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White Bean Soup

I turned to this hearty recipe after my husband had open-heart surgery. Filled with beans, veggies and chicken, it's chock full of fiber and lean protein to help fill us up. It makes a big batch so it's great to freeze for leftovers. —Elizabeth Wagner, Clio, Michigan
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. + soaking Cook: 2 hours
  • Makes
    11 servings (1-3/4 quarts)


  • 1/2 pound dried baby lima beans
  • 1/2 pound dried great northern beans
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley


  • Sort beans and rinse with cold water. Place in a Dutch oven; add water to cover by 2 in. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 1-4 hours or until beans are softened.
  • Drain and rinse beans, discarding liquid; set beans aside. Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt. In the same pan, saute chicken in 1 tablespoon oil until no longer pink. Drain and set aside. Saute onion in remaining oil until tender. Add the carrots, celery and garlic; saute 1-2 minutes longer.
  • Stir in the broth, water, pepper, beans and chicken; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1-3/4 to 2-1/4 hours or until beans are tender. Stir in parsley and remaining salt.
  • Serve immediately or cool and freeze in a freezer container for up to 3 months.
  • To use frozen soup: Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Transfer to a saucepan. Cover and cook over medium-low heat until heated through, stirring occasionally. Stir in 1/4 cup parsley and 1/2 teaspoons salt.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 270 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 46mg cholesterol, 499mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 9g fiber), 27g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 2 starch, 1/2 fat.

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  • Tarre
    Oct 24, 2019

    Message for Judy, insects will have nothing to do with canola and neither should you. It contains trans fats, even though the labels say it doesn't. It is highly chemically refined, GMO, and a rich source for omega-6 fats. You are much better off eating chicken. This recipe looks great. Anyone who thinks it needs more flavor needs to taste while cooking and ADD MORE FLAVOR as in three times the garlic, three times the celery, salt, pepper, and spices such as oregano and/or thyme.

  • Judy
    May 21, 2019

    I make a white bean soup but add tomato, cumin seed , turmeric and bay leaves. Chicken is toxic and full of chemicals and hormones and canola oil should be substituted for olive oil.

  • wjjmaj
    Jan 17, 2016

    Something is missing. I found this rather tasteless.

  • Rabid_Monkey202
    Apr 21, 2015

    Really quite good. It was surprising how much adding white beans could change the standard chicken soup.

  • EvelynDeVries
    Feb 9, 2013

    Very good soup. It is hearty and filling. I served it with Honey Whole Wheat Rolls (recipe here in Taste of Home) and they were wonderful together.

  • mirania
    Jun 25, 2008

    No comment left