Slow Cooker Creamy Gnocchi Sausage Soup with Kale Crisps

Slow Cooker Creamy Gnocchi Sausage Soup is thick and creamy comfort in a bowl – with an added bonus of some leafy green kale crisps.

Almost like a fully loaded Zuppa Toscana, this soup is absolutely incredible, with a guilt-ridden sinful taste! It’s the addition of gnocchi (also known as soft and pillowy dumplings) that makes this soup a family favorite in our house!

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground hot Italian sausage, browned (or any other sausage — chicken, pork, or turkey)
  • 1 onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic (or 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic)
  • 4 cups good-quality chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, (adjust to your tastes)
  • 1/3 teaspoon cracked black pepper, (adjust to your tastes)
  • 2 1/3 cups evaporated milk or half and half, (or reduced fat cream — full fat may also be used if not watching calorie intake)
  • 3 heaping tablespoons cornstarch mixed and dissolved well in 2 cups of milk, (I use 2% milk)
  • 1 pound fresh gnocchi (found in the fridge section of your supermarket)
  • 4 cups shredded kale leaves, stems removed (or baby spinach leaves),
  • extra salt and pepper, to taste
  • optional toppings: freshly grated Parmesan cheese and crispy bacon

Directions:

  • Place the browned sausage, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, broth, Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper in a crockpot or slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
  • Add the evaporated milk (or half and half or cream), milk/cornstarch mixture and gnocchi. Stir and replace cover. Cook another 30 minutes until the soup has thickened and the gnocchi has softened.
  • Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Add the chopped kale (or spinach) to a baking sheet, drizzle some olive oil over the greens. If you want to add some seasonings; S&P, chili powder go for it. Bake your greens until the turn crispy and brown; about 15 mins. You will top your soup with your crispy greens.
  • Taste test and season with extra salt and pepper, if desired. Serve immediately with optional parmesan cheese and bacon. (If soup thickens too much when cold, just add extra milk in half cup increments until achieving desired consistency while warming it up to serve.)

Enjoy – see you in the Kitchen!

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