Summer Squash Soup with White Beans and Kale

This sunny soup is earthy, light, and bright with lots of satisfying textures in a deliciously simple broth. Totally oil-free, this dish highlights the flavors of fresh summer produce and hearty cannellini beans—making it the perfect clean-out-the-pantry recipe. Not a fan of kale? Feel free to substitute spinach, Swiss chard, collard greens, or any other leafy greens you enjoy.


  • 1 cup finely chopped leek (white part only)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
  • 6 medium yellow summer squash, halved lengthwise and sliced ¼-inch thick (6 cups)
  • 2 15-oz. cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (3 cups)
  • ½ of a bunch kale, stemmed and cut into ½-inch strips (2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Preheat a large pot or Dutch oven over high until a drop of water sizzles when added. Add leek, garlic, and Italian seasoning. Cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Add squash, beans, kale, and 4 cups of water. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until squash is tender. Stir in lemon juice, salt, and pepper.

Comments (54)

(5 from 25 votes)

Recipe Rating

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Terrible, bland. I should have read the reviews.


I found this soup to be very bland even with vegetable broth (which I used). I also had to add a lot more vegetable broth just to cook everything and make it a "soup". I would suggest the addition of thyme, parsley, potatoes and less squash (seeds from the six squash were floating everywhere).


I tried this recipe because of the image, it looked tasty and satisfying. After making the dish, I realized I should have read the reviews. I followed the recipe and although it does have a fresh taste with the water base, I would have preferred to use vegetable stock.

Anne in Tucson

This was so good! It was super fast and easy. I loved everything about this soup. The lemon juice really brightens up the flavors. I did use vegetable stock instead of water for more flavor. My wife said tomatoes would be good in it, so next time we will try that.


I wish people would not rate with stars prior to making a dish. Giving 4 or 5 stars before you've made the food makes no sense and throws the valid ratings off.


I agree with you, Anne, 100%! I’ve never understood why people do this.


A good, easy summer time soup! I was looking for a new way to use yellow squash, so I used yellow squash and some collard greens I already had cooked. Once I cooked the white beans, everything came together really quickly; I used the cooking liquid from the beans instead of water or stock, and it was the perfect amount. Good by itself, also nice with some chopped fresh tomatoes on top.


Being a RAW VEGAN, this will be an easy recipe to convert! Thanks ;-)


Top with cubes of svocado! Add organic pasta or rice.


Delicious, I substituted the squash for kumara and added stock instead of water.


I really enjoyed making this as it takes practically no time to prepare. I love how easy and tasty the water based broth is. It is quite filling for a seemingly "light soup". Next time I make it I may try to add in a chili pepper to give it a little more of a Kick!!


Delicious! Added chickpea miso toward the end of cooking.


Where are the counts for carbs, etc. for this recipes?

valentina begay

im sure this will be fabulous, read some comments as to what was added excellent remarks. I will definitely try.

Jennifer Lacroix

Very bland.


I was pleasantly surprised with this recipe, because it is so simple yet tasty. I didn't have enough squash, so I used just 3 cups and I couldn't find summer squash (time of year thing), so I used butternut squash. Otherwise, I stuck to the recipe. I didn't use a broth or miso as some of the others reviewers said they did and it was honestly a delicious fresh soup without these additions. I suspect you get an entirely different soup if you add these things. Thanks for a great recipe!

Shelli Heller



Easy and delicious soup. Used butter beans instead of cannelini beans. Also used vegetable broth instead of water. Will make again!

Michelle Zunno

Ann, I am making this for the 3rd time right now!! I am using butter beans this go-around and thank you for the suggestion!

Michelle Zunno

Made this last night and so excited to get home and eat it. 10 stars!! The miso was a great addition !!! I used chopped spinach and sweet corn as well!! And the lemon was essential. Just gave it some Zing.


This was delicious! I also added Miso paste, a splash of low sodium soy sauce, and just about every veggie I had in the refrigerator. This was truly delicious and I swear it tasted better the next day. Thanks, this was great meal!


