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Black-Bean Soup

Yield 6 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups soup, about 3 tablespoons tortilla strips, 1 tablespoonsour cream, and 1 tablespoon minced onions)
Creamy bean soups of this type are served all over Mexico. Crunchy toppings add a textural contrast that is pleasant to the eyes as well as the taste buds.

Ingredients

  • Soup:
  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • 2 bacon slices, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5 cups Chicken Stock or 2 1/2 (16-ounce) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Toppings:
  • 3 (6-inch) corn tortillas, cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 6 tablespoons low-fat sour cream
  • 6 tablespoons minced fresh onion
  • 6 lime wedges

Nutrition Information

  • calories 360
  • caloriesfromfat 12 %
  • fat 5.3 g
  • satfat 2.1 g
  • monofat 1.5 g
  • polyfat 1.1 g
  • protein 22.1 g
  • carbohydrate 58.5 g
  • fiber 11.4 g
  • cholesterol 18 mg
  • iron 4.5 mg
  • sodium 520 mg
  • calcium 148 mg

How to Make It

  1. To prepare soup, sort and wash beans; place in a large Dutch oven. Cover with water to 2 inches above beans; bring to a boil, and cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 1 hour. Drain.

  2. Cook the bacon in pan over medium heat until crisp. Remove the bacon from pan. Add chopped onion, thyme, garlic, and bay leaves to bacon drippings in pan; sauté for 4 minutes. Add beans, bacon, Chicken Stock, and 3 cups water to pan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add salt, and simmer for 30 minutes or until beans are tender. Discard bay leaves. Place half of bean mixture in a blender or food processor, and process until smooth. Pour bean puree into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining bean mixture. Add to bowl.

  3. Preheat oven to 350°.

  4. To prepare toppings, place the tortilla strips in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes or until tortilla strips are toasted.

  5. Ladle soup into each of 6 bowls, and top with tortilla strips, sour cream, and minced onion. Serve with lime wedges.