Vegetarian Carrot and White Bean Soup Recipe
The leaves are falling from the trees, and there is a chill in the air. For me, that means soup season has arrived. Last week I found that I had a big bag of carrots in my refrigerator that needed cooking. I can't imagine why I would have purchased such a big bag, except that maybe I knew in the back of my head that a carrot soup was in the making.
Recently, I have been trying to eat a more vegetarian diet. Knowing that it is important to keep that diet balanced, I wondered if adding beans to carrot soup would work, and it did! The result was a beautiful, delicious, spicy carrot and white bean soup. I made it on a Sunday, and it carried me through several dinners through the week. Like so many soup recipes, as the ingredients married in the fridge, the soup tasted better and better with each serving. If you enjoy this recipe, then see below for ways to vary it, as variety is the spice of life. Enjoy!
- 1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 onion
- 1/2 cup celery
- 4 - 6 cloves garlic, more or less to taste
- 4 all spice pieces
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 - 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 vegetable stock cubes
- 3 shakes pumpkin pie spice
- 2 parsnips
- 12 - 15 carrots
- 1 can white beans
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- Heat 1 -2 tablespoons of olive oil in a soup pot.
- Chop and add 1/2 of a large onion. Cook the onions until they become almost translucent in color.
- Add a 1/2 cup chopped celery. Using a garlic press, or chopping very finely, add four to six cloves of garlic.
- Add all of the spices: all spice, bay leaves, salt, pepper, cumin, and pumpkin pie spice.
- Dissolve the vegetable stock cubes in warm water. The stock cubes I use require 2 cups of water per stock cube. Read the package directions if you are unsure.
- While the stock cubes are dissolving, add the parsnips and carrots to the pot. Cook for two minutes "dry" before adding the vegetable stock to cover all the vegetables. Add a bit of water if necessary.
- Cook until the carrots are fork tender.
- Using an immersion blender (or food processor), puree some or all of the soup. I like mine a bit chunky, so I only partially puree.
- Add a can of drained and rinsed white beans. Cook until beans are heated through.
Recently, I have had an abundance of winter squash and pumpkins from my CSA bag. I have made a variation of this soup with and without the white beans. To vary the soup, reduce the amount of carrots and substitute a portion of butternut squash or a pie pumpkin.
Another delicious addition is kale, fresh or frozen. Greens are a healthy addition to your daily diet. Kale, or another similar green such as Swiss Chard, tastes great in this soup along with the squash substituted for some of the carrots.
The bottom line is that this recipe, like most soup recipes, is flexible. Experiment with the vegetables that are in your kitchen. It is hard to do it wrong.
Do you love bean soups? Here's another recipe for bean soup by fellow hubber carol7777:
Tips and Final Thoughts
- Taste the soup as you are cooking it, and add more spices (or less) to taste.
- Use chicken stock if you don't have vegetable stock cubes, and if you aren't concerned about keeping the recipe vegetarian.
- Serve with salad and crusty bread for a delicious, healty vegetarian dinner.
- This soup tasted better the second day, as so often soups do. Make it a day ahead and heat and serve for a quick dinner.
Other Recipes by donnah75:
I love this garlic press! It is worth every penny.
© 2012 Donna Hilbrandt