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Fasolada: Greek Bean Soup

Updated on September 8, 2014

A Recipe for Fasolada (Greek Bean Soup)

Fasolada is a delicious and practical soup that is a basic staple in Greek households. This soup delivers a lot of nutrition for a low price. Use the freshest vegetables and herbs that you can find for the best flavor.

Served with a slice of fresh bread, Fasolada makes a hearty meatless meal, perfect for serving during Lent. The beans, when served with bread, make a complete protein as nourishing as red meat.

Bean soup is an economical choice for feeding a family. This soup can be made on the weekend and will be ready for you to reheat on Monday after work. Like many soups, this one is even better the next day after the flavors have had the chance to blend. Fasolada also freezes well, so put extras in the freezer for supper after another busy day.

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The Complete Book of Greek Cooking - Fasolada and Much More!

If you have been reading my cooking lenses very long, you know I love old church cookbooks. I was so excited when I saw this one on Amazon! I had to tell you about it!

The thing I like most about church cookbooks is that all of the recipes are from someone's Mama or Grandma. These are real recipes made by real cooks in someone's kitchen to serve to their family, friends and guests. They are favorite, tried and true recipes, not adaptations by a chef of a dish he makes in a restaurant. This is home cooking at its finest!

The Complete Book of Greek Cooking: The Recipe Club of St. Paul's Orthodox Cathedral
The Complete Book of Greek Cooking: The Recipe Club of St. Paul's Orthodox Cathedral

Check the reviews on this cookbook! So many Greek-Americans are finding these recipes to be truly authentic. That many reviewers cannot be wrong! Check it out!

 
Greek fasolada
Greek fasolada

Fasolada Recipe

One thing I love about fasolada is that everyone has their own way of making it. It is a very flexible recipe that can adapt itself to whatever ingredients you have available.

This recipe is from an old church cookbook called Food Fit for Gods: A Guide to Greek Cuisine. It was published by the St. Dionysios Greek Orthodox Church in Overland Park, Kansas in 1963. This is one person's idea of how to make it; but, I am going to show you a video below that I just love. In the video you will see just how flexible this recipe really is, and she will take you step by step how to make both the tradiitonal vegetarian version I have presented here and a variation using ground beef or lamb.

Perfect on a cold, winter evening!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound navy beans
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon mint leaves
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

Instructions

  1. Soak the beans all day or overnight in the water. Put the beans in a colander and rinse them well under running water. Cover the beans with 2 quarts of fresh water, then add the onion, celery and carrots. Bring this to a boil and let simmer until vegetables and beans are tender, about 90 minutes. While this is cooking, heat vegetable oil in a saucepan, then add the salt, pepper, mint leaves and tomato paste, along with 1/2 cup of broth from the beans. Bring this to a boil. At the end of cooking, add this seasoned broth to the bean soup and boil together for one minute before serving.
  2. Serve with fresh bread. Drizzle soup with olive oil at the table.
Cast your vote for My Favorite Fasolada Recipe

How to Make Fasolada

This video is very long, almost a half hour, but it is very informational and if you are interested in making fasolada I recommend you watch it. You will learn several techniques for preparing the beans, both the overnight soaking method and the quick-soak method which is much faster. You will also learn several variations and how to substitute various ingredients depending on what you have available or your individual preferences.

This is a great video series for learning how to cook Greek cuisine. If you are interested in delving deeper into Greek cooking I highly recommend this series as a terrific place to start.

I enjoy making my fasolada this way as well. This video shows how flexible this recipe is.

Fasolada Poll I

Do you like bean soup like fasolada?

See results

Need a Good Stock Pot?

I have three stock pots I use regularly and a very huge stock pot I keep in the basement and bring up for special cooking occasions. If you cook a lot of soups and stews, as I do, you need a supply of good stock pots. For this reason I am always browsing on Amazon to find the best deals on cookware and especially stock pots.

I found this super stock pot with a heavy bottom and an amazing price.... Less than $60! What a deal! I had to tell my readers about it, just in case any of you need a better pot for cooking your homemade soups and stews. This would also be great for anyone who does freezer cooking.

I was going to recommend my Cuisinart stock pot on this lens, but when I saw this bargain I just had to tell you about it instead.

Alpha Heavy Gage 24 Qt Stainless Steel Stock Pot with Glass Lid By Savezoneusa /Alpha
Alpha Heavy Gage 24 Qt Stainless Steel Stock Pot with Glass Lid By Savezoneusa /Alpha

This is an awesome pot for the price. Check it out and see if you agree. Be sure to check the reviews!

 

Greek Basil for Your Fasolada

You can put more authenticity into your Greek cooking when you add this basil plant to your garden.

Greek Columnar Basil - 4" Pot - Keeps Flavor All Season
Greek Columnar Basil - 4" Pot - Keeps Flavor All Season

Greek basil will add that special touch of authenticity to all of your Greek dishes.

