What’s for Dinner? Spicy Black Bean Soup

Yeah, ok…so I’m into soups right now. It’s February in Michigan. Need I say more?

While planning my meals this week I stumbled upon a picture of black bean soup and I knew I just HAD to make it. Plus, we are trying to reduce our grocery bill a little by adding in at least one vegetarian meal each week and this fits the bill: it’s filling, nutritious, has adequate protein, warms the body and it’s vegetarian.

In search of a good recipe I came across many online, but nothing quite seemed right (I felt like Goldilocks and the 3 Soup Recipes…one was too bland, one was too labor intensive, etc, etc.) until I found this Black Bean Soup recipe from The Novice Chef blog. The beautiful picture drew me in…

Spicy Black Bean Soup from TheNoviceChefBlog.com

and the recipe seemed totally doable on a weeknight AND sounded like it would taste good…and when she said the soup was even ass friendly I KNEW a chef with a sense of humor was worth a try!

Spicy Black Bean Soup

by Jessica (The Novice Chef)


3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large white onions, chopped
4 large jalapenos, minced
1 large shallot, minced
5 garlic cloves, minced **see notes
2 1/2 tablespoons cumin
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons white pepper
2 teaspoons dried oregano
6 (14.5 oz) cans low sodium black beans (4 cans drained & rinsed, 2 cans with liquid) **see notes
6 cups water, plus 3 tablespoons Better Than Bouillon Vegetarian No Chicken Base **see notes


In a large heavy bottomed stock pot, over medium high heat, add olive oil, onions, jalapeno, shallot and garlic. Sauté until translucent.
Add spices and mix until well combined. Cook for 3 minutes more.
Add beans and broth (water + better than bouillon), bring to a simmer. Simmer until soup has thickened slightly, about 40-45 minutes.
Using an immersion blender (or using the transfer 1 cup at a time to a blender method and back to the pot method), blend about half of the soup until smooth.
Serve with a scoop of sour cream, green onions, and maybe even a grilled cheese sandwich!

Notes: One of the ingredients in Better Than Bouillon (BTB) Vegetarian No Chicken Base is hydrolyzed corn starch, which is another name for MSG (yikes!) so I cannot recommend using this product! I used chicken broth instead of the water + BTB but if you want a truly vegetarian soup use vegetable broth.  To save another penny or two, instead of canned black beans I used dried black beans in bulk (16oz) which I soaked overnight covered in water with a dash of apple cider vinegar. Drain and rinse before using. Being the garlic lover that I am, I used a WHOLE bulb 🙂 I also added 2 cans of diced tomatoes for a little extra flair.

SAVE TIME: double this recipe and freeze the extra in 16oz freezer-safe Mason Jars to pull out for dinner-in-a-pinch.


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