Kale and Tiny Chicken Meatball Soup


January 11, 2011 by Dana

It’s January 11, 2011.  Just eleven days into the New Year.  Eleven days since that moment.

You know the one I’m talking about.  The moment when you vowed to be better.  To live better.  To be the best you can be.

Yes, January 1 at 12:01am was your time.  Maybe it was the excitement.  Or the champagne.  Or that peppy Ryan Seacrest.  But in that moment, you knew it was time to take the plunge.

So you vowed to eat healthier, cook more, drink more water, exercise more, sleep more, read more, make more money, save more money, spend more time with family, spend more time with friends, and pay more attention to the dog.

In fact, you were so excited about the new 2011 you, that you logged right on to twitter and tweeted your master plan to your dearest friends.  All 500 of them.

Fast forward to now, ten days later, and you’re thinking that maybe, just maybe, you were overzealous.  I mean, you were fine the way you were, right?  But you’re stuck.  You told 500 people that you were going to be Martha Stewart on steroids.  You can’t quit after just 11 days.  You’d never hear the end of it!

Well, don’t you worry.   I’ve got your back.  I am giving you an easy, tasty and healthy solution:  A recipe for Kale and Tiny Chicken Meatball Soup (which is basically this one from Andrea at What’s Cooking at the Genua’s? with a few small changes.)


For the Soup:
1 lb  kale
96 oz   light chicken broth
6 large  carrots, chopped

For the Meatballs:
1 pound  ground chicken
1 large  egg
1/2 cup  finely minced onion
1/2 cup  bread crumbs
1/2 cup  freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon  salt
1 freshly ground pepper to taste  

Now, this recipe might not take Fluffy to play fetch in the backyard for you, but it will help you stay on track with your healthy eating.  It might even save you enough time to start that 1000 page dissertation on fruit flies that you borrowed from the library last week.Directions


1. Trim the kale and discard any bruised leaves. Cut off the stem ends. Separate the leaves and wash well in cool water, especially the center of the leaves where the dirt collects. Stack the leaves and cut crosswise into 1″ strips. There should be about 4 cups.

2. In a large pot, combine the kale, broth, and carrots. Bring to a simmer and cook until the kale is almost tender, about 30 minutes.


3. While the kale is cooking, mix together all the meatball ingredients. Shape the mixture into tiny meatballs, less than 1″ in diameter.

4. When the kale is cooked, drop the meatballs into the soup. Cook over low heat, stirring gently, until the meatballs are cooked, about 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add salt and pepper if needed. 

This soup is very tasty, and super healthy with all the kale and carrots.  Andrea’s original recipe calls for ground beef or veal, but I wanted to stick with something a little lighter.   I was worried about the meatballs being dried out, as chicken meatballs often are, but they were great!

19 thoughts on “Kale and Tiny Chicken Meatball Soup

  1. I still have yet to try kale. I don’t know what is stopping me! The meatballs are cute in this! Thanks!

  2. Thanks for the mention Dana! This looks great! So yummy! I will try it with the chicken as well!

  3. 11 days – crazy! Love the tiny meatballs, almost like an Italian wedding soup. Great use of kale…good reminder to get those veggies.

  4. I would LOVE this soup! Anything with kale…

  5. Faith says:

    This looks so flavorful and healthy! I love kale and it sounds like the perfect hearty addition to this soup!

  6. Evan @swEEts says:

    You know what my resolution was this year? to have no resolutions and eat plenty of good food! :) I do love eating soup when it’s cold out and last night as we were eating potato soup my fiance looked at me and said, ‘you know, soup is a good way to lose weight’ haha is he trying to tell me something!?

  7. FitMamaEats says:

    Thanks for sharing this easy great recipe!

  8. Babygirl says:

    I really love kale and paired with these delectable chicken meatballs, sounds like a great meal to me. Nice.

  9. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by FitMamaEats. FitMamaEats said: From Food for Thought: Kale and Tiny Chicken Meatball Soup http://t.co/dMEBvZ6 […]

  10. pup says:

    LMAO! Your post cracked me up!! So far I am sticking to my resolution!! Which was to exercise more and lose some weight (10 days in, 3lbs down and am working out in the a.m. before work..not everyday, but at least every other!)

    As for your soup, that looks and sounds delicious!! Great post!!

  11. Ah so sweet you are thinking of us he he. I am not the resolution type but lighter eating now just makes my tummy happy.

  12. This is why I don’t make resolutions. Lol. I’ve been in the gym 4x a week as usual. Funny, I haven’t seen a lot of extra people there.
    Love those meatballs! I might even eat the green stuff for those meatballs. Love it. And I read the whole thing in a mental NY accent. Counts, right?

  13. Hi Dana, this dish looks so inviting:) just want i need. thanks for sharing this. have a great day.

  14. Monet says:

    Such a well written post. You always make me smile! Thank you for giving me another recipe to keep my healthy and on-task for the new year. I love kale, and I think it is perfect in a hearty winter soup. Thank you for sharing with me. Stay warm and safe during the rest of the week!

  15. biz319 says:

    I love any kind of meatball – can you imagine my Italian husband doesn’t like them??!!

    Looks delicious – not a huge fan of kale, but I may sub in baby spinach! :D

    I am actually thinking of making a ground chicken and spinach meatball for mini sub sandwiches for my lunch next week – in my head it turns out good – I’ll let you know!

  16. Joanne says:

    Too true my dear! Too true.

    I’m so glad I have you as a friend. I needed this recipe in my life.

  17. Reeni says:

    Tiny meatballs? This is just my cup of soup! I love everything about it! Hearty, healthy and comforting – exactly what is needed at this time of year.

  18. Thanks! Just found this recipe and the results of my labor and your advice are simmering away right now. The soup looks great. Same resolutions for 2012 as for 2011.

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