Disclosure: This Restaurant-Style Black Bean Soup Recipe for my #SouperJanuary blog series includes affiliate links, this means I make a few cents if you buy the item after clicking my link. This costs you nothing, but it helps keep this blog running on butter…lots of butter!
Restaurant-Style Black Bean Soup Recipe
Let’s face it, a lot of black bean soup is bland, lackluster, and even mysterious in color. But not this Black Bean Soup recipe from my friends at America’s Test Kitchen! It has bold, robust flavors and a deep, dark color (no purples or greys need apply).
I highly recommend this Black Bean Soup recipe. It takes a while, but making it from scratch is SO worth it. It even tastes better than any restaurant’s black bean soup!
Cook’s Note for Black Bean Soup:
*You can find ham steaks with other meat like bacon.
*This recipe calls for a small part of canned chipotle sauce. Here’s what to do with the rest of the can!
*When cooking the beans, the ham steak will darken to the color of the beans. This is normal, so don’t freak out!
*The baking soda added to the beans helps keep their black color without them turning purple or grey.
*Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
*This Black Bean Soup would be ah-mazing with my Sour Cream Cornbread recipe!
- For the Beans:
- 1 pound dried black beans, rinsed and picked over
- 4 ounces ham steak, rind trimmed
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 cups water
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- For the Soup:
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large onions, minced (about 3 cups)
- 1 large carrot, minced (about ½ cup)
- 3 ribs celery, chopped fine (about 1 cup)
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- 5 - 6 medium cloves garlic, minced
- 1½ tablespoons ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons chipotle sauce
- 6 cups low-sodium chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoon water
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- Lime wedges
- Minced fresh cilantro leaves
- Red onion, finely diced
- Avocado, diced
- Sour cream
- For the Beans:
- In a an large saucepan over medium-high heat add the beans, ham, bay leaves, water, and baking soda. Bring to a boil. Stir in salt, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer briskly until beans are tender, 75 to 90 minutes (if necessary, add another 1 cup water and continue to simmer until beans are tender); do not drain beans. Remove and discard bay leaves. Remove ham steak, cut into ¼-inch cubes, and set aside.
- For the Soup:
- Over medium-high heat, add oil to a large Dutch oven (or large, heavy-bottomed pot) over until shimmering but not smoking. Add onions, carrot, celery, and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft and lightly browned, 8-10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and add garlic and cumin; constantly stir until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in cooked beans, bean cooking liquid, chipotle sauce, and chicken stock. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, to blend flavors, about 30 minutes.
- To Finish:
- Ladle 3 ½ cups of soup into food processor or blender, process until smooth, and return to pot. Stir together cornstarch and water in small bowl until combined. Gradually stir in cornstarch mixture into soup; bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, to fully thicken. Off heat, stir in lime juice and reserved ham. Top with garnishes and serve immediately.
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Hungry for more soup recipes?
Check out other recipes in this blog series!