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Italian White Bean and Sausage Stew

Rated as 4.75 out of 5 Stars

"This comforting and substantial white bean and sausage stew is a soup that eats like a meal! Browning the sausage in a dry pan creates a beautiful fond that adds rich flavor. With beans, greens, and sausage, this stew is incredibly nutritious and warms you from the inside out. Serve with a hunk of crusty Italian bread."
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9 h 45 m servings 669
Original recipe yields 6 servings


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  1. Soak beans in cold water, 8 hours to overnight.
  2. Drain beans and set aside.
  3. Make a cut down the center of each sausage and peel off the casing. Transfer sausage into a dry soup pot over medium-high heat. Brown sausage, while breaking it up into small pieces with a wooden spoon, 5 to 7 minutes. Cook and stir until juices start to caramelize and stick to the bottom of the pan, creating a fond, 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add onion and stir to coat in the rendered sausage fat. Cook until onion starts to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add white wine to deglaze the pot. Add black pepper, red pepper flakes, bay leaf, and water.
  5. Add drained beans, increase heat to high, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Add salt and continue to simmer until beans are tender, about 30 more minutes. Taste beans to be certain they are perfectly cooked.
  6. Smash about 1/4 of the beans with a potato masher to give the stew a creamy texture if desired. Stir in chopped kale, increase heat to medium, and cook until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Taste and adjust salt.
  7. Ladle hot soup into bowls, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and a pinch of red pepper flakes.


  • Chef's Notes:
  • Instead of soaking dried beans overnight, you can use canned beans. Dried beans come out better though and are less expensive.
  • Use any sausage you want. If your sausage doesn't have garlic in it, add 2 cloves minced garlic 5 minutes after you add onion. Pecorino can be used instead of Parmigiano-Reggiano.
  • If you don't have wine, you can use 2 tablespoons wine vinegar and 1/4 cup water, or just use water.
  • The amount of water you add will depend on how thick you want the stew. I use about 7 1/2 cups.
  • You can use any greens for the kale, like spinach, Swiss chard, mustard greens, or stinging nettles. Cooking time will vary based on what you use.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 669 calories; 38.6 42.6 36.2 75 1989 Full nutrition

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Read all reviews 8
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Phenomenal soup!! Made it for my mom and gramma, who are both in self quarantine , they loved having a girls lunch together and loved the soup with some nice crusty italian bread!!! Thanks for t...

Was excellent. Only had Northern beans and it worked out fine. Substituted 50% chicken broth and 50% water mix, for water ingredient, for more flavor. Used chicken Apple sausage instead of po...

This is a very hearty soup. We plan to edit to our regular shoe rotation.

I followed the recipe exactly. It is inexpensive and easy to make. This soup is excellent, especially on cold, rainy evenings. Thanks, Chef John!

I added some thinly sliced Yukon Gold potatoes and I used hot Italian sausage. I added fennel seed and garlic as well. Wonderful recipe. Thanks again, Chef John!

I used 2 cans of cannellini beans (drained), and frozen spinach in lieu of Kale because....well, Coronapocalypse 2020. With using canned beans, I knew it wouldn't need to simmer nearly as long...

I found this very similar to my favorite soup...Zupa Toscana, but easier to make and likely healthier. (Main difference being bean-based versus potato-based.) As such, it is a winner in my kit...

Used what I had, hot Italian sausage, canned pinto beans, and kale. Followed the directions otherwise and it was excellent. Very hearty. Had a hard time not eating half the pot