Basil is easy to grow. After harvesting either hang in a dark, well-ventilated place to dry, or freeze.

You will be amazed at the flavor compared to the herbs you buy at the store!

 
fasolada made with black-eyed peas
fasolada made with black-eyed peas

Fasolada: An Economical Dinner

I made fasolada this afternoon and I wish I could give you a taste over the internet. It is a simple, but wonderful soup.

I wanted to share with you the cost of making a pot of this soup. I had some of the ingredients already. Of course, if you need to purchase any of these you will have a higher initial expense, but many of the ingredients are staples available in most kitchens. You will be able to use those staples for many more dishes, so they are a good investment if you do have to buy them.

I used black eyed peas this time. The navy beans were 20 cents cheaper. Some money can be saved by purchasing lower priced beans. I just happen to love black eyed peas.

I also bought organic produce wherever possible. You can save money by purchasing non-organic, buying these vegetables from local farmers at a farmers market, or by growing your own.

Here is my price for buying the ingredients for fasolada:

Kroger:

Black eyed peas $1.69

Yellow onion .50 (I used one onion from a bag of 6 large onions costing $2.99)

Carrots .85 (I used half of a bag that cost $1.69)

Celery .42 (I used 3 stalks out of a $2.79 bag containing 2 heads of celery hearts, the rest will go into the freezer)

Kroger total: 3 .36

I bought tomato sauce when it was on sale at Walgreen's 2 cans for $1.00.

Walgreens total: .50

I already had on hand the seasonings and extra virgin olive oil.

Adding together the amount I spent at Kroger and Walgreens, the grand total is $3.86 for a pot of soup that is going to give me a lot of servings. I can freeze some to have later. The cost per serving I am estimating will be around 50 cents. That is a great deal in today's economy!

Photo property of author. All rights reserved.

Fasolada Poll II

Are you looking for thrifty recipes like fasolada to save money on groceries?

See results

Dried Beans on Amazon - A variety of white beans for your fasolada

While my recipe calls for navy beans, any light colored bean will work.

Have you eaten fasolada? Do you think you will try this recipe? - Do you like the flexibility this recipe offers? What will you put in your fasolada?

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    • FanfrelucheHubs profile image

      Nathalie Roy 4 years ago from France (Canadian expat)

      I love bean soups but never had Fasolada

    • victoriahaneveer profile image

      victoriahaneveer 4 years ago

      Sounds good!

    • Joan Haines profile image

      Joan Haines 5 years ago

      Beans truly are one of the most delightful and nutritious foods of all time! This looks great. "Blessed by a Squid Angel."

    • bossypants profile image

      bossypants 5 years ago from America's Dairyland

      Fasolada sounds delicious -- and it's fun to say! Thanks for sharing this economical and easy recipe!

    • SusannaDuffy profile image

      Susanna Duffy 5 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      Thanks to you - ingredients for Fasolada are on my shopping list for today

    • CoeGurl profile image

      CoeGurl 5 years ago from USA

      This soup really sounds delicious and I'm going to make it! Thanks!

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 5 years ago from UK

      Fasolada sounds delicious and I like the way it can be vegetarian or have meat depending on who you are cooking for. Not to mention that it's a thrifty dish that looks like it would fill you up wonderfully.

    • profile image

      AngryBaker 5 years ago

      I love a hearty soup... thanks

    • Susan300 profile image

      Susan300 5 years ago

      I've never tried this, but it sounds interesting. I'm glad I stopped by. :)

    • Inkhand profile image

      Inkhand 5 years ago

      I have never eaten fasolada before, but after reading lens I am going to try your fasolada recipe.

    • profile image

      ifuturz 5 years ago

      Great lens

    • profile image

      shoefiend 5 years ago

      great lens i loved it

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 5 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I love American-style bean soup with bacon or ham in it. But I'm more than willing to try this recipe for a number of reasons; it's more economical, it's beans, and it's from you. Such a good recipe, thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      KarenCookieJar 5 years ago

      Yum, this looks good, I'd like to try it.

    • Beadsnresin profile image

      Beadsnresin 5 years ago

      Thanks for the lens, might give it a go.

    • ChrissLJ profile image

      ChrissLJ 5 years ago

      As a vegetarian, delicious bean recipes are a staple in my household. I've never had fasolada, but it looks delicious and tempting for a chilly winter dinner.

    • JanieceTobey profile image

      JanieceTobey 5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing your vegetarian bean soup! It sounds delicious!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      enjoyed reading about this soup, I've had it before, not bad.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Mom always used to make navy bean soup with a bit of ham in it on laundry days (we're talking the hang-the-clothes-on-the-clothesline days). It was so yummy with cornbread.

      Your version would be a good one to try some day.