Gnocchetti sardi con fagioli e cavolo nero

Pasta with beans and kale   Our original home cooking

Pasta with beans and kale is a recipe of mine made with Sardinian malloredus (short pasta of Sardinia) dressed with bean-and-kale sauce. It's a healthy recipe for its technique of cooking and ingredients. Recipe anti-cancer, really! Perfect for your daily menu in fall and winter.

Ingredients / Serves 4

  • 400g (14 ounces) kale
  • 1 400 g (14 ounces) can white beans
  • 3 little young onions, finely chopped (100g - 3 1/2 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons dried chives
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 150g (5 1/3 ounces) peeled and chopped tomatoes
  • 250g (8 3/4 ounces) Sardinian little dumplings (malloreddus) or short pasta you prefer
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Half a glass of white wine
  • Salt
  • Time:
    preparation: 30 minutes
    cooking: 50 minutes
    total: 1 h 20 minutes
  • Difficulty:
    easy recipe
  • How many calories in a serving?
    Calories: 406 (kcal) 21 % GDA (*)- 1699 (kJ)
    Protein: 13.7 (g) 28 % GDA
    Total fat: 11.5 (g) 17 % GDA
    Total carbohydrate: 66.7 (g) 25 % GDA
    Sugars: 8.3 (g) 10 % GDA

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Recipe for pasta with beans and kale

Preparation and cooking

  • - Prepare kale.
    Clean, wash and boil kale in abundant salt water.
    Drain it very well, let it cool for some minutes and then cut into thin strips.
    Put apart its cooking water.
  • - Prepare pasta sauce.
    Sauté chopped onions in some water in a non-stick frying pan.
    Add kale strips together with white wine, tomatoes, aromatic herbs and beans (well drained from their preservation juice).
    Season to taste with salt.
    Cook all ingredients for about 10 minutes over a medium heat, stirring now and then.
    Don't let your sauce get too dry.
  • - Cook pasta.
    Meanwhile cook Sardinian little dumplings or the pasta you've chosen until al dente stage in the same water you've used to boil kale.
    Add other water to reach the suggested water amount to cook pasta very well.
    If your sauce is too dry take a ladle of boiling water and pour it into bean-and-kale sauce.
  • - The last step.
    Drain pasta very well and transfer into the pan with your sauce.
    Finish cooking pasta in the pan over high heat for a minute.
    Stir with a wooden spoon now and then.
    Turn off the stove, add olive oil and stir.
    Your pasta is ready!

Just before serving

  • - Serve at once in individual plates.
  • - If you want, accompany your pasta with grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese in a little bowl.



  • - Naturally you can use dried beans (120g - 4 1/4 ounces). In this case you have to soak them for almost 12 hours and then boil for about 90 minutes or until they are tender. You need much more time but it's necessary if you have to eat without salt (canned beans are full of salt). Rememebr: all my recipes can be made without salt because they are rich in aromatic herbs.
  • - You can prepare this first course with fresh Sardinian little dumplings. In this case you have to cook 500 g
    (1.1 pound) fresh pasta. But obviously you can use the short pasta you prefer.
  • - You can also boil kale 1 day ahead.
  • - This is a healthy recipe according to Mediterranean diet for chosen ingredients and cooking technique. As you have just read I do not brown onion in olive oil and add olive oil only at the end.

Menu planning

  • - Malloreddus with beans and kale is the best choice for your fall and winter weekly menu.
    If you'd like to serve it to your friends be sure they like kale!

Healthy eating

  • - Sardinian dumplings with kale and white beans is a typical vegetarian dish but it's ideal for people who like healthy eating too. This dish is full of ingredients and so I'm used to cook only 60g (2.1 ounces) of pasta per head. If you have it for lunch you can complete your meal with fresh fruit. If you cook the usual amount of pasta (80g - 2.8 ounces) you have to choose between wine and fruit. If you are still hungry scrunch some raw seasonal vegetables. Don't add any meat or fish dish as beans have a the right amount of protein.
    Here are the doses per head: 60g (2.1 ounces) pasta, 100g (3 1/2 ounces) kale, 2 tablespoons canned beans, aromatic herbs and tomatoes in the amount you want (they don't increase significantly the nutrition facts), a bit of white wine and 2 teaspoons olive oil.
  • - If you want to drink a glass of wine remember you have to add 80-85 kCal per 100 ml.


What's the right wine for " Pasta with beans and kale "?

My husband and I generally pair rosé wine such as wines producted in Salento - Apulia. But Lambrusco (red wine of Emilia Romagna) could be another good idea.