Black Bean Pumpkin Soup

Black Bean and Pumpkin Soup

By Sally Cameron on October 16, 2012

beans, legumes & grains, soups, stews & chilies, the daniel plan, vegan, vegetarian,


In this busy season when days zoom by and temperatures drop, it’s de-stressing to have an easy, hearty soup recipe in your back pocket.

This satisfying soup is two soups in one; black bean soup and pumpkin soup. It can be made quickly from things you probably have in your pantry or freezer – canned black beans, canned pumpkin, canned tomatoes, onions and chicken  or vegetable broth.

Another benefit – the ingredients are nutritional powerhouses called “superfoods“; ingredients with high nutritional density.  So this soup is not just easy and fast, but super healthy.

Black Bean and Pumpkin Soup

Start by pureeing the rinsed, canned black beans, tomatoes and half of the broth in a blender.  Use either chicken, turkey or vegetable broth. Homemade is best, as you control what goes into it, like sodium and unnecessary additives. And the taste is the far better. Please, try making your own broth. Make a big batch and freeze it for soups. Its really worth the effort.

Cook onions and garlic slowly to release their sweetness and flavor. Add spices. Stir in the bean and tomato puree, pumpkin, the rest of the broth, then a little dry sherry (optional). Finish with a little Balsamic vinegar. Heat it up and enjoy!  This soup keeps well in the fridge for a 4 days.

Smoked Spices for a Flavor Twist

For a flavor twist, I use smoked spices – smoked paprika, smoked black pepper and smoked salt. If you can’t find them in your area, you can order them from Chef’s Warehouse at this link.

If you don’t have smoked spices, make the soup with the regular paprika, black pepper and salt. If you like smoky flavors, try the smoked spices. They work great in chili and to create your own dry rubs too.

Put out small bowls of grated low fat Jack or Cheddar cheese, sliced green onions, crushed tortilla chips, low fat sour cream, diced avocado, chopped cilantro and allow everyone to customize their soup with garnishes of choice.

As it’s a hearty soup, you can enjoy a big bowl on it’s own or a smaller bowl with a grilled cheese sandwich, chicken quesadilla or a tossed green salad for a bigger meal.

To Make The Web Design

To make the fun web design, here’s what to do. Use a thinned combination of low fat sour cream, yogurt, or as I did, a combination of yogurt and a little pumpkin puree thinned with water. It needs to be liquid enough to squeeze out and hold shape, but not too thin so it disappears in the soup. Use a funnel to pour the “cream” into a small squeeze bottle or plastic zip bag with a tiny corner snipped off. Start in the center and swirl circles outward. Next take a chopstick or something similar and pull streams out from the center to create a web. Practice on a small plate if you need to. This also works with many other sauces, especially dessert sauces for painting a pretty plate. Note – this recipe has been updated and re-posted from the original post in December 2010. 

Helpful links


How to cook your own pumpkin, from Sally Vargas at Cooking Lessons

Homemade rich turkey broth, vegetable broth, or chicken broth recipes


Leave a Comment
marla | October 17, 2012 at 5:34 am

Such a pretty fall soup Sally!

Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious | October 17, 2012 at 9:46 am

What a gorgeous soup! Will definitely have to try this!

Kate | October 17, 2012 at 10:52 am

Really unique. I like the sounds of black bean and pumpkin together! 🙂

Katie | October 17, 2012 at 11:16 am

What a beautiful photograph!

Alexa | October 17, 2012 at 11:25 am

This looks so good! I am definitely planning on making this with the fresh pumpkin I bought this weekend! I love your site- I’ll be subscribing!

Mary@SiftingFocus | October 17, 2012 at 1:07 pm

Sally, this recipe is my idea of a perfect soup. I’m visiting with my mom for a few days and I know she would love it too. I’m going to make it for her while I’m with her so we both can enjoy it.

sally | October 17, 2012 at 1:20 pm

Thanks Mary! Please let me know how you and she like it. It’s one of my favorites, plus so easy and healthy!

Carys | October 17, 2012 at 1:26 pm

This soup was a hit in our house! I saw your post on the Vita-mix facebook page and once I checked out the recipe I couldn’t get it out of my head so I whipped some up today and it did not disappoint! I added a bit of turmeric and omitted the onion because I don’t eat it. I served it up with left over rice mixed in, sliced avocado, a bit of sour cream and a sprinkle of cheese. We both loved it! Thanks for the recipe! I’ll have to check out your others!

Ryan in Colorado | October 17, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Fantastic soup… the only thing I added (beyond the avocado and the chipotle pepper cheddar) is about a cup or so of almond milk. I tend to like creamier soups and in an effort to stay away from dairy whenever possible, I went with a nut milk. I used my Vitamix and it turned out wonderfully– its a definite keeper!!! The wife loved it too and she is picky about soups!

Cathy Lawdanski | October 17, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Made this for lunch on this cold day. Topped with a 100 calorie pack of Wholly Guacamole. Delicious! I have been trying to incorporate more meatless dishes into our diet. I also do not like plain beans or their texture, so having a bean soup with pureed beans is wonderful!

Betsy @ Anna Nimmity | October 18, 2012 at 4:23 pm

This looks so good! I can’t wait to try it. Thanks!

Michelle | October 18, 2012 at 4:44 pm

This soup looks amazing and delicious! I would love for you to share this at my Creative Thursday link party. I can’t wait to try this recipe. Have a great weekend.

Carol | a cup of mascarpone | October 22, 2012 at 2:46 am

I adore black bean soup and pumpkin based soups, but have never had the two together! Why not? This sounds fabulous! I can’t wait to try it!

Kay Miller | October 22, 2012 at 11:39 am

Love this recipe! And how fun to add the “spider web” design for a festive meal. Need to make a trip to the grocery store today and have added these ingredients to the list. Can’t wait to try the finished product!

Jill | November 15, 2012 at 6:43 am

I came across this recipe on foodgawker and I have to say that I absolutely love it. I put extra chipotle pepper in there and it was just a tad too spicy but it is SO good. Thanks!

Jen | January 14, 2013 at 4:23 pm

Great soup, made today. I used whole chipotles blended with the beans and tomatoes. Wonderful recipe. Thank you!

maureen | January 15, 2013 at 8:52 am

Could you substitute butternut squash for the pumpkin?

    Sally | January 15, 2013 at 9:05 am

    Hi Maureen. I’ve not tried that yet. It will take a bit more time if you want to use fresh squash as it will have to be cooked then pureed. I use organic canned pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix). I saw organic pureed canned squash at Whole Foods just yesterday and thought about it! Try it and please comment back on how it came out. It should be good as both have a natural sweetness to them.

      Maureen | April 25, 2013 at 6:52 am

      Hi Sally….I finally made this soup with squash. Thanks for the tip about Whole Foods carrying the organic pureed can of squash. You are right about the natural sweetness. It was delish! Thanks for the recipe and the help tweaking it!

Sonja Reynolds | September 30, 2014 at 10:17 am

Great recipe – my entire family loved it (including my 7 month old!)

Two notes:
I sautéed the spices, then just added the rest of the ingredients.
I used an immersion blender after it was all cooked.

I used fresh (whole) tomatoes, and increased the pumpkin and decreased the beans.
(Doubled the recipe, used 3 cans each of pumpkin and beans).

Anna Lee | September 30, 2014 at 5:02 pm

Just made this and LOVE it! It has a really great taste to it. I couldn’t really taste the pumpkin, which is good for me because I’m not a huge fan. I bet some corn would be a great addition to it!

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