Black Bean Soup

Add A Few Caribbean Pantry Items To Black Beans And Taste A Classic

Whenever you get to fixing a mess of black beans, it’s nice to save a cup or two with some potlicker to fashion soup.

This recipe is for a scratch soup, but if you have cooked beans, just omit the bean cooking section and go to step 2 to complete.


RECIPE: Serves 8-10

  • black beans, dried – 2 cups, sorted and rinsed
  • water – 8 cups
  • salt – 1 tsp.

  • *cumin seeds – 1-1/2 tsp
  • *coriander seeds – 1 tsp
  • *bay leaves – 3 small
  • *oregano – 1 tsp dried or 1 TBS. fresh

*If you have taco seasoning blend, you can omit the spices/herbs above and add 4 tsp

  • vegetable oil – 3 TBS
  • sweet pepper – 2 cups, chopped, (or combination hot & sweet peppers)
  • celery – 1 cup, chopped
  • onion – 2 cups, (1 large), chopped
  • garlic – 1 TBS, (2-3 cloves), minced

  • soy sauce – 2-1/2 TBS, (or 2 tsp salt)
  • pepper – 1/2 tsp
  • wine vinegar – 1 TBS


  • hot sauce
  • dry sherry
  • sour cream
  • scallion tops – minced
  • cilantro – chopped

INSTRUCTIONS: Following are instructions for pressure cooking.  If using pot or slow cooker, cook on low until softened. Slow cooker takes 6 or so hours, stove top takes at least one hour. 

  1. Pressure cooker method: Add beans, water, and salt to a pressure cooker. Pressure cook^ for 20-25  minutes. Taste and repressurize if more time needed to soften. 
  2. Meanwhile in a dry, large skillet toast the cumin and coriander about a minute then crush or grind. Add oil to the pan and sauté the spices and veggies until wilted.
  3. Add the sautéed veggies to the beans and simmer for 20 minutes. Thin the soup if needed with additional water.
  4. Off heat add the soy sauce, pepper, and vinegar . Stir and taste to adjust seasoning.

Serve with table side condiments.

OPTIONAL SERVING IDEA: Poach some shrimp or other bite-sized protein with a spice blend, [I love blackening seasoning or taco]. Serve soup over rice topped the shrimp.

^BRINING BEANS: I am a big fan of soaking beans before cooking. For velvety bean texture, soak dried beans in 4 cups of water with 2 TBS. of salt for 6-8 hours. Discard the salted water (or save for another time) and lightly rinse the beans. Then add to pressure cooker and cook for only 9-10 minutes and proceed to Step 2.

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