Recipe: Curly Kale & Butter Bean Soup

Curly Kale & Butterbean Soup

Veganuary-heartMy lunches during Veganuary have often featured lovely homemade soups made at the touch of a button in my trusty Optimum ThermoCook.  (If you haven’t heard about the ThermoCook, read my review here).  However, I’m conscious that soup isn’t always as protein-packed as it could be, so have been sneaking beans, lentils, quinoa, peas and all sorts of other vegan protein sources into my soups.

This one was particularly delicious – against all the odds.  When I was shopping for my Cranks Supperclub in December I thought I had picked up 4 tins of chickpeas.  Distracted by a toddler piling chocolate biscuits into the trolley, it turns out I had picked up 4 tins of butter beans instead.  Eek!  Cue a very last-minute chickpea expedition hours before guests arrived.

All was well, but the tower of butter bean tins have been staring at me ever since.  A soggy half-used bag of curly kale looked sorry for itself in the fridge, and voilà – this Curly Kale & Butter Bean Soup was born.

I think of butter beans as being a bit… well… 1980’s vegetarian hippy, (sorry), but in fact they are delicious, and I particularly like them blitzed into a soup like this.  They turn the soup creamy and velvety, not at all what you expect from a vegan soup.  And of course with their high-protein, low-fat credentials paired with the nutrient-rich curly kale superfood, this soup isn’t half good for you!

Curly Kale & Butterbean Soup

If you don’t own an Optimum ThermoCook (yet…. get it on your Christmas list for next year!), the instructions in the printable recipe below are for making it the old-fashioned way on the hob.  But if you do, (lucky you), instructions for making this in a ThermoCook are underneath the recipe.

5 from 2 votes
Curly Kale & Butterbean Soup
Curly Kale & Butter Bean Soup
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
25 mins
Course: Soup
Servings: 5 people
Author: Kate Ford | The Veg Space
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 leek, trimmed and finely chopped
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 potato, peeled and roughly cubed
  • 100 g curly kale, tough stalks removed
  • 2 x 400g tins butterbeans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 litre water
  • 4 tsp stock powder
  • handful fresh parsley
  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the leek, onion and garlic. Fry gently for 3-4 minutes until soft.
  2. Add the potato, curly kale and butterbeans, then the water and stock powder. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Taste, and season with salt and pepper as required.
  3. Add the parsley, then blitz with a hand blender or in a high-speed blender, and serve immediately.

Optimum ThermoCookTo make in an Optimum Thermocook:

  1. Place the oil, leek, onion and garlic into the jug, select CHOP.
  2. Then choose the SAUTÉ function for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the potato, kale and butterbeans, then the water and stock powder.  Choose CHOP and then the THICK SOUP function.  Taste then season with salt and pepper as necessary.
  4. Add the parsley then choose the SMOOTHIE function.  Serve immediately.


Curly Kale & Butterbean Soup

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Vegan in 15 Cover | Kate FordThere are plenty of similarly quick and easy soup recipes in my new book, ‘Vegan in 15‘*. Hop over to Amazon for a look.  Thanks for your support!

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For more Optimum ThermoCook soup recipes from blogging friends, take a look at:

I’m linking this post up with two blogging challenges:


Read my full review of the Optimum ThermoCook in this post: Kale & Squash Pearl Barley Risotto.  

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links – I am a Froothie Ambassador and will earn a small commission if you order an Optimum ThermoCook via these links.  (Of course, I fully endorse the product and would not agree to promote it unless I genuinely loved it!). 


  1. I love kale and I like butter beans so this soup is calling to me. Thanks for linking to my recipe too, most appreciated.

  2. I love kale and butter beans so will make this soon as they are always on hand in my kitchen. Looking at the list of ingredients, I think it will freeze quite well {I’m the only lover of kale in the house!}
    Deborah ShireGardener recently posted…Dydd Santes DwynwenMy Profile

  3. So many lovely seasonal ingredients in here and love love love butterbeans too. Such a creamy way of adding protein into a soup!

  4. What a super green soup! I love adding kale to my soups for a nice veggie boost and this one sounds delicious.

  5. This looks delicious and very hearty, ideal for a winter lunch. I rarely cook with butterbeans either but funnily enough, my most recent recipe is also butterbean-based!

    From your Veganuary updates it looks like you’ve been cooking some amazing vegan food throughout January. How have you found it overall? I’ve been taking part too and really enjoyed it. I usually only cook vegan food at home anyway but it’s meant some changes when I eat out but it’s not been as hard as I’d feared 🙂
    Natalie Tamara recently posted…Superfood Butterbean Burgers | Vegan, Gluten-freeMy Profile

  6. Butterbeans are my favourite in soups, so I’ll have to try your kale version ASAP. Wish I had a Thermocook as they look so convenient, great that you have given instructions for those of us only with a pan too 🙂
    Lucy @ BakingQueen74 recently posted…Almond Petit FoursMy Profile

  7. Ooooh I like kale and really love the addition of butterbeans, I have to try this soon. The ThermoCook really does make soups easily; thanks for the link to mine.

  8. Ooh I bet this tastes good. Kale has such a nice flavour and I really like butter beans. Annoying CT can’t eat them for some reason, so I very rarely get them. That ThermoCook is just great for soups.
    Choclette recently posted…Food Awards 2016 – Yeo Dudes, Tin and Thyme Did ItMy Profile

  9. Thanks so much for sharing with NCR. Such a nourishing soup and a great way to use butter beans.

  10. Oh delicious deliciousness! I am a huge butterbean fan and combined with kale makes this a delicious and nutricious sounding soup!

  11. I love kale soup and love your addition of butterbeans:-) Fabulous photography! Thanks for entering #CreditCrunchMunch!
    Camilla @FabFood4All recently posted…Non Alcoholic MojitoMy Profile

  12. A lovely entry for #creditcrunchmunch, I cannot get enough kale!
    Helen @ Fuss Free Flavours recently posted…Fuss Free Nibbles – February 2016My Profile

  13. So glad to know I’m not the only one with half a bag of limp kale in the bottom of the fridge! This soup looks like a great way to use it up and enjoy a tasty lunch.
    Janice (@FarmersgirlCook) recently posted…Citrus Chia Seed Muffins with Seville Orange CurdMy Profile

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