Greek Bean Soup made with canned cannellini beans and veggies, a delicious and healthy recipe that is low carb and gluten free. Light, with a subtle thyme hint, this soup is also vegan and vegetarian friendly. It's a comforting recipe for the cold season, but it can also be enjoyed all year round.
After the joy of festive season, when gargantuan dishes spoiled our taste buds and the colourful Christmas displays brightened our very souls, here come the cold and gloomy days of January. And the New Years resolutions around a healthier diet come into effect for some of us.
Now, healthy food doesn't have to be tasteless, nor less comforting than a hearty meal. It can soothe our souls too with its magic touch. And nothing screams comfort better than a steaming hot bowl of soup.
Inspired by the Greek fasolada or fasolatha, which is a wholesome white bean soup, usually made with dried beans for a more rustic touch, this cannellini bean soup is as good as good can be.
It's been a sample food for in Romania too many many years, especially in the olden days when poverty meant that people had to reply on their own fruit and vegetable to survive. And it's still a sample food nowadays too.
- canned cannellini beans - or any other white beans you have around
- stock/broth - I used vegetarian stock, but if you don't want a strictly vegetarian dish, you can swap it for chicken stock too
- celery stalk
- red pepper - I prefer red peppers for their sweetness, but yellow or green peppers also ok
- carrots - fresh or frozen
- olive oil - it has a more Greek touch about it, but regular vegetable oil also ok
- tomato paste - gives colour and tons of flavour to the soup
- salt & pepper
- dried thyme - works wonderfully well with beans
- bay leaves
- onion and garlic
Step-by-step photos and instructions
- in a large pan, heat up the olive oil, add the peeled and chopped onion, and fry it until golden
- add the peeled and chopped garlic, carrot, celery and red pepper, and sautee for 5 minutes until the veggies begin to soften
- add the rinsed canned beans, and give it a good stir
- pour over the stock and bay leaves, and leave it to cook with the lid on for 20 minutes until the veggies are tender
- season with salt and pepper, add the thyme and tomato paste, and mix well
- serve hot with green parsley - optional
Canned white beans or dried white beans?
By all means, you can use the dry ones you find in large packages. They are quite inexpensive and will last you a long time - that's actually how a traditional Greek fasolada recipe is made.
If you use just one cup of beans, you'll be able to make a big pot of soup for the whole family. 4 people can easily feed from the amounts listed below. The only issues here is that dried beans need soaking, and boiling for a few hours until the beans are tender.
While if you use canned beans, which have already been cooked, so you can just throw them in the soup and everything is ready in well under 30 minutes.
As the beans cook, they will become slightly mushier, which will thicken the soup even more - there is no need to use any thickener here.
I like the bean soup pretty thick, but if you like it thinner, then use more vegetable stock (broth).
As for the veggies used, you don't have to use all of them, but I find that with every good soup, the more veggies, the tastier.
The soup can safely be frozen if you made a larger batch, to defrost, you can either use a microwave, or add the frozen soup to a pan with some water, and allow it to gently reheat until bubbling hot.
Other bean recipes
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Greek Bean Soup
- 2 tins cannellini beans
- 3 cups vegetable stock (broth)
- 1 carrot
- 1 onion
- 1 red pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoon tomato puree
- 1 celery stick
- 3 cloves of garlic
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- ½ tablespoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- In a large pan set over a medium heat, heat up the olive oil, add the peeled and chopped onion, and fry until golden.
- Add the peeled and chopped garlic, carrot, red pepper and celery and sautee for 5 minutes for the veggies to begin to soften.
- Pour over the stock, add the beans and bay leaves, and leave it to cook for with the lid on for 15-20 minutes until the veggies are tender.
- Season well with salt and pepper, add the thyme and tomato puree, and give it a good stir.
- Garnish with fresh parsley - optional.
- Serve hot!
- As the beans cook, they will become slightly mushier, which will thicken the soup even more - there is no need to use any thickener here.
- I like the bean soup pretty thick, but if you like it thinner, then use more vegetable stock (broth).
- As for the veggies used, you don't have to use all of them, but I find that with every good soup, the more veggies, the tastier.
- The soup can safely be frozen if you made a larger batch, to defrost, you can either use a microwave, or add the frozen soup to a pan with some water, and allow it to gently reheat until bubbling hot.