Caldo Verde (tr. “Green Broth”) is a classic Portuguese soup made from potatoes, chouriço sausage and finely shredded leafy greens, usually collards. It’s hearty, comforting and incredibly easy to make with very few ingredients.
This recipe takes the foundation for a traditional Caldo Verde and bends it ever so slightly to be both Whole30 and Paleo compliant. Instead of using the more common yellow potatoes, I substitute low-glycemic Japanese yams. It’s hard to find good-quality chouriço made without sugar or fillers in my neighbourhood so I substitute Spanish cured chorizo. I add some smoked paprika to the soup, which changes the colour of the broth to a golden-orange, but bumps up the same seasoning used in the sausage. As for the greens, I go back and forth between collard greens and kale. Both are excellent but collards are my absolute favourite.
What You Need For Whole30 Caldo Verde
- Japanese Yams: Traditionally, yellow potatoes are used to make Caldo Verde. Though potatoes of all kinds are Whole30 compliant, I originally developed this recipe to also meet Paleo guidelines and Japanese yams were the perfect fit. You can substitute any kind of white-fleshed sweet potato, or even cauliflower to keep it low-carb.
- Sausage: It’s not easy, but try to find a cured sausage that is sugar-free and made without preservatives. Palacios brand makes a very good, all-natural product that tastes great. You can order it online or try finding it in specialty shops near you.
You can use Spanish chorizo, Portuguese chouriço, or Portuguese linguiça. In each case, you’ll want to peel off the chewy, outer casing and slice the sausage into discs as thin as you can.
- Collard Greens: You can use kale if preferred, but I strongly recommend making this soup with collard greens. For best results, remove the stems and centre ribs and slice the collards as thin as humanly possible into long ribbons.
- White Onion: I like using a large white onion for this caldo verde. It’s slightly sweeter than yellow varieties, which balances the smokiness of the sausage and paprika.
- Garlic: Not all Caldo Verde recipes call for garlic, but I find that it adds a delicious depth of flavour to the soup. It all gets blended up with the onions and broth so don’t worry about chopping it up finely.
- Good Quality Chicken Broth: I like to use a combination of chicken broth and water to make my Caldo Verde. I find that too much chicken broth overpowers the flavour of the soup. But if you only use water, it falls a little flat.
Because this soup has so few ingredients, it’s crucial to use the absolute best quality chicken broth you can find. If it’s not homemade, I recommend Kettle & Fire. It’s made with pasture-raised, organic chicken bones, all organic ingredients and without any refined sugars, fillers, preservatives, colourings, flavourings or starches.
You can shop for Kettle & Fire broths online and use code PRIMALGOURMET for 20% OFF sitewide or find it in local stores.
- Smoked Paprika: This is optional, but to boost the smokey flavour in the sausage, I like to add a spoon of smoked paprika to the soup. It does change the colour of the broth, but that doesn’t bother me.
Caldo Verde – Whole30, Paleo
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large white onion sliced
- Kosher salt to taste
- 3 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika optional
- 1 quart chicken stock
- 3 medium Japanese yams substitute yellow potatoes or any kind of white fleshed sweet potato
- 1.5 quarts water
- 1 pound collard greens stems removed and leaves very thinly sliced
- 8 ounces cured chorizo sausage casing removed and very thinly sliced, substitute chouriço or linguiça
- Freshly-cracked black pepper to taste
- Preheat a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add the onions and season with a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and translucent, around 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 60 seconds. Add the smoked paprika, if using, and cook, stirring, 60 seconds.
- Add the chicken stock, yams and enough water to cover. Raise the heat to high, bring the soup to a steady simmer, cover with a lid and cook until the yams are completely fork-tender, around 10 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat and, using an immersion blender or regular blender, blend the soup until it’s completely smooth. If the soup is too thick, add more water or chicken stock to achieve a velvety consistency. Reduce the heat to a steady simmer, add the collard greens and chorizo and cook, stirring occasionally, until the collards are slightly soft, around 8 minutes. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as desired. Serve immediately.
16 replies on “Caldo Verde – Paleo, Whole30”
[…] I didn’t set out with any specific recipe in mind today when I made this Sausage, Potato and Kale soup, though it does recall rustic versions of Caldo Verde. […]
Any chance you have an instant pot version to share?
Hey Marjorie! I’m afraid i don’t 🙁
The soup cooks super quick so I don’t feel an instant pot is needed. However, you can definitely use one if desired since you can sauté the onions and garlic directly in the pot.
Love this recipe. I’ve tried with pre-cooked and uncooked sausage. Recently I used raw sausage and my Instapot. Left the potato and onions in for 8 mins on high pressure and then 2 mins extra with the sausage and Kale. May have been overkill, but was really delicious.
So happy you enjoyed the soup!!!
So good! Perfect for meal prepping for a week of lunches!
🙂 So glad you enjoyed!
Made this last night and loved it! I’m looking forward to a few days of leftovers. Thanks for your great recipes!
So happy you enjoyed, Meg!
Creepin back here because COME ON FALL. Making this for myself and friends this week and am so excited to bring it back as a staple this fall/winter like it was last year. Quick question- I have the HARDEST time getting the casing off sausage. Any quick tips? I’ve seen you post about this on instagram but cannot remember how you went about it.
Try placing the sausage under some hot running water. It will help loosen the casing so that you can easily peel it off!
Hi! I would love to try this but we don’t eat pork. Any suggestions on how to make this kosher friendly? Thanks!
You can substitute your favourite beef, chicken or turkey sausage. The flavours would be a bit different depending on the seasoning but who knows, it could be delicious!
[…] tend to make a lot of Picadillo and Caldo Verde during a Whole30. They’re easy, filling, and total crowd-pleasers. Plus, they taste better the […]