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Smoky Black Bean Soup

Smoky and Satisfying Black Bean Soup

Black Bean Soup

Amanda Haas


My kids have always loved black beans, so I was looking to find a way to make them a more substantial meal instead of a side dish. This simple soup hits the spot. For richer flavor, you could use some chicken stock, but I like this version because it's completely vegetarian.

Smoky Black Bean Soup


  1. 1 1⁄4 cups dried black beans
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    3 cups chopped onion
    1 cup chopped red bell pepper
    1 tablespoon ground cumin
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    2 cups organic vegetable broth
    2 cups water
    2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
    1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
    1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    8 teaspoons shredded monterey jack cheese (optional)
    2 tablespoons finely chopped onion (optional)
    1⁄4 cup light sour cream (optional)
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)


  1. Sort and wash beans; place in a large saucepan. Cover with water to 2 inches above beans; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes; remove from heat. Cover and let stand 1 hour. Drain beans.
  2. Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add onion and bell pepper; cook 8 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. Add cumin, oregano, and garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add beans, vegetable broth, and water. Bring to a boil; partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour and 30 minutes or until beans are tender.
  3. Place half of bean mixture in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Blend until smooth. Return pureed soup to pan. Stir in lime juice and next 3 ingredients (through black pepper). Ladle soup into bowls; top evenly with cheese, onion, sour cream, and cilantro, if desired.

Amanda Haas is the culinary director of Williams-Sonoma's test kitchen. She's also the mother of 2 beautifully energetic boys, a cookbook author, a cooking video host, and the founder of One Family One Meal, a website that helps families menu plan, grocery shop, and cook on a budget. Her cookbook, Real Family Food, features this and other family-friendly recipes. Amanda’s newest cookbook, featuring delicious dishes focused on health and well-being, will be published by Chronicle Books at the end of the year.


Calories per serving
Image Source: Jim Bathie
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