This 7-Ingredient Tuscan White Bean Soup is simple, hearty, surprisingly flavorful. It’s the perfect winter comfort food.
- 4 ounces pancetta or bacon, finely diced
- 1 small white onion, peeled and diced
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 8 cups good-quality chicken stock
- 4 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 large sprig fresh rosemary
- salt and freshly-ground black pepper
- (optional but highly recommended for serving: freshly-grated Parmesan, Italian bread)
- Heat pancetta (or bacon) in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Cook until crispy, stirring occasionally. Transfer the bacon to a separate plate, using a slotted spoon, reserving about 3 tablespoons of bacon grease in the stockpot. (Discard any extra grease, or you can substitute olive oil in place of the 3 tablespoons of bacon grease.)
- Add onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant, stirring occasionally.
- Add chicken stock, beans, bay leaf, rosemary and half of the cooked pancetta (or bacon). Stir to combine. Continue cooking the soup until it reaches a simmer. Then reduce heat to medium-low, cover partially, and let the soup simmer for 10-20 minutes so that the flavors will meld.
- Add salt and pepper to taste. (I definitely recommend a generous pinch or two of black pepper, and extra salt if needed, depending on your chicken stock.) Remove the bay leaf and rosemary.
- Serve warm, topped with the extra pancetta (or bacon). Garnish with Parmesan and serve with Italian bread if desired.