White Bean Soup

By • December 27, 2012 • 23 Comments

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Author Notes: This is a simple, tomatoey bean soup that will serve you well all week long.Merrill Stubbs

Serves 6

  • 1 1/2 cups small white beans, rinsed
  • Salt
  • 6 cups chicken stock (homemade or low sodium), vegetable stock or water
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 2 small sprigs rosemary
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 3 large sage leaves
  • 26 ounces chopped tomatoes (I use Pomi), with their juices
  • 2 tablespoons good olive oil
  • Grated parmesan to taste
  1. Put the beans in a large pot and add enough water to cover them by at least 2 inches. Add a large pinch of salt. Bring the water to a boil and boil hard for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let the beans soak for at least an hour, and up to 4 hours.
  2. Drain the beans and return them to the pot. Add the chicken stock or water, garlic, herbs and a couple pinches of salt. Bring the beans to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the tomatoes and simmer gently, uncovered, until the beans are tender (30 to 60 minutes more), stirring occasionally. If the soup seems too thick at any point, just add a little water.
  3. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove the herb sprigs and stir in the olive oil and some grated parmesan just before serving.
Jump to Comments (23)

Tags: baby food, beans, New Year's, soup

Comments (23) Questions (2)

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Stringio

11 days ago radovanovic.rade

The most traditional dish in the Balkans. Especially in Serbia, Bosnia and Macedonia. We make it both ways with or without meat. When it is with meat it is with smoked meat like pork ribs, pork sausage, knee, lamb smoked meat, rarely with beef and turkey. We rarely use rosemary, sage or thyme in this dish but rather the smoked bay leaf. I never heard somebody using the broth but who knows. Useful tip! Put some fresh mint leaves before the tomato to avoid stomac bloating that beans often give. You wil hardly feel the taste of it. We often like it hot (pepper, dried hot paprika, etc.).

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13 days ago whmcdevitt

it gives water as an alternative!

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13 days ago Liz Cleerdin

If this is part of your meatless Monday series, why isn't vegetable stock being used instead of chicken?!!

Merrill

13 days ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

You could also use vegetable stock, which I will add to the recipe as another option.

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about 1 month ago Kate McGinnis

Why are dried beans preferred for this recipe rather than canned beans?

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5 months ago whmcdevitt

can i make a suggestion?? i don't understand why people make a comment without first reading them. i'm shocked by some of them. an example is "why is there fish or a leech or something awful in this picture.......come on. did you really think thats what was in the beautiful bowl of soup. my god!!

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7 months ago Lauren

How would you modify this for canned beans?

Merrill

7 months ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

I think you'll have much better results if you used dried beans, but if you only have canned you'll only need to cook the soup for a few minutes (no more than 10), and you can add the other ingredients to the beans all at once.

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8 months ago miriamshapiro1101

i only have dried beans on hand. Can you help me modify the recipe? thanks :)

Merrill

8 months ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

The recipe calls for dried beans, so no modifications are necessary!

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about 1 year ago hannah

A wonderful intersection of healthy, easy, and delicious -- this soup simply rocks!

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over 1 year ago cschaefer

I made this for my 7 month old daughter a few months ago. From her first taste to the last, and every time I fed this to her, she ate with animation and excitement. I could hardly put the beans in her mouth fast enough. I pushed the beans easily through a sifter and was able to freeze about 21 separate ice cube-sized servings for her future meals. Night after night these frozen reserves were my go-to base for her meals and she never grew tired of it. I just picked up another round of ingredients from our market & will be making it again this week. Thank you Merrill and I love your “Cooking for Clara” feature.

Stringio

almost 2 years ago Peggy Sawyer

WHY is there a fish, or a leech, or something AWFUL in this picture?

Merrill

almost 2 years ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

It's a sage leaf!

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almost 2 years ago amc100

I thought it was a mussel!

Stringio

over 1 year ago Peggy Sawyer

I am glad to hear that it's a bay leaf because we couldn't figure out what it was. It is very good soup. :)

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about 1 year ago emery

How old are you ??

Open-uri.26765

almost 2 years ago amy.damoulakis

You wouldn't happen to have the nutritional information and serving size would you? I'm figuring out Weight Watcher points :-)

Merrill

almost 2 years ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

So sorry, I don't!

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almost 2 years ago Carrie Ruehlman

So you don't have to soak the beans overnight?

Merrill

almost 2 years ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

Nope! This method works just as well.

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almost 2 years ago jk_pohren

6 chicken stock? what does that mean? 6 cups I assume?

Merrill

almost 2 years ago Merrill Stubbs

Merrill is a co-founder of Food52.

Yes, sorry -- just corrected this!