Hearty White Bean Soup

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I live in Texas and yesterday a cold front blew in making it a perfect time for a hearty white bean soup.  We have been enjoying quite a mild fall season, so with this first cold front, I decided to make this yummy soup in our crock pot.

white bean soup

As I have said before, I love crock pot meals because you can throw everything in and walk away.  This crock pot soup is no exception.  It will fill your house with some pretty mouth watering aromas!  This is the perfect soup for a day spent in your pj’s relaxing and staying in from the cold outdoors.

White Bean Soup

Hearty White Bean Soup

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

Total Time: 8 hours, 30 minutes

Hearty White Bean Soup

This hearty white bean soup will warm you up on the coldest of days and leave you wanting more.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups veggie stock
  • 4 cups white beans (We use about 1 1/2 cups dried beans that expands to 4 cups after soaking.)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 6 organic carrots
  • 6 celery stalks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 T parsley
  • 1/2 tsp sage
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  • In a food processor, finely chop the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic.
  • Put everything in a crock pot, turn on low, and let the contents slowly get warm.
  • After they are warm (about an hour), you can turn on high and let slow cook for some time.

The longer you can let it cook, the better. I would suggest waiting to salt the soup after everything has had a chance to cook. If you salt a soup too early, you run the risk of it being too salty as some of the liquid inevitably boils off. Enjoy!

http://mywholefoodlife.com/2012/11/13/hearty-white-bean-soup/

148 thoughts on “Hearty White Bean Soup

          1. Thank you! I didn’t realize it wasn’t that much of a difference! Making it this am especially for my husband. Have a good day!

          2. If you have a little extra it’s okay too. Soup recipes don’t have to be exact. I hope you enjoy the recipe! :)

  1. Okay, so I have a weird question………and it’s only bc I have certain small people in my house that just ignore beans and veggies……but have you or has anyone tried this soup by puree-ing it all? and maybe serving it over rice or a veggie based pasta? I wasn’t sure how the texture would turn out if I tried. Thanks

    1. I made this today and pureed half the soup so it thickened up, but still had junks of beans and veggies. It was very good!

  2. I can not wait to try this recipe! This will be my first time soaking beans, so to get 4 cups soaked, would it be 2 cups dried?
    Thanks! You rock!

    1. That sounds about right to me. I always just eyeball it. Since it’s a soup, it’s okay if it’s not exact. Hope you like it. It’s one of my faves. :)

  3. Making this tonight :). Already in the crock pot. Do you use navy beans or great northern beans in your soups when they call for white beans? I have navy beans in this soup but I used great northern beans in your 3 bean and veggie soup which we LOVED by the way. Just wanted to see if it mattered what kind of white bean I used.

    Thanks again for your blog and fb page. We have been a month now with no processed foods and your recipes are wonderful and tasty and my kids approve of everything I have made so far.

    1. Good for you to be off processed foods! I am happy my recipes are helping you. :) I usually use great northern beans, but navy beans should work well too. Please report the results so I can tell others in the future.

      1. I use half navy beans and half great northern beans when I make this. Making it for the second time today. So yummy!

  4. This is probably a dumb question, but do you cook the beans separately (after soaking) or do the 8 hours in the crockpot take care of that? I just made a huge batch of your veggie stock, and now and excited to make some soup this week!!

    1. I just soak them over night and they will soften enough in the crock pot. If I was using the beans in a cold dish, I would boil them in the morning after soaking over night.

  5. I made this and is was SO good. I made it on top the stove and let it simmer for a couple of hours. My hubby, who is super picky, LOVED it. Mine got really thick, so I figure the longer you simmer it, the thicker it gets. I actually didn’t mean to simmer it that long, but i’m glad I did. Everyone who likes bean soup, Make This!! This is the first online recipe I liked the looks of while searching for months. Glad I found it!!!

  6. Could you recommend a substitution for the celery or can it simply be left out? Odd food allergy sufferer here, can’t eat celery.

  7. Thanks so much for this recipe and your inspiration. I have been a vegetarian for, well, since college, and in April 2012 I convinced my husband to get on the same path (he’s from Texas, now living in VT so you can pretty much guess what a meat lover he was!) He especially dislikes soup, so I was tentative putting this in front of him last night. But guess what? This was a HUGE hit! I intuitively did as others had commented (duh, I should always read the comments first) and used my stick blender to puree half of this so the soup was thicker. After the first bite my hubs suggested adding brown rice, which luckily I make and freeze in small batches, so I threw that in and it really was like a creamy chicken and rice soup, without the guilt, the processed foods, and the sodium. I look forward to following you and trying more of your recipes. This one was a home run, even in the middle of a 100 degree heat wave, which is saying something :)

  8. I’m gluten intolerant, so I was wondering what I could replace the stock cubes with? I live in the Netherlands, and I’ve looked everywhere, but can’t find a gluten-free variety… And I ADORE soup (and your recipes!!)!

