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Pinto Bean Soup

This Pinto Bean Soup has a savory broth with a variety of vegetables and nourishing pinto beans. Sausage adds a blast of flavor to this soup along with simple flavor enhancers and seasonings.

BONUS: This makes a great freezer meal!

A green Dutch oven filled with Pinto Bean Soup with a soup ladle in it and fresh parsley on the side.

This Pinto Bean Soup has instantly become one of my all-time favorite recipes. And that’s solely based on the taste. The bonus is that it’s a really budget-friendly recipe that is loaded with vegetables and nourishing pinto beans.

Sausage adds a ton of flavor to this soup, but ground turkey can be used for an even lighter version.

Are Pinto Beans Healthy

  • Pinto Beans are a great source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They’re also rich in various antioxidants.
  • Check out this article from Healthline for more detailed information regarding the health benefits of Pinto beans.

How to Make Pinto Bean Soup

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Cook and crumble the sausage over medium heat. Reserve 1 Tbsp. drippings. Remove the sausage and set aside.

Sauté the onions, carrots, and celery in the drippings and butter until softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute, then add the flour and cook for 2 minutes.

Cooked ground sausage with reserved drippings next to a pot with mirepoix.

Add the Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, seasonings, and beans. Add the chicken broth in splashes, and use a silicone spatula to “clean” the bottom of the pot to add more flavor to the soup.

Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover partially and simmer for 20 minutes.

Adding chicken broth to a pot with mirepoix and pinto beans with seasonings.

Add the sausage back to the soup and simmer for 15 more minutes. Add the spinach and let it wilt, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in heavy cream, if using. Transfer to serving bowls and serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

Add sausage and spinach to Pinto Bean Soup and stirring to combine.

Using Dry Pinto Beans

  • I like to use canned pinto beans for this soup simply due to the convenience of it, and the fact that the flavor is so good with them!
  • To use dried pinto beans: Rinse them and soak them. You can soak them overnight or submerge them in 2 inches of water. Bring them to a boil, then remove them from heat and let them sit for 1 hour.
  • Add them to the soup as outlined and bring back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Simmer the soup for 90 minutes or more, until the beans are tender and the broth has thickened.
  • Add the sausage during the last 10 minutes of cooking, as outlined, followed by the spinach at the end.

Other Canned Bean Options

  • Any variety of white canned beans is delicious in this soup, including Cannellini, Great Northern Beans, Small White Beans, and even Chickpeas can be used for this soup.

What to Add to Pinto Bean Soup

  • Frozen corn, peas, green beans, and even canned tomatoes make great additions to this soup. Fresh zucchini is a great option as well as freshly chopped kale or cabbage.
  • Ground beef, ground turkey, or ground chicken can be used as well, (although it’s hard to beat the flavor that sausage adds). 

Pro Tips

  • The Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and mustard powder can’t be tasted outright but act as flavor enhancers in this soup. The hot sauce doesn’t make it spicy. I use Frank’s Hot Sauce for this recipe. 
  • Jimmy Dean Regular Pork Sausage is my preferred sausage for this recipe, but any variety may be used. 
  • For even more flavor, add the rind from a block of Parmesan or Romano cheese when you add the broth and let it simmer and flavor the soup. If any remains at the end of cooking, it can be discarded.
  • The best way to ensure that you are able to get drippings is to move the sausage to one side of the pot when it’s about halfway done. Tilt the pot slightly to allow drippings to run down  and use a spoon to scoop it up and transfer it to a small ramekin. 
  • To control the sodium: Look for beans that have no salt added. You can also use low or no sodium broth.

Storage

  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. This soup freezes very well for future meals.

A soup bowl filled with Pinto Bean Soup with a spoon on the side.

Tools For This Recipe

(Amazon affiliate links)- Check out all of my kitchen essentials here.

  • 3.5 quart Dutch oven– this is what I use for this recipe. (Le Creuset is great quality, you’ll have it forever.)
  • Food Storage Containers– These are what I use, they fit exactly 1 cup and are leak proof, microwave safe, stackable, and BPA free.
  • Measuring Spoons I have these magnetic ones which stay nice and organized in my utensil drawer.
  • Pinch Bowls for measuring out seasonings ahead of time.
  • Chefs Knife– I have this one, it’s affordable but high quality.

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A soup pot filled with Pinto Bean Soup with a ladle and parsley on the side.

Pinto Bean Soup

5 from 12 ratings
This Pinto Bean Soup has a savory broth with a mixture of vegetables and nourishing pinto beans. Sausage adds a blast of flavor to this soup along with simple flavor enhancers and seasonings.

