Go Back

Caldo Verde ~ Portuguese Green Soup

A white bowl of caldo verde, or Portuguese kale soup with thinly sliced kale and a single chorizo coin floating in the center.
Portuguese kale soup, caldo verde, is something you’ll experience literally everywhere in Portugal, from Lisbon’s trendiest restaurants to farmhouses scattered at the edge of villages. Understandably so. Its simple yet sustaining character is appreciated everywhere.
John Villa

Prep 25 mins
Cook 40 mins
Total 1 hr 5 mins
Soup
Portuguese
6 servings
456 kcal

Ingredients 

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 10 ounces chouriço, linguiça,or Spanish chorizo sliced into 1/4-inch (6-mm) coins
  • 1 large Spanish onion diced
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 garlic cloves sliced; don’t be afraid to go for a third or fourth. The Portuguese love their garlic
  • 6 medium potatoes peeled and roughly chopped
  • 8 cups cold water or half homemade chicken stock or canned chicken broth, and half water
  • 1 pound kale or collard greens stems removed, leaves cut into very, very thin slices
  • Freshly ground black or white pepper

Directions 

  • In a large pot over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the chouriço and cook until lightly browned on both sides, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Using a slotted spoon remove the sausage to a plate. Try to let the sausage drain well into the pot; its fat will flavor the soup.
  • Dump the onions into the pot. Sprinkle with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes more.
  • Stir in the potatoes, add the water or combination of water and chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat so the soup gently simmers. Cook until the potatoes are almost tender, 10 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the soup cool slightly.
  • When the caldo verde has cooled a little, purée it using an immersion blender. (Tradition states that one slice and only one slice of chouriço is added to each bowl although some chefs like to add half the sausage to the soup before puréeing. It’s your choice.)
  • Add the kale to the soup, bring everything back to a boil, and then reduce the heat and simmer until tender, 2 to 5 minutes. Season with more salt, if needed, and pepper.
  • Ladle the caldo verde into bowls and garnish with the remaining slices of chouriço. (The soup can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated overnight. Simply warm over low heat before serving.)