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Cannellini Bean and Escarole Soup

The Good News Soup preserves almost all of the water-soluble vitamins in beans like folic acid and niacin.

Plus: More Soup Recipes and Tips

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

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  • 1 1/4 cups dried cannellini beans ( 1/2 pound), soaked overnight or quick-soaked and drained
  • Salt
  • 1 head of escarole (1 pound), cored
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small celery rib, finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • One 16-ounce can whole tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon chopped marjoram
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Grilled peasant bread, for serving


  1. In a medium saucepan, cover the beans with 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 2 hours. Keep adding water as necessary so the beans are always submerged in 1 inch of water. Remove them from the heat and season with salt.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the escarole for 3 minutes. Drain and coarsely chop.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the celery and bay leaf and cook over low heat until the celery is softened, about 5 minutes. Add the beans, their cooking liquid, tomatoes and their juices and simmer over moderate heat for 3 minutes. Add the escarole and simmer for 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaf. Season with salt and stir in the parsley, garlic, marjoram and crushed red pepper. Add a piece of grilled bread to each bowl, ladle in the soup and serve.


Quick-Soaking for Dried Beans Rinse the beans, then transfer to a saucepan and cover with water. Boil for 2 minutes, then remove from the heat, cover and let stand for 1 hour; drain.

One Serving 451 cal, 22.1 gm fat, 3.1 gm saturated fat, 49 gm carb, 18 gm fiber.

Contributed By Photo © James Baigrie Published November 2004

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