Lima Bean Soup | This warm and comforting soup is the perfect one pot dinner, packed with lima beans and potatoes as a starchy base, full of flavourful vegetable broth and seasoned with dried herbs. The perfect hearty vegan soup to warm you up.
The best thing about this lima bean soup recipe is it’s one pot, so it’s really quick and simple. You can make this bean soup in 30-35 minutes. It’s also completely vegan! Wonderful for those seeking a wholesome yet hearty soup.
Have you ever wondered why soup is so comforting? It’s the combination of flavour, warmth and nourishment that makes us crave soup, especially when we’re under the weather.
Lima beans, the star of this vegan soup, are a protein and fibre rich legume, according to Healthline. When we have such nutritious ingredients at our disposal, it’s easy to create delicious and nourishing vegan and vegetarian recipes.
Potatoes provide a hearty substance to the lima bean soup. They’re similar in texture, both creamy and delicious. Despite being fairly low in calories, potatoes are quite filling, being a starchy vegetable.
If you love plant based soup, you’ll love Tomato Tofu Noodle Soup!
Canned or dried lima beans?
I use canned lima beans in this soup recipe for pure ease. They’re ready to be used and are soft, which is good, but because of how tightly packed they are in the can, some had broken apart. To avoid this, you could use dried lima beans. Just cook them according to their package instructions, then use them.
How to make flavourful vegan soup?
Vegan food can be bursting with flavour, just like any other food. The key to delicious recipes is building flavour every step of the way, with technique. For example, starting with a mirepoix, adding the herbs and seasonings straight away, and using flavours that work together.
Almost every good, flavourful soup starts with a mirepoix. A mirepoix is a mix of chopped celery, carrot, and onion. Saute the vegetables and get them nice and tender, they’ll work together to provide a flavourful base to the soup.
You’ll want to add the dried herbs in at the beginning, to wake them up and start flavouring everything from the get go. The biggest mistake most people make is adding herbs and seasonings once the broth is already in the pot. They won’t provide much flavour if they’re just boiled, so instead cook them from the start.
How do you make lima bean soup?
Starting with a mirepoix, a blend of onion, celery and carrot, is essential. Start by sauteeing them on medium heat in a bit of olive oil. You can add a splash or two of water to loosen them from the bottom of the pot and scrape up all that flavour.
Then, add the dried herbs, salt and pepper. It’s good to get them flavouring the soup from the get to. Finish cooking the vegetables with the herbs, then add the garlic and cook it until fragrant, about 20-30 seconds. Garlic cooks quickly and can burn easily so be careful.
Next, add the lima beans and potatoes. Stir into the mirepoix mixture, then add the broth. I use “chickenless” broth for its cozy flavour, but you can use any vegetable-based broth you have. Or make your own with stock powder and hot water, or real vegetables.
Add a bay leaf, then cover the pot with the lid. Bring the soup to a simmer, then you can leave the lid almost all the way on. Simmer the soup until you can easily pierce the potatoes with a fork, about 15-20 minutes depending on the potato size. I cut 1/2-inch cubes and it took about 15 minutes.
How can I thicken lima bean soup?
If you want a thicker soup instead of a brothy soup, you can puree some of the soup with an immersion blender. Or add it to a blender and blend until it reaches your desired consistency. Potatoes and lima beans, which are both creamy in texture, are great for thickening soups.
More about the ingredients in this recipe. The exact measurements are below.
Heat the oil in a large heavy bottom pan over medium heat. Once hot, add the celery, carrot, and onion (mirepoix).
Cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes or until the onion is just tender. Between stirring, you can add a splash of water to loosen the vegetable from the bottom of the pan.
Add the herbs, salt and pepper to the mirepoix and stir. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. The onion and celery should be soft. The carrot can cook more in the broth.
Add the garlic and stir into the mirepoix. Cook for 20-30 seconds, or until fragrant.
Add the lima beans and potatoes, and stir to combine all the ingredients.
Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Cover almost completely with a lid and let the soup simmer until you can easily pierce the potatoes with a fork. About 15 minutes.
Taste the soup and add more salt or pepper if needed. Ladle the soup into a bowl, and top with black pepper and a sprinkle of parsley. I like to serve soup with a slice of buttered bread, or a handful of whole grain crackers.
Tips for making lima bean soup
What to serve with bean soup
I always think soup is best served with a slice of bread, garlic bread, or some whole grain crackers.
Add some protein to the soup by adding tofu puffs, cubed tofu, or extra beans like white or pinto beans.
Enjoy the classic pairing of soup and a sandwich, by making my vegan cucumber sandwich.
For another easy potato dish, try Vegan Potato Curry!
Let the soup cool to room temperature, but don’t let it sit for more than two hours. Then transfer to an air tight container and store in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Or, freeze in freezer bags or an air tight container for up to 3 months.
To reheat a large batch, add the soup to a pot and heat on medium heat until hot, or microwave. You may need to add water to the soup if it thickens in the fridge.
To thaw frozen soup, transfer it to the fridge to thaw, place the freezer bag in a bowl of lukewarm or cold water or microwave it slowly, stirring in between.
You can thicken lima bean soup by lightly pureeing it with an immersion blender, resulting in a chunky, creamy bean soup.
Yes, you can freeze lima bean soup by storing it in freezer bags or an air tight container. To thaw, transfer to the fridge or if it’s in a bag, a bowl of lukewarm water.
Lima Bean Soup Recipe
- 1 heavy bottom pot
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ yellow onion chopped
- 3 celery stalks chopped
- 4 carrots chopped
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups lima beans canned and rinsed or dried and cooked
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 3-4 russet potatoes peeled and chopped
- Heat the olive oil in a large heavy bottom pot on medium heat.
- Add the celery, carrot and onion. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. The onion should be just tender. Add splashes of water before stirring to loosen the vegetables from the bottom of the pot.
- Add the thyme, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Stir into the vegetables and cook for another 2-3 minutes. The onion and celery should be softened.
- Add the garlic and cook for 20-30 seconds, or until fragrant. Be careful not to burn it.
- Add the potatoes and lima beans. Stir to mix all the ingredients together.
- Add the broth and stir. Bring the soup to a simmer with the lid almost covering the pot. Simmer the soup, stirring occasionally, until you can easily pierce the potatoes with a fork, about 15-20 minutes.
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