The Best Portuguese Kale Soup is a delicious way to enjoy healthy kale! This kale soup recipe is based on a traditional Portuguese Kale Soup with a few creative variations of our own. Sausage, beans and potatoes simmer with kale and plenty of garlic for great flavor. Read on for details, or click here to jump down to the recipe. Article originally published in January 2016 and updated with new wine pairing suggestions. If you’d like to get right to the wine pairing info, click here Disclosure: some of the wines mentioned were provided as complimentary samples.
I probably make this Portuguese Kale Soup more than any other soup recipe. I’ve tweaked a few things over time, and the result is my Best Portuguese Kale Soup recipe I’m sharing with you today.
When I first wrote up this recipe in the winter of 2016, I had planned to make a batch of the Best Portuguese Kale Soup before I knew temperature were going to be in the single digits for much of the day. Boy, were we glad to dig into steaming bowls of this kale soup last night after coming in from the cold. Sausage, beans and potatoes simmer along with the kale and plenty of garlic for a hearty, full-flavored soup. A great way to enjoy some healthy kale!
How do you make Portuguese Kale Soup?
When I first started making Portuguese kale soup, I followed the kale soup recipe from Thoughtful Eating. The post refers to the soup as Caldo Verde in Portuguese, though some commenters here have said that Caldo Verde is something different than this kale soup.
The main ingredients of traditional Portuguese kale soup include the sausage, potatoes and of course the kale, along with a good base of onion and garlic. In addition to covering the basics of the traditional recipe in that post, Raquel also provided some great tips, like thickening the soup by breaking some of the potatoes up against the side of the soup pot.
Though the basic approach is the same, my Best Portuguese Kale Soup recipe departs in a few ways from the traditional version. I like to use andouille sausage instead of the traditional chorizo (known as chouriço in Portuguese); I like the garlicky flavors of andouille. I often use turkey andouille sausage for a healthier soup, with the same tasty results.
I always add some beans–I think some versions you will find do that, but I don’t think it’s standard. The other twist in my Best Portuguese Kale Soup is the use of a bit of butternut squash, which adds a touch of sweetness to go along with the spice. This tasty innovation was the result of some extra squash on hand one chilly fall evening! But feel free to skip the squash if you’d like, I make it without the squash sometimes and it still tastes good.
So give my recipe a try on a cold night. I bet you will find yourself making it again and again, and you might come up with a few tasty variations of your own, and lay claim to your own Best Portuguese Kale Soup recipe! You can also have fun trying different Portuguese wine to pair with kale soup.
Wine Pairing for the Best Portuguese Kale Soup
Portuguese red wine is the natural choice to pair with Portuguese Kale Soup. Portugal is a great source of wine values. I typically look for a red blend from the Duoro region including the Touriga Nacional variety.
I had a chance to test out a couple of new Portuguese wines to go with our latest batch of kale soup. I especially liked the way the 2015 douROSA ($15, 14 % ABV) paired with the soup.
I get a bit of forest floor on the nose of the douROSA. On the palate, fresh red cherry fruit with a bit of cinnamon and vanilla on the finish. I enjoyed sipping a bit of the douROSA while making the soup as well as along with it.
This wine is from Quinta Da Rosa, located in the Duoro region of Northern Portugal. The primary grape is Touriga Nacional, with other traditional port grapes rounding out the blend. Quinta Da Rosa is also well known for its high quality Ports.
When I originally posted this recipe, I recommended the 2012 Tinta Boa ($11), a blend of Portuguese grapes Tinta Roriz and Touriga Nacional.
The 2015 JP Azeitão Red ($8, 13.5% ABV) is another good Portuguese red wine value I’ve tried recently that could work with the kale soup. The wine is from Peninsula de Setubal, comprised of 55 % Syrah along with Portuguese varietals Castelão (25%) and Arogonez (20%). This Portuguese wine has a bright, fruity nose. Taste of strawberry and bit of licorice. Light and easy drinking. I originally served this as a nice pairing for our Vegetarian Kale Soup; a variation of this Portuguese kale soup recipe that features tempeh in place of the sausage.
Portugal provides a great chance to try some new new wine grape varietals. The most recent time I made Portuguese kale soup, I served it with a wine that takes new wine grape exposure to the extreme. 2014 Achado E Perdidos 28 Uvas ($12, 13.5% ABV) is a red wine made from a field blend of 28 grape varieties, none of which I’ve seen outside of Portuguese wine (see list below).
The 28 Uvas is deep purple in the glass. Spring flowers on the nose. Well-balanced, cherry and strawberry fruit with a bit of licorice. Definitely another great wine pairing for our Portuguese Kale Soup!
Achados E Perdidos means “lost and found i” Portuguese. The winery is located on one of the steepest terraced bands on the banks of the Duoro River. The winemakers João Silva e Sousa and Francisco Baptista found an old vineyard planted in schist soils, where 28 native Portuguese wine grape varietals were grown together. Field blends like 28 Uvas were common in Portugal before a modern trend toward trying more popular international grapes. Thus they have “found” a traditional Portuguese vineyard and are producing some very good wine from it.
