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Windy City Black Bean Soup

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 90 minutes
  • Serves 6-8
Windy City Black Bean Soup


2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2-3 strips bacon, cut or chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
6 Backyard Farms Tomatoes on the Vine, chopped
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
1 teaspoon Mt. Olive diced jalapeño, in jar
1 quart chicken broth

2 cups water
1/2 can beer, any kind
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon smokey paprika
1 tablespoon olive oil topping when serving
1 bag croutons
1/4 teaspoon fresh chives
1/2 teaspoon sour cream


In a skillet, heat olive oil on medium heat. Add the bacon, onion, green pepper. Sauté for 5 minutes then add garlic. Continue to sauté for an additional 2 minutes.

In a medium saucepan, add all the other ingredients along with the bacon, onion, green pepper, garlic and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Transfer all ingredients in saucepan to the blender and puree. Once the ingredients are pureed, transfer back to saucepan and heat on medium heat until bubbly. Simmer for 1 hour reducing the soup by 1⁄4.

Serve each bowl of soup with 6 croutons, chives and sour cream.

Winning recipe in our Falling for Tomatoes Recipe Contest chosen by Head Chef Mary Ann Esposito

A Note from John N., creator of this recipe:

The Fall of 2005 my partner and I met my brother and his partner in the Windy City of Chicago Illinois for a weekend of Fun and Food. After walking about on the streets of the Windy City, the aroma of delicious food stimulating our appetites filled the air from the restaurants and bistros. We decided to stop at a sidewalk bistro to have a cocktail and a lite lunch. Sangria was the special of the day. Like the bold colors of the leaves changing on the trees, Sangria would be the perfect drink to start off this lunch. Watching the food coming from the kitchen to the table was very interesting. A waiter serving a bowl of something brown caught my eye. I stopped him to ask what food item he was serving the customer. Black Bean Soup, he replied. Now ready to place our order, I decided on a bowl of the Black Bean Soup. The soup was tasty but missing something. I asked everyone at the table to taste my soup. After tasting the soup we all agreed that the soup needed some more flavor. I told the guys that I can duplicate this and make it better. After returning home from the Windy City, I decided to practice until I got the flavors that I liked. This is my Windy City Black Bean Soup Recipe.