Black Bean Soup with Crispy Tortillas
© Yunhee Kim

Black Bean Soup with Crispy Tortillas


This ultrasimple soup requires little more than a couple of cans of black beans, some onion and a bit of cumin. A topping of fried tortillas (or store-bought chips) adds crunch.

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  1. Vegetable oil, for frying
  2. Three 6-inch corn tortillas, cut into narrow wedges
  3. Kosher salt
  4. 1 onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  5. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  6. Two 15-ounce cans black beans
  7. 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  8. Freshly ground pepper
  1. In a medium saucepan, heat 1/2 inch of vegetable oil over moderately high heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350°. Add the tortillas and fry, stirring occasionally, until crisp and lightly golden, about 1 1/2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the tortillas to paper towels to drain; season with salt.
  2. In a medium soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil used to fry the tortillas. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the cumin and cook for 1 minute. Add the beans and their liquid and 1 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with a few tortillas. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of cilantro and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Luscious, earthy Argentine Malbec.