Kale with Spicy Italian Sausage

Whenever my husband (Ok, ok, his name is David. "My husband" sounds too.... well... possessive, doesn't it? From now on, he'll be referred to as David, or, if he's cooking, Chef D).

Ahem... Whenever Chef D makes this meal, he says something like "Ah, this recipe reminds me of my bachelor days, when I'd make this for just myself. Mmmmmmm...."

and I think two things...

Ha! He's reminiscing about his bachelor days. That makes him sound OLD.

and then,

Wait. You made yourself spicy Italian sausage and kale, with crusty bread, all for yourself, while I was living in my own apartment, eating lettuce with canned corn? What happened to stuff like, um, ramen noodles or cereal????

I never actually say that out loud, because really, I'm glad he had all that time to perfect this simple, tasty, sop-up-all-the-juice-with-your-bread meal that I can now enjoy.

Recipe: Kale with Spicy Italian Sausage

Serves 2
by Chef D

(Chef D's favorite part about this dish is that it only uses one pot, making this a super easy dish to cook and clean up!)

You'll Need:
  • 4 packed cups of washed, coarsely chopped kale*
    (we used a mix of russian red and curly. you could also use broccoli rabe, but I don't recommend any other less-sturdy greens)
  • 1 medium clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil (optional)
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped (we tend to go with vine tomatoes, but we've used cherry and grape tomatoes also. the only tomato that we will not use in this recipe is a hothouse. bland, watery, blah.)
  • 2 links spicy italian sausage (1/2-3/4 of a lb)**
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Good bread of your choice

*To trim kale, fold the leaf in half, take a sharp knife and slice away the thick stalk (a.k.a rib), then very coarsely chop.

**Note: This dish is also delicious with sweet italian sausage and sausage with fennel. If you're using spicy sausage, be prepared for the dish to be extra spicy, as the kale seems to soak up all the flavor.

Heat pan, cook sausages until cooked through. Remove sausages and let sit.

Reduce heat to low, add 1/2 tbsp olive oil and scrape bottom of pan. Add diced garlic and saute for 1 minute, or until just brown. Add kale and tomatoes, let simmer on low, while tending to sausage.

Slice sausages into 1/2 inch rounds. Add immediately to kale and tomatoes.

Stir to combine in pot, still on low heat. Cover with lid, and let simmer, approx. 5 minutes, or until kale is wilted and tomatoes are cooked down. Stir occasionally, to ensure even cooking.

Divide, sprinkle with freshly grated parmesean, and serve with bread for soaking up the juicy goodness.

This is the first meal we make when kale's in season, and we eat it even more frequently in the fall. The spices from the sausage flavor the whole dish, so no need for adding anything else. You could, if you felt inclined, add a dash of white wine or chicken broth if the tomatoes weren't juicy enough.

I prefer this dish with a red wine, while Chef D enjoys it with a white.

What do you think?


  1. Hi Nicole, I just found your blog through the CSA email. I'm also a member of Mountain View. This recipe is going into this week's menu for sure! When they had broccoli rabe I made pasta with BR and sausage. It was tasty but kinda heavy with all that pasta (and I had to add a bunch of olive oil to keep the pasta from being sticky--so it was definitely pretty high calorie!) This sounds so much healthier. Thank you! I'm looking forward to reading!


  2. HI Nicole,
    I just discovered your blog, and I love it! I'm going to try out this recipe soon.

  3. I'm very happy to have found this blogpost! I've been searching to find a kale recipe that wasn't A: soup, B: didn't include beans or pasta, and C: sounded like something my kids would eat.


  4. My dad wants 1) Sausage 2) Kale and 3) Crusty Bread for Father's Day, and everyone else will probably NOT be dining on the first two items. So imagine my glee at a "Serves 2" recipe containing all of those ingredients. Thanks!

  5. Hello There!

    Tried this recipe and thought should leave you a comment! It turned out great! :)

  6. Delicious! I made it with yellow tomatoes from the garden and added some leeks, thyme and sage. Thanks for the recipe.

  7. So delicious! Added toasted pine nuts for an extra bit of texture. Yum!



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