Easy 30-Minute Kale, White Bean, and Chicken Soup

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Chicken Kale Soup — This chicken soup with kale is easy, hearty, and healthy. It’s packed with flavor, texture, and is a full meal in itself!!

large pot of white bean and kale soup

Hearty Chicken and Kale Soup Recipe

My family loves soup and I love making it for them because with soup there are always leftovers. Bonus for the cook. 

This chicken and kale soup is easy, ready in 30 minutes, hearty, and healthy. It’s packed with flavor, texture, and even for those who think that soup can’t make a meal, this one will change your mind.

There are many recipes for sausage, kale, and white bean soup online but I opted to go with the ease of using shredded rotisserie chicken. The beans add heartiness and protein, while the kale, cabbage, and zucchini add texture. Even with soup I need texture and love anything green and the veggies are perfect.

bowl of white bean and kale soup with spoon resting on top

Chicken Kale Soup Ingredients

To make this chicken kale white bean soup, you’ll need:

  • Olive oil
  • Vidalia onion
  • Celery 
  • Green cabbage
  • Garlic 
  • Chicken broth
  • Shredded cooked chicken
  • Cannellini beans
  • Dried parsley and oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • Kale
  • Zucchini 
  • Lemon juice

Note: Scroll down to the recipe card section of the post for the ingredients with amounts included and for more complete directions.

bowl of white bean and kale soup

How to Make Chicken and Kale Soup

This is such a quick and easy kale chicken soup recipe! Here are the basic recipe steps:

  1. In a large dutch oven, sauté the onion and celery until soft.
  2. Add the cabbage and continue to cook until slightly wilted.
  3. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant. 
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  5. Let the mixture boil until the chicken is warmed through, the zucchini has softened, and the kale has wilted. 
Easy 30-Minute Kale, White Bean, and Chicken Soup - Loaded with juicy chicken, healthy kale, and tender beans! Easy, hearty, and satisfying! Love it when something healthy tastes so good!!

Can I Use Different Greens in This Soup?

Yes, this chicken and kale soup recipe is fairly flexible in that regard. If you don’t have kale on hand, spinach or a similar leafy green may be substituted. 

Can I Freeze the Soup? 

Yes, this soup will last up to 6 months in the freezer. I recommend freezing it in smaller containers so you can reheat one or two portions at a time. 

Chicken, White Bean and Kale Soup — This white bean and kale soup soup is easy, hearty, and healthy. It’s packed with flavor, texture, and is a full meal in itself!

Tips for Making Chicken and Kale Soup

I use low-sodium chicken broth, low-sodium beans, and add a bit of salt to the soup so I can control the overall salt level. The saltiness of low-sodium broth, beans, rotisserie chickens, and personal preferences for salt all vary, so salt to taste.

At any time while making the soup, if the overall liquid level is lower than you like and you prefer more broth, adding a cup or two of water is okay because at the end you will adjust the salt level.

Before adding the kale to the soup, remove the center rib. That part is extremely tough to chew and shouldn’t be added to this soup (use just the kale leaves). 

Chicken, White Bean and Kale Soup — This white bean and kale soup soup is easy, hearty, and healthy. It’s packed with flavor, texture, and is a full meal in itself!

What to Serve with the Soup

Serve the kale chicken soup with your favorite bread or rolls for dipping, or a side salad for some extra veggies and freshness. Here are my suggestions for side dishes:

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4.58 from 111 votes

Chicken Kale Soup

By Averie Sunshine
This white bean and kale soup soup is easy, hearty, and healthy. It’s packed with flavor, texture, and is a full meal in itself!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 10
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Ingredients  

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups sweet Vidalia or yellow onion, peeled and diced small (about 2 medium/large onions)
  • 1 cup celery, sliced thin (about 2 stalks)
  • 2 to 3 cups green cabbage, sliced into thin ribbons (about 1/2 small head of cabbage)
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced
  • 64 ounces 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 to 4 cups shredded cooked chicken, use about 1 whole storebought rotisserie chicken to save time; or roast or cook your own chicken in a skillet
  • two 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
  • leaves from 4 large stalks of kale, torn into bite-sized pieces (discard the center thick rib)
  • 1 cup zucchini, diced small (from about 1 medium zucchini)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, optional (brightens up the flavor)

Instructions 

  • To a large Dutch oven or stockpot, add the oil, onion, celery, and sauté over medium-high heat for about 7 minutes, or until vegetables begin to soften. Stir intermittently.
  • Add the cabbage and sauté for about 3 minutes, or until cabbage wilts and softens. Stir intermittently.
  • Add the agarlic and sauté for another 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add the chicken broth, shredded chicken, cannellini beans, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper to taste, and boil about 5 minutes, or until chicken is warmed through.
  • Add the kale, zucchini, optional lemon juice, and boil 1 to 2 minutes, or until kale has wilted and zucchini has softened.
  • Taste soup and add salt or herbs, to taste. Amount of salt will vary based on how salty the brand of chicken broth used is, how salty the rotisserie chicken is, and personal preference. At any time while making the soup, if the overall liquid level is lower than you like and you prefer more broth, adding a cup or two of water is okay because at the end you will adjust the salt level.
  • Serve immediately. Soup will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 4 months.