I just made this recipe the other night and made a few changes by adding vegetable broth instead of water and adding mushrooms and celery. The first night it didn’t have a lot of flavor even with the broth but the second night it was absolutely delicious and had lots of flavor! I’d like to add a few red pepper flakes just to give it a little bit of a zing.


Would be wonderful if you could add calories


This is absolutely DELICIOUS! I added liquid smoke and omitted the lemon, and my carnivore husband ate it UP!

Susan Mullori

This soup looks delicious I am going to print the recipe.

Tom Resh

I love this recipe but as usual I made a few additions. I added Miso paste to enhance the broth as well as Better than Bouillon Veggie Base. Also added sliced mushrooms, bay leaves, and a handful of corkscrew pasta. I also make a very similar soup that uses Veggie based Beyond or Impossible meat and a can or two of tomatoes. Enjoy!


Will try . Looks good.


It would be awesome if the macros were included too!

Lou Nardi

Great soup ideas

Tracie Van Wagoner

Can you also include using dried beans in your recipe instructions in dishes using beans?

Margaret Ristoff

I use vegetable broth and spinach and cook it longer than it says. I also mix the squashes. My family loves it! I cut a lemon on half and they put as much as they want in.

Michael Kaplan

This was delicious! A small amount of salt and freshly ground pepper once served made it perfect! Will likely make it again. Many thanks!

Melissa Aguayo

I've made this a few times, and added chopped crimini mushrooms, veggie broth, bay leaves, and a little arrowroot powder to add thickness. Everyone loves it! It's clean, light, and so flavorful.


How can I print just the recipe? I don’t need a color-backed recipe for 13 other pages. When I click on print the recipe, this is what I get. What am I doing wrong?


Delightful summer soup, easy and quick to make. I used juice of 2 lemons but I also zested them right into the pot before juicing . Makes it even more summery!


I do not like squash so could I add another veg instead with the white bean and kale? Could I use potatoes? Thanks

Stephanie Schultz

Appreciate this site


The goal is to cook a meal in 30 minutes or less!

Pam Schwartz

Just made this. Added spelt rotini and a bit of fresh hot green pepper. Delish!


I'm going to make this for dinner, but using No Chicken Broth and a few bay leaves. It sound light and healthy! Can't wait.:)


I just made this. It was easy, quick and full of flavor. Thank you for sharing this recipe.


Delicious and good to have such a tasty and nutritious fat-free option.


I think I'll use vegetable stock instead of water but otherwise this sounds delightful


While I understand your frustration, they don't need to include how to cook dry beans in this recipe. That can be learned elsewhere. Any recipe that calls for beans can be from either and shouldn't need stated. It's up to the person cooking it to decide what process the bean was originally cooked before proceeding with the recipe.

Nancy Johnson-Cramer

Lets take the perspective of a New-be: I like all the information about cooking beans. Cooking beans is not a given skill in the standard American diet and those just beginning on the plant based journey need the support of coaching. Those of us who are seasoned cooks can just skim down. We need to support and encourage the baby beginners in the art of making good beans. Lets keep giving them a helping hand.


Do I have to change anything if I use dried minced garlic instead of fresh?


Has anyone tried substituting spinach for the kale?

Cori T.

Thank you for this recipe it was great! So easy. I left out the kale and put spinach in right before serving.

Kathleen Sherman

Yes, I used fresh spinach instead of kale. Sliced it into strips and it tasted great.


Great recipes


these receipes sound so good. I'm changing my diet today!!!!


I'm thinking maybe using low sodium vegetable stock would be good too.

Susan Divine

This sounds so simple and delicious for a quick summer meal! I’ll be serving this up for dinner tonight!

About the Author

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About the Author

Darshana Thacker Wendel

Darshana Thacker Wendel is a whole-food, plant-based chef and former culinary projects manager for Forks Over Knives. A graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute, she is the author of Forks Over Knives: Flavor! She created the recipes for Forks Over Knives Family and was a lead recipe contributor to the New York Times bestseller The Forks Over Knives Plan. Her recipes have been published in The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health, and LA Yoga magazine online. Visit and follow her on Instagram for more.
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