Ingredients

Seasonings

  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon mustard powder
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Soup

  • 1 pound ground Italian sausage, hot or mild
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • ½ cup carrots, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups spinach
  • 2 (15.5 oz.) cans Pinto Beans, drained but not rinsed
  • ¼ cup heavy cream, optional
  • For Serving
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional

Instructions

  • Note: The mustard powder and hot sauce are so subtle in this soup but help enhance the other flavors, so although you may be hesitant to add them, I highly recommend it!
  • Remove the casings from the sausage if you purchased links. Preheat a large pot over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook and crumble to break it apart. Once cooked halfway through, reduce heat to medium-low and cover partially. (This is the best way to ensure you get drippings). Continue to heat, stirring occasionally, until cooked through. It’ll take around 10-12 minutes total.
  • Set the sausage aside on a paper towel lined plate. Reserve 1 tablespoon drippings. (Butter can be used if you don’t have drippings.)
  • Add the drippings to the pot along with 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the diced onions, celery, and carrots and cook for 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes to remove the raw flour taste.
  • Add the hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, seasonings, and beans.
  • Add the chicken broth and use a silicone spatula to “clean” the bottom of the pot, this will add more flavor to the soup. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes, then add the sausage back. Simmer for 15 more minutes, then add the spinach and let it wilt for 2-3 minutes.
  • Stir in ¼ cup heavy cream if desired. Transfer to serving bowls and top with grated Parmesan cheese.

Notes

Pro Tips
  • See information in post above the recipe card for instructions on making this soup with dried pinto beans instead of canned.
  • The Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and mustard powder can't be tasted outright but act as flavor enhancers in this soup. The hot sauce doesn't make it spicy. I use Frank's Hot Sauce for this recipe.
  • Jimmy Dean Regular Pork Sausage is my preferred sausage for this recipe, but any variety may be used.
  • For even more flavor, add the rind from a block of Parmesan or Romano cheese when you add the broth and let it simmer and flavor the soup. If any remains at the end of cooking, it can be discarded. Note that this will add salt to the soup.
  • The best way to ensure that you are able to get drippings is to move the sausage to one side of the pot when it's about halfway done. Tilt the pot slightly to allow drippings to run down  and use a spoon to scoop it up and transfer it to a small ramekin.
  • To control the sodium: Look for beans that have no salt added and use low sodium chicken broth.

Storage
  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. This soup freezes very well for future meals.

Nutritional info below is per cup. There are approximately 9 cups of soup in this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 325kcal, Carbohydrates: 22g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 9g, Cholesterol: 47mg, Sodium: 713mg, Potassium: 655mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 2236IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 89mg, Iron: 3mg
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28 comments on “Pinto Bean Soup”

  1. This soup was wonderful, will definitely make again. The broth was so flavorful. And since I live alone, it made enough for 6 meals.

  2. This is one of my new favorite soups. Even with the amount of pinto beans in it my husband enjoyed it as well.

    • I am so happy to hear that Bri, I honestly can’t get enough of this soup either, I was surprised the first time at how much I loved it!! 😉 Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this review, I really appreciate it! -Stephanie

  3. what can I substitute for the mustard powder?

  4. Stephanie this soup was fabulous!!! I had a feeling I was gonna love it even before I made it and I was spot on. The only thing I messed up was totally my fault…..lol, I underestimated the opening on my bottle of hot sauce. Thought it was small where you could shake, but one shake and a waterfall came flying out! WOW my mouth is still smoking but it was worth it!

    • Lol that’s so funny about the hot sauce, I’ve definitely made that mistake before with lemon juice!🤣 I’m so happy you enjoyed the soup Danny, thanks so much for the great comments and for taking the time to leave a review!

  5. I left a review but needed to add this is the best broth/soup I have ever had..and I am fussy about soups!! I don’t need much sausage in the end but the Jimmy Dean regular sausage is really needed to devote flavor..and taking the time to get drippings is so worth it!!!!!! Thank you so much Stephanie, my favorite ….

    • You’re very welcome Margery, I’m so happy you enjoyed this soup so much! I’ve been obsessed with it, and Jimmy Dean Sausage is such a great choice. Thanks so much for the great comments and review!💖

  6. Very flavorful.. used my own homemade chicken stock……..jimmy Dean sausage..I got drippings!!!!!! Had organic baby spinach… veggies should cook a bit longer if you like tender carrots and celery. I added a chicken bouillon cube at end..I will make this again for sure!! A definite keeper, Thanks Stephanie!!

  7. So flavorful!

  8. Making this tomorrow. I’m so grateful for you! You inspire me to make dishes that I hadn’t thought of. Every recipe of yous that we’ve tried have been great.

  9. Made this today..it is so delicious! As you mentioned, I used lean turkey sausage to lighten it up, and added a Parmesan rind while simmering. Wow!! Lots of flavor! Will definitely be making again! Thanks for the recipe! 

  10. This soup so delicious , and so easy to make.

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