Notes

  • Soup will keep airtight in the fridge for 5 to 7 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 657kcal, Carbohydrates: 40g, Protein: 60g, Fat: 29g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 17g, Cholesterol: 184mg, Sodium: 6517mg, Fiber: 8g, Sugar: 12g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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4.58 from 111 votes (90 ratings without comment)

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. 5 stars
    My husband loved this soup. I added a few carrots and used coleslaw mix because there were no cabbages. All good.

    1. Thanks for the 5 star review, Cynthia, and I’m glad you and your husband both loved the soup and that’s a good idea with using coleslaw mix!

  2. 5 stars
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  3. 5 stars
    I made this soup tonight for dinner, and we really enjoyed it. I left out the celery as I’m not a fan of that vegetable. I also use a all purpose seasoning named “Vegeta”. This is a hungarian all purpose seasoning, and I pretty much use it in place of salt. I used all the other spices you named off. This soup is a keeper! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  4. 5 stars
    I made this soup tonight for dinner, and we really enjoyed it. I left out the celery as I’m not a fan of that vegetable. I also use a all purpose seasoning named “Vegeta”. This is a hungarian all purpose seasoning, and I pretty much use it in place of salt. I used all the other spices you named off. This soup is a keeper! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  5. 5 stars
    Chicken soups are my ever favorites! Picture of this one dragged me to this page. Also, love the addition of kale. thanks for sharing!

  6. 5 stars
    Chicken soups are my ever favorites! Picture of this one dragged me to this page. Also, love the addition of kale. thanks for sharing!

  7. 5 stars
    Chicken soups are my ever favorites! Picture of this one dragged me to this page. Also, love the addition of kale. thanks for sharing!

  8. 5 stars
    It was delicious way to use up leftover chicken! I let out zucchini just because my son it not a fan and he gobbled it up!

  9. This recipe looks so tempting, yet I am hesitant because of the macros listed in the nutritional content. It says this makes 7 servings, with the serving size unspecified, and that one serving is 941 calories with 42g of fat and more than 9300mg of sodium! Is that accurate, Averie? This seems hard to believe because the ingredients–broth and a bunch of veggies with a few cups of chicken–look so healthy. I realize that I can plug the recipe into a website or app to calculate it, but that is a lot of effort for someone else’s recipe, plus I wanted to ask you here in case others can benefit from the Q&A. Thank you in advance for your reply.

    1. You’re right for basically a bunch of vegetables and some chicken and broth, there’s no way that’s correct.

      I bumped up the servings to 8 but what’s happening is that the program that ‘reads’ these recipes I think is reading 3 cups of chicken AND 4 cups of chicken, and anything that’s not written as 1 this, 1 that, 2 this, etc. it gets confused. Sorry…it’s a technology glitch I wish I could fix but I can’t and as you said, it’s quite a bit of work to plug and chug the numbers into an online program for the stats. In my opinion, there’s no way that a normal bowl of this could possibly have more than 250-300 calories and even that is high. Take that for what it’s worth though, my educated guess only.

  10. 5 stars
    SOOOOOO GOOD!! This recipe is a WINNER!! I will be making this soup again and again. I made it from scratch, simmered the dry beans in chicken broth until about 1/2 way done added 2 lbs. of chicken wings and cooked until tender, removed chicken wings to cool. While the wings were cooling I chopped and added the vegetables you called for in the recipe. I added some sliced carrots. When the carrots were just getting soft I added in the zucchini and kale and the garlic, parsley, oregano and pepper. I added some lemon pepper at the end instead of lemon juice, (I was out of lemon) and a little salt. It turned out AMAZING!! Thanks for another GREAT recipe!!

    1. Thanks for the five star review and I’m glad you will make this again and again! And wow…hats off to you for doing scratch beans and chicken wings! Glad it’s a keeper for you!

    1. I’m sure you could do it although you run the risk of things turning to mush as well as the onions not cooking like they would on the stovetop. For me when a recipe is so fast (under 30 minutes) it seems to just make it more complicated/longer than necessary than it needs to be if you put it in a slow cooker. I would just make as written!

  11. 5 stars
    Great soup! Even my non-soup-loving husband says it’s one of the best. We add grated Parmesan. Also, I love you can freeze it; I immediately froze half of it!

    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and glad you love the soup and I too love the pop of brightness from the lemon!