Another soul soothing, body warming healthy soup that is also easy, of course. White Bean Soup with Chorizo uses all of the convenience and tasty goodness from a simple Mexican sausage and delivers a super easy soup that can be made in the crock pot.
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It’s still Winter here in Utah, although there were many days it felt more like Autumn. We have had a relatively mild season here. That is great news for non-skiers. I LOVE to ski. So not such great news for me.
It is still chilly so this makes it soup season right? I thought so too.
I was craving soup but I didn’t want to go outside so I whipped up a batch of soup with ingredients I already had in my larder.
There are a few food items I like to keep extra on hand because they can store almost indefinitely and they are so handy for easily creating dishes without going to the store or thinking too hard on what to make. Dried white beans and chorizo are definitely on that list. I keep chorizo in the freezer and dried beans in the pantry.
Dried beans and other legumes are a no-brainer. They keep well and they are so healthy for you. Beans help reduce cholesterol, are a high quality protein and have lots of fiber. They also take on just about any flavor profile so to me they are like a blank canvas.
Have I convinced you yet to stock up on these? Especially if they are on sale or if you come across hard to find varieties.
How do you make White Bean Soup?
You should know the basics of White Bean Soup, it will likely be one of your back pocket recipes.
First realize there are different white bean varieties. Here in the U.S. there are 5 common ones you can find in the supermarket.
5 types of white beans common to the U.S.
- Great Northern– A medium size, buttery flavor bean that holds their shape well.
- Cannellini– A large bean that is also known as a white kidney bean, holds its shape very well so it is great in dishes where you don’t want mushy beans. It has a good ‘bite’ and a slightly nutty flavor.
- Baby Lima– Also called butter beans, they have a buttery flavor and are medium-ish size.
- Navy– The smallest bean in this list. Navy beans are the softest bean that cooks quickly and is great for creamier applications like creamy soups and dips. Just mash them half way through cooking and you have a natural thickener. You can get really creative with these little gems.
- Mayocoba- These are kind of yellowish but I’m going to add them anyways because this is my list and I love mayocoba beans.
How to make white bean soup in 5 steps.
- Soak beans over night in enough water to cover beans by one inch. Toss water and rinse beans.
- In a large dutch oven or soup pot, cook aromatics in oil or with diced bacon until soft. These may include onions, garlic, fresh or dried herbs. Pro-Tip only cook garlic no longer than 3 minutes to prevent burning, so add last.
- Add any spices right before you add water. The heat from the pan ‘blooms’ the spices and release their oils. Any spice profile will work well so you could add Mexican, Indian, Korean, New England, Moroccan, Italian spices and herbs. This is the FUN part!
- Add liquid such as water, broth, wine, vermouth, sherry, scape the bottom gently with a wooden spoon to loosen the ‘fond’ that developed when cooking the aromatics in oil. This adds flavor to your soup.
- Add beans and simmer on low until soft. If you want a creamier soup, mash half the beans half way through the cooking time and simmer some more. This allows the starches to build up and thicken the soup. You could also leave it as is and have a brothy soup.
How to garnish soup
Below are some of my favorite ways to garnish soups. Soups can look a bit bland after cooking so I like to add color and texture to my soups. It also gives you a chance to add some fresh flavors to a dish that is very homogenized in flavor due to the long simmering process. Have you ever noticed that? It happens in crock pot or slow cooker recipes too. If you add something in the end, it can really freshen some of these simmering dishes. Lemon or lime juice is one of my favorite tricks.
- One of the white creams look and taste great. Sour cream, cream fraiche, Mexican or Salvadoran crema.
- Fresh herbs like parsley, thyme, cilantro
- diced onions such as green (scallions) or red
- paprika or chile powder
- hard-boiled eggs diced or crumbled
- BACON, nuff said.
- Battered and fried jalapeno slices, yep that’s a thing. Pickled jalapeño slices work well too.
- Yellow or black sesame seeds.
- Julienned peppers, cut thin or made with a julienne peeler.
What is Chorizo sausage?
For the purposes of this post and most of this blog, chorizo refers to the Mexican chorizo you can find in U.S. markets. Chorizo is quite different in many countries. The origin of chorizo is probably Spain dating back to Roman times.
The Spanish chorizo is a fermented and smoked variety made with dried, powdered chiles. Mexican chorizo is a ground meat, usually pork, soaked overnight in vinegar and mixed with dried chile powder. The Mexican version is much spicier than the original Spanish version.
The spanish version is cured in a natural casing that doesn’t need to be cooked. Mexican chorizo is a raw version in a plastic casing and needs to be cooked. Those two chorizos can’t be any more different so I need to clarify for all of us.
Chorizo is also found in South America, Puerto Rico, Portugal and the Philippines. They are all different. So interesting.
9 creative uses for Chorizo sausage
For these reasons alone is why you need to keep this Fusion kitchen secret in your freezer. Keep a few plastic tubes of this culinary shortcut around. You will start to see all kind of applications for this gem.
- fried with scrambled eggs
- toss with par-boiled potato slices before baking or broiling
- garnish soup with cooked chorizo
- add to any marinade for a spicy, peppery kick
- add cooked chorizo to burritos and tacos
- fry up in a pan, add to cream cheese and nuke until soft and gooey for a spicy dip
- add to beans in a slow cooker for an easy, spicy kick
- add a little cooked chorizo to quesadillas
- add cooked chorizo to queso and garnish on top
Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to rate the recipe and comment below! Take a picture and tag us @FusionCraftiness #FusionCraftiness on Instagram for a chance to be featured in our Insta Stories:)
If you have any uses for chorizo that I haven’t covered, leave a comment. I wanna know! If you make this or anything you want to share with the rest of the Fusion Craftiness community, leave a #FusionCraftiness so we can see:)
Bon Appetit my friends.
If you are making your own broth, you will need to check out this post on How to Make Broth. It also gives you clues as to when homemade broth is a must or if you can get away with store bought broth.