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Vegetarian Escarole and White Bean Soup

Mangia bene! The classic Italian pairing of escarole and white beans shines in this hearty soup, a meal-in-a-bowl that’s guaranteed to brighten a dreary day. You can make escarole and white bean soup with collards or other greens as well. Cooler weather? You want this warming vegetarian soup on your menu!

Escarole and White Bean Soup in bowls on brown napkins with bowl of Parmesan cheese in backgroundb

Click here to PIN! Vegetarian Escarole and White Bean Soup!

Around the world, many cuisines have recipes with greens like escarole or collards paired with white beans. Many include sausage, meatballs, or bacon/procuitto. I’ve even come across one that calls for sardines! This meatless escarole and white bean soup will delight vegans, vegetarians, and meat-eaters all.

What is escarole?

Escarole belongs to the characteristically bitter endive family. Like other leafy greens, this tangy only slightly bitter green is full of anti-oxidant benefits and vitamins, especially vitamins A and K. Escarole leaves are broad and look somewhat like green lettuce.

Simmered in broth, escarole greens becomes juicy, wilty and mild, all good reasons to make this fragrant stewy soup.

*** When escarole isn’t available, make your soup with collard greens in place of the escarole.

Escarole and White Beans

This recipe comes from the Garafalo family. The week we found escarole in our farm share box, our local farmer’s mother sent me the recipe for her awesome white bean and escarole soup. Her recipe called for low-fat chicken broth–I just swap in vegetable broth.

Diane Garafalo suggests serving your escarole and white beans with a crusty Italian bread. Savory Cottage Cheese and Dill Muffins would also be good with this soup.

As the Garafalo family says, mangia bene–eat well!

**** If you want to give this vegetarian combo of greens and white beans a meaty sausage quality, by adding what we call “soysage”, a faux sausage meat substitute like Gimme Lean “sausage.”

Escarole and White Beans

How to Pressure Cook beans:

When you cook your own beans instead of opening a can, you will be amazed. The beans have better texture and the broth from cooking the beans is sooooo flavorful!

  • Start with 1 cup of beans and soak them overnight. Cook the beans in water to cover, one to two inches,  with 2 cloves of garlic for 9 minutes in the pressure cooker, remove from the heat, and let the pressure come down naturally.
  • See my recipe for How to Cook Pinto Beans in the Pressure Cooker for more explicit directions for pressure cooking beans from scratch.

Make it a fabulous week–get in the kitchen and cook a delicious main course soup!

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Nutrition information is meant to be an estimate only. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and substitutions that are made.


  • Love escarole! Soysages, I’m less sure about. However, it’s such a funny word that I might be willing to try them just say I can say soysages again. GREG Reply · 21 August, 2014

  • letty

    🙂 Reply · 21 August, 2014

  • Sharon L Schwartz

    Soaking the beans then pressure cooking… how much liquid do I pressure cook with? Reply · 9 August, 2021

    • Thanks for the question Sharon. When pressure cooking soaked beans, add enough water to cover the beans by one to two inches. I updated the recipe to clarify. Reply · 10 August, 2021

  • Lance

    I’ve made this soup a handful of times. It’s great especially when you cook your own beans and use the cooking liquid for stock.

    A chopped Yukon Gold potato and half a yellow onion make nice additions. Reply · 29 September, 2022

    • Thank you Lance. Yes, homecooked beans make superior vegetable broth! Reply · 29 September, 2022

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