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White Bean, Potato, and Arugula Soup

White Bean, Potato, and Arugula Soup

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Makes 8 first-course or 4 main-course Servings



  • 2 1/3 cups Great Northern beans (about 1 pound)
  • 3 large fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 10 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 6 cups (or more) chicken stock or caned low-salt chicken broth

Parmesan oil

  • 2/3 cup (packed) grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 bunches arugula, tough stems removed, cut into 1-inch strips (about 3 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

Recipe Preparation


  • Place Great Northern beans in large pot. Pour enough water over beans to cover by 4 inches. Let soak overnight. Drain beans and return to pot. Add 2 bay leaves and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add 3 tablespoons olive oil and fresh rosemary sprigs and simmer uncovered until beans are barely tender, about 30 minutes.

  • Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in another large pot over medium heat. Add russet potato pieces and sauté until brown in spots, about 8 minutes. Add half of garlic and sauté until beginning to color, about 3 minutes. Add 6 cups chicken st0ock and boil until potato pieces are falling apart, about 10 minutes. Pour beans and cooking liquid into potato mixture. Bring to boil; reduce heat and simmer just until beans are tender, about 10 minutes. Season soup generously with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Soup can be prepared up to 2 days ahead. Cool slightly, then cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before continuing, thinning with additional chicken stock if necessary.

Parmesan oil

  • Blend 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup olive oil in processor until smooth. DO AHEAD Parmesan oil can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover oil and refrigerate.

  • Stir 2 bunches arugula into soup. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy small skillet over medium heat. Add remaining chopped garlic and dried crushed red pepper; sauté until golden. Add to soup and simmer 5 minutes. Stir Parmesan oil into soup. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper.

Recipe by Lidia s in Kansas City MOReviews Section

Recipe: Comforting White Bean Potato Soup

Even Peanut’s overwhelmed by recipe development! He came right over and sat in my pile of cookbooks as if to say “stop looking at what other people do, just do you!”

I’m not gonna lie: creating recipes can be pretty intimidating. After all these years of cooking, I’m at a place where I can confidently improvise in the kitchen and know that my meals will come out tasting good (like 90% of the time!). I know what ingredients will taste good together, I know approximately how long to cook things, and I can eyeball amounts and end up with a finished product that I’m happy with. I also make a lot of recipes from other people, which has really bolstered my confidence in the kitchen.

But actually having to write down amounts for every ingredient? Remembering to look at the clock and time how long each step takes? Focusing on all the little details that make it easy to follow a well written recipe? This is a whole new world, of which I am just now learning how to speak the language. I’ve already done a pasta sauce, so when I sat down and tried to decide what new recipe I wanted to create, I decided to stick with another foundation: soup!

Anyone can make soup from scratch, without following a recipe. Even people who are intimidated by cooking can come up with a basic soup recipe that tastes good! All you need is some veggies, some broth, something hearty and filling, and lots of flavor from spices, salt, pepper, and acid. Boom. My favorite soups are comforting and filling, chock full of things that will leave my body feeling nourished and loved. Do you get that feeling from soup too? That you’re being enveloped in a nice warm hug? There’s nothing better than that! I love a nice, fresh, brothy soup, but I’m someone who will just get hungry an hour after eating it for a meal. If I’m going to make a soup fit for a meal, I need it to have some real substance that will cling to my bones and keep me warm and full for the rest of the day.

That’s how this soup was born: I took one look at the Yukon Gold potatoes at the grocery store and immediately found myself dreaming of a potato soup that I could bring to work with me and eat for lunch throughout the week. But if I was going to eat soup for lunch it needed to be filling: I’m on my feet all day chasing around four-year-olds. I barely have time to drink my tea in the morning at work, so I’m definitely not able to snack throughout the day! My lunches need to leave me feeling full but energized. Then I saw this recipe for Senate Bean Soup from Kathy over at Happy Healthy Life and knew that I needed to add some white beans to my recipe for a solid dose of protein and fiber. And just like that, my Comforting White Bean Potato Soup was born!

This soup is fresh, comforting, and filling! The celery, arugula, and fresh herbs add a nice pop of green and the potatoes and cashew cream give this soup a luscious velvety texture. It’s like the best of both worlds!

