Cubano Brazilian Black Bean soup

I made this before it was 103 here. This is good served with quesadillas, sour cream, chopped cilantro.

Cubano Brazilian Black Bean soup

This isn’t something that I just threw together, it has gone through a rigorous testing in our test kitchen, ok my kitchen. My 1950’s kitchen. I know the right ingredients, the taste and flavors like I know my own husband. You might tweak it with different spices and I recommend coriander, adobo or other latin flavors. Jeff says this was the best ever.

I largely use what is on hand because while cooking is an act of love, it is also got some practicality to it. Substitutions made thoughtfully are encouraged.


1 onion
1 tsp cayenne
5 cloves garlic
1 tsp cumin
1 T vegetable oil
2 tsps chili powder
+/- 1 cup salsa (the fresher the better)
3 to 4 cups low salt chicken broth
6 ounce can green chiles
14 ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
1-2 cups greens (collard or spinach)
3 cans or about 4 cups prepared beans (not dry)
1 length of linguica OR kielbasa OR ¾ large ham steak OR 4 to 5 pieces of bacon (optional)
3 or 4 potatoes OR 1 cup rice (dry)
1 cup sweet white corn

1. Chop onion and garlic in the chopper to a near puree. Sautee on medium high in a frying pan with about 1 T of vegetable oil.
2. Add cayenne, cumin and chili powder to the garlic onion mixture that is sautéing.
3. After a couple minutes of sautéing, add salsa. Old salsa, canned salsa… just not Pace, Taco Bell or Doritos brand because they put a bunch a junk in their salsa that shouldn’t be there. I used a small can of jalapeno salsa.
4. Add green chiles. Hot or mild, you choose—keep sautéing and stirring this mixture.
5. Add tomatoes.
6. Stir all this together and cook for a 5 to 7 min stirring, not quite boiling.
7. Add greens. They should wilt slightly but not get totally cooked.
8. In a slow cooker, a large one, put black beans (drained and rinsed of course) Dump the onion mixture over the beans.
9. Deglaze your frying pan with finely chopped ham, or bacon or sliced sausage. Meat is not a necessity here, this recipe can stand without it. Dump the meat on top of the other stuff in the slow cooker
10. Decide whether you want your starch to be potatoes or rice. It doesn’t matter—the soup will be more liquidy with potatoes. If you want rice, add one cup of dry rice to the slowcooker. If you want potatoes chop 3 potatoes (peeled if they aren’t new potatoes) to 1 inch pieces approx. and throw this in the slow cooker.
11. Put about a cup of sweet white corn in the slow cooker
12. Pour enough chicken broth into the slow cooker that you can see it rising on the side of all the ingredients.

Cook this altogether in the slow cooker. Allow it to cook on high boiling for 2 to 4 hours then simmer on low until your potatoes and beans are soft. This should be around like 6 hours max (on low).

One Comment Add yours

  1. Natalie says:

    Oh yummy! Sounds good. When the weather gets a little less hot I hope this is still online for me to try.

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