  9. Hhmmmm.
    Should be interesting.
    At 54t years of age, I’ve never used anything other than a huge kettle type pot to cook beans in.
    I’ve also ONLY eaten and used DRY beans. Never have had canned beans. Maybe coz my Mom was raised in the hills of Southeastern KY and cooked such good, wholesome, foods. I remember always having plenty of bags of dry beans in the cabinet.
    My Moms favorite was Navy beans, my brother only wanted Great Northern. Wow. He really loved them. Me? Well, I liked both of those types &the Pinto, too!

  10. Oooops.
    Somehow I wasn’t able to finish…..
    Anyway, so, this will all be kind of new to me. Haha.
    Using a crockpot, for beans.
    Interesting. In this area, (South Midwest) we HAVE to have CORNBREAD, baked in a cast iron skillet with our beans. Simply HAVE to!! Oh, raw onion, on the side, too. :-)
    I will let y’all know how it turns out in a few days, when I make this.
    Looks like a wonderful combination of spices, flavors, etc. Mmmmmm.
    Thanks for sharing, Melissa.
    I think during Summer, we really do NEED MORE Crockpot recipes (main dish). Helpscut down on heat in kitchen/house, etc., electric bill, etc., etc.

    1. I have many others on the blog if you are interested. I personally love the sweet potato chili. One of my faves…

    2. Delynn,
      I hope you have taken the leap of beans in the crock pot! Yes, first of all, definitely saving in the electricity department, and so easy… just walk away and forget them for 8 hours or so! I make batches of all kinds of beans, sodium free, and then freeze them in 15 oz or so size containers (which would equal a can) and then… all set whenever you need them!

  11. My gut has been killing me since yesterday (wondering if my 4 yr old’s celiac disease came from me…) and someone pinned this recipe this morning and it sounds like the perfect thing. simple and wholesome. It is in the crockpot as I type and I am impatient for the next 4 hours to pass quickly!!

  12. I make my bean soup with veggie stock made from ‘suppegrunen’ which is celeraic, lauch(a large green onion) carrot and parsley…then I soak the beans in water overnight changing water about 6 times (gets the gas out) and then add herbs to it….I am almost done with my white bean…next is Pinto beans…my personal fav…..my dad like them with cornbread and fried potatoes and onions…mmmmm

  13. Make this right now for the 2nd time. It is SO good!!! I buy organic dried beans and I also make this on the stove instead of the crock pot. It takes a good 3 hours or so. If broth evaporates, add some more or water….mine turned out perfect!! Also I didn’t add the celery and carrots until about 1.5 hours before done time……just use your judgement. Yum!!!! Oh…I also double the recipe 8 cups beans and 8 cups veggie broth :)

  14. I have husband who likes meat for main meal. Could I add a ham bone to this recipe? Would the amount of broth or seasonings need to be increased?

    1. I have never cooked with ham bone, but I imagine it would be fine in the recipe. Not sure what kind of flavors it adds, so I am not sure what to say about the spices. Maybe take a taste while it’s cooking and adjust if needed?

  15. decided to make this yesterday after i saw your post. it was late so i made the veg stock in the crock pot overnight while i soaked the beans. chopped up the soup vegs too so all was ready for this am. and thought i may as well throw together some overnight oats as well while i’m at it. i was very productive while i slept thanks to you :D today has been a breeze and the soup is looking and smelling lovely and perfect for this fall day. thank you!!

  16. I made this recipe today and it was delicious! I pureed the veggies and half the beans to thicken it up, and added diced chicken. It was a big hit! Thanks!

  17. Trying this recipe for the first time tonight. Recently returned to veganism after a few years break. Doing it whole foods style this time around instead of all the processed replacement foods. Thanks so much for all of the recipes and resources. My kids have loved the recipes we have tried so far.

  18. I am making this right now! I love your website; it has made me more cognizant of the ingredients in packaged foods. The healthy alternatives you’ve created are great. Can’t wait to eat this soup!

  19. I am making this today but first I am cooking up a beautiful nitrate free organic ham hock I just know its going to be amazing. Not planning on changing anything else about the recipe I’ll let you know how it turns out.

  20. Beans double in size when soaked overnight and expand again when cooked. In general, 3/4 c dry beans measures 1 1/2 c soaked beans and 2 c cooked beans.

  21. I use this recipe regularly. I use homemade chicken (or hen, as it may be) stock, ham, fresh roasted kale, and, of course, tons more garlic! Yummy!

  22. What size crock pot are people using? I have one that is around 3 quarts and another that is 4 quarts. The 3 quart one (which is about 30 some years older works better.

  23. I did something wrong. Mine didn’t turn out correctly and tasted too much like onion. Could I have chopped the onion too finely? Would that increase the onion taste? The onion was overpowering.

      1. 6 hours. I am sure it was me, but I can’t figure out what I did wrong so I am reluctant to try it again. I don’t normally chop things in the food processor, and I am wondering if I made them too small and then had problems because of the size. That is the only step where I think I could have made a mistake. I am not sure if that makes sense though.

  24. You don’t mention chopping up the garlic – does this mean we throw them in the crockpot whole? I assume so, but wanted to check. Thanks!

  25. I don’t have any veggie stock on hand but I do have organic chicken stock. Do you think it would taste ok with this soup?

