Coconut Sweet Potato Kale Soup

When I go to Whole Foods, I’m like a kid in a toy store. I could spend hours perusing the aisles, admiring the colors, and playing with the packages. This goes for farmer’s markets on warm days too. They are trips I always look forward to and on which I nerd out, although I’m sure I’m not alone in the ever increasing world of foodies.

For me, Whole Foods outings are particularly special because although I’m surrounded by two of these produce galleries within a bike ride’s reach, a college kid’s budget makes these trips unpalatably scant. Luckily for me, my mom knows me well and gifted me with a Whole Food’s gift card this past Christmas.

For the first couple months, I’d been saving most of it, dropping by for a bottle of kombucha or two here and there. However, this past week, I decided I needed a getaway from the regular grocery store to one that would surround me with fresh eye candy, left and right. It’s here that I picked up some lovely Lacinato kale and deep orange hued sweet potatoes.

Yes, this post makes me sound like I come from a family of healthy nut hippies, which I guess to an extent could be true, but kale, sweet potatoes, and kombucha could easily become your best supermarket friend’s too. I decided to take my two prized produce purchases and throw them together in a coconut-laced soup. Feel free to indulge in full-fat coconut milk for a richer, slightly sweeter broth, or keep it on the light side and proceed as is.

Coconut Sweet Potato Kale Soup

(Serves 4-6)

-2 Tbsp. olive oil
-1 medium onion, diced
-2 garlic cloves, minced
-2 tsp. finely minced ginger
-1 large sweet potato, cut into bite-sized cubes
-1 heaping Tbsp. curry powder
-1 tsp. cinnamon
-2 scant tsp. salt
-1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
-1 Tbsp. brown sugar
-4 1/2 cups of water
-13.5 fl. oz. can lite coconut milk
-1 lb. kale, chopped

In a medium-large pot, heat oil over medium high. Saute onion until nearly translucent. Add garlic and ginger, and cook for another minute, stirring to prevent sticking.  Add spices, salt, brown sugar, and sweet potatoes. Cook additional minute, stirring frequently.

Add water, cover, and bring to a simmer. Cook until sweet potatoes are nearly fork tender, 15-20 minutes. Add kale and coconut milk and cook a remaining 5-10 minutes, or until kale is tender. Serve with a side of brown rice, if desired.

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  • Reply
    The Candid RD
    February 19, 2012 at 7:17 am

    Even though Whole Foods is (in a way) our competition, I also enjoy shopping there every once in a while. Its fun perusing the aisles, like you said, and learning about new products and buying some special foods every once in a while.
    The soup sounds wonderful. I love the combination of flavors! Ginger, curry, cinnamon, sweet potato….YUM!

  • Reply
    February 19, 2012 at 10:06 am

    That looks brilliant. I think coconut must be one of my favourite soup ingredients – it works SO well.

  • Reply
    janet @ the taste space
    February 19, 2012 at 10:30 am

    I don’t shop at WF very much, to be honest. The ethnic grocers are where the cheap exotic ingredients lie… but I will admit that while the regular kale is only $1.50 at my favourite grocer, it ain’t lacinato kale! Love that stuff but I just wish it weren’t $4/bunch!

    Looks like a great soup!

  • Reply
    Hannah (BitterSweet)
    February 19, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    I’m exactly the same when shopping at Whole Foods! If only I could find someone else with as much enthusiasm for it, that would kind of be the perfect date. 😉 The soup sounds fantastic, perfecting warming and satisfying

  • Reply
    May 14, 2012 at 8:55 am

    what kind of curry powder do you use in this recipe? Thanks!

    • Reply
      Grace Dickinson
      May 14, 2012 at 11:29 am

      Curry powders do vary from brand to brand, recipe to recipe, so just pick your favorite! Any recipe/jar labeled “curry powder” will do.

  • Reply
    March 18, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Just made this, and I feel so healthy — my head actually cleared as I was eating it! I followed the recipe exactly except added a half teaspoon of green curry paste. Will definitely make again, thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      Grace Dickinson
      March 18, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      So good to hear this! I love the idea of the green curry paste with the sweet potatoes.

  • Reply
    Sweet Potato, Kale, and Coconut Milk Soup | simplecookblog
    April 21, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    […] salads, as chips, in tacos I was ready to give up. To me, it just tastes bitter. But then I found this recipe and decided to give it one last try. Success! Flavorful […]

  • Reply
    May 31, 2013 at 1:08 am

    Made this soup for dinner tonight. I did use veggie broth instead and 1/8 tsp of ground ginger…didn’t have fresh in the house. It was a HUGE hit. Have you tried blending it? My family loves smooth soup…how about freezing?

    • Reply
      May 31, 2013 at 8:40 am

      Hi Jennifer,

      Glad it went over well with your family! I haven’t tried blending it, but I could totally see that being delicious! I’ve done a lot of blended coconut sweet potato/squash-type soups, and even some blended green soups as well, so my bet is that it would work well with this.

      I have froze this before. The coconut milk will separate a bit, but just give it a good stir as you’re reheating, and it should be fine!

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