Chicken Sausage with Lentils and Kale

Cooking the sausage in the pan adds a flavorful base for the rest of the dish. Finishing it under the broiler gives the sausage a nice brown finish and the kale a crunchy texture.

Finish it off with grated parmesan and serve over cooked quinoa or brown rice. You can always skip the sausage to make it vegetarian, but you'll want to add in more spices like cayenne to increase flavor.

Note: Check the lentils package to see if they need to be presoaked.

Serves 4.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound spicy italian chicken sausage, removed from casing
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 (28-oz) can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable stock or water
  • 1 cup green lentils, rinsed
  • 4 cups curly kale, leaves stripped and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cups chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


Step 1

Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat in a cast iron pan until shimmering. Add the sausage, breaking it apart with a wooden spoon, stirring until only a little pink remains, about 3 minutes. Place sausage in a bowl and set aside.

Step 2

In the same pan over medium heat, add remaining oil and heat until shimmering. Add the shallot and a pinch of salt, stirring until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the cumin, scraping up any bits of browned sausage at the bottom of the pan, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds more.

Step 3

Pour in the tomatoes and stock, breaking the tomatoes apart with a wooden spoon once softened. Adjust heat to maintain a simmer, then add the lentils. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until softened, about 30 minutes, or until lentils are tender to the bite.

Step 4

Adjust broiler rack to 6 inches below the heating element and preheat broiler to high. Stir in the sausage and kale, until wilted. Place pan under the broiler until sausage is browned, about 4 minutes. Top with parsley and serve with crusty bread, if desired.

From the Kitchen

How other cooks made this recipe

Inspired by a dish I had at a restaurant that paired finely chopped hard boiled egg with lentils and bacon and it was a revelation. Keeping the kale in this one to up the good-for-me factor.