  26. I just made this yesterday – it’s very cold in the PNW right now (but sunny!) and this was perfect to have waiting. I made it with chicken stock, and with extra beans (I just soaked and used the whole bag of northern beans), and then we sauteed kale and garlic in olive oil and added it to the soup on serving. It was great! We also made some gf biscuits and served with it. I’ll definitely make this again – great flavor and so easy! My house smelled amazing!

  27. How long do the beans have to soak. Do they need to be boiled before they go in the crock pot? You motivated me to try dried beans instead of canned, but I’m a novice:) I totally forgot to soak them overnight.

    1. They need to be soaked overnight. If you plan on having the crock pot on all day long, then you can throw them in after just soaking. If you want to cook the soup in just a few hours, you will need to boil the beans for about 10 minutes prior to throwing them in the crock pot.

  28. I’ve had this soup cooking for only 2 hours and it already tastes amazing!! I can hardly wait to eat it later. I forgot to soak my beans overnight so instead I found an article online that suggested putting them in a pot with 5 inches of water over them and bring it to a boil. Then I took it off the heat and let it sit for an hour. The beans are getting soft but they’re not quite ready yet. But I’m sure they will be in the next couple of hours. I omitted the sage and thyme because I don’t like them. So instead I added some rosemary and a handful of fresh flat leaf parsley because I happened to have it. Thanks for a wonderful recipe. I doubled mine because I had so many beans and I can’t wait to have it in the freezer for the next cold day. Which we will have constantly for the next 4 months in Michigan.

  29. I’m not sure what happened…I halved the recipe and all the spices and there is a really strong flavor that is not nice. Not sure what herb it might be that tastes that way. I made sure to half the herbs too but this just did not turn out. It smelled so promising too :(

    1. Really? I’m sorry that you didn’t enjoy it. Sometimes halving a recipe can be tricky. It’s not always an even split. :(

  30. Used this recipe to dress up navy beans already cooked in the crockpot. I did leave out the bay leaf as I consider that an ingredient for a longer cooking time than I had. I chopped and par-cooked the veg in vegetable stock and then added them to th beans. Quite tasty. Oldest daughter and family live in Plano. Good people in TX!

  31. I apologize if I missed this somewhere but how many servings is this? I know with whole foods its more about eating until satisfied but I still tend to eat more than I should lol.

  32. Also, I can never find vegetable “stock” in the grocery store, only “broth”, not sure if this will make a big difference or not?

  33. This looks delish. Can’t wait to try it! Question re the spices: I saw you answer someone saying that you used dried spices in this. I only have ground versions of these two spices. Can I use those and if so, how do you recommend that I adjust the amounts? Thanks.

  34. This looks yummy. All I have are canned beans. Do I put those in at beginning and slow cook for the 8 hours? Will they be too mushy? Thank you!

  35. HI. I made this soup today and when it was done all I could taste was salt even though I didn’t add any. Could it all have come from the celery? Not sure how to save this soup. It’s very bland but salty. I may puree it and use it as a base to another soup.

  36. I made this the other day and it was just ok. I barely added any salt. Used homemade veggie stock and followed the recipe but it had almost no flavor. It definitely could have used more salt but I’m not sure that would have saved it.

    On another note, how do you deal with all the bean skins? I used dried and soaked over night and when we ate this I felt like I was just chewing up bean skins. Not sure if that’s a common problem.

    1. I have never had an issue with the skins. You could puree the whole thing if the bean skins are an issue next time. Sorry it was not what you hoped. :(

  37. I neglected to read the comments and forged ahead with the recipe so I came home to bean paste. I measured four cups of dried beans and soaked them overnight. Perhaps the recipe should be edited to read 1 cup dried beans soaked overnight OR two 15 oz cans. It was my own mistake but it was my first time using dried beans and the ingredient list was not perfectly clear.

    1. I’m sorry the instructions were not clear enough for you. I have edited the post. Let me know if it makes more sense. I hope you were able to salvage the soup. :(

      1. That’s terrific. Thank you! It may save someone else from making my mistake. I might add some cumin, chili powder, and sauteed peppers and onions for unfried refried beans and fill some burritos or enchiladas.

        I’ll have to try this again! Normally I read comments I don’t know why I didn’t this time. Thanks for sharing.

  38. Made this today, it was great! Used dried navy beans and added a tablespoon of white miso and 1/2 T nutritional yeast at the end of cookimg in lieu of salt, also added some fresh ground pepper and a touch of cayenne. Thanks for the recipe!

  39. I won’t lie, I am always a little skeptical when it comes to deceptively simple, few-ingredient slow-cooker recipes as they tend to come out bland and watery, but this one is delicious. I added fresh sage and rosemary from the garden and a hunk of parmesan during cooking as well as juice from half a lemon. Super good. This will be a go-to, especially in cooler months. Thanks!

  40. I have made this soup several times. I follow it exactly except I chop all my veggies by hand – prefer them more coarse. I think the seasoning is PERFECT. I use navy beans. I have read all the comments and I find some of them interesting and others puzzling. Such an easy recipe – and the leftovers taste better every day that passes. Love this soup!

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