There are three components to this soup, but when you make them in the right order it’s really not that complicated and doesn’t take that long.

Quick Cannellini Bean Soup With Arugula

The holidays are over, we are chasing away the flu, and this healthy cannellini bean soup with arugula will be a perfect supper as we welcome the long-awaited California rains…An old, yet timely post.

Enough already with the holiday goodies and rich food! I’m ready to freeze the last of the cookies, pass out the final batch of Scottish toffee and reel in our sugar, salt and fat consumption. It’s always fun for a while, but once or twice a year is plenty.

So, we are putting on the brakes early this year, as we anticipate a vacation later this month. Traveling means restaurant-eating, fun but always a challenge if one is watching salt, in particular. We will be visiting Charleston, SC, a city I have long wanted to see, and those folks are known for a spectacular dining scene.

I was pleased when Larry agreed on Boxing Day to “go light” through New Year’s. This easy cannellini bean soup with arugula made a terrific supper on a cold evening last night, and is hearty enough to serve as an entrée. It comes together in a flash and is an excellent fast meal made with pretty ordinary ingredients you probably have in your pantry and fridge. If you have have fresh greens other than arugula, throw them in.

Skip the chicken sausage and switch out the chicken stock for vegetable, and you have a vegan version. We’re going to be having more vegan meals in 2013 – Larry doesn’t know that yet – so that will be my next twist on the recipe.

  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 leeks, white and light green parts only, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, or 1/4 teaspoon dried
  • 2 14-ounce cans reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 1 2-pound roasted chicken, skin discarded, meat removed from bones and shredded (4 cups)

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring often, until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in sage and continue cooking until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth and water, increase heat to high, cover and bring to a boil. Add beans and chicken and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Serve hot.

The Gentlemanly Tomato

Surprisingly bright for a bean-ish dish, this Tuscan soup has plenty of flavor to complement the meatier textures of the beans and potatoes. Warm arugula adds a little extra zing and a fancy, restaurant-style flair without getting things too insanely weird. Pair with garlic bread and a salad that’s less the “sweet, heavy” type and more the sort that has pine nuts and/or olives in it.

Note: The photo above is someone else’s soup this recipe below (from Moosewood’s Simple Suppers) doesn’t include sausage, carrots, or white beans, but otherwise looks pretty similar. If you want, you can throw in some sausage, chopped: I like MorningStar’s vegetarian breakfast sausage links or Yves’ vegetarian Italian sausage (the Yves item is also an EXCELLENT vegetarian hot dog.).

  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups diced red potatoes
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary (about 4 in long – or 1-2 Tbsp dried) either include whole sprig, or remove and break/rub/crush/mince the leaves. Discard stalk.
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 14-oz can of small red beans, drained
  • 1/2 c white white, or 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 4 oz arugula (about 4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • salt and black pepper
  • lemon wedges (optional)
  • grated Parmesan or Pecorino Roman cheese (or cheese substitute, if you’re vegan)

1. Put oil, onions, and garlic in bottom of soup pot and sauté until garlic is fragrant but not burnt, about 2 min. Add potatoes, rosemary, broth, and salt cover, and bring to a boil. Add the beans and the wine (or lemon juice), then reduce heat and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.

2. While the potatoes cook, rinse and drain the arugula. Remove any large or tough stems, and coarsely chop any large leaves. Set aside.

3. When the potatoes are tender, add the basil. Salt & pepper to taste. Remove and discard the rosemary sprig – some leaves may stay behind in the soup, and that’s fine. Put a handful of arugula into each bowl and ladle the hot soup over it. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and/or cheese.

White Bean, Potato, and Arugula Soup - Recipes

Looks delicious! I have a similar (Potato & Leek Soup) recipe.. and love adding Kale, and sometimes ground beef or sausage to the recipe! Mmm! Never thought of arugula (actually can't say that I have ever had arugula.) - sounds like an experiment is in order! Thanx! :)

Yummy - though I find it hard to believe you lived without leeks for so long! Loving this recipe, especially the addition of white wine AND arugula.

i feel the same way about leeks!! i cannot believe i went so long without them. my sister grew baby leeks last year and is experimenting on growing full size this sumemr, cannot wait to try myself.

will have to check out Judi's books. thanks!

been too long for me without a daily dose of cute. so we appreciate all those things sitting in your pantry while we enjoy the cuteness!

What a tasty potatoes & leek soup. This is a classic typical soup from Belgium!!

We do love our soups!! I also love that you added rocket ( arugula ).

MMMMM. I love your toppings too!

I love potato soup with leeks, but I usually make a cream base. Thank you for sharing,I'll have to try this recipe instead.

Saw this and had to make it and MAN is it good. wow. I used Kale instead of arugula and it is deeeelish.

I found this while searching for something to do with the lovely collard greens from my CSA--I've narrowed it down to either this soup or your swiss chard and artichoke pizza! Both look great!

I have a question for you that I hope you can answer do you remember where you got the spoons in the picture? I just love them (and hate the flatware I have) and I'm thinking about buying myself a present . . . . )

Aren't those spoons fun? I found them a few years ago at World Market. Enjoy your soup and/or pizza! :)

This is wonderful! I have to try. Thank you for sharing :-).

Does this soup freeze ok? I ended up making a HUGE batch!

Hi Kate,
I can't remember if I've frozen any of this particular soup or not (I love it so much there isn't usually any left over!), but I've successfully frozen all kinds of soups. It should freeze just fine. The flavor of the arugula might come out a little stronger - I've noticed that some herbs in breads and soups taste stronger after being frozen. You can always try freezing a small sample - just defrost tomorrow and see how it tastes before freezing the rest. :)

This is the most amazing potato leek soup that I've ever had! I left it a little chunky to get some of the roasted potato bites. Just sent the recipe off to my mom and sister. Absolutely delicious!

December 2015 update: Hi! For some reason I can't figure out, Blogger hasn't been letting me leave comments on my own blog (!) for the last several months, so I've been unable to respond to your comments and questions. My apologies for any inconvenience! You're always welcome to email me: farmgirlfare AT gmail DOT com.

Hi! Thanks for visiting Farmgirl Fare and taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and I especially love hearing about your experiences with my recipes. Comments on older posts are always welcome!

Please note that I moderate comments, so if I'm away from the computer it may be a while before yours appears.

I try my best to answer all questions, though sometimes it takes me a few days. And sometimes, I'm sorry to say, they fall through the cracks, and for that I sincerely apologize.

I look forward to hearing from you and hope you enjoy your e-visits to our farm!

Beans and legumes comprise one of the cornerstones of the Greek diet. And it’s no wonder — they’ve existed in Greece since before the Bronze Age. They are a humble ingredient that provide a sustainable source of protein and satisfaction as well. That’s why you can find Fasolada — Greek White Bean Soup — throughout the country and diaspora.

Template for a perfect Fasolada

A basic slate of broth, onions, carrots, and celery lay the foundation for this versatile soup. Recipes commonly add tomatoes. I’m also adding tomato paste here for more depth of flavor and to boost acidity. But you don’t need to use it at all. Instead, some households will swirl in a little skordalia (Greece’s favorite garlicky dip), fold in feta, yogurt, or garnish with chili, green onions, lemon and/or plenty of herbs like dill or parsley.

You can also serve the soup as is, or if you want it thicker, use a blender or immersion blender to puree some or all of the beans. It all depends on the texture that you most prefer. Either way, a steaming bowl of this soup pairs perfectly with a hunk of crusty bread.

What beans should I use?

Most Greeks buy their beans dried, but in this recipe you can use either three 15-ounce cans of Cannellini or great northern beans rinsed and strained or 1 pound dried beans that you’ve soaked in water overnight. I normally have a stock of canned beans in my pantry, so often make this with canned beans. And it really takes no time at all at that point.

Types of tomatoes and tomato paste

You can also use fresh or canned tomatoes in this recipe. I often use fresh tomatoes in the summer time when they are in season. If you opt to use fresh tomatoes, use about 1 1/2 – 2 pounds and grate them on a box grater and save the skin for your compost. Supermarket tomatoes out of season aren’t your best bet. They normally lack in flavor. Canned/jarred tomatoes are best to use in this case.

As far as tomato paste, I use double concentrated tomato paste for this recipe. You could use triple concentrated, just be aware that it is stronger, so you may want to decrease the amount.

Arugula and potato soup

Most people who remember Mitchell Parrish recall him as one of America’s great lyricists -- he wrote the words to Hoagy Carmichael’s “Star Dust,” one of the 20th century’s most romantic and widely covered songs, as well as “Sophisticated Lady,” “Stars Fell on Alabama,” “Moonlight Serenade” and the English version of “Volare.”

But I remember him as a guy who inadvertently gave me one of my favorite soups. My husband, a jazz journalist, interviewed Parrish shortly before his death at age 92 in 1993. Parrish had talked about his years in Paris, when he loved to go into a little bistro and order potage St. Germain, which he described as pea soup.

Hmm, I wondered, was this different from split pea soup (soupe de pois casses)?

As it turns out, it is fresh pea soup. To make it, you saute some sliced Bibb lettuce in butter, add young peas (frozen are best, unless you have some just-picked fresh ones), cover with water and simmer, covered, for about 40 minutes. Puree, correct the seasoning, and it’s extremely wonderful -- silky and sophisticated as Duke Ellington’s lady, with very pure pea flavor. Stir in a little lemon zest or chopped mint at the end, if you like.

A few years later, when my son was a baby, and I was determined to get him to eat vegetables, I simmered some broccoli in a little chicken broth till the broccoli was tender, put it all, vegetable and broth, in the Cuisinart, and pureed. Voila! -- a silky, dark green, wonderfully nutritious soup that he slurped up with glee.

In my naivete, I thought this dish’s best attributes were that it was quick (only 15 or 20 minutes for the broccoli to get tender) and an easy way to sneak cruciferous vegetables into my unsuspecting son’s diet.

But I kept admiring the way it looked -- so green and creamy, despite the fact there was no cream in it -- and I could never help myself from taking a few spoonfuls. Delicious. Sometimes I used cauliflower, sometimes baby bok choy. Always, it was a pure expression of the starring vegetable. I started making it for the whole family, and even serving it at dinner parties. Naturally, I seasoned ours more assertively than the baby’s, sometimes stirring in a little creme fraiche. When I realized that this was the easiest first course in the universe, no more work than making a salad, it turned into a habit.

Once I thought about it for half a minute, I realized I hadn’t invented it. It’s the same technique that Julia Child used for one of my longtime favorites, potage parmentier -- the leek and potato soup that she called “simplicity itself.” You just simmer sliced leeks and potatoes in water, pass them through a food mill (I always just used a food processor a mill makes it even smoother) and stir in a little cream or butter and parsley or chives. Use chicken broth instead of water, chill it, and it’s vichyssoise. Toss in a big handful of watercress five minutes before it’s done, and it’s watercress soup.

Then there’s my most frugal, yet luxurious soup, a puree of asparagus. When local asparagus makes its appearance in spring, first I go through an asparagus vinaigrette phase. I peel the spears, simmer them gently in salted water, drain and sauce with a vinaigrette. But wait -- don’t throw away the asparagus cooking water: Save it to use as a base for a creamy asparagus soup. Once you have a few batches’ worth (about a quart), use it to simmer two bunches of unpeeled asparagus until they’re just overcooked. Then puree. It’s asparagus heaven.

But it’s the chicken broth-based purees that are the quickest and easiest: Roughly cut up some vegetables, add a carton of chicken broth, turn on the heat, and you’re almost there. If you use an immersion blender, you don’t even have the fuss of transferring the liquid to the bowl of a food processor or blender, nor the mess of an extra pot (since it never all goes in one batch).

Best of all, you can dress them up or dress them down. Toss in extra vegetables -- whatever’s in the fridge. Or give them a dapper garnish, depending on the soup.

The broccoli soup is terrific as is, one of those cases of the whole adding up to more than the sum of its parts. Or you can finish it with a little lemon juice or zest, stir in some creme fraiche or butter, or sprinkle on a bit of grated Parmesan. This one works just as well with cauliflower. If you want something a little richer, stir in some cream. When truffle season rolls around, a creamy cauliflower puree is a magnificent canvas for shaved white truffles.

I frequently toss a handful of arugula into other puree soups just before they’re done cooking. (This is an especially handy trick once the arugula is looking a little too tired to appear in a salad.)

But what about a very, very arugula-intense soup? We started by simmering Yukon gold potatoes in the broth, so the soup would have some body. Then we added two whole bags of baby arugula. The green’s peppery flavor softens when it’s cooked, but in the end it still wants a little fat to round it out. A dollop of creme fraiche swirled in makes it creamy alternatively, a touch of olive oil keeps it more Italian.

The fennel-carrot soup departs a little from the formula, because you saute the aromatic vegetables (including onion) in olive oil first. From there, just add the broth, simmer and puree. It’s delicious as is, but a little Dungeness crab on top wouldn’t hurt either.

What is resistant starch?

Have you heard about resistant starch? It’s unique to a few carbohydrates, cooled potatoes being one of them.

Resistant starch is, in basic terms, starch that resists digestion. It functions similar to soluble fiber, improving insulin sensitivity, lowering blood sugar levels and reducing appetite.

It enters the small intestine undigested, eventually reaching the colon where it provides food for good gut bacteria. Most food that we eat feeds about 10% of our gut bacteria, but fermentable fibers and resistant starches feed the other 90%. (It’s also why I’m NOT a fan of low-carb, low-fiber diets- how are you going to feed your gut!?)

When our gut bacteria digest resistant starches, they form several compounds including short-chain fatty acids, most notably butyrate, the preferred fuel of cells in your colon. Bottom line– resistant starch feeds friendly gut bacteria and feeds the cells in the colon by increasing the amount of butyrate.

That’s all to say, please stop fearing the potato. Especially the cooked and cooled potato, which has higher amounts of resistant starch. I was talking to a friend the other day and he told me that he avoided potatoes, as they usually increase weight gain.

And while that might be true for french fried potatoes (the way most Americans eat potatoes), that’s not true for other preparations. In fact, eating foods with resistant starch (like this potato salad) increases feelings of fullness and decreases meal caloric intake.

What’s that you say? You can’t wait to dive into this amazing arugula, white bean and roasted Little Potato salad because it not only looks good but it may also help with weight loss and better gut health? Me too my friend, me too.

If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking!

Roasted Buffalo Chickpeas

I’m a weirdo and can totally eat chickpeas straight out of the can. Well, I rinse them first, but if I’m ever craving something with a little bit more spice, this is my go-to Bean Protocol recipe snack!

The Mindful Palate

A comforting easy soup to make on the most hectic day. Feel free to use prepared boxes of veggie stock instead of homemade. My favorite brands of boxed stock are Kitchen Basics or Imagine. Both are just fine and come in a low or no sodium version (that's what I use). By now many of you have noticed I don't add salt except on rare occasions. If you need salt because you are used to it, go right ahead and add it. Don't tell me you did though, salt's not good for my blood pressure.

White Bean and Arugula Soup
nutrition facts
about 8 servings depending on the size of your bowls.

1 T olive oil - use pure olive oil not extra virgin when you saute
1 onion, chopped
3 heaping T garlic, chopped
1 1/2 t thyme
1 t smokey paprika
1/2 t fresh cracked black pepper
2 (15 oz cans) white beans, rinsed and drained - or better still, cook up a pound of beans from dry, divide into two freezer bags that weigh about a pound each and use one bag each time you make the soup!
4 cups vegetable stock, preferably low or no sodium
2 medium red potatoes, chopped - you can always add more to make it super hearty
1 1/2 T olive oil (habanero olive oil is wonderful here, but not required by law)
2 C arugula, chopped

Saute in a large soup pot, pure olive oil, onion, thyme, black pepper. Stir frequently and when the onion is clear, add the garlic and saute for a few more minutes - do not brown the garlic or it may turn bitter. If the pot becomes dry before the veges are softened, add one tablespoon of the stock and continue to saute until the veggies are soft.

Add the white beans (Great Northern is my favorite, but Cannelini works if you like the larger bean), stock and potatoes. Simmer at least 15 minutes. Taste and add more seasonings if you wish. You may want a thinner soup, in which case add more broth - it does not add much in the way of calories!

Shortly before serving the soup, heat a skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and saute the arugula or whatever greenery you are using. When it is wilted, add it to the soup.

I strongly recommend hot red pepper flakes for this - especially if you serve it thicker.

Serve with a warm homemade roll such as a brioche or a baking powder biscuit. A salad makes a lovely accompaniment - both for the visual and for the contrast of cool to hot. Enjoy mindfully and often.