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+ servings
Escarole and White Bean Soup in bowls on brown napkins with bowl of Parmesan cheese in background
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4 from 6 votes

Escarole and White Bean Soup

This robust soup will warm you up on a dreary day. Make with collard greens if you don't have escarole. Use canned white beans or pressure cook the beans first, then build the soup on top of the beans and cooking broth. Serve with a large green salad and maybe something chocolate-y for dessert. Serves 6.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Keyword: escarole, white beans
Servings: 6 servings.
Calories: 128kcal


  • 1 large bunch of escarole or collard leaves
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic (or more to taste) , minced
  • 3 cups cooked white beans drained, from scratch, or 2 (15-oz) cans cannellini beans (white kidney beans), rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (see note)
  • fine sea salt , to taste (see note)
  • Freshly ground black pepper , to taste
  • Crushed red pepper , to taste


  • Cut off the bottoms of the escarole, wash the leaves thoroughly, but do not dry. Roughly tear or chop them into pieces. If using collard green, strip away and discard the stems, then chop the greens into 1-inch pieces.
  • In a large pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant and translucent, about 15 seconds. Do not let the garlic brown.
  • Toss the wet escarole or collards into the pot with the garlic (enjoy the sizzle), and sauté until wilted, about 2 minutes.
  • Add a few pinches of salt, grind in some pepper, and give it a pinch or two of crushed red pepper.
  • Stir in the beans, the cheese, and the broth.
  • Let simmer until escarole is tender and beans are soft, about 20 minutes.
  • Taste the broth and adjust the seasonings. If you wish, add more broth for a soupier consistency.
  • Serve in individual bowls. Drizzle each serving with a splash of olive oil.
  • Let guests add more grated cheese, if desired.


  • To cook beans from scratch: Start with 1 cup of beans and soak them overnight. Cook the beans with 2 cloves of garlic for 9 minutes in the pressure cooker, remove from the heat, and let the pressure come down naturally.
  • If using broth from beans cooked from scratch, you may not need additional vegetable broth. Taste before adding purchased broth.
  • Taste for salt after adding the cheese because the cheese is quite salty.


Calories: 128kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 17mg | Sodium: 843mg | Potassium: 249mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2030IU | Vitamin C: 5.2mg | Calcium: 218mg | Iron: 0.8mg