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hearty 3bean_0

Hearty Three-Bean Soup


hearty 3bean_0

Hearty Three-Bean Soup

This tasty, filling soup is a great reason to try cooking your own dried beans from scratch! But canned beans are just fine too. For 6 cups of beans you’ll need 1 pound of dried beans, cooked, or three 15-ounce cans of cooked beans.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings 12 Servings

kitchen gear

  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife (adult needed)
  • Measuring spoons
  • Measuring cup
  • Colander or strainer
  • Large heavy-bottomed pot
  • Spatula or wooden spoon
  • Potholder 


  • 2 teaspoons canola or olive oil
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 5 carrots, scrubbed or peeled and diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, put through a garlic press or peeled and minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups assorted canned or cooked beans (kidney, black, white, or pinto beans), rinsed well and drained
  • 8 cups chicken, beef, or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon or lime juice
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil or cilantro leaves
  • salt


  • Put the pot on the stove, turn the heat to medium, and carefully add the oil.
  • Add the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic and cook until they are tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Turn the heat to high and add the bay leaves, beans, and stock and bring the pot to a boil, then lower the heat to low and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
  • Add the rice and cook until the rice is tender, about 45 minutes. Taste the soup and add salt if you think it needs it.
  • Stir in the lemon or lime juice and serve the soup right away topped with the herbs — or, since it’s even better the next day, transfer the soup to the container and store it overnight in the refrigerator before reheating and serving.


To make any soup super-special, add a topping to each bowl.
Make it Rich: a drizzle of olive oil
Make it Creamy: a spoonful of yogurt or sour cream|
Make it Cheesy: a sprinkle of grated parmesan or cheddar
Make it Crunchy: a few croutons or toasted nuts or seeds
Make it Tangy: a squeeze or slice of lemon or lime, or a dash of vinegar
Make it Fresh: a snip or sprig of fresh herbs, such as parsley, basil, cilantro, chives, or dill
Make it Spicy: a dash of hot sauce, sliced jalapeños, or chili flakes
"Diced" means cut up in squares about the size of dice
"Minced" means finely chopped
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