Vegetarian white bean soup is the ultimate crock-pot comfort food. It is a healthy and delicious one-pot slow cooker meal made with pantry staples that your family will love!
This vegetable bean soup is filled with plant-based protein. It has so much flavor yet is made with simple ingredients. A real winning combination!
To make this delicious meal, you will need:
- cannellini beans - canned. rinsed and drained
- mirepoix - (carrots, onion and celery), diced
- Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and fresh ground pepper
- lemon juice and zest - of half a lemon
- vegetable broth
- baby spinach leaves
- parmesan rind
- shredded parmesan - if you are a parm lover, the more the better!
- fresh rosemary sprig - optional
- salt and black pepper - to taste
This great recipe just involves a few simple steps:
Preparing your slow cooker
Prepare your slow cooker by coating it in a non-stick agent. Any nonstick cooking spray or oil will work. Olive oil and avocado oil are my go-to coatings.
NOTE: some slow cooker inserts come with a nonstick surface. Use of a non-stick agent is still suggested. However, oil is sometimes recommended rather than spray to protect the longevity of the non-stick surface. Check the manual for your slow cooker if you have any concerns.
Alternatively, you can choose to use a slow cooker liner.
Add all ingredients into your slow cooker, other than spinach and parmesan cheese. Stir it briefly to mix all the ingredients together. Place a sprig or two of fresh rosemary on top of your slow cooker's contents and cover.
Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours. Once cooked, use tongs to remove the parmesan rind and rosemary from your slow cooker and discard.
If you prefer soup with a thicker consistency, use an immersion blender to partially blend the ingredients in your crock pot. Be careful not to fully liquify it all. This step is fully optional. If are feeling extra lazy - skip it!
If you don't have an immersion blender, you can puree some of the cooked beans in either a regular blender or food processor. Just be careful when handling as it will be HOT! Returned pureed beans to your slow cooker and stir to combine.
About 15 minutes prior to serving, stir in grated or shredded parmesan and spinach leaves. Your soup is ready to serve when the spinach has wilted.
Serve your white bean soup recipe topped with a sprinkling of chopped grated parmesan cheese. If you are fan of spice, top with some red pepper flakes.
A crusty bread, such as sour dough, along with a crisp garden salad make for the perfect sides. We love to serve this soup alongside a whole chicken or some delicious homemade turkey salad or chicken salad.
The best part of this delicious bean soup is its easy customization. Here are a few suggestions:
- To keep your cannellini bean soup vegan, replace parmesan cheese with nutritional yeast.
- Substitute other canned white beans for cannellini beans. White kidney beans, navy beans, or great northern beans are all great options.
- Kale or other leafy greens can be used in place of spinach in the easy recipe. The only difference is that kale may take a few more minutes to fully cook.
- Frozen spinach is a great sub for fresh spinach. Allow frozen spinach to thaw and fully drain before adding to your slow cooker.
- Try adding some different flavors to your soup by swapping out the vegetable stock for chicken broth or beef broth.
- To turn up the heat, add some red pepper flakes or a dash of sriracha sauce.
Note: I have only made this slow cooker soup recipe with canned beans. If you try it with dry cannellini beans, please let me know how it went in the comments section below.
Store your homemade white bean stew in an airtight container or bag. Leftovers of this cold weather favorite will last 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
If you plan to freeze leftovers, be sure to use a freezer-safe container. Frozen leftovers will last 3 months in the freezer. They are super easy to defrost and reheat - and sooo much better than anything you can buy on a grocery store shelf.
If you love this recipe, please let me know in the comment section below!
😉Hints & hacks
- This is one of those slow cooker recipes that is great if your people will be eating at different times. After cook time, turn your slow cooker to warm and everyone can have a hot and filling meal - anytime.
- To meal prep this easy weeknight dinner in advance, mix together all ingredients other than the spinach and parmesan cheese. Store in an airtight container or zipper top bag in the refrigerator until you are ready to slow cook.
- The perfect way to store leftovers of this slow cooker recipe is in individual serving-sized containers. This makes for easy grab-and-go future meals.
- I always recommend the use of a slow cooker liner. Of course, this is an optional step. I like to purchase my liners in bulk for a less expensive per-piece price.
- In the market for a new slow cooker? I love mine.
- Don't forget to plug your slow cooker in and turn it on! 😏
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Slow Cooker Vegetarian White Bean Soup
- 6 quart slow cooker or larger
- Knife and cutting board
- mixing spoons
- 3 14.5 oz cans cannellini beans rinsed and drained
- 2 cups mirepoix* finely chopped
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt plus more to taste, if needed
- ¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper plus more to taste, if needed
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice Or the juice of half a fresh lemon
- ½ tsp lemon zest
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 10 oz baby spinach leaves about 4 cups
- parmesan rind
- 1 cup plus shredded parmesan or more if you are a parm lover!
- fresh rosemary sprig optional
- grease slow cooker with oil or non-stick cooking spray
- add 3 14.5 oz cans cannellini beans,2 cups mirepoix*,1 tablespoon Italian seasoning,2 teaspoon garlic powder,½ teaspoon salt,¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper ,2 tablespoon lemon juice,1 teaspoon lemon zest, and 8 cups vegetable broth to your slow cooker and stir to combine.
- place fresh rosemary sprig on top, if using
- over and cook on the low setting for 4-6 hours (or high for 3-4 hours)
- once cooked, use tongs to remove parmesan rind and rosemary sprigs
- if you would like to thicken up your soup, use an immersion blender to partially blend slow cooker ingredients
- stir in ¾ cup parmesan cheese and allow to melt
- top with additional parmesan cheese and enjoy!