Warm, hearty, and bursting with flavor, Vegan Cuban Black Bean Soup is a soul-soothing dish that transports your taste buds straight to the vibrant streets of Havana. This plant-based twist on a classic Cuban favorite combines the earthy richness of black beans with a medley of aromatic spices and herbs. It’s a nourishing, budget-friendly option that’s perfect for any season. Whether you’re a seasoned vegan or simply looking to expand your culinary horizons, this recipe will delight your senses and leave you craving for more.
Storing and Making in Advance
Vegan Cuban Black Bean Soup keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days when stored in an airtight container. This makes it an excellent option for meal prepping or enjoying leftovers throughout the week. In fact, making it in advance can enhance its flavors as they meld together over time. Simply reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave, and you’ll find that the soup tastes even better after a day or two. Just remember to adjust the consistency with a bit of vegetable broth if it thickens in the fridge. This versatility makes it a convenient and delicious choice for busy schedules and planned meals.
You won’t need any specialized or uncommon kitchen equipment to prepare Vegan Cuban Black Bean Soup. The recipe primarily relies on standard cooking utensils and appliances, making it accessible for most home cooks. A few basic tools that can be handy include a large soup pot or Dutch oven for simmering the soup, an immersion blender or regular blender for pureeing if desired, and a vegetable peeler for prepping ingredients like garlic and onion. However, these tools are optional, and the recipe can still be successfully executed with minimal equipment, making it convenient for a wide range of home kitchens.
Per Serving Information
The nutritional values provided in the recipe for Vegan Cuban Black Bean Soup are approximate and can vary based on portion size and specific ingredient brands. On average, one serving of this soup (approximately 1 cup) contains about 280 calories, 13g of protein, 49g of carbohydrates, 14g of dietary fiber, and 5g of fat. These numbers can be adjusted according to your dietary needs or preferences. Keep in mind that additional garnishes, such as avocado slices or vegan sour cream, may add extra calories and nutrients to each serving. It’s always a good idea to consult the nutrition labels on specific ingredient packages for precise information or consult with a nutritionist if you have specific dietary concerns or requirements.
Vegan Cuban Black Bean SoupCourse: Dinner, LunchCuisine: CubanDifficulty: Medium
2 cups dried black beans, soaked overnight
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced (adjust for spice preference)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
6 cups vegetable broth
1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Salt and black pepper to taste
Juice of 1 lime
Fresh cilantro, chopped, for garnish
Avocado slices, for garnish
Vegan sour cream or yogurt, for garnish (optional)
- Drain and rinse the soaked black beans. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, garlic, and bell peppers. Sauté until they become soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the minced jalapeño, cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, dried oregano, and bay leaf. Cook for an additional 2 minutes, allowing the spices to become fragrant.
- Add the soaked and rinsed black beans to the pot, along with the vegetable broth, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste. Stir well and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and let the soup simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until the beans are tender and the flavors have melded together. Stir occasionally.
- Remove the bay leaf and use an immersion blender to partially puree the soup to your desired consistency. Alternatively, transfer a portion of the soup to a blender and blend until smooth, then return it to the pot.
- Season the soup with salt, black pepper, and lime juice, adjusting the flavors to your liking. If the soup is too thick, you can add a bit more vegetable broth.
- Serve hot, garnished with fresh cilantro, avocado slices, and a dollop of vegan sour cream or yogurt if desired.
- Flavorful Bean Soaking: To enhance the depth of flavor in your Vegan Cuban Black Bean Soup, consider soaking the dried black beans with a touch of sea salt, a bay leaf, and a few crushed garlic cloves. This soaking liquid infuses the beans with extra taste, ensuring they absorb more seasoning as they cook. Rinse them thoroughly before using to remove excess salt.
- Spice Up Your Spice Rack: Experiment with the spices to tailor the soup to your personal taste. If you enjoy extra heat, add more minced jalapeño or a pinch of cayenne pepper. For a smokier flavor, consider using chipotle powder instead of smoked paprika. Adjusting the spices allows you to fine-tune the soup’s flavor profile to your liking.
- Homemade Vegetable Broth: While store-bought vegetable broth is convenient, making your own can elevate the soup’s taste. Simmering vegetables like carrots, celery, onions, and garlic with water and a handful of herbs creates a rich and flavorful broth that can take your soup to the next level. Use this homemade broth as the base for your Cuban black bean soup for an extra layer of depth.
- Creamy Vegan Touch: To add creaminess without dairy, consider blending a cup of soaked raw cashews with some water until you have a smooth, creamy consistency. Stir this cashew cream into the soup just before serving to create a luscious, velvety texture. It’s a dairy-free alternative that complements the earthy flavors of the black beans.
- Marinate with Time: Like many soups and stews, the flavors of Cuban black bean soup develop and intensify with time. For an even tastier result, prepare the soup a day in advance and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight. When you reheat it, you’ll find that the flavors have melded together beautifully, making for an even more satisfying dining experience. Just remember to adjust the seasonings if needed before serving.