Vegan Creamy Kale Soup with Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

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You’d never guess this luscious, creamy kale soup is totally dairy-free! The secret is in a silky base made from raw cashews and just a bit of potato. Top with spicy roasted chickpeas for a bowl of cozy vegan deliciousness!

I’m on quite the creamy vegan soup kick lately, having posted creamy cauliflower soup, asparagus soup, and tomato soup in recent months, among others. It’s starting to feel like spring, but still pretty darn chilly out. I’m not ready to let go of soup yet!

This is actually an older recipe that I first posted way back in the early days of this blog. It’s a favorite, and I thought it was about time I gave the photos a makeover and the recipe a few tweaks.

What makes this soup extra special (besides the creamy, dairy-free deliciousness) is the roasted chickpeas. They’re totally optional, but who doesn’t love a topping with a little flavor and crunch on their soup?

Just toss the chickpeas with some olive oil, cayenne pepper and salt. If you prefer a heat-free version, skip the cayenne pepper. Arrange the chickpeas on a baking sheet and bake until crispy.

You can make the soup while the chickpeas roast. The creamy base starts with some cashews and a little bit of potato to thicken it up. (I know, I’ve been using that formula a lot lately, but it works so well!). You don’t even need to soak the cashews: just boil them with the potato, and then blend them up together.

In goes the kale. A lot of kale goes into this soup, so you’ll need to add it to the base in batches. Just add as much kale as will reasonably fit into the pot, and simmer for a minute or two until it wilts. Then you’ll have more room for the next batch.

Simmer everything until the kale is nice and soft, then blend it again. You can keep it as chunky or as smooth as you like.

Ladle into bowls, top with crispy roasted chickpeas, and dig in!

Tips for Making Delicious Creamy Kale Soup…

  • The roasted chickpeas will keep for a day or two in a sealed bag, but they won’t retain their crispness. Here’s a possible work around: roast just as many chickpeas as you plan on eating. Toss the rest with olive oil and seasonings, but hold off on roasting until the day of serving.
  • If you’re allergic to cashews, macadamia nuts may work as a substitute. I haven’t tested this, but they generally work well as an alternative. If you’re allergic to all nuts, you might be able to increase the amount of potato, and use less broth and more non-dairy milk.
  • Make sure your non-dairy milk is unsweetened. Every now and then I slip up and use a sweetened variety in a savory recipe and it always tastes funny.
  • Don’t feel like making the roasted chickpeas? Try topping your soup with some roasted pepitas or sunflower seeds instead.

4.8 from 5 votes Print

Vegan Creamy Kale Soup with Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

You’d never guess this luscious, creamy kale soup is totally dairy-free! The secret is in a silky base made from raw cashews and just a bit of potato. Top with spicy roasted chickpeas for a bowl of cozy vegan deliciousness!

CourseSoup CuisineAmerican Prep Time 20 minutes Cook Time 50 minutes Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes Servings 4 Calories 476 kcal Author Alissa


For the Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

  • 1(14 ounce) canchickpeas,rinsed and drained
  • 1tablespoonolive oil
  • ½teaspooncayenne pepper,or to taste
  • ½teaspoonsalt

For the Creamy Kale Soup

  • 1tablespoonolive oil
  • 1large onion,diced
  • 5garlic cloves,minced
  • 4-5cupsvegetable broth
  • 1cupraw cashews
  • 1 cupdiced russet potato
  • ¾poundcurly kale,about 1 medium bunch
  • 1cupunflavored and unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 1 ½tablespoonswhite wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Make the Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Place the chickpeas, olive oil, cayenne pepper and salt into a small bowl. Stir to completely coat the chickpeas.

  3. Arrange the chickpeas in an even layer on the baking sheet. Bake until crispy, about 50 minutes, rearranging them 2-3 times during baking to ensure even cooking.

Make the Creamy Kale Soup

  1. While the chickpeas roast, coat the bottom of a large pot with olive oil and place it over medium heat. When the oil is hot add the onion and sauté for about 5 minutes, until soft and translucent.

  2. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for about 1 minute more, until very fragrant.

  3. Add 4 cups of broth to the pot, along with the cashews and potato. Raise the heat and bring the liquid to a simmer.

  4. Lower the heat and allow it to simmer until the potato is very tender, about 20 minutes. 

  5. While the soup simmers, prepare the kale by removing the stems and roughly chopping the leaves.

  6. Remove the pot with the cashew mixture from heat. Transfer the soup to a food processor bowl in batches and blend until completely smooth. Return it to the pot.

  7. Place the pot back over medium heat and bring the liquid to a simmer. Add the kale leaves in batches, allowing each addition to simmer just until they wilt and you have enough room in the pot to add another batch. Push the leaves down with a spoon between batches.

  8. Allow the soup to simmer until the kale is very tender, about 20 minutes.

  9. Transfer the soup again to the food processor bowl, working in batches, and blend it to your desired smoothness. Return it to the pot.

  10. Stir in the milk and vinegar. Thin with an additional cup of broth if desired, and season the soup with salt and pepper to taste. 

  11. Heat the soup back up to a simmer. Remove from heat.

  12. Ladle into bowls and top with the spicy roasted chickpeas. Serve.

Nutrition FactsVegan Creamy Kale Soup with Spicy Roasted ChickpeasAmount Per ServingCalories 476Calories from Fat 223% Daily Value*Fat 24.8g38%Saturated Fat 4.3g22%Sodium 1553mg65%Potassium 948mg27%Carbohydrates 54.8g18%Fiber 8.1g32%Sugar 4.5g5%Protein 14g28%Calcium 220mg22%Iron 5.2mg29%* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.« Vietnamese Rice Noodle Salad with Hoisin Glazed TofuBarbecue Chickpea Burgers »

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This looks wonderful. Can’t wait to try it.


  • This soup was delicious! I still have problems getting the cashews to not have a “grainy” look. They didn’t feel grainy when I ate the soup, but I was wondering if I am doing something wrong. I have seen posts where they say to soak cashews anywhere from 20 minutes to 10 hours!


    • Whoa – this was AMAZING!!! Thank you so much for the recipe. Can’t wait until the next batch, but I have to, cuz I am super full now 🙂


      • Great soup! Tasty, easy and a great way to get more kale in. I will definitely be making this one again.

        Thanks, Alissa!


        • Enjoyed this one – used sunflower seeds instead of cashews, small Yukon Gold potatoes instead of Russet and rice vinegar instead white wine vinegar. Probably not nearly as smooth as cashews would be…but raw sunflower seeds are $1.49/lb at my local grocery store! I left the skin on the potatoes too – it complemented the kale nicely, as did a combination of black and white pepper. I did end up using around 5.5 cups of stock in order to get all of the kale in – I missed the first blending, so I ended using my immersion blender on the whole soup at the end. Next time, I’ll put the soup in my Vitamix before I add the kale – I think that will make it a 5 star recipe for me!

          I didn’t make the crispy chickpeas – although I love them! My oven is finicky with temps over 350°F (landlord: “well, it works” 😩) so I’ve done them on the stovetop before as well.


        • Hi, I’m Alissa! I’m a former attorney turned professional food blogger. I love creating vegan recipes with bold flavors!

          More about me →

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