Fabada (Spanish Bean Stew with Chorizo and Blood Sausage)

Fabada asturiana is a deliciously rich and hearty bean stew from Asturia, Spain, made with fabes (creamy white beans) as well as chorizo and blood sausage. Slideshow: More Hearty Stew Recipes 

Fabada (Spanish Bean Stew with Chorizo and Blood Sausage)
One can construct an informative map of Spain from all its regional bean stews, but it’s the Asturian fabada that’s enshrined in the legume hall of fame. For that, give thanks to  fabes,the region’s large, amazingly creamy white beans, and also to the fact that Asturias is home to Spain’s best  embutidos (cured and smoked porkstuffs), which form the  fabada’s meaty base. More elegant and a lot easier to prepare than French cassoulet, a good  fabada exemplifies the simple beauty of Spanish cuisine. Where to eat it: All Asturian restaurants excel in  fabada, but  Casa Gerardo, run by the hotshot chef Marcos Morán and his dad, wins our prize.  Get the recipe:Fabada (Spanish Bean Stew with Chorizo and Blood Sausage). Photo: Christopher Testani
Active Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
6 to 8


  • 1/2 pound meaty pancetta

  • 1/2 pound dry Spanish chorizo

  • 1 meaty ham hock (about 1 pound)

  • 2 quarts plus 2 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth

  • 1 pound dried Asturian fabes beans (see Note), soaked in water overnight and drained

  • Bouquet garni: 1 small halved onion, 8 garlic cloves, 2 parsley sprigs and 1 bay leaf wrapped in cheesecloth and tied

  • Large pinch of saffron, finely ground in a mortar

  • 1/4 cup boiling water

  • 1 medium tomato, halved crosswise

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped

  • Kosher salt

  • Pepper

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pimentón de la Vera (smoked Spanish paprika)

  • 1/2 pound blood sausage


  1. Fill a pot halfway with water; bring to a boil over high heat. Add the pancetta, chorizo and ham hock; simmer over moderate heat for 5 minutes. Drain the meat and return to the pot. Add the stock, beans and bouquet garni and bring to a boil over high heat; skim off any foam. Cover partially and simmer over low heat until the beans are just tender, about 1 hour.

  2. Meanwhile, in a small heatproof bowl, mix the saffron with the boiling water until dissolved. Grate the tomato halves on the large holes of a box grater set in a bowl until only the skins remain; discard the skins.

  3. In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the pimentón and cook, stirring, until the onion is coated, about 1 minute. Add the grated tomato and simmer until reduced by half, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir the onion mixture into the pot of beans along with the brewed saffron and the blood sausage. Simmer uncovered until the beans are very tender but not falling apart, about 30 minutes.

  4. Transfer the meats to a carving board and let rest for 5 minutes, then cut into bite-size pieces. Discard the ham bone and bouquet garni. Return the meats to the pot and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the fabada to bowls and serve.

Make Ahead

The fabada can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Reheat the stew gently before serving.


Fabes are available at despanabrandfoods.com.

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