The grape varietals in 28 Uvas are Alicante Bouschet, Alvarelhão, Baga, Bastardo, Bastardo Roxo, Donzelinha Tinto, Esgana Cão Tinto, Folgazão Roxo, Jaen, Malvasia, Malvasia Roxa, Mourisco, Mourisco Semente, Mourisco de Trevões, Periquita, Refute, Souto, Tinta Amarela, Tinta Barroca, Tinto Cão, Tinta Carvalha, Tinta da Barca, Toureira Femea, Toureira Franca, Tinta Francisca, Toureira Nacional, Tinta Roriz and Tinta de Tabuaço.
Some of the winery description and the list of grape varietals come from Princeton Corkscrew.
As much as I like pairing Portuguese wine with this kale soup recipe, I do occasionally pair the soup with other robust red wines. For instance, we recently opened the 2014 Niner Wine Estates Reserve Cabernet Franc ($65, 14.5%) from Paso Robles. Disclosure: This wine provided as a complimentary sample.
This bottle from Niner Wine Estates is a special Cab Franc, produced in a cool sub-AVA of Willow Creek. I get bell pepper on the nose. On the palate, blackberry fruit, slate and black pepper. Dusky mouthfeel. Very different than the Portuguese blends, but a good pairing nonetheless. Cab Franc is a versatile red wine for food pairings!
We also have enjoyed our kale soup with a good red Languedoc blend, the 2013 Domaine D’Aupilhac Montpeyroux. We we pleased with the way this blend of Mourvedre, Syrah, Carignan, Grenache and Cinsault went with the soup. A bit like a Portuguese red blend with all the different grape varietals!
One more pairing idea — in this article on Texas winesarticle on Texas wines, The Swirling Dervish reports that a Cab / Merlot blend from Spicewood Vineyards worked well with the soup. Good to know that if you can’t find Portuguese wine, Cab / Merlot blends can work too! A bit easier to find.Print
Best Portuguese Kale Soup
Cooking Chat’s Best Portuguese Kale Soup is a delicious way to enjoy healthy kale! Sausage, beans and potatoes simmer along with the kale and plenty of garlic for a hearty, full-flavored soup.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 35 mins
- Total Time: 45 mins
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Soup
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: Portuguese
- 9 ozs andouille sausages (I often like to use turkey sausage for a healthier dish)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 medium potatoes, chopped
- 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and chopped
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 1/2 cups of water
- 1 bunch of kale (at least 4 cups) stems removed & coarsely chopped
- 1 14.5 oz can red kidney beans
- pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- salt to taste
- Heat a large soup pan with oil spray. Add the sausages and cook for 5 minutes or so to brown, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the sausages and set aside to cool. When they have cooled, slice the sausage in half lengthwise, then cut into semi-circles 1/2 inch thick. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil on medium in the soup pan, then add the onions. Sauté for 5 minutes, then add carrots and sauté a few more minutes.
- Stir in the potatoes, then the butternut squash and garlic. Cook for a minute or two, then add the chicken stock and water. Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce to simmer on medium for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes the veggies should be starting to get soft. Use a sturdy spoon to smash some of the potato and butternut against the side of the pot, to thicken the soup. Stir in the kale in a few batches, to allow some to cook down a bit to create more room. Add salt to taste and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
- Stir in the sausage and the kidney beans. Cook for another 5 to 10 minutes to let all the flavors meld. More cooking time is great, too, if you’ve got the time! When it’s cooked to your liking, serve with a crusty bread and glass of Portuguese wine to round things out.
- 9 ounces sausage is based on 3 smaller sausages, which is the size the chicken and turkey sausages I use tend to use. 2 larger sausages would be comparable.
- You want a minimum of 4 cups of kale. That might be a good amount if your family hasn’t warmed up to kale yet, but I typically use closer to 6 cups.
- You can use one sweet potato instead of the butternut squash. Or you can choose to skip the squash entirely; the soup will still be tasty, but just missing that sweet offset to the spices in the dish.
- Turkey or chicken sausage can be used in place of the traditional pork.
Keywords: soup, kale soup, Portuguese soup, Portuguese kale soup
Portuguese Wine & Food with Wine Pairing Weekend
- From Camilla Mann of Culinary Adventures with Camilla: “Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato with a Vinho Verde”
- From Jill Barth of L’Occasion: “The Plurality of Portuguese Wine”
- From Lori Budd of Dracaena Wine : “Portugal’s Political History Effects It’s Culinary and Wine Culture”
- From David Crowley of Cooking Chat: “Best Portuguese Kale Soup”
- From Nicole Ruiz Hudson of Nibbling Gypsy: “Cooking to the Wine: Passagem Douro Reserva with Spiced Wine Braised Octopus”
- From Lauren Walsh of The Swirling Dervish: “Talego – A Taste of Portugal in Paris.”
- From Wendy Klik of A Day on the Farm: “Rustic and Red”
- From Sue and Gwen at Wine Predator: “Portugal: Wine, Castles, Cobbles, Coastline, Cuisine