Kale, Sweet Potato, and Lamb Sausage Soup

Source: Micki Seibel, October 2012

Source: Micki Seibel, October 2012

Cook Time

Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 20 min
Yields: Serves 6-8 as a main course

I was looking for a new way to cook kale and come across this soup. Merguez, a North African lamb sausage spiced with chills or harissa, makes the perfect contrast of flavor with the leafy kale and sweetness of the sweet potatoes. However, the real secret to this soup is the inclusion of a russet potato whose starch thickens the broth. It’s almost a stew. The soup’s medium-bodied texture and spice pair well with a medium-bodied, fruity pinot noir such as New Zealand’s Mt Difficulty.


  • 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb / 0.45kg merguez or other lamb sausage
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp dried thyme, minced
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled and minced
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed and leaves cut into 1/4
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 450 fahrenheit / 232 degrees celsius.
  2. In a non-reactive bowl, toss the sweet potatoes with 1 1/2 tbsp of olive oil and a generous serving of kosher salt.
  3. Spread the sweet potatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast in the oven until tender, about 20 minutes.
  4. In a large, heavy pot heat the remaining 1/2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add the merguez sausage and brown on each side, about 8 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
  5. In the pot, add the onion and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.
  6. Stir in the garlic and thyme and cook for an additional 1 minute.
  7. Add 3 cups of chicken broth and the russet potato, turn the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, cut the sausage into 1/2″ pieces.
  9. When the potato is soft, use a handheld blender or potato masher to mash the potato and combine it into the broth to create a thick, creamy textured broth.
  10. Add the sausage and 2 more cups of chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes.
  11. Add the sweet potatoes, kale, and salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring often, until the kale is tender, about 8 minutes.

How To Not Screw It Up

  1. When you roast the sweet potatoes, be sure to use parchment paper and NOT aluminum foil. There are conflicting studies on the subject of whether or not there are health risks to cooking with aluminum at high heat. The studies may be inconclusive, so I won’t risk it until we know for sure.
  2. You want to mince the russet the potato. The smaller the cuts that you make, the more likely it is to cook and dissolve into the broth. That will make the labor easier for mashing or blending it into the broth. Getting the potato to smoothly blend with the cooking liquid is the key to the texture of this soup.

Nutrition Facts: Kale, Sweet Potato, and Lamb Sausage Soup

Serving size: 450g
Calories 374Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value *
Fat 15 g23%
Saturated fat 5 g25%
Carbohydrates 42 g14%
Sugar 2 g
Fiber 7 g28%
Protein 21 g42%
Cholesterol 45 mg15%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.