In a large soup pot, sauté the onion, celery, and carrot with ¼ cup water for about 10 minutes, adding water as needed to prevent burning or sticking.
Now add the garlic, thyme, rosemary sprigs (or the dried versions) as well as red pepper flakes, bay leaf, black pepper. Stir and cook for another minute.and continue to sauté for another minute.
Now add the beans and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf, stir in the nutritional yeast and turn the heat off.
Remove 3 to 4 cups of the soup and place in a blender and blend until smooth. Return the blended soup to the pot and stir to combine. You can also use an immersion blender and blend about half the soup. This gives the soup a slightly thicker texture. Stir in the kale and lemon juice and let sit for a few minutes until the kale wilts.
Taste and reseason with salt and pepper as needed. Divide among bowls and enjoy (with some crusty bread if possible!).