This is hands down the best black bean soup I have ever had….and I have tried multiple black bean soup recipes. This one is soooo flavorful and addictive. It makes quite a bit, but you will be thankful for the leftovers because it tastes better the second day (if that is even imaginable). This recipe also freezes well. Reheat the frozen portions for a quick lunch or dinner. Or bathe in it…because it is THAT good.
Don’t let the long list of ingredients spook you. It is such a flavorful soup and so easy to throw together. If you don’t have smoked paprika, you can leave it out. But I think it adds a nice flavor along with the bacon. Mmmm. For a vegetarian version, you leave out the bacon and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.
(Note: Ketchup can be used in place of the tomato paste and maple syrup.)
Spicy Black Bean Soup (serves 6 to 8)
- 6 slices of smoked all natural bacon, diced in 1/4″ slices
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeño, diced (keep seeds for a kick or deseed if want a milder soup)
- 1 medium sweet bell pepper, diced
- 1 15 oz can of chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
- 1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 Tablespoon of chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons of worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons of maple syrup
- 4 15 oz cans of black beans, drained but not rinsed
- 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped (about 1 cup)
- kosher salt and cracked pepper to taste
- juice of 1/2 lime or 1 Tablespoon of lime juice
- Cook bacon over medium heat in a dutch oven until bacon is cooked but not crispy, about 5 minutes. Drain a portion of the grease out, leaving just enough to sauté the onions.
- Add onions and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add sweet bell pepper, jalapeño, and garlic. Cook for about 2 minutes.
- Add broth, tomatoes, spices, tomato paste, and maple syrup. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium low and cook covered for 5 minutes.
- Add black beans. Increase heat to medium until boiling. Reduce heat to medium low and cook an additional 10 minutes, covered.
- Stir in 1/2 cup of the chopped cilantro, salt and pepper to taste, and lime juice. Heat until soup thickens, about 5 minutes.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes. Ladle into bowls and top with remaining chopped cilantro, sour cream or greek yogurt.