) punch.
A few things to quickly note about this savory one-pot wonder. First, it’s a small batch recipe and makes just a little more than a quart of soup. Given the filling nature of the beans, I’d say it comfortably serves 3 to 4, depending on hunger levels. (I recommend getting a side salad or some toast involved at dinnertime.) With that said, the recipe is easily doubled for a crowd or meal prep, and it freezes perfectly. If you do decide to freeze your soup or aren’t eating all of it right away, I recommend adding the spinach/kale to individual portions so that the greens stay as fresh as possible.
I dig uncooked sweet Italian turkey sausage in this recipe to keep things lean, but you can obviously use any sausage you like, including pre-cooked sausage (just dice it before browning). You’ll also find that the soup is on the thicker side thanks to blending half of the beans into a creamy puree before adding the to the pot, but if you prefer something brothier, simply add another cup or so of broth. I love me some bone broth for its added flavor and nutrients, but any low-sodium broth will serve you well.
Make the soup! It does a body good. If you’re a visual learner, a step-by-step tutorial will be saved in the “Soups” highlight in my Instagram profile for the next week…
Super Easy Sausage and White Bean Soup (Serves 4)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
¾ pound uncooked sweet Italian chicken or turkey sausage, casings removed (You can also use diced precooked sausage if you like!)
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
½ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
3 cups chicken bone broth or broth of your choice, divided (plus extra to thin if needed)
Two 14.5-ounce cans white beans, drained and rinsed (I like to use one can of cannellini beans, and one can of Great Northern beans.)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 packed cups baby spinach or baby kale
For serving (optional):
Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves or basil leaves
Shaved or grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese
-Heat the olive oil in a medium Dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot and shimmering, add the sausage and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring and breaking up the meat into smaller pieces with a spatula, until lightly browned.
-Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion and garlic. Cook for about 4 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent. Be very careful not to burn the garlic! If you notice it browning, reduce the heat immediately.
-Add ½ cup of broth to the pan (we’re deglazing!), making sure to scrape up any delicious browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the dried oregano, crushed red pepper (if using), and half of the beans to the pot along with another 1½ cups of broth. Bring to a simmer.
-Meanwhile, blend the remaining beans and 1 cup of broth in a blender until smooth. Pour the bean puree into the pot, and return the soup to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, for about 15 to 20 minutes to allow the flavors to combine and the soup to thicken slightly.
-Stir in the balsamic, then add the spinach or kale. Cook for about 1 minute, just until the greens have wilted. Taste the soup and season with salt and pepper if needed. (The amount of sodium in sausage, beans, and broth vary greatly, so you may not need any salt, or you may need quite a bit.)
-Ladle soup into bowls and serve topped with fresh herbs and/or Parmesan if you like.
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