Quick and easy spicy black bean soup is vegan, gluten-free, loaded with protein, and affordable to make—plus it is ready in 45 minutes!
This is part of a new series called, Vegan for Everybody where I share simple, affordable, healthy, and easy to make recipes that everyone can make.
When I started this blog, my goal was to share food the average person could make. To provide them with some kitchen inspiration and to share the knowledge I gained during my 10 years plus working in the food industry. While that goal still remains, I feel it has been put on the back burner over the years with the pressure to “keep up” online...but it’s time to bring it back.
The health food world can be alienating. It can be elitist and exclusionary, focusing on expensive, unattainable lifestyles and the single origin, organic, farmers market ingredients that go along with it. But for many of us, getting that perfect squash from the farmers market is a luxury, if it’s something we even bother buying (or want to for that matter). Eating well shouldn’t be hard. It shouldn’t take all day to prepare a nutritious meal for yourself, and most of all it shouldn’t exist just for the wealthy.
The Need for Access
Like so many things in today’s world, access to fresh groceries isn’t created equally. The average Canadian family’s grocery bill will rise to nearly $13,000 this year—that is just under ½ of what the average single person makes. Large areas in the US and Canada are deemed food deserts, that is an area with no grocery store available.
Imagine, not having access to the human necessity of fresh produce? Having to buy everything you eat from a gas station or corner store? Food in lots of these areas is so hard to find, and so far beyond the economic reach of so many people that dollar stores now sell more food than some of the largest grocery store chains.
For many of us that do have access to wonderful grocery stores, things can still be tight economically. I am very privileged, and generally speaking, I can afford most of the groceries I seek. But I also live in the most expensive cities in Canada, have student debt, and struggle to pay rent some months (the reality of the gig economy and student life). So naturally, finding quick, affordable, and healthy meals is a necessity.
- cooking oil
- dried oregano
- smoked paprika
- ground coriander
- bay leaf
- canned chipotle peppers
- veggie stock
- caned black beans
- canned diced tomatoes
To make this spicy black bean soup begin by heating a pot to medium. Add the oil, onion, cilantro stems and celery. Cook, stirring often until the veggies just begin to become tender, about 5 minutes,
Add the garlic, cumin, oregano, coriander, smoked paprika and bay leaf. Stir and continue to cook for another 2 minutes.
Add the stock, canned chipotle peppers, tomatoes and beans. Bring the mixture to a simmer then cover and cook on low for 20-30 minutes or until the onions and celery are completely soft.
Remove the bay leaf and set aside. Using an emersion blender puree the soup until smooth. You can also carefully ladle to mixture into a blender, pureeing in batches. Taste to soup and adjust seasoning as needed.
Serve the spicy black bean soup with toppings of your choice (see below).
Tips + Notes
This Spicy Black Bean Soup
Soups are one of my favourite things to make in a hurry as they come together in one-pot with little effort. They are generally inexpensive to make, and often use up a lot of non-perishable items that many have access to. This spicy black bean soup uses canned beans, canned tomatoes, a few spices, and onion and garlic as a base.
If you have fresh veggies that need to be used up (such as tomatoes, bell pepper, or leeks) they can be added prior to pureeing, or you can use cooked veg as a garnish (like corn, roasted squash, or sweet potato). If you have a larger family or like leftovers, simply make a double batch of this soup for 8 servings. And to extend the meal even further, try serving the soup over cooked rice or quinoa.
Using Dried Beans
I opted for canned beans here to highlight the fact that this meal can be made quickly with canned food from the grocery store, but dried beans will also work. If you desire to use dried beans, soak and cook 1 cup dried black beans to yield the amount of the 2 cans called for.
Meal Cost Per-Serving
For my meal, I chose items like organic tomatoes, cilantro, and beans, but using non-organic would drop the cost of each bowl to $2.40 CND ($1.85 USD). Staples like salt, oil, spices, and stock (I like bouillon as it is less expensive and has less packaging than tetra bricks) are not taken into consideration. Sides like tortilla chips, or bread are also left out.
- Canned Organic Tomatoes $1.99
- Canned Organic Black Beans 2@$2.99
- Organic White Onion $1.30
- ⅓ Can of Chipotles $1.30
- Non-Organic Lime $0.75
- Non-Organic Watermelon Radish $0.46
- Organic Garlic $0.69
- Non-Organic Jalapeno $0.18
- Organic Cilantro $2.99
Total Cost Per-Serving: $3.90 CND ($2.99 USD)
Other Vegan for Everyone Recipes
- 2 tbsp (30 ml) cooking oil
- 1 cup (125g) chopped onion
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- Stems of 1 bunch cilantro, chopped (leaves saved for garnish)
- 6 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 tsp (2g) ground cumin
- 1 tsp (1g) dried oregano, Mexican if possible
- 1 tsp (2g) smoked paprika
- ½ tsp (1g) ground coriander
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 canned chipotle peppers, chopped (if you can't find these, add a little more smoked paprika)
- 4 cups veggie stock
- 2-14oz (398g) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1-14oz (398g) can diced tomatoes
- Cilantro Leaves
- Jalapeno, sliced
- Radishes, sliced
- Lime, sliced
- Tortilla Chips
- Hot Sauce
- Heat a pot to medium. Add the oil, onion, cilantro stems and celery. Cook, stirring often until the veggies just begin to become tender, about 5 minutes,
- Add the garlic, cumin, oregano, coriander, smoked paprika and bay leaf. Stir and continue to cook for another 2 minutes.
- Add the stock, canned chipotle peppers, tomatoes and beans. Bring the mixture to a simmer then cover and cook on low for 20-30 minutes or until the onions and celery are completely soft.
- Remove the bay leaf and set aside. Using an emersion blender puree the soup until smooth. You can also carefully ladle to mixture into a blender, pureeing in batches. Taste to soup and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Serve with toppings of your choice.
I didn't use any salt in mine as I found the stock and canned beans to be salty enough but use your own judgement.