My Favorite White Bean Soup

Believe it or not, I am not a huge fan of beans.  I want to be because I know that they are quite good for me and for my tum-tum but….eh?  I tend to be very meh about most bean things.  The exceptions are my White Bean & Asiago Puree, Daal (recipes forthcoming) and Deborah Madison’s Rosemary White Bean Soup from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone.

I love this soup. A lot. 

Deborah Madison’s recipe is excellent.  The first couple of times I made this, I made sure to follow it precisely.  But soups are so forgiving, its OK if things shift along the way.  I’ve skipped the rosemary infused olive oil on this lazy Saturday and taken a few other shortcuts/liberties but I think the results are still just lovely.

All the following amounts range from accurate to guesstimations, but I try. Here’s what I do:


  • 2-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 small carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 tsp celery flakes (J despises celery so we never, ever have it in the house)
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic (from a jar, b/c today was a lazy Saturday)
  • 1 medium yellow summer squash, chopped (this is totally optional, I just threw it in because it was burning a hole in my veg bin)
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 14oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 4 cups chicken or no chicken broth made from Better Than Bouillon.
  • 4 cans white beans (I used 1/2 cannellini and 1/2 navy b/c it was what I had)
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan

Sweat the carrots, onions, squash and garlic in the olive oil until the carrots start to soften.  Add all the spices and let the heat release all the spice and herb oils.  Add tomatoes, broth and beans and leave to simmer for 30-45 minutes, with the lid ajar.  I was hungry so I went with 30 minutes.  Puree with a stick blender, stir in parmesan and grind some fresh pepper in.  Its delicious.  Too thick?  Add more broth.

Serve with more cheese, maybe a bit of pasta or some crusty, toasted and buttered bread.  It’s excellent topped with some homemade pesto!


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