One of the big surprises in my recent life is that my kids like beans. I was soooo happy to find that they really liked this soup. I even put it in their lunch boxes one or two days.
I don’t know what it is, but cooking with dried beans makes me feel super domestic. Kind of like baking bread from scratch or making homemade chicken broth. There is just something about making something on your own that we usually buy from the store. It’s healthier and soooo much better tasting. Canned beans are a great staple and there are plenty in my pantry, believe me. However, I do think starting with dried beans makes a big difference in your final product.
I also made Cajun red beans and rice this week and looooooved it!
The little toasts in the picture have a combo of goat cheese, olive oil and fig preserves spread on them and then broiled. Yes, you should do that if you are wondering.
We still have a few weeks left of soup season. Try this recipe before it’s too late!
Note: You can find the bean soup mix in with all the other dried beans at your store. I think I actually used a 16 bean package which is just fine. It comes with a packet of seasoning. You can use it in this recipe or leave out. You may find that you won’t need it.
If you like this recipe you may also want to try these other recipes from Becki’s Whole Life…
Source: Slightly adapted from Cooking Light
- 1 (12-ounce) package variety dried seven-bean mix
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
- 4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup chopped carrot (about 2)
- 1 cup chopped celery (3 ribs)
- 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
- ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 teaspoons dried basil or 2 tablespoons fresh
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 tablespoon fresh
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 ham hock – I used about 2 cups of chopped leftover ham
- 1 (14-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Sort and wash beans; place in a large Dutch oven. Cover with water to 2 inches above beans; cover and let stand 8 hours. Drain beans. You can also do a quick soak by bringing the water to boil and then taking the beans off the heat to soak for 2 hours.
- Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with olive oil. Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Add beans, broth, and remaining ingredients except lemon juice; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 2½ hours.
- Remove ham hock from pan (if using); cool slightly. Remove ham from bones; finely chop and return meat to pan. Discard bones, skin, and fat.
- Discard bay leaf. Stir in juice.