This creamy pumpkin black bean soup can be made easily from things you probably have in your pantry. It's a hearty soup recipe for busy days that is so satisfying and is made in 30 minutes in one pot. And it's one of the most shared soups recipe on my site. Enjoy!
This is the best soup for fall. It's a super easy bean and pumpkin soup made with pantry items so you can whip up a batch anytime.
All ingredients are readily available at the grocery store and easy to keep in the pantry.
- Black beans: Canned beans made this quick and easy, plus easy to keep on hand. Read labels and choose a low-sodium or no-sodium brand to keep salt low.
- Tomatoes: Canned diced tomatoes are fine here. If all you have is whole, split the tomatoes and scrape out some of the seeds.
- Pumpkin purée: Canned is what I use, get the puree not the pumpkin pie filling. That has added spices not needed in the soup.
- Broth of choice: Chicken, turkey, vegetable, beef, or turkey all work.
- Onion: For a savory depth or flavor, a must have ingredient in soups!
- Garlic cloves: Fresh is best, instead of chopping, great with a microplane zester. Works like a charm for fine fast garlic.
- Ground cumin: For a lightly lemony taste, terrific in Mexican, Southwestern and Mediterranean recipes. One of my can't-live-without spices.
- Paprika: I use smoked paprika, available at all stores. If you don't have it use regular paprika, but the smoked has a lovely flavor. Try it. It work great in chili and in your own dry rubs too.
- Pepper: For heat, use ground chipotle powder, which is dried, ground, smoked jalapeños. Swap red pepper flakes or a little cayenne.
See recipe card for measurements and any other ingredients. For homemade versus canned pumpkin, read how to cook your own pumpkin, from my friend Sally Vargas.
Rinse the black beans with cold water through a strainer, then puree the beans with the tomatoes and half of the broth in a blender or food processor. Next, cook onions and garlic slowly to release their sweetness and flavor. Add spices.
Stir in the bean mixture, the pumpkin, and the rest of the broth. Simmer about 15 minutes. That's it. If you want it extra smooth, blend again, in two batches.
Broth: Homemade or Purchased
Homemade or purchased? Homemade broth is best as you control what goes into it. You control the sodium and skip unnecessary additives. And the taste is better than canned or boxed. Make a big batch and freeze it in smaller containers for soups, stews, and risotto. It's really is worth the effort.
If you don't have time to make broth, check out the freezer section of your market for good frozen broths. There is one organic boxed brand that's pretty good, but it has 310mg of sodium per 1 cup. Whatever you purchase, read the ingredient labels carefully.
Sodium tip - If you use a broth with higher sodium, you may not need to add any salt to season. Taste your soup first.
If you have an Instant Pot, this chicken broth recipe and the vegetable broth are fast compared to bone broth.
Put out small bowls of grated Jack or Cheddar cheese, toasted or raw pumpkin seeds, sliced green onions or fresh chives, crushed tortilla chips, low fat sour cream, diced avocado, chopped fresh cilantro, and allow everyone to customize their soup.
For a nice finish, try a little dry sherry (optional), Balsamic vinegar, or sherry vinegar.
How to Thaw and Reheat
If its frozen (freezer notes in the recipe FAQ), start the thawing process by putting frozen containers into the refrigerator the day before serving. If it's not totally thawed when you want to reheat, place the container in a large pot or bowl of cold water and change the water every 30 minutes.
When it loosens up enough, pour into a pot and reheat on low heat with a lid. Stir and break up any frozen portions as you go. Heat through to serve.
How 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.
Love pumpkin? Try my pumpkin polenta with poached eggs for a hearty fall breakfast or breakfast-for-dinner option.
A grilled cheese sandwich or a tossed green salad make nice side dishes.
This soup freezes beautifully. I freeze in 3 cup portions in an airtight container (2 servings). A serving is 1 ½ cups per person.
This soup keeps well in the fridge for 4 days so you can make it ahead on the weekend and enjoy during the busy week. Make an extra batch
More Soup Recipes
How to cook your own pumpkin, from my friend Sally Vargas at Cooking Lessons
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Black Bean and Pumpkin Soup
- Large pot
- Strainer to rinse the beans
- Blender, food procesor or immersion blender to puree
- 2 15-ounce cans black beans rinsed and drained
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 3 cups low sodium broth chicken, turkey, or vegetable
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 3-4 garlic cloves chopped fine
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika or regular
- ½ teaspoon Sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon smoked black pepper or regular
- ¼ teaspoon ground chipotle pepper or more for more heat
- 1 15-ounce canned pumpkin puree not pie mix
- 2 -3 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar
- Grated Jack or Cheddar cheese
- Diced Tomato
- Dollop sour cream
- Chopped green onions and cilantro
- Sliced or mashed avocado
- Crispy tortilla strips make then yourself, see recipe on site
- Add drained beans, tomatoes and half of the broth to a large capacity blender and puree until smooth. If you have a smaller capacity blender do it in two batches.
- In a large saucepan heat olive oil over medium low heat. Add onion and cook until soft and fragrant, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add spices, stir and cook for 1-2 minutes more, until they bloom and you can smell them.
- Stir in black bean-tomato puree, pumpkin, and the rest of the broth. Simmer uncovered until blended and thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in vinegar and serve. For an extra smooth soup, give it one more whirl in the blender. Top with garnishes of choice.