The Best Black Bean Soup

This Black Bean Soup Recipe is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almond Breeze

Oh friends, do I have an awesome spring dinner recipe for you.

Best black bean soup

Whenever I see my Uncle E the chef, he gives me amazing cooking tips. He is the mastermind behind this salmon, this vegan sushi, and the best pasta salad you will ever have in your entire life. We got to spend some time with him this past weekend, and while he gave me a TON of recipes, the most interesting one was a black bean recipe.

Perfect Black Beans

He told me a story about how they were never his forte, and one of his friends from Key West taught him the tricks to making incredible black beans. I’ll go ahead and tell you the secrets: first, sauté your veggies (onion, peppers, garlic, don’t be stingy with the veggies; the more the merrier).

Add your black bean spices (fajita spices like chili powder, cumin, cayenne, garlic, onion, etc), the black beans, the secret ingredient,

Trader Joe's Organic Marinara Sauce

(I KNOW, right?)

and some broth to finish it off. BOOM. Perfect black beans.

Perfect Black Beans

Black beans

Of course, I had to try this method as soon as I could, and after we destroyed the first batch, I made another and turned it into a glorious black bean soup. I added some Almond Breeze for a hint of creaminess, a little chicken broth, and topped it with goat cheese, avocado, cilantro and lime juice.

The Best Black Bean Soup Recipe

You need this in your life.

best black bean soup (1 of 1)-2

It’s a thousand times better than my beloved black bean soup from Panera. Give it a whirl for a delicious vegetarian lunch or dinner option! Let me know what you think. 🙂

Best black bean soup 1 of 1 3

Here’s the recipe if you’d like to give it a try!



The best black bean soup

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A savory black bean fiesta in a bowl

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 20


  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • pinch cumin
  • pinch cayenne
  • 2 cans black beans, drained
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/3 cup marinara sauce
  • 1/2 cup Almond Breeze almond milk
  • 1/2 cup broth
  • crumbled goat cheese, cilantro, sliced avocado and lime juice for serving


  1. 1. Heat a large saucepan to medium, and add a splash of olive oil.
  2. 2. Add you bell peppers, onion and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently until aromatic and slightly softened.
  3. 3. Add the seasonings, and stir to fully coat the veggies. Reduce the heat to low and add the black beans.
  4. 4. Next, add your marinara sauce and stir well.
  5. 5. Gently pour in the Almond Breeze and broth, stir to heat through (but do not boil) and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. 6. Serve into bowls and top with crumbled goat cheese, cilantro and lime wedges.


  • Serving Size: 4



Any random secret ingredients you like to add to certain things? I like to add a pinch of sugar to marinara sauce, and (as I learned from Rachael Ray back in the day) a bit of nutmeg to casseroles.

This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almond Breeze, my favorite almond milk. Thank you so much for supporting this little blog. <3

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  1. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on March 25, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    Anything is better with almond milk! Definitely going to try the marinara trick. Thanks for the tip Gina!

    • Fitnessista on March 25, 2015 at 9:34 pm


  2. Laura B @ FitMamaLove on March 25, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Aack, this sounds so good! And I just had Panera’s soup the other day and thought it was pretty good, but I bet this is loads better. Will definitely try!

    • Fitnessista on March 25, 2015 at 9:33 pm

      let me know if you do! xoxo

  3. Erin @ Her Heartland Soul on March 26, 2015 at 5:01 am

    YUM! This sounds so good!

  4. Livi @ Eat, Pray, Work It Out on March 26, 2015 at 5:06 am

    Sounds so creamy and delicious!

  5. Amanda @ Slimplify Life on March 26, 2015 at 5:30 am

    Looks healthy and delicious! Thanks Gina & Uncle E :).

  6. Erin @ Erin's Inside Job on March 26, 2015 at 6:46 am

    I do like black beans, but sometimes they can be a little overwhelming. I will have to try out your way and see how they turn out!

  7. kristin | W [H] A T C H on March 26, 2015 at 6:58 am

    my mind is blown. i love black bean soup and am definitely going to give this a try.

  8. Jodie on March 26, 2015 at 7:29 am

    Ohhhhh Gina this looks fantastic! I am definitely making this. Drooling.

  9. Carly on March 26, 2015 at 8:46 am

    This looks awesome! Going to put it in the meal plan for next week. I’ve had a couple of soup fails recently so I’m looking for a win here!

    • Carly on April 1, 2015 at 3:49 pm

      Update: delicious!! So easy and boyfriend tested and liked too. Adding this one in to the saved file! Thanks!

      • Fitnessista on April 2, 2015 at 8:13 am

        so glad you liked it! <3

  10. Nic on March 26, 2015 at 8:52 am

    I make a variation of this, instead of marinara though I add pico de gallo and sweet potatoes and spicy sausage. It’s amazing, and it’s SUPER quick to make. I picked up the pico de gallo tip off another blog and I think it’s brilliant – all the yummy veggies and none of the chopping!

  11. Stacy @ Sweating TulipZ on March 26, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Ahh, I love black bean soup! Thank you for sharing the secret! 🙂 I can’t wait to try this!

  12. Tracy on March 26, 2015 at 9:40 am

    This sounds really delicious and I bet it’s much better than Panera’s. Theirs is too salty for me! I bet the marinara adds a lot of depth in flavor. Thanks to both you and your uncle 🙂

  13. Shannon on March 26, 2015 at 11:57 am

    This looks delicious!

  14. Britt on March 26, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    We make our black beans exactly this way, but have never added broth at the end. My family jokes that my husband is more Mexican than I am because he triple adds all the spice, and puts cilantro on everything. Definitely going to try!

  15. mary on March 28, 2015 at 11:08 am

    I tried it. It’s good! Well, I added way more broth, and whirred most of it in the blender, and topped it with jalapenos, cheddar, sour cream and tortilla strips. But I think the marinara was a nice addition. I don’t know if the milk did anything but maybe! My base recipe is very similar, but without marinara or milk. I like the pico de gallo tip someone posted, too. Thanks!

  16. Rose on March 31, 2015 at 3:52 am

    Tried it! Love it. Thanks! I like your chana masala too.

  17. nickee on May 9, 2015 at 7:14 am

    Tried it and I loved it!! going to be a staple 🙂 Thank you for sharing.

  18. Kristin on October 5, 2015 at 5:23 am

    This is ridiculously good! My husband keeps asking me to make it again (and when I do make it, I do a triple batch). I used less onion, but then added more seasonings. I did try freezing a portion of this soup in the freezer to pull out another time. It tasted fine when thawed, but the consistency was not